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Old 10-04-2012, 04:14 AM   #16
joehunt
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I can't say for certain but I think the vendors have the gift card route partly so it is possible to circumvent geo-restrictions.
This is not correct.

Vendors which advertise their products as being usable worldwide (such as Amazon for example) cannot apply geo-restrictions on purchases, no matter what payment method.
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Old 10-04-2012, 04:14 AM   #17
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You really don't need gift cards, anymore. This is a cage with the doors left unlocked.

And as much as we love to blame the publishers, geographic restrictions are being imposed by authors (they sign with different publishers for different regions rather than giving one publisher worldwide rights). Assigning worldwide rights for English language editions would make more sense for the consumer, yes. But then US stores would have to start collecting EU VAT, for example. The devil is in the details, and it is a lot easier if they just leave the backdoor open.
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Old 10-04-2012, 04:28 AM   #18
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This is not correct.

Vendors which advertise their products as being usable worldwide (such as Amazon for example) cannot apply geo-restrictions on purchases, no matter what payment method.
There are many physical and digital goods on Amazon which are US only. All of them are clearly marked as such.

And, as I have discovered, quite a few ebooks are cheaper on Amazon's UK website. Also a significant number of books are available in ebook form in the UK but not in the US.

Anyway, the point being, while they are very strict on digital downloads for music, video, streaming services, etc, they make little effort to stop "out-of-country" purchases for e-books.
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Old 10-04-2012, 05:11 AM   #19
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Anyway, the point being, while they are very strict on digital downloads for music, video, streaming services, etc, they make little effort to stop "out-of-country" purchases for e-books.
I should have been clearer. I was referring to the Kindle, which is advertised as being usable worldwide. On the other hand, the Fire is advertised as US only.
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Old 10-04-2012, 05:27 AM   #20
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And while you can use the Kindle worldwide you can't purchase every eBook Amazon offers. Most of them you can buy with a credit card, but some you have to use the gift card route if you want it in your Kindle. That is what we usually refer to as geo-restrictions.
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Old 10-04-2012, 05:53 AM   #21
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I guess I need more coffee LOL! All my responses referred to Kindles/gift cards/geo restrictions.
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Old 10-04-2012, 06:38 AM   #22
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Your user data doesn't show any location, so we don't know from what vantage point you are responding. But if you access Amazon.com from outside the US with an account that is not established in the US som books will say "this item not available in your area", but if you enter a US address and pay with a gift card you can get access to that book. As I said earlier, I have no way of knowing, but I hope that Amazon is doing it that way out of concern for their overseas customers.
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Old 10-04-2012, 09:33 AM   #23
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Can I use an amazon.com giftcard (dollars) as a form of purchase on amazon.fr or .de, then? It sounds like this is what some of you have tried!
Also, I was wondering if I can gift a book bought in the US store to a non-US Kindle account. Has any of you tried this yet?

Joehunt, when you log in to a European amazon site with your US amazon login, it won't even show you the price for MP3s and ebooks, nor can you add any to our cart. You instead see a message that this type of content is not available in your country, and that you should visit amazon.com.
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Old 10-04-2012, 10:24 AM   #24
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Quote:
Originally Posted by xendula View Post
Can I use an amazon.com giftcard (dollars) as a form of purchase on amazon.fr or .de, then? It sounds like this is what some of you have tried!
Also, I was wondering if I can gift a book bought in the US store to a non-US Kindle account. Has any of you tried this yet?

Joehunt, when you log in to a European amazon site with your US amazon login, it won't even show you the price for MP3s and ebooks, nor can you add any to our cart. You instead see a message that this type of content is not available in your country, and that you should visit amazon.com.
Thanks - I didn't know this as I have a US Amazon account.

