Author Topic: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon  (Read 21864 times)  

Offline MPET87

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Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
« Reply #100 on: November 24, 2019, 07:54:09 am »
I'm in the same situation too. Acx sent the exact email to me.
Somebody told me that the problem could be my residency, as I live in Europe and not in one of the Countries admitted by the Acx contract.

Is there somebody, who received this mail, that has completed the tax form both on acx and kdp with US or Uk information?

This would be of extreme help to understand what's happening!!

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    Offline SusanMayWriter

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    Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
    « Reply #101 on: November 24, 2019, 07:51:06 pm »
    I'm in the same situation too. Acx sent the exact email to me.
    Somebody told me that the problem could be my residency, as I live in Europe and not in one of the Countries admitted by the Acx contract.

    Is there somebody, who received this mail, that has completed the tax form both on acx and kdp with US or Uk information?

    This would be of extreme help to understand what's happening!!

    I'm in Australia and I've completed all the tax forms and, for what it's worth, I don't believe it's us being outside the US or UK. I think they are referring to the person using the code being say in the US but having a UK account. In any case, I don't think it's that issue.

    I haven't heard anything since the "we are looking into it" email. But I will report back.

    Offline MPET87

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    Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
    « Reply #102 on: November 25, 2019, 01:02:10 am »
    I'm in Australia and I've completed all the tax forms and, for what it's worth, I don't believe it's us being outside the US or UK. I think they are referring to the person using the code being say in the US but having a UK account. In any case, I don't think it's that issue.

    I haven't heard anything since the "we are looking into it" email. But I will report back.

    Thank you.

    I'm asking because no one living in one of those countries, until now, has reported this issue.

    So I'm trying to understand if that's at least a part of the problem.

    I wrote to ACX, but they are not answering.

    Offline SusanMayWriter

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    Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
    « Reply #103 on: November 25, 2019, 01:33:33 am »
    Thank you.

    I'm asking because no one living in one of those countries, until now, has reported this issue.

    So I'm trying to understand if that's at least a part of the problem.

    I wrote to ACX, but they are not answering.

    I'll report back once I've heard more. But I really don't think it is that. If it was, then they'd remove our account completely and unpublish our books. It's very rude of them not to tell us what it is, so we don't have to guess. :(

    Offline MPET87

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    Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
    « Reply #104 on: November 25, 2019, 06:24:53 am »
    I'll report back once I've heard more. But I really don't think it is that. If it was, then they'd remove our account completely and unpublish our books. It's very rude of them not to tell us what it is, so we don't have to guess. :(

    I agree, very rude. But I also know this is common with Amazon.

    According to the contract, they should remove the account and unpublish the books. But I know a lot of publishers in this situation, and if ACX removed all their books, it would have determined damage for them. It's the only explanation I gave to myself so far.

    Offline Asteroth

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    Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
    « Reply #105 on: November 25, 2019, 08:33:05 am »
    Nice write up here - https://accrispin.blogspot.com/2019/11/issues-at-audible-acx-attempted-rights-fraud.html

    I am a US citizen, pay US taxes, have a US address and bank account despite being in the Czech Republic at the moment.... but if it were where I lived - why not just say so?
    G. Michael Vasey

    Offline Aaronhodges

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    Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
    « Reply #106 on: November 28, 2019, 07:25:40 am »
    Ok based on the latest information about the scammers using fake/duplicate books to get the promo codes, I have a new theory. It might be related to boxsets after all. I know I didn't really keep track of which of my subscribers received which codes, but I'm willing to bet a few that only got one or two of the books of my trilogies might have also asked for a code for the boxset when it came out. That would essentially mean the same person was redeeming different codes for the same book.
    Even considering this, I doubt it was more than a handful of people since I offered each of the books individually long before the full trilogy came out in audio.

    Offline SusanMayWriter

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    Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
    « Reply #107 on: November 28, 2019, 07:28:04 pm »
    Ok based on the latest information about the scammers using fake/duplicate books to get the promo codes, I have a new theory. It might be related to boxsets after all. I know I didn't really keep track of which of my subscribers received which codes, but I'm willing to bet a few that only got one or two of the books of my trilogies might have also asked for a code for the boxset when it came out. That would essentially mean the same person was redeeming different codes for the same book.
    Even considering this, I doubt it was more than a handful of people since I offered each of the books individually long before the full trilogy came out in audio.

