Amazon settles Kindle deletions for $170,000

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Amazon settles Kindle deletions for $170,000

Promises not to withdraw books in the future.

Amazon has paid US$150,000 (A$170,880) to settle two lawsuits following its ill-advised move in July to automatically withdraw two George Orwell books without telling users.

The company paid the cash to settle two cases, including that of one plaintiff who had lost his homework notes when the titles Nineteen Eighty-Four and Animal Farm were deleted from his Kindle.

Amazon withdrew the books after discovering that the books' publisher did not have the rights to the titles.

Court documents [PDF] revealed that Amazon paid the amount in a negotiated settlement without admitting responsibility.

However, the company did state that no more books will be withdrawn in the future without the user's consent.

The decision to withdraw the books was a PR disaster for Amazon, particularly in light of the titles involved.

Amazon founder Jeff Bezos has apologised, calling the move "stupid, thoughtless and painfully out of line with our principles".

Full details of the payments were not given, but it appears that a portion of the money will be paid to children's literacy charities.

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