Amazon Just Killed Off The Kindle’s BuzzJul 17th, 2009 | By James Lewin | Category: General
From the day it was released, people have recognized that the Kindle is crippled by compromises.
- We’ve learned that the Kindle is a failure as a new media platform;
- Amazon is turning off Kindle features to keep publishers happy; and that
- “Buying” a book for the Kindle is like Russian roulette.
A lot of people have been willing to ignore these things, though, because the Kindle demonstrated that ebook readers are now workable.
It looks like Amazon may have killed off the Kindle’s buzz as an ebook reader today, though, by remotely deleting hundreds of people’s books:
This morning, hundreds of Amazon Kindle owners awoke to discover that books by a certain famous author had mysteriously disappeared from their e-book readers. These were books that they had bought and paid forâ€”thought they owned.
But no, apparently the publisher changed its mind about offering an electronic edition, and apparently Amazon, whose business lives and dies by publisher happiness, caved. It electronically deleted all books by this author from peopleâ€™s Kindles and credited their accounts for the price.
It’s bad enough that Amazon is remotely deleting books that people thought they had bought – but the books happen to be the works of George Orwell – 1984 & Animal Farm.
What’s next – Fahrenheit 451?
It’s a public relations disaster for Amazon, resulting in headlines like Think You Own the Book You Bought for Your Kindle?Â You Don’t, Says Amazon and Whose Kindle Is It Anyway?
The tragedy of the Kindle is that it’s cutting edge technology designed to enforce the status quo of publishing – and nothing revolutionary is going to come out of that.
Back in 2007, we noted:
The Kindle doesnâ€™t make it easy for you to get Internet content; it isnâ€™t a new platform that you can easily publish content for; and it doesnâ€™t play well with the Web.
Now we know that the Kindle’s key feature – letting you buy ebooks – is broken.
The technology for ereaders is here, but we need something better than the Kindle.
And it looks like it’s not going to be coming from Amazon.