Author James Crawford has found some flaws in using Amazon’s Kindle Direct Publishing platform. After noticing a huge spike in downloads over night for his novel Blood Soaked & Contagious, he went to see what was going on with his book.
It turns out that Amazon dropped the price of his zombie novel to free, after finding the book cheaper on another site, as per the company’s terms. The problem is that Amazon was wrong about the other listing. Crawford explains what happened in his blog post: “The BN version is a free teaser of the first three chapters of the full novel, which is the one pictured in the Amazon clipping. KDP’s terms stipulate that they will change the price if they find the SAME work priced differently elsewhere. This isn’t what happened with me. They found something that is quite similar, asked no questions, and used their power to discount my novel 100%.”
Crawford has written to Amazon to point out the error and they have corrected the issue. The eBook is now on sale for $5.99. However, the company told him that they cannot pay royalties on the books sold while it was free. According to Crawford, that is 5,104 books.