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Amazon Takes Action Against Alleged Kindle Direct Publishing Abuses

In a bold move to protect the integrity of its Kindle Direct Publishing (KDP) platform, Amazon has filed five arbitration demands with the American Arbitration Association against individuals and entities engaged in fraudulent activities. The allegations range from creating fake customer reviews and user accounts to employing schemes to inflate book rankings and royalties.

Details of the Arbitration Demands

A. Fraudulent Customer Reviews:

One arbitration demand targets an individual from the Philippines accused of operating a service that boosted the number of pages read in authors’ books using hundreds of fake Amazon customer accounts. This alleged service involved creating fake accounts, purchasing the books, and leaving positive reviews to increase the books’ rankings and sales. Notably, Amazon compensates authors participating in Kindle Unlimited and Kindle Owners’ Lending Library programs based on pages read.

B. Creation of Fake User Accounts:

Another arbitration demand accuses an individual of creating fake user accounts to purchase books and leave positive reviews to manipulate rankings and boost royalties. The individual allegedly utilized bots and scripts to automate the process of creating fake accounts and generating reviews.

C. Other Schemes to Increase Rankings and Royalties:

Amazon alleges that various individuals engaged in additional schemes to manipulate rankings and royalties, including:

  • Offering discounts or promotions exclusively to specific individuals or groups to artificially inflate sales.
  • Exchanging positive reviews for positive reviews with other authors or marketers.
  • Employing bots or scripts to generate fake customer reviews or manipulate the KDP system.

Amazon’s Response

Amazon emphasizes that the vast majority of authors and publishers using KDP are genuine and operate in good faith. However, the company acknowledges that a small minority engages in fraud to gain an unfair competitive advantage. Amazon’s actions reflect ongoing efforts to protect readers and authors from individuals violating terms of service and manipulating programs.

Legal Actions

Amazon is seeking injunctions to prevent the authors and publishers from continuing the alleged activities. The company is also pursuing attorney’s fees and financial damages to be determined through arbitration.

Previous Actions Against Platform Abuse

While these are the first cases involving KDP, Amazon has previously taken action against abuse of its online platforms, including fraudulent product reviews. The company’s terms of use stipulate binding arbitration as a remedy in disputes between the company and users.


Amazon’s arbitration demands against individuals and entities involved in KDP abuse demonstrate the company’s unwavering commitment to protecting readers and authors from fraudulent activities. Amazon aims to maintain a fair and competitive environment for genuine authors and publishers using the KDP platform.

As Amazon continues to crack down on platform abuse, it sends a clear message that fraudulent activities will not be tolerated. This decisive action serves as a reminder that maintaining a level playing field is crucial for fostering a thriving and ethical ecosystem for authors, readers, and the publishing industry as a whole.