Yet Another Reminder That You Don't Own Your Ebooks: B&N Nook Deletes Files, Blames User

from the poof-gone dept

Just as Barnes and Noble is updating the Nook, its ebook reader that hasn't gotten much traction, comes reports that of an upset customer who found that the Nook deleted all of his files, and when he complained to B&N, the company basically told him it was his fault and there was nothing it could do. While B&N was able to restore the ebooks, it could not restore anything else, not from B&N, such as his own documents and notes:
I tried to turn my Nook on this morning and it wouldn't turn on. Finally, it gave me a screen that said it was updating and that I needed to leave it be, so I did. When it had finished updating it had wiped all of the files off of my nook. When I reregister the device, the books from B&N will return, but everything, including documents not from B&N, has been deleted.

When I called technical support (1-800-THE-BOOK) to complain/make sure they were aware of the problem so that it wouldn't happen to other people, I was informed that this can happen when the device hasn't been updated in awhile. I asked if this was something they were trying to fix and I was blamed for the fact that everything had been wiped from my device because I had not been studiously updating the device. I asked if he understood how absurdly incompetent this was, my computer, after all, does not delete all my files because I don't update it for awhile. I was informed that my computer updates everyday, whereas I have apparently not updated my nook in a terribly long unspecified length of time, which was just too long and too many updates for it to handle without deleting all my files.
Amazon got in a lot of hot water years ago for deleting copies of an ebook. You would think Barnes & Noble would know better than to do the same.
Hide this

Thank you for reading this Techdirt post. With so many things competing for everyone’s attention these days, we really appreciate you giving us your time. We work hard every day to put quality content out there for our community.

Techdirt is one of the few remaining truly independent media outlets. We do not have a giant corporation behind us, and we rely heavily on our community to support us, in an age when advertisers are increasingly uninterested in sponsoring small, independent sites — especially a site like ours that is unwilling to pull punches in its reporting and analysis.

While other websites have resorted to paywalls, registration requirements, and increasingly annoying/intrusive advertising, we have always kept Techdirt open and available to anyone. But in order to continue doing so, we need your support. We offer a variety of ways for our readers to support us, from direct donations to special subscriptions and cool merchandise — and every little bit helps. Thank you.

–The Techdirt Team

Filed Under: ebooks, nook, ownership
Companies: barnes & noble


Reader Comments

Subscribe: RSS

View by: Time | Thread


  1. identicon
    Y.Y., 22 Dec 2011 @ 9:16pm

    Nook does nothing for customers..... Bad move for Nook buyers....

    This is what happened to me today. I wrote the below to their customer service email address. I have heard nothing from them.


    I just became a Nook customer for the first time and I had issues with a ebook purchased. I downloaded it into my ipad under your Nook ipad App.
    I was unable to open the the file so I deleted the book in hopes of re-downloading it to resolve any issues. (As this can occur with ipad apps as well.)
    I was then no longer able to access the book. Minutes thereafter, I searched under the website for Support and sope with your Nook Tier 1 Staff.
    The conversation was very disturbing. The first thing that I was informed was that I had to buy the book again. and when I confirmed, she says "yes."


    Only after mentioning that this may be an issue, I am informed that she will try to undelete and to wait an hour to access the book. When I deleted
    under Nook, I was given no warnings whatsoever that by deleting it under the library, I may be risking to have to purchase the book again. This is
    potentially a major lawsuit waiting for you guys at Nook. I am writing to you before I conduct myself in any other way. Please respond as to how
    Nook intends to fix this issue for future Nook customers.



    11:10:09 : (MY NAME): Initial Question/Comment: I bought this inline, downloaded it on my ipad nook app.. didn't load so I deleted it in the library... now I can't access it...

    11:10:14 : System: Welcome to the Barnes & Noble Chatroom.

    11:10:39 : System: Angelica has joined this session!

    11:10:39 : System: Connected with Angelica. Your Reference Number for this chat is 370195.

    11:10:44 : System: Thanks for joining us.

    11:11:00 : (MY NAME): hi

    11:11:05 : (MY NAME): can you help?

