I am always a work in progress... We never stop learning to master our craft.

Some of my favorite personal quotes..

"Everything I do, everything I am, all that I breathe is 18+ and will contain sexually suggestive material. ~ Gina Kincade 2011

"If you never have any expectations of other people then you will never be disappointed. When a positive experience occurs it is always a reason to rejoice." ~Gina Kincade, 2009

"I have learned, as a rule of thumb, never to ask whether you can do something. Say, instead, that you are doing it. Then fasten your seat belt. The most remarkable things follow." ~Julia Cameron

Saturday, January 7, 2017

Do Amazon Kindle Unlimited Page Reads FAIL Offline?

Do Amazon Kindle Unlimited Page Reads FAIL Offline? - The Zon refuses to acknowledge any such potential glitch.

Ever download a KU book and then take your device out of your home country or to the beach on vacation? Yes? Well then you may want to read this!

Did you know that even just a trip in the car where you have no online access can *trip* the KU page read fail.

Recently, starting October 18th, I had an opportunity to test my theory regarding KU page reads and offline access, and what I discovered likely won't shock many authors, but it certainly isn't paying them for pages read either.

While away from my home country in October I stumbled upon something you may find very interesting.

Ever try downloading a new KU book while not in your home country and get an error message? Yeah, me too, though with all the other stuff going on, figuring maybe it was simply a fluke, I pretty much let the issue lie until a couple of weeks ago.

So, KU royalties and page reads have seemed excessively low for months, which would be okay if it were just my books (I'm not so high on myself as to believe everyone loves my work) but I publish books for several other authors as well as high page count boxed sets, so it's not just me and this was further confirmed by recent reports showing a lack of page reads in books that otherwise sold quite well, which is exactly what prompted me to research this (yet another) potential KU page read glitch and I've now confirmed my theory.

A few weeks ago when I was headed out to one of my many full day medical trips I decided to test this newly discovered bit of glitchy information just a bit more.
Before leaving home I downloaded MY OWN KU book to my iPhone Kindle App (which has no data plan so it's wifi only), so we are talking the app here and not the kindle specific...yet.

Anyway, I purposely went to 3% in this 3k+ boxed set before leaving the house.  During the drive (passenger, of course) I slowly scrolled through the boxed set, reading some of the pages as I would any other book, just so I had some idea if my theory was correct or not. Fast Forward to five hours later: I returned home with the boxed set sitting at 83% now read (iPhone back on wifi) and checked the KU reads - no change. 24 hours later I checked again...and you guessed it - no change.

So, me being the type I am, I took my IPad the next trip (synced on all devices, right?) and picked up exactly where I'd left off on the book - so the sync part worked, at least - and I scrolled to the end of that boxed set on the iPad and then set myself up for another book, shorter but still KU, but didn't open the book until I was in the car where I then paged through the full book and started a third by another author, also a KU book. The third book didn't even show as read once I did hit an internet connection. (Thank you Tim Hortons hot spot)
That's right, 24 hours later neither book showed more than 1 page reads! Yup, that's right, almost 4000 pages not counted when I was OFFLINE. Nor did it update when my device was back online, ever.

So, readers, if you enjoy your KU books while relaxing on a beach (which IS your right for paying for this service) and you don't have an active internet connection, authors don't get paid.

Authors, for those of us who fly or drive from convention to convention, and for many of us that means away from our home country, the KU books you read while away from home don't get paid to your fellow author. For me personally, this is a heck of an amount of reading!

Now, of course, I went to Amazon with my concern about offline pages read and got the canned response of "of course the authors get paid" and there's nothing wrong with our service", and even when I asked for it to be escalated to a supervisor all I got was the "we will look into this further and get back to you."

Well, about a week later they did, and the response wasn't unexpected but it did piss me off because the almighty Zon refuses to admit they don't count offline page reads and their *service* only counts the last marked ONLINE location in the book.

So, in a nutshell, readers could read dozens of books while offline and on holiday and authors won't get paid for a single page read. But, of course, Amazon refuses to address this as an issue any more than they did the page flip feature. Ironic, huh?

Try it yourself and see what you find out. You can do it from the comfort of your own home simply by putting your eReader into airplane mode, thus extinguishing your online status for a while. Have fun and, please, feel free to tell me what you discover.
Maybe if more authors and readers knew about this glitch Amazon might actually address it, though I won't hold my breath.

***Note: My KU subscription is not used to inflate my own KU reads but rather to support my fellow authors enrolled in the program.
Occasionally, I do use the program to establish research on how effective Amazon's application of this program works. Not thrilled with what I find, usually.

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