    I don't think it's that because some people don't have boxsets and also some had never even published an audiobook or given out codes. But I've been meaning to post some further information. I'm now in this very interesting FAcebook group, which is mostly the narrators talking but authors are welcome.

    This scam with audiocodes is so big now, I can't believe it. So the narrators are constantly receiving messages from Rights Holders (RH) offering them jobs to do these short books. They tell them that if the book comes in under 3 hours, which is the next jump point for a higher royalty, that they need to speak slower so it's three hours minimum.

    One I just read about was someone offering 7 books to narrate at around 3 hours each, which would equate to 21 hours total and they wanted to offer them $550 for the lot. They also said that there will be errors in the text and could the narrator just correct errors as they narrated. So, this even at $50 per finished hour, should be $1,050. Then the RH tells them that they could join their team and there's plenty more work. They even ask for the narrator's codes to use.

    In this post, the other narrators told this one to run for the hills, that this was a scammer, and that the other give away is that the RH's English isn't great. Several mentioned that they'd received the identical message and the one thing they all had in common was that they were narrators who were either new or had just updated their profiles, so in a search apparently at the $50 rate, they come up first. So the scammers are looking for inexperienced people to get their foot in the door to do these narrations.

    Another narrator commented that they had an author back out of the narration after they'd done it because they'd lost their codes. Now why would you back out when you can still sell the book? And another asked if the narrator could redo their title and pen name intro as they needed to create a new ACX account and switch it over. Clearly they've had their account pulled down.

    One narrator said that a book they had narrated has been held up for 6 weeks now because they are under investigation and then a bunch chimed in to steer clear of books around the 3 hour mark, that that will send a red flag to ACX. Now I've put up two books in the last few months that are novellas and they are just over 3 hours. However, they've been ebooks for years and I have many novels in audible and as ebooks. But it could be an audible close to the three hour mark might be a red flag. I'd be interested to hear if anyone else has a three hour audible.

    These scammers are just cockroaches. The narrators call them code farmers.  Just makes my blood boil. They were in the KDP pot and probably are still there and now they've been in the ACX pot and seem to have been for a while. And they're teaching others to do it. And we get caught up in their scam as innocent bystanders. Not to mention, we are losing money from the pot to non-legitimate 'authors' and code farming downloads that aren't even real listeners.

    On another note, I haven't heard back from the executive service person who was investigating my issue with codes, so I'll follow up today. Anyone else got news?

    Offline MPET87

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    Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
    « Reply #108 on: November 29, 2019, 12:23:33 am »
    I'd be interested to hear if anyone else has a three hour audible.

    I do. I have 4; each one is between 3 and 4 hours, depending on various factors, like content, reading pace, etc.

    All the books are between 25k and 30k words, so it's normal for a narrator who reads at an average speed to get at 3 hours of narration.

    I'd say that the narration time shouldn't be a trigger. Sometimes I get narrators reading at a speed which makes ununderstandable my book, so I have to ask to slow down a bit.

    Moreover, I'd say that if the only way ACX gives us to promote our book and get reviews are the promo codes, they shouldn't remove the tool accusing us of the use of it. Doing so, they are creating second-level users who cannot compete with users that can promote their books.

    Remember, that's the purpose of providing codes, which can be supplied to professional reviewers. I can't see the scam. Nobody told ACX to pay redeemed codes.

    Offline SusanMayWriter

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    Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
    « Reply #109 on: November 29, 2019, 03:49:26 am »
    I do. I have 4; each one is between 3 and 4 hours, depending on various factors, like content, reading pace, etc.

    All the books are between 25k and 30k words, so it's normal for a narrator who reads at an average speed to get at 3 hours of narration.

    I'd say that the narration time shouldn't be a trigger. Sometimes I get narrators reading at a speed which makes ununderstandable my book, so I have to ask to slow down a bit.

    Moreover, I'd say that if the only way ACX gives us to promote our book and get reviews are the promo codes, they shouldn't remove the tool accusing us of the use of it. Doing so, they are creating second-level users who cannot compete with users that can promote their books.

    Remember, that's the purpose of providing codes, which can be supplied to professional reviewers. I can't see the scam. Nobody told ACX to pay redeemed codes.

    Im just saying that maybe the trigger that threw us up as scammers because thats one of there M.Os. Of course, its a legit thing to have a 3 hour book but what the scammers do is make a book as cheap as possible just to get the codes & farm them. They are not audibles they are making to sell, thus they dont care about quality. They dont even audition their narrators. Im just trying to find out if having a 3 hour  odd audible is the connection.

