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Amazon Kindle: A Contract Review

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Services, Inc., Amazon EU S.à.r.l., Amazon Services International, Inc., Amazon Serviços de Varejo do Brasil Ltda., and each other entity that directly or indirectly controls, is controlled by, or is under common control with any of those entities that joins as a party to the Kindle Contract (not that you will necessarily ever know which other entities so join).

You become bound by the Kindle Contract by using any part of the Kindle Program, whether or not you ever formally accept its terms.

Modification of the Kindle Contract

Unlike traditional print publishing contracts, the terms of the Kindle Contract can be changed at any time by Amazon in its sole discretion, and, with two exceptions, you are deemed to have been notified of (and to be bound by) those changes as soon as they are posted at http://kdp.amazon.com. You may or may not also be notified by email. If you disagree with any of the changes, your only recourse is to withdraw your book from publication via the Kindle Program.

The two exceptions are the Kindle Contract’s royalty and grant of rights provisions, changes to which become effective 30 days after posting on the website or after you accept them via click-through or by making additional books available through the Kindle Program. That’s right … if you make additional books available, whether or not you ever noticed the changes in the Kindle Contract, you are deemed to have accepted those changes.

Duration of the Kindle Contract

The Kindle Contract continues indefinitely until terminated by either party. Each party has the absolute right to terminate at any time, with or without good reason. Amazon has five business days after termination before it must stop selling your book. Following termination, Amazon has the right to continue to make your book available to those customers who purchased or borrowed it prior to termination.

Grant of Rights

“You grant to each Amazon party, throughout the term of this Agreement, a nonexclusive, irrevocable, right and license to distribute Digital Books, directly and through third-party distributors, in all digital formats by all digital distribution means available.” Subsequent language contradicts the “irrevocable,” and makes clear that you may withdraw your book from new sales through the Kindle Program at any time.

Copyright Ownership

You retain full copyright ownership of your book, subject only to the rights you have granted to Amazon, which are in most respects temporary in nature.

Minors

Minors are not allowed to publish their own books via the Kindle Program, although their parents or guardians may do so on their behalf.

No Multiple Accounts

Each person or entity is permitted to hold only one Kindle account, and false identities are prohibited. I imagine (but do not know) that a person is permitted to own several different corporations or LLCs, each of which could maintain a separate Kindle account.

Metadata and Advertisements

Amazon reserves the rights to (i) remove or modify all metadata and product descriptions for any reason, and (ii) remove all or any part of a book’s cover art for any reason, including in each case if it determines    

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