Audible No Longer Lets Users Gift Credits, Only Memberships

Redditors are reporting, and Audible has confirmed in the FAQ on its site, that Audible no longer lets listeners gift an Audible credit. The only option available now is to gift a membership:

At this time Audible customers do not have the ability to send credits as gifts. We apologize for any inconvenience this may cause. You can, however, gift Audible Gold Monthly Gift memberships in increments of three, six, or 12 months.

Given that Audible's cost of conveying a single credit is the same as processing that Gold membership, I can see why they would want to remove one option in favor of the other.

Nevertheless, a number of Audible users are dismayed by this news. "I don't want to spend 45 bucks to send someone a 3 month subscription. I want to use a credit I have or spend 20 bucks sending them a single book," the original source wrote.  Another agreed with the sentiment: "I am an author and that was what I used it for. Others used it to gift me a book, and they did not even need to buy a subscription!".

While there was obviously some abuse of the system in that credits were sold on Ebay, gifting a single credit was still a valuable tool for many in publishing.

For example: "As a narrator, this really distresses me. I use my credits to help promote the books I narrate - gifting them to various reviewers, my patreon supporters, friends and acquaintances interested in audiobooks. Audible sends you a handful of codes whenever you narrate a book on a royalty share contract. Now I guess I'm just going to have to send the code and trust that they use it to buy my book...otherwise, the whole system is pointless."

About Nate Hoffelder (10619 Articles)
Nate Hoffelder is the founder and editor of The Digital Reader:"I've been into reading ebooks since forever, but I only got my first ereader in July 2007. Everything quickly spiraled out of control from there. Before I started this blog in January 2010 I covered ebooks, ebook readers, and digital publishing for about 2 years as a part of MobileRead Forums. It's a great community, and being a member is a joy. But I thought I could make something out of how I covered the news for MobileRead, so I started this blog."

5 Comments on Audible No Longer Lets Users Gift Credits, Only Memberships

  1. Hmm… trying to sort this out. There’s a weird thing about the audible promo codes they give producers of audio books. They are just general credits, and not connected directly to the books you are trying to promote. So if you offer a promo code, you have to trust that the person receiving it will actually use it to buy your book (rather than use it for someone else). Apple has promo codes (for iOS apps and I think iBooks) directly linked to your product that can’t be used elsewhere.

    I wonder if this is somehow connected to abuse of the promo codes. But it seems that the solution is to link promo codes directly to a particular product, not to get rid of them all together.

  2. it’s not only not being able to gift a credit, you can’t even “Send as a gift” any more. I have been on Audible for months about their ‘fixing’ what wasn’t broken! This is the email I sent them yesterday:

    Dear Audible, first you got rid of “Gift a Credit!” from your audiobook service, so one could no longer give someone an extra credit at the end of the rollover period. It was also a great way to give someone a birthday or Christmas present, so they could choose which book to get. Then you switched to “Buy as a gift”. Ok, a bit less of a surprise, unless you’re really sneaky finding out what someone wanted without their realizing.
    Then, for some unfathomable reason, you removed the “Buy as a Gift” option for audiobooks. Your lame excuse of “we will be focusing on our most popular customer benefits” is utter codswallop, because how does removing these two options benefit me? Or benefit a gift recipient?
    It’s stupid crap like this that makes people look for ways to ‘convince’ your proprietary MP3 format, which can ONLY be played on Audible approved devices (that still rankles me), to play on other devices, in NON-proprietary MP3 format, or look for the audio CDs instead. I am not saying I do this, but I can understand WHY.

  3. I’m glad to see more and more people talking about this. When I created that post on Reddit I wasn’t seeing enough outrage as I thought there should be.

    This does not benefit the consumer at all. Removing the gift option benefits Audible and Audible only. It’s ridiculous.

  4. I loved buying particular Audible books for my friends. I have done it at least a dozen times. I’m really going to miss this feature! It’s the difference bettween picking out a special gift and just giving a gift card. Plus the minimum order size for a gift is 3 months membership. This is cost prohibitive! Gifting with Audible is pretty much totally broken now. We need cross platform alternatives ASAP!

  5. This is awful. They keep using the same talking points about “Gifting a membership means you benefit because the recipient gets the same benefit as you” Really? One of my “things” I do to build relationships is to give a meaningful book that would be special to the person. I would never gift a membership. Pretty much ever. Hey happy birthday, here is a gift that keeps on costing you money. Yeah that makes sense.

3 Trackbacks & Pingbacks

  1. Top 5 Publishing News Stories 4/17-4/21 - Publishing Trendsetter
  2. Forgotten Books That Were Once Called Classics: Critical Linking, April 23, 2017
  3. Episode 15: News Roundtable – April 2017 – Publishing Without Supervision Podcast

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