    Offline Aaronhodges

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    Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
    « Reply #110 on: November 29, 2019, 07:20:16 am »
    All my audiobooks are 9+ hours haha, so not the issue with me!

    Offline SusanMayWriter

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    Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
    « Reply #111 on: November 29, 2019, 03:03:09 pm »
    All my audiobooks are 9+ hours haha, so not the issue with me!

    Well there goes that theory. Lol

    Offline Night

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    Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
    « Reply #112 on: December 01, 2019, 03:03:13 am »
    Nice write up here - https://accrispin.blogspot.com/2019/11/issues-at-audible-acx-attempted-rights-fraud.html

    I am a US citizen, pay US taxes, have a US address and bank account despite being in the Czech Republic at the moment.... but if it were where I lived - why not just say so?
    Hello Asteroth and hello averybody.
    May I ask you a question? How did ACX now you actually live in Czech Republic? Did you declared it during your registration to the platform or in the tax interview?

    Thank you very much

    Offline Jane Killick

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    Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
    « Reply #113 on: December 04, 2019, 08:44:43 am »
    On another note, I joined a FB group my narrator suggested. It's mainly narrator's discussing stuff but authors are in there. It's a window into the other side and you can easily get waylaid reading all the posts. Boy, some authors are not kind to their narrators or really expect too much. Anyway this is it: https://www.facebook.com/groups/ACXNarratorsProducers/

    Hi Susan! I have tried to join this group, but more than a week later and I've heard nothing from them. Any insights? I said I am an author with a radio background who is planning to narrate my own audiobooks.

    Sorry for being slightly off topic...

    Offline KevinH

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    Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
    « Reply #114 on: December 05, 2019, 05:44:23 am »
    Hi Susan! I have tried to join this group, but more than a week later and I've heard nothing from them. Any insights? I said I am an author with a radio background who is planning to narrate my own audiobooks.

    Sorry for being slightly off topic...

    I believe that FB page is run by Jeffrey Kafer, who frequents KBoards quite a bit. You might try shooting him a PM.

    Offline SusanMayWriter

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    Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
    « Reply #115 on: December 05, 2019, 06:12:40 am »
    Hi Susan! I have tried to join this group, but more than a week later and I've heard nothing from them. Any insights? I said I am an author with a radio background who is planning to narrate my own audiobooks.

    Sorry for being slightly off topic...

    Hi Jane,

    Sorry for late reply. Just message him again. It took me a couple of goes. The questions you have to answer I think sometimes don't go through. If you don't get in in the next couple of days, let me know and I'll message the moderator for you. :) The gentleman's name is Don Baarns.

    Offline andzol

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    Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
    « Reply #116 on: December 16, 2019, 06:32:08 am »
    Hello Guys,

    I read part of this thread and I have no idea how to use ACX promo codes properly.

    A couple of questions still stuck into my mind:
    - Could anyone use the promo codes to redeem books other than it was published with?
    - How scammer exploit promo codes?

    I think I will use on my own and trusted spaces only. I will also ask for an email, from everybody whoever asks a code.

    A will follow this thread. 

    Zoltan Andrejkovics

    Offline EmparentingMom

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    Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
    « Reply #117 on: December 29, 2019, 05:44:36 am »
    I have some news to report. My wonderful narrator has been in contact with her contacts at ACX, who are very high up. So I received an email, personally addressed from someone in the Audible Executive Care team. They opened a ticket for me and promised to look into it and get back to me as soon as possible.
    Hi, has anyone heard back after receiving such an email? I got one too, but haven't heard anything since then....

    Offline JeffOYB

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    Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
    « Reply #118 on: December 29, 2019, 06:38:36 am »
    Hi... I started a thread a couple days ago about Advantage -- the print publisher's side of Amazon. The same thing is happening to me there.

    I did nothing to warrant what is happening. Indeed, there was nothing possible for me to do. From what I can see about this Promo Code stuff, you're in the same boat.

    I'm just starting in ACX myself and I just uploaded my first audiobook. I don't recall a fee involved. Advantage is $99/year.

    The main benefit of Advantage is Amazon keeps at least 1 copy of a book in stock and can ship it. They've stopped keeping stock of many of my titles. I pay for them to stock my titles. Only possible conclusion: they're stealing my fee from me. And, bizarrely, they're preventing themselves from being themselves: stocking my books is how they make $ ! It's crazy: they make 55% of every copy they sell. They're only hurting themselves -- unless somehow this part of their company is losing $? If so, they should simply cancel it.

