Chris Dawson thinks this: If you don't like buying online products only to have them remotely deleted without so much as a "have a nice day," ...
Don't buy a bloody Kindle!
Chris thinks that Amazon's terms of service create a contractual bar to any action against the company. I disagree.
Chris's post comes in response to a class action lawsuit filed by Justin Gawronksi and A. Bruguier, who claim to have suffered damages from Amazon's remote wiping of "1984." These complaints can be boring to read, so you gotta appreciate one that begins:
With an uncanny knack for irony, Amazon recently remotely deleted any traces of certain electronic copies of George Orwell’s “1984” and “Animal Farm” from customers’ Kindles and iPhones, thereby sending these books down Orwell’s so-called “memory hole.”
The key issue in the plaintiffs' complaint seems to me whether Amazon violated its terms of service.
Use of Digital Content. Upon your payment of the applicable fees set by Amazon, Amazon grants you the non-exclusive right to keep a permanent copy of the applicable Digital Content and to view, use, and display such Digital Content an unlimited number of times, solely on the Device or as authorized by Amazon as part of the Service and solely for your personal, non-commercial use. Digital Content will be deemed licensed to you by Amazon under this Agreement unless otherwise expressly provided by Amazon.
It's a nonexclusive right to a permanent copy. I don't see anything in this language that suggests that the permanence is revocable.
Of course the damages are nominal for any given user - perhaps just 99 cents. Or perhaps the cost of the whole Kindle. That's why it's a class action. But, no, I don't think it's a 'ridiculous' lawsuit.