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Thread: Can I give away free copies for reviews? (against Amazon TOS?)


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Permlink Replies: 16 - Pages: 2 [ 1 2 | Next ] - Last Post: Aug 21, 2012 4:36 PM Last Post By: oldblindog
jendiren

Posts: 8
Registered: 07/29/12
Can I give away free copies for reviews? (against Amazon TOS?)
Posted: Aug 20, 2012 5:48 PM
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Just to make sure, it isn't against Amazon TOS to give away free copies of my book for reviews, correct? Please respond.

(Do you have any favorite place to give away free copies of your book?)

Thanks in advance.
piwrit

Posts: 424
Registered: 04/18/12
Re: Can I give away free copies for reviews? (against Amazon TOS?)
Posted: Aug 20, 2012 7:33 PM   in response to: jendiren in response to: jendiren
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GoodReads.com will host a free giveaway of any physical book that has been registered for sale, ISBN. Have fun, get noticed.

piwrit
vlgallas

Posts: 2,504
Registered: 05/13/09
Re: Can I give away free copies for reviews? (against Amazon TOS?)
Posted: Aug 20, 2012 11:25 PM   in response to: jendiren in response to: jendiren
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If the book in question is enrolled in KDP Select, it does violate the TOS.
louisewise

Posts: 286
Registered: 03/12/11
Re: Can I give away free copies for reviews? (against Amazon TOS?)
Posted: Aug 21, 2012 1:17 AM   in response to: vlgallas in response to: vlgallas
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Where does it say that, Vigallas? I read it as you can't have your ebooks for sale anywhere other than Amazon, but giving them away (making them free, or sending PDFs for reviews aren't a problem). The paperbacks have no restriction and can be sold, reviewed, anything anywhere.
vlgallas

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Re: Can I give away free copies for reviews? (against Amazon TOS?)
Posted: Aug 21, 2012 1:43 AM   in response to: louisewise in response to: louisewise
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I wasn't referring to paperbacks. I do not believe that a digital edition of any type (Word, epub, PDF, whatever) can be sold or given free when a book is enrolled in KDP Select.

This is my belief. I do not recall if I read it somewhere or simply interpreted this from the TOS - probably both.

Perhaps someone else will weigh-in here?
alexlovat

Posts: 25
Registered: 01/26/12
Re: Can I give away free copies for reviews? (against Amazon TOS?)
Posted: Aug 21, 2012 1:58 AM   in response to: vlgallas in response to: vlgallas
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I think you might be confused. You cannot sell your book on other platforms, otherwise it will be pulled from the Select program, but my own book is enrolled in the program and the button that says "give as a gift" on the book's page works just fine, so I doubt it is against the terms to give it away, otherwise the button wouldn't be there at all. You can do whatever the hell you want with your book, as long as it's done with Amazon.

That's how I understand it anyway.
louisewise

Posts: 286
Registered: 03/12/11
Re: Can I give away free copies for reviews? (against Amazon TOS?)
Posted: Aug 21, 2012 2:36 AM   in response to: alexlovat in response to: alexlovat
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That's how I read it. Do what you like as long as you sell it through Ammy.
vlgallas

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Registered: 05/13/09
Re: Can I give away free copies for reviews? (against Amazon TOS?)
Posted: Aug 21, 2012 11:14 AM   in response to: alexlovat in response to: alexlovat
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I think you might be confused. You cannot sell your
book on other platforms, otherwise it will be pulled
from the Select program, but my own book is enrolled
in the program and the button that says "give as a
gift" on the book's page works just fine, so I doubt
it is against the terms to give it away, otherwise
the button wouldn't be there at all. You can do
whatever the hell you want with your book, as long as
it's done with Amazon.

That's how I understand it anyway.


The "give as a gift" button is for someone to purchase a gift card from Amazon for the amount of the book. The person given this gift can purchase your book or any another book. This has nothing at all to do with anything we are discussing.

I do not believe I am confused at all. So both you and lousewise think that you can give away free PDFs or reviews copies (digital copies) and it does NOT violate KDP Select terms? I disagree.
1001nightspress

Posts: 3,873
Registered: 12/11/11
Re: Can I give away free copies for reviews? (against Amazon TOS?)
Posted: Aug 21, 2012 11:28 AM   in response to: vlgallas in response to: vlgallas
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I think you can--give out review copies, I mean. Like to book bloggers and so on. Some of those sites only take review copies in advance of publication, even. But I suppose one could always email Amazon and ask.

You CAN have an excerpt up at your own site and on a reviewer's site--I asked about that, and got an answer. Has to be less than 10%, and should be marked as a "sample."
1001nightspress

Posts: 3,873
Registered: 12/11/11
Re: Can I give away free copies for reviews? (against Amazon TOS?)
Posted: Aug 21, 2012 11:34 AM   in response to: 1001nightspress in response to: 1001nightspress
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Reposted from a discussion on the Kindle boards:

  • * *

Regarding review copies, I asked them the following question.
Can we still provide free copies to reviewers if our books are in KDP select.