    11:11:28 : Angelica: Thank you for joining Barnes and Noble Digital Chat Support.

    11:12:14 : Angelica: As I understand, you are unable to open a book. Is that correct?

    11:12:15 : (MY NAME): just bought The Hospice Companion [NOOK Book] downloaded it once to the app library.... it didn't open so I deleted it in hopes of downloading it again... I can't

    11:12:45 : Angelica: I am sorry for the inconvenience, Yasushi. Let me assist you.

    11:13:00 : Angelica: With regard to your concern, where did you delete the book?

    11:13:14 : (MY NAME): in my ipad nook app

    11:13:23 : (MY NAME): under library

    11:14:05 : Angelica: Did you archive it or delete it?

    11:14:23 : (MY NAME): delete

    11:15:05 : Angelica: I see.

    11:16:20 : Angelica: What you've done is to permanently delete the book. In that case, you will need to repurchase it.

    11:16:43 : (MY NAME): so I have to pay for it again?

    11:17:25 : Angelica: Yes.

    11:18:04 : (MY NAME): you guys are crazy.... what's tech support for?

    11:18:33 : (MY NAME): I didn't get any warnings regarding this when I deleted

    11:19:49 : Angelica: I am still looking for the resolution, Yasushi.

    11:20:03 : Angelica: Let me see what we can do.

    11:21:43 : (MY NAME): I'm printing this conversation. This can lead to a major lawsuit for you guys by Nook customers. (This is not a threat remark) Apple customers can download their apps time after time once you purchase anything. I hope you have a better system....

    11:22:30 : Angelica: What I will do is to undelete this book, please try to open it again after an hour.

    11:22:47 : (MY NAME): okay... hopefully it works....

    11:22:55 : Angelica: Is there anything else I can help you with?

    11:23:24 : (MY NAME): we'll just have to wait an hour. What Tier level support are you by chance?

    11:24:10 : Angelica: We are Tier1.


    11:24:41 : (MY NAME): and your protocol is tell customers to repurchase the book?

    11:25:25 : Angelica: No, you'll just have to open it again.

    11:25:39 : (MY NAME) what's your agent number?

    11:26:09 : Angelica: You may just take note the session number 370195.

    11:26:40 : (MY NAME): I need to discuss this with someone in a higher Tier level. It's not your fault. The system they set up for you is inadequate.

    11:27:07 : Angelica: I understand, (MY NAME).

    11:27:43 : Angelica: Once I've already undelete the book, you'll just have to open it again. It will not cost you anything.

    11:27:59 : (MY NAME): There aren't enough warnings before people delete. Nook has been around long enough that there isn't an excuse for all this.

    11:28:34 : (MY NAME): what's the corporate IT's contact?

    11:28:50 : (MY NAME): email or phone

    11:29:30 : Angelica: Unfortunately, we don't have that information. But you can send an email to Service@barnesandnoble.com.

    11:30:02 : (MY NAME): okay, will do. I'll see where this leads to.

    11:30:15 : Angelica: Sure.

    11:30:20 : Angelica: Do you have any concern?

    11:30:23 : (MY NAME): merry Xmas

    11:30:34 : (MY NAME): plenty of concerns

    11:30:40 : Angelica: Thank you for contacting Barnes and Noble Digital Chat Support. Have a good night.

    11:31:00 : System: The session has ended!


    ********

    9:13PM PST I Checked my account only to find nothing..... Now I'm disturbed.

Add Your Comment

Have a Techdirt Account? Sign in now. Want one? Register here



Subscribe to the Techdirt Daily newsletter




Comment Options:

  • Use markdown. Use plain text.
  • Make this the First Word or Last Word. No thanks. (get credits or sign in to see balance)    
  • Remember name/email/url (set a cookie)

Follow Techdirt
Insider Shop - Show Your Support!

Essential Reading
Techdirt Deals
Report this ad  |  Hide Techdirt ads
Techdirt Insider Chat
Recent Stories

This site, like most other sites on the web, uses cookies. For more information, see our privacy policy. Got it
Close

Email This

This feature is only available to registered users. Register or sign in to use it.