JZ Comment: If this is true – and Selena Kitt is a very well established author – EVERY author who uses Kindle Select should be reading this and following the subject very closely in the near future.
How are scammers making millions off Amazon? (And off any author enrolled in Amazon’s KDP Select program?)
It’s easy. So say
digital entrepreneurs scammers like Dave Koziel – who admits to outsourcing his material, he’s not an actual writer or anything. You see, all you have to do it just upload “books” stuffed to the gills with anything, even unrelated material (romance books, cookbooks, South Beach diet books, foreign language texts, any and everything you’ve got at your disposal) then use a click-bait link at the front of the book (something like “Click here to win a Kindle Fire!”) to take the reader directly to the very back. A German blog has detailed these tactics as well, although it seems the German Amazon store (much smaller than the U.S. one) is cracking down on this now…
Source: SCAMAZON – Amazon “Kindle Unlimited” Scammers Netting Millions
JZ added Comment: On March 14th Amazon posted the following ‘Global Announcement’ in response to this:
We have recently received a number of questions on topics such as TOC formatting and our policing of abuse and fraud among KDP publishers.
In many cases, putting a book’s Table of Contents (TOC) at the end of a book can create a poor experience for readers, and in general we suggest authors locate TOCs to the beginning of a book. If the formatting of a book results in a poor experience or genuine reader confusion, or is designed to unnaturally inflate sales or pages read, we will take action to remove titles and protect readers. That said, absent any other issues of quality, locating the TOC at the end of a book is not in itself outside of our guidelines.
Relatedly, some in the community have contacted us about the activities of a small minority of publishers who may attempt to inflate sales or pages read through the use of various techniques, such as adding unnecessary or confusing hyperlinks, misplacing the TOC or adding distracting content. We both actively police for this type of activity on our own as well as investigate when the community points out such abuse (thank you to those of you who have helped us in this regard). Any abuse we find results in the immediate suspension of a title. Some circumstances, including repeat offenses, will result in KDP account suspension. In any abuse cases, we will also remove related pages read from the allocation of the monthly KDP Select Global Fund.
We have updated the Kindle Guidelines to reflect the above. As you might expect, our guidelines – along with our processes to identify abuse — will continue to evolve. Our goal is to most effectively meet the needs of the many authors who so constructively support this community and Kindle readers.
The Kindle Direct Publishing Team