Monday, 20 February 2012

Amazon pulls the plug on MunaHacha Maive Nei?

The following is the correspondence I have had with amazon Kindle over their decision to withdraw MunaHacha Maive Nei? because it is in a language that they do not support.

What exactly is that supposed to mean? Does the decision indicate animosity towards ChiShona, and African languages in general? Even if that were the case, I am not sure this is something amazon would admit publicly.

This title has been selling a few copies a week since I published it last year. It has made money for amazon and for me. It is also a ground-breaking project; the first science fiction novel in ChiShona and the first ever ChiShona novel to appear as an ebook first before getting printed. Why pull the plug now?

I am gutted by amazon's decision, but I am exploring ways of getting around this. Just as I had jumped on Kindle as a route towards reaching my readers, bypassing the established and untenable publishing paradigm, I have to see if there are other means out there.


Kindle Direct Publishing

Feb 13 (7 days ago)

to me

Hello Masimba,

Thanks for your request to publish your book in chiShona. Although we don't currently support publishing in this language, we're continually working to expand the number of languages and titles that are available to our worldwide audience, and we’re excited that you want to offer your title.

Please check our forums periodically for updates on newly supported languages:

We're sorry we haven't been able to address your concerns to your satisfaction. We will not be able to offer any additional insight or action on these matters.

Thanks again for your interest in publishing on Kindle.


Susanne N.
Kindle Direct Publishing
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---- Original message: ----

Dear Amazon Kindle

I don't understand what you mean by "not supported". There have been
sufficient downloads from members of the book reading public to
demonstrate its potential. It is the first ever science-fiction novel
in chiShona, and the first novel in that language to appear as an
eBook first before going in to print.

I wonder why you have decided to pull the plug on a project that has
not harmed you in any way. Are you hostile to African languages?


On 2/9/12, Kindle Direct Publishing < wrote:

As part of our efforts to provide the best experience possible for customers in the Kindle store, we are taking this opportunity to notify you that your book(s) is in a language not currently supported by KDP. As a result, we will be removing your book(s) from the Kindle Store:
MunaHacha Maive Nei? (Swahili Edition)(ASIN:B0054GLXH4)
Please note that we are only accepting new submissions in English, German, French, Italian, Spanish and Portuguese at this time. The Kindle community is expanding quickly and we’re working to support titles in more languages in the months ahead. You can stay up to date on the latest Amazon KDP news
by visiting the link below:

We appreciate your understanding and cooperation in this matter.

Best regards,

Kindle Direct Publishing