Their answer
You may enroll books in KDP Select that you provide for free to professional reviewers. If the reviewers are not professional reviewers, you may still send free copies for reviews, however you may not enroll the title in KDP Select.

  • * *

So... for professional reviewers (I gave one to Publishers Weekly, the author's university alumni magazine, and two respected book review sites, for example), it should be OK. For Aunt Margery, even if she's going to leave an "honest review" on Amazon for you, no.
atorreblewriter

Posts: 54
Registered: 08/14/12
Re: Can I give away free copies for reviews? (against Amazon TOS?)
Posted: Aug 21, 2012 12:09 PM   in response to: 1001nightspress in response to: 1001nightspress
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Great info Knight - thanks!

Just an FYI to the original poster - I was reading an authors' blog the other day, and she was upset because Amazon had pulled her book because they found out it was involved in a free giveaway on another site. They didn't just yank it from KDP Select - they took it off AZ completely. So somewhere, someone, is watching, so it is better to stick to the rules.

She was able to get it reposted, but it took some time.
vlgallas

Posts: 2,504
Registered: 05/13/09
Re: Can I give away free copies for reviews? (against Amazon TOS?)
Posted: Aug 21, 2012 12:39 PM   in response to: 1001nightspress in response to: 1001nightspress
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Thank you for the clarification. Though I consider it really important, I didn't email support as it is not an issue that I have. I have no books in Select. Also it usually takes 2-3 days for a response.

So professional reviewers only if the title is enrolled in Select. I knew you couldn't give away PDFs or there would be little benefit (or zero benefit) to Select for Amazon.

I had a couple of books in Select in past and actually had someone attempt to set me up on it. The person emailed via my blog and was willing to pay double or triple for a PDF. When I responded several times that I couldn't sell the particular book as I had a contract that only Amazon could sell it, the person begged. Yes, literally begged with around 4-6 "pretty please" statements and "what can I do?". I still have the emails (like 10 from the person in the exchange before I told her/him to take a hike) - and in the end she/he begged me to give a PDF copy since I couldn't sell one.

In past I did give a free PDF copy to a person with valid reasons for not being able to buy it. That weird email exchange was obviously initiated by someone that wanted to see my book removed. Hmmm... within a week a book that attempts to compete, written by an anonymous author (really just a marketer with little actual knowledge on the topic), was visible in the Kindle store and has ridden my book's coattails ever since.

Yes, life is full of traps. ;)
vlgallas

Posts: 2,504
Registered: 05/13/09
Re: Can I give away free copies for reviews? (against Amazon TOS?)
Posted: Aug 21, 2012 12:44 PM   in response to: atorreblewriter in response to: atorreblewriter
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Yup... and make no mistake, there can always be some deceitful competitor that will attempt a trap.

Hopefully "louisewise" revisits this thread.
1001nightspress

Posts: 3,873
Registered: 12/11/11
Re: Can I give away free copies for reviews? (against Amazon TOS?)
Posted: Aug 21, 2012 1:24 PM   in response to: vlgallas in response to: vlgallas
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Wow. That is something else!

You know, if people spent half the time and energy writing books as they did up- and down-voting reviews and making up duplicate profiles to respond to themselves in threads and all that stuff, they'd probably make more money. Though I suppose the antisocial behavior has other motivations than just profit.
vlgallas

Posts: 2,504
Registered: 05/13/09
Re: Can I give away free copies for reviews? (against Amazon TOS?)
Posted: Aug 21, 2012 2:42 PM   in response to: 1001nightspress in response to: 1001nightspress
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The timing was weird. For me enrolling the particular book in Select was a mistake anyway, but by mid-February it had served it's time. Other reasons I believe it is related to that marketer book (actually they created 3 books) is the enrollment in Select of each of their books, the use of parts of my title in each of their books' titles, and the weird website they send readers to.

One guy that read my book and emailed me with a related question reviewed the wrong book - he read my "Complete..." book and reviewed a different one. Then he reviewed their volume 1 book and left them a negative review, but stated it was a lot of info for the price. When he reviewed it, the price was $2.99 and went to $8.97 a couple of weeks later.

Also their blurb claimed 10 years in the business at first, but then was changed to "several years in the industry" after I warned about listening to marketers that claim a decade of experience, but really are anonymous marketers with little actual knowledge in a blog post.

One thing about it... I stopped promoting and marketing that book back in November of 2010, so now I also benefit from any marketing that the copycat marketers do as my books are visible in the "customers who bought this item also bought" panel for their books. Their advertising may sell their books, but it also sells mine. ;)
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