    I've been messaging them for months. Every reply from about 50 staffers so far has been literally a lie. They also say they are "researching the issue." Of course, they are not. There is nothing to research.

    I've been told there's an ordering freeze on my account. I look at it: there is no freeze. I question whether any of you are banned because of this promo code thing. In fact, I question whether you're actually banned. If your acc't doesn't have a note about that, it's not true. Some staffer can't tell you this or that. Also, if one might be in violation of something you'd receive a warning within your acc't and an explanation. That's how business works. I suspect that because this is data-work that you cannot be in violation regarding these codes. They are data that can be used as data and all such use that functions seems likely to be allowable. They wouldn't design the codes so they'd work in an undesirable way.

    I've had staffers tell me there's a freeze and they removed it and I should soon get orders. Nothing has happened. I say there is no freeze, no removing, no nothing. Something else is happening.

    I've been an Advantage member since it started, sold thousands of units. This craziness started w/in the last year.

    I've escalated my situation and I still get the same run-around.

    I just asked to be escalated up from that Executive level.

    (I've also been on eBay since it started. I've had surprises there as well but in each case they were explained and I got redress. It all actually made sense to a degree.)

    I am quickly acting on all my options. I think we should Class Action this thing across as many topic areas as we can. How many customers are they doing this to?
    « Last Edit: December 29, 2019, 07:53:35 am by JeffOYB »

    Offline JeffOYB

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    Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
    « Reply #119 on: December 30, 2019, 04:22:19 pm »
    Hmmm... No interest?

    I note that I am proceeding very aggressively on resolving this situation. If anyone wants to get in on the solution, let me know.

    Offline SusanMayWriter

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    Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
    « Reply #120 on: December 31, 2019, 06:41:23 am »
    Hi, has anyone heard back after receiving such an email? I got one too, but haven't heard anything since then....

    Im afraid that despite receiving a positive email as I said saying they were looking into it, nothing from them.

    Ive emailed several times but no reply. So darn rude of them. Its been more than six weeks & theyve diane nothing. Yet, I see from comments in the narrators Facebook group that the scammers & code farmers have seemingly increased & having a lovely time. All I can say is to keep emailing & callling, and if anyone does get anywhere please let us know here.

    Offline MMSN

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    Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
    « Reply #121 on: December 31, 2019, 11:05:19 pm »
    Susan-- ACX/Audible has put out a video where Senior Director Christina Harcar says she is responsible for trying new things, and if they don't work, making them go away. To me, this sounds like a Troubleshooter. You may want to SNAIL MAIL her a letter of your predicament.
    Audible's address: 1 Washington Park, 16th Floor Newark, NJ 07102, Attn: Legal Department,Fax: 973.820. 0505

    Offline SusanMayWriter

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    Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
    « Reply #122 on: January 02, 2020, 06:52:07 am »
    Susan-- ACX/Audible has put out a video where Senior Director Christina Harcar says she is responsible for trying new things, and if they don't work, making them go away. To me, this sounds like a Troubleshooter. You may want to SNAIL MAIL her a letter of your predicament.
    Audible's address: 1 Washington Park, 16th Floor Newark, NJ 07102, Attn: Legal Department,Fax: 973.820. 0505

    Thank you so much. Ill definitely look into that as another avenue.

    Offline Aaronhodges

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    Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
    « Reply #123 on: January 13, 2020, 08:18:11 am »
    Anyone had any updates from ACX? :/

    Offline starkllr

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    Re: Author Beware: My ACX Nightmare with Amazon
    « Reply #124 on: January 13, 2020, 09:35:29 am »
    I read part of this thread and I have no idea how to use ACX promo codes properly.

    A couple of questions still stuck into my mind:
    - Could anyone use the promo codes to redeem books other than it was published with?
    - How scammer exploit promo codes?


    Before the change to the new promo code system last fell, you could redeem any audiobook with a promo code.  You'd shop on Audible, add the audiobook to your cart, and then enter the code at the end to "pay" for it.

    Now, the code is very specifically tied to the book.  You don't go to the book's page and add it to your cart, you go to the promo code redemption page, enter your code, and then the book shows up in your cart and it's "paid" for with that code. 

    I suppose you could return the book later and get an Audible credit back to use on something else, but i don't know if that actually works or not.

     
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