Saturday, May 19, 2018

#CockyGate and #NotMyClickFarm (From My Newsletter)



Normally I don't add information from my newsletter to the blog, but I felt this was an important message that all my readers needed to be aware of.  If you haven't already signed up, please do so.  This is copied verbatim from my letter. 

#CockyGate and #NotMyClickFarm (From My Newsletter
It's with my deepest regret that I tell you today I'm pulling my books from Kindle Unlimited.  This decision was well thought out, but I wanted to explain my reasoning and hopefully your understanding if you were using Kindle Unlimited to read my work.  If you read my blog, you'll remember the article I wrote concerning #Cockygate. To put it all in a nutshell, an author attempted to trademark the word cocky and was demanding authors removed any titles containing that word.  Recently, the author pulled her trademark (or it's marked for cancellation).

After that happened, obviously I was upset for all the authors who had their books altered, but something else came on it's heels.  Kindle Unlimited started deleting accounts without a valid claim to innocent authors, hinting that they were part of a click farm.  I've talked with several of these authors, and they were given no opportunity to plead their case.  Their books were removed and eventually their ability to publish on the Amazon platform.  You can read about one of those authors on my blog in my interview with Sophie Stern.  Hence the hashtag #NotMyClickFarm

After reading the email Amazon sent, and seeing that this wasn't an issue under her control, I made the decision to write Amazon and ask that my books be removed from the Kindle Unlimited program.  Sophie is no longer allowed to publish her books on Amazon, so she wasn't just booted from the Kindle Unlimited Program.  To me, that is a risk I wasn't willing to take.  I'll admit, I didn't even know "Click Farms" existed until a few weeks ago.  The last thing I want to do is have my books pulled from Amazon, so I took the safer route (I hope) and removed my books from that program.

What really bothers me is that it looks like Sophie's books "might" have been removed because a marketing company she used was either hacked or part of the problem.  I say might because I can only base that information on the email Amazon sent her warning that Kindle Unlimited authors were responsible for who they marketed with and if this type of problem arose from that. To be honest, I'm afraid to market my books at all now.  So, until I feel safe again, the only marketing I do will be in the form of this newsletter or via my social media links. 

I'm sorry for the long-winded letter, but I felt it was important that you understand why I felt the need to pull my books from the Kindle Unlimited program.  I understand that it's easier for some people (and more cost efficient) to get their reading material through the program, so I do apologize to anyone that is disappointed in my decision.  I try to keep my books reasonably priced because I understand that times are tough.  As always, I look forward to hearing your comments, and if you can't afford my work, let me know.  Most people that know me will tell you I do this for the love of sharing my books, not for the paycheck.  
Blogger Wordpress Gadgets
Animated Social Gadget - Blogger And Wordpress Tips