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US buying Kindle book From UK?


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Showing 1-25 of 91 posts in this discussion
Initial post: Sep 2, 2012 11:53:10 AM PDT
How is it possible for a US registered Kindle device/user to buy a book only available on the Amazon UK site?

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 2, 2012 11:56:35 AM PDT
Jazzy_Jeff says:
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In reply to an earlier post on Sep 2, 2012 12:10:07 PM PDT
That's the type of help I'd expect from kids.

Posted on Sep 2, 2012 12:11:23 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 2, 2012 12:13:12 PM PDT
CBRetriever says:
actually, that's true - the other kindle stores are very restricted as to who can buy from them

ETA: here's who can buy from where: http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/help/customer/display.html/ref=hp_left_cn?ie=UTF8&nodeId=200829280#where

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 2, 2012 12:11:31 PM PDT
Jazzy_Jeff says:
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In reply to an earlier post on Sep 2, 2012 12:37:44 PM PDT
Anne Shirley says:
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In reply to an earlier post on Sep 2, 2012 1:26:07 PM PDT
I called Kindle support. They said I could deregister the Kindle and re-register with a UK domain address. The switch back.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 2, 2012 1:27:05 PM PDT
Jazzy_Jeff says:
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In reply to an earlier post on Sep 2, 2012 1:52:30 PM PDT
I won't. I'm not sure I trust the phone support.

Posted on Sep 2, 2012 2:13:52 PM PDT
Bixillarla says:
You have to be a UK resident with a UK address and credit card to purchase ebooks from the UK site. The reason is copyright laws, the books on the UK site can only be sold to UK residents. The publishers don't have the rights to sell outside the UK.

Same goes for the other regional Amazon sites.

Posted on Sep 2, 2012 2:49:43 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 2, 2012 2:50:15 PM PDT
Jazzy_Jeff says:
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Posted on Sep 2, 2012 3:51:37 PM PDT
Law? What are you talking about? I just was interested in a book.

Posted on Sep 2, 2012 3:52:56 PM PDT
Bix... thanks!!

Posted on Sep 2, 2012 4:14:53 PM PDT
GreyDay says:
I'm not sure about needing a credit card from that country. Lots of people don't have any credit cards registered to their Amazon account. They just use gift cards. I haven't heard anything about the law saying you have to be a citizen of a country to be able to buy books, only that the seller can only sell to people IN that country. No mention of how long you have to be in that country to qualify. I believe it is within the rules for people on vacation to temporarily change their residence to that country using their hotel as their address, buy a bunch of books, and then when they go home change back.

Or you could bypass the rules with a service like this: http://hidemyass.com/vpn/faq/

Posted on Sep 2, 2012 4:23:56 PM PDT
GreyDay says:
Isn't Bermuda a British Territory? Are Bermudans able to buy from Amazon. UK?

Posted on Sep 2, 2012 4:39:09 PM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 2, 2012 4:40:10 PM PDT
Cluny says:
The inability to legally purchase a book from amazon u.k. and canada (and vice versa) is frustrating. Especially when you start a book series that you love and don't realize that books in the middle of the series are unavailable for U.S and it is a series that should be read sequentially. This is makes pirated materials tempting ( I haven't, but under these circumstances being a crazed bookalcholic myself can understand motivation driving frustrated series readers to acquire by illegal means)

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 2, 2012 4:56:14 PM PDT
GreyDay says:
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In reply to an earlier post on Sep 2, 2012 10:46:12 PM PDT
CBRetriever says:
ETA: here's who can buy from where: http://www.amazon.co.uk/gp/help/customer/display.html/ref=hp_left_cn?ie=UTF8&nodeId=200829280#where

and this is the only one that says they can buy from amazon.co.uk:

United Kingdom and Channel Islands
If you are living in the United Kingdom or the Channel Islands you can purchase Kindle Touch, Kindle Touch 3G, Kindle and Kindle Keyboard 3G from Amazon.co.uk. You can purchase Kindle DX from Amazon.com.

