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Amazon offers redelivery, $30 to users who owned '1984'

Amazon came under fire for wirelessly deleting copies of two George Orwell titles from the Kindle e-readers of customers. On Thursday, Amazon e-mailed customers an offer for redelivery of the titles or a $30 gift certificate.
Written by Andrew Nusca, Contributor on

Amazon came under fire this past July when it wirelessly deleted copies of two George Orwell titles -- 1984 and Animal Farm, ironically -- from the Kindle e-readers of some of its customers.

Needless to say, users were not pleased. (A sampling of the furor: Perlow; Kingsley-Hughes; Dawson; Blankenhorn; Diaz; Koman)

Amazon CEO Jeff Bezos eventually apologized for the incident, calling it "stupid, thoughtless, and painfully out of line with our principles."

On Thursday, Amazon made its actions louder than its words by e-mailing affected customers an offer to either return the deleted books or to give them a $30 Amazon gift certificate.

The full e-mail (via WSJ), after the jump:

Hello,

On July 23, 2009, Jeff Bezos, our Founder and CEO, made the following apology to our customers:

“This is an apology for the way we previously handled illegally sold copies of 1984 and other novels on Kindle. Our “solution” to the problem was stupid, thoughtless, and painfully out of line with our principles. It is wholly self-inflicted, and we deserve the criticism we’ve received. We will use the scar tissue from this painful mistake to help make better decisions going forward, ones that match our mission.

With deep apology to our customers,

Jeff Bezos Founder & CEO Amazon.com”

As you were one of the customers impacted by the removal of “Nineteen Eighty-Four” from your Kindle device in July of this year, we would like to offer you the option to have us re-deliver this book to your Kindle along with any annotations you made. You will not be charged for the book. If you do not wish to have us re-deliver the book to your Kindle, you can instead choose to receive an Amazon.com electronic gift certificate or check for $30.

Please email Kindle customer support at kindle-response@amazon.com to indicate your preference. If you prefer to receive a check, please also provide your mailing address.

We look forward to hearing from you.

Sincerely,

The Kindle Team

It's good to see Amazon did the right thing. I only wonder why it took so long (legal issues?).

No word on any resolution for the class action lawsuit Amazon is facing, filed in part on behalf of a student who said that the company rendered useless notes he had taken for a school assignment.

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