If you want to learn more about this issue via video or podcast, here are two things you can listen to.
A lovely youtuber named Daniel Greene decided to talk about the Audible issue in his video and it's a great watch. Please consider supporting this YouTuber and thank you so much for spreading awareness!
OR take a listen to the lovely Megan O'Russell's podcast discussing the issue: https://tinyurl.com/NotARental
Hello everyone! I have a very important issue to talk about that involves myself, authors, and narrators alike as well as you, the listener! Recently, many authors and narrators have seen a huge spike in returns for their audiobooks. This is because Audible is promoting to it's subscribers that they can "exchange" books whenever they feel like for whatever reason. The big issue with this, is that this is actually a return which means authors and narrators are losing tons of money and sales. Audible is ignoring this because they've already received your money from your subscription charge and now, they don't have to pay us royalties because it was a return. On top of that, the website I work through called acx.com to produce these audiobooks has been severely lacking in customer service, communication, banning promo codes, turtle paced quality checking times and sending to retail(it takes them months to quality check a book and then more to get the book out to retail), and so much more.
It takes so much money and time to produce one book. An author will at minimum spend $1000+ on having a book produced and even more for marketing. We narrators either spend a lot more time if we're editing ourselves AND narrating or we spend our own money to have books edited and proofed. It is a very challenging, time consuming, and expensive process. While we adore what we do, we have to be compensated for it. This is very wrong on many different levels and even though I am a small fish in the big wide open ocean that is audiobook narration, I still feel it is my duty to fight for fairness for all involved.
Our goal is to have the return policy adjusted so that it's fair and cannot be abused or promoted like a library. If they wish to treat the subscription like a library, then it needs to be adjusted so we are paid fairly for the work we've done. But it is SO unreasonable that people can listen to the whole book, return it, get a credit back and go get another book and wash, rinse, repeat. On top of THIS issue, acx.com is choosing not to be 100% transparent with our sales data regarding our books, especially when it comes to returns!! If you wish to be part of the fight, here are a few things you can do:
Please do not promote "exchanging" and "returning" to your friends or family. This is very damaging to narrators and authors and as said before, we lose out on a ton of money. This is our livelihood.
PLEASE PROMOTE this message. Let your friends know what Audible is doing and how poorly it's treating it's narrators and authors by promoting this. Encourage them to fight it too!
If you wish to tackle Audible/ACX on social media, we are using hashtags like #cancelaudible #audibleunfair #fairdeal4producersandrightsholders #audiblefairdeal and we are coming up with more.
Consider joining this facebook group: https://www.facebook.com/groups/fairdealwithaudible/about as it has the most information about this problem and what we're doing to combat it. It's also good to join to stay updated.
Last but not least, don't support Audible and go to other audiobook stores which I will happily list after this!
Audiobook Services/Stores we recommend:
Chirp - Great for those on a budget!
Apple - Very well known!
If you wish to be part of the fight, join the facebook group if you're able and read, read, read! Make sure to make audible aware of the wrong it's doing and support other audiobook stores and services until they straighten their act. This will be a long and hard fight, but it will be worth it! Here is another reason why this is so important. If a fulltime author who makes half of their income from audiobooks simply keeps having their books returned as it is now, they won't make enough to live off of NOR enough to have more audiobooks produced which means a lot less content to listen to.
It is so important for a number of reasons that we fight this! Thank you for reading this and thank you for your continued to support. I will continue to narrate audiobooks, but from here on out, I will be doing so through other means and I will be promoting other stores and services.
If you're more of a listener, take a listen to Megan O'Russell's podcast on this issue at https://tinyurl.com/NotARental
Take care friends! :)