You can gift a book from the US store to a non-US Kindle account only if the book is available for sale in the recipient's country. Please note that the price you pay may be more than the price shown on the US sales page.
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Old 10-04-2012, 10:47 AM   #25
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Now this is where my guilty conscience kicks in, when I created the new account I hid my IP address and fill in an hotel address based in US. But I was surprised that I could sign in to the new account and purchased the books with the gift cards without an anonymous IP. Am I doing the right thing here? I'll try to replace the address and fill in with a virtual US address instead. Anyone knows where I could get one without paying an exorbitant fee?
On a side note I'm so happy I could finally purchase those books.
I do the same thing at amazon to buy US geo restricted books (I am in Canada). You don't even need to hide your ip address (as long as you download book to your computer and load to device from there) and I can use my cdn credit card for purchases. For an address I just did a search for an address in Montana (pick an address in Montana as they do not have a state sales tax, so you will not get tax added to the purchase price). Think I just used a university address or something similar.
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Old 10-04-2012, 10:51 AM   #26
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Your user data doesn't show any location, so we don't know from what vantage point you are responding. But if you access Amazon.com from outside the US with an account that is not established in the US som books will say "this item not available in your area", but if you enter a US address and pay with a gift card you can get access to that book. As I said earlier, I have no way of knowing, but I hope that Amazon is doing it that way out of concern for their overseas customers.
You don't even need to pay with a gift card. At least I don't. I can buy US books with my cdn credit card no problem. Do it all the time.

I just have an account on amazon.com - with both my canadian (for actual goods I need shipped to me) and a US address associated to my account. It is easy to switch between the 2 when shopping for kindle books.
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Old 10-04-2012, 11:32 AM   #27
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So I'm curious--before the geographic restrictions clamp down, I was able to buy ebooks at Waterstone's. If I buy a gift card and give a fake UK address, will I be able to buy ebooks from them again despite the fact that I live in the US? Because just casually going to the site, without ever logging in, it's got my IP address and knows I'm in the US and tells me I can't buy ebooks from them. And when I try using a free proxy server, clicking "add to basket" doesn't do a thing.
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Old 10-04-2012, 01:28 PM   #28
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Originally Posted by xendula View Post
Can I use an amazon.com giftcard (dollars) as a form of purchase on amazon.fr or .de, then? It sounds like this is what some of you have tried!
Also, I was wondering if I can gift a book bought in the US store to a non-US Kindle account. Has any of you tried this yet?

Joehunt, when you log in to a European amazon site with your US amazon login, it won't even show you the price for MP3s and ebooks, nor can you add any to our cart. You instead see a message that this type of content is not available in your country, and that you should visit amazon.com.
No. If you buy a giftcard at amazon.com, fr or de you can only redeem it in the same country you bought it.

But amazon concludes (or has done so in the past) that the adress of your credit card is your "real" adress and therefore geographic restrictions might (may?) apply: If a book is restricted to the US, you cannot pay with a credit card that is registered in the UK. But if you use a giftcard for payment, this adress check fails.
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Old 10-04-2012, 03:20 PM   #29
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But amazon concludes (or has done so in the past) that the adress of your credit card is your "real" adress and therefore geographic restrictions might (may?) apply: If a book is restricted to the US, you cannot pay with a credit card that is registered in the UK. But if you use a giftcard for payment, this adress check fails.
I buy books in the 'US' store from Canada using my Canadian credit card all the time. Have been for a number years now. Just need to change from my default cdn address to a US address - which amazon makes very easy to do.

The key is, you need to download the books to your computer and load from there. If you download directly to your kindle, Amazon will send you an email saying you are buying books outside of your 'registered' country.
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Old 10-04-2012, 09:15 PM   #30
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Thank you, foghat. I'll give that a shot as well then. I always thought that the address needed to match the credit card billing address.
So you are essentially only changing the country settings of your kindle account in "Manage your Kindle" back and forth, correct?

...
What I did in the past, was deregister my device and register it on my sister's German account when I wanted a French book (that's before they introduced georestrictions within the borders of the EU) then doing the same thing over again. The thing is that this way, your books end up in an archive folder - all of them, so it's not optimal. Also, registing and deregistering is a hassle, and now, I would not even be able to do this any more, because a German account won't let me shop on amazon.fr.

Last edited by xendula; 10-04-2012 at 11:36 PM.
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