Spotify has purchased Findaway Voices, the audiobook production platform that ran Authors Direct as a storefront. Now, Spotify is closing and discontinuing Authors Direct so audiobooks will only be offered on Spotify itself. But what does it mean for listeners?
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What does this mean for Authors Direct customers?
According to an email from Spotify, customers who own audiobooks from Authors Direct will automatically receive an email with an audiobook code for Spotify. If an author makes their audiobook available on Spotify, Authors Direct customers will now own the audiobook on Spotify.
You don’t need a paid Spotify account for this, but you will need a free one, as well as the Spotify app.
This also means that if an author decides not to offer their audiobooks on Spotify, Authors Direct customers will end up with nothing.
Is this legal? Sadly, yes. This is Digital Rights Management and is something you agree to somewhere in the Terms of Service whenever you “buy” an audiobook from a store that forces you to use their own app to listen to the audiobook.
The Authors Direct store will close for purchases on April 14, and the app will be removed from stores on June 5.
Somewhere around this time, you also won’t be able to download any audiobooks in the Authors Direct app anymore.
However, if you have the Authors Direct app installed on your phone now and have audiobooks downloaded, I’m sure that Spotify won’t touch those.
Audible has something built into their app with which they can block your access to audiobooks you have downloaded. But I doubt Spotify will make the effort of implementing a function like that.
If something happens to your phone, your audiobooks will be gone though. So, this is only a temporary solution that would allow you to finish listening to books you have on Authors Direct.
The Spotify code will not expire. If you don’t have an interest in using it right now, just save the email for later.
So far, I have found three comments from authors.
Paranormal fiction author R.J. Blain will make her audiobooks available on Spotify. If you own any audiobooks on Authors Direct from this author, you should receive an email with a Spotify redemption code.
Romance author Lisa Willet Becker is offering deals on her Authors Direct audiobooks so listeners can snatch them up for a low price before moving over to Spotify.
Romance author J.A. Huss said on Facebook that she will not offer her audiobooks on Spotify.
I will update this space!