Kindle content can be purchased from Amazon.co.uk.

also, the UK is the only country where the residents cannot shop at amazon.com for ebooks according to the linked page - people in France, Germany, Italy and Spain can still switch to http://amazon.com, but not UK residentsand bermuda is amazon.com and poor Saint Pierre and Miquelon which is a province of France can't buy kindles at all and must shop from amazon.com via PC

Posted on Sep 2, 2012 11:45:10 PM PDT
I don't know how much of the restriction is actual law (and whether the laws differ from country to country), how much is agreements between publishers and booksellers (or between publishers and publishers), and how much is just what combination of verifiable data is easiest for Amazon to use. Residency, unlike citizenship, is a somewhat hazy concept anyway; lots of people have multiple residences.

I sent Amazon an email recently asking for some clarification. In my case, I wasn't asking about the UK site; I'm a US resident with a US account at Amazon.com and wanted to know if, while I was vacationing in Canada, I could buy ebooks that are on Amazon.com but are available to Canada residents but not to US residents. I asked if it was allowed and, if so, how to do it. Here is the answer I got --

Hello,
Thanks for contacting Amazon.com.
I understand your concern regarding this issue.
I can confirm that you can buy Kindle books which are available for Canadian customers.
In order to access the books you need to update your home country displayed in the Kindle Store on the Manage Your Kindle Page (http://www.amazon.com/manageyourkindle). Choose "Country Settings" on the left side of the page. Click "Change" to edit your country of residence.

It all sounds too easy to be true, but I'll be visiting Canada in a couple of weeks, so I guess I'll add a gift card to my account before I go and then, when I've gotten there, I'll change my country and see if it works.

Using Google, I've been able to find Amazon pages with Kindle books that say they're not available to US customers, so I'm assuming that at least some of them are available to Canadians.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 3, 2012 6:04:13 AM PDT
Change country... that's what I was told.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 3, 2012 6:05:51 AM PDT
CBRetriever says:
but you do have to provide an address when you change country

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 3, 2012 6:12:58 AM PDT
Yes. Which would be bogus. I won't do that.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 3, 2012 6:14:37 AM PDT
Last edited by the author on Sep 3, 2012 6:15:13 AM PDT
CBRetriever says:
actually same here - I've had people suggest I leave my country set to the US, but since I've been living in France for almost 3 years, that feels like cheating to me - I'll wait and change it back when I return

Now, I could be tempted if I was sent to a kindle-free country...

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 4, 2012 6:29:24 AM PDT
Changing country works, and your temporary address while on holidays (vacationing, in Yank-speak) is fine to use. Prices, however, are still subject to your billing address's country and may be different to the price for the same book sold to a Canadian-billed address.

In reply to an earlier post on Sep 4, 2012 6:51:57 AM PDT
ppcsue says: "I don't know how much of the restriction is actual law (and whether the laws differ from country to country), how much is agreements between publishers and booksellers (or between publishers and publishers), and how much is just what combination of verifiable data is easiest for Amazon to use. Residency, unlike citizenship, is a somewhat hazy concept anyway; lots of people have multiple residences."

It's a combination of law and distribution rights. For physical goods things are very simple. Physical goods are considered distributed to the reseller and then customs (and import/export laws) come into play when a person in one country want's to buy a good sold in another country. Distribution rights and copyright law has always defined what physical books are available in what country. That's why you buy Harry Potter and the Sorcerers Stone from bookstores the US while you buy Harry Potter and the Philosophers Stone from bookstores in the UK. And to get the one not available to you in your country you have to import it.

Digitally distributed goods are more complicated because they can be stored anywhere in the world regardless of what country the actual reseller is in (a server storing the files can be in the US but the reseller located in Canada for example). They can also be instantly delivered to anywhere in the world and may or may not cross many country borders in the process. So countries around the world made new laws covering the sales of digitally distributed goods that define the country of distribution to be the physical location of the end purchaser rather than the location of the reseller.

So the combination of distribution rights that are negotiated between publishers in different countries (covered by copyright law) and the new laws defining distribution location for digitally distributed goods are the reason why Amazon is required to restrict what books are available to what customers based on their residence.
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Discussion in:  Kindle forum
Participants:  32
Total posts:  91
Initial post:  Sep 2, 2012
Latest post:  Jan 30, 2014

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