Draft2Digital killed my account

EDITING TO ADD: To anybody coming in to this post off of my thread on Mastodon, please have a look at this followup post that I just posted, there are new developments: Followup on the Draft2Digital situation.

I’m still effectively on writing hiatus until further notice. But I’m putting up this post anyway to send out a word of warning to other indie authors:

If you have an account on Draft2Digital, be damned sure to log into it regularly if you want to keep it.

Because I’ve still been dealing with the combo of the pandemic and my high-pressure day job kicking my creativity in the teeth, I have still had no cycles to deal with my writing. And by extension, this means logging into the various accounts I set up to sell my self-published titles.

But since I do still occasionally sell a book or two on various systems, when tax time rolls around, I need to log into those systems to try to get what meager numbers I can.

Last week I attempted to log into my Draft2Digital account. It wouldn’t let me. It told me the account was inactive. Not gone, mind you, just inactive.

So I thought at the time, “Well, shit, they probably just put a hold on my account because I haven’t logged into it in a while.” Therefore, I poked around on their site to try to find out the recommended steps for dealing with this. Best I could find was a recommendation to just email their support alias, which I did. Here’s what I said to them:

Hi Draft2Digital team,

My name is Angela Korra’ti and I have an account on your system with the email address of (email address redacted).

I honestly do not sell much on your site right now, in no small part because the pandemic kicked my creativity in the teeth and I have had zero cycles to spare to deal with my writing. But I DO have to at least get yearly reports for tax purposes, which is what I was trying to do tonight.

However, when I tried to log in, your site wouldn’t let me. I got an error message saying that my account is inactive.

What steps do I need to resolve this, please?

I can be reached at this email address.

Thanks in advance for any assistance,

That was three or four days ago. I got crickets in reply until this morning, when I found an email in my Inbox that said:

Unfortunately, your identity cannot be confirmed, and your account must be closed.  

The data you provided is insufficient to identify you as a legitimate user of our service. This may happen if your account information matches a previously probated and terminated account; if you are coming from a region where we cannot verify government documents; or if you are using an application or software to hide your identity.  

To remain in compliance with tax laws, we are required to be able to confirm your legal identity. As we have been unable to do so we have closed your account, and all published content has been removed. 

Under our Terms of Service (TOS), since your account has been terminated you are prohibited from establishing a new account. In addition, our TOS prohibits you from using a false identity, impersonating any other person, or using a username or password you are not authorized to use. Any attempt to circumvent D2D’s review by opening a new account will not be tolerated, and no royalties will be paid from any subsequent accounts you create.

We apologize that we are no longer able to support your publishing needs. Disputes to this notice will only be handled via our review team manager and must be sent in writing. We appreciate your understanding in this matter.



At no point did they actually ask me for any documentation of my identity. Nobody said, “We need more from you to prove you are who you say you are.” No “We need you to take steps X, Y, and Z to prove legit proof of your identity.”

No, they just cut straight to “fuck you, you don’t get to have an account on our system anymore because you didn’t give us enough proof of who you are, and furthermore, you don’t get to have an account on our system again ever”.

And here’s the part that really boggles my mind: they also gave me the meager, pitiful sales numbers from my account because apparently they were legally obligated to do so. Even though their mail outright said they couldn’t satisfy themselves that I was who I said I was.

But if that was the case, why the absolute fuck did they send me my sales numbers? In what universe does this make sense from an account security standpoint?

Really, though, the core thing I’m pissed off about here is, there was no communication to me about needing additional proof of my identity before they could give me access back to the account. Nothing. Nada. INFORMATION I WOULD HAVE BEEN PLEASED TO ARRANGE TO GIVE THEM IF THEY HAD ONLY ASKED ME TO DO SO.

But they didn’t. I had zero opportunity to do so, and no idea that they even wanted it. Because they didn’t fucking talk to me.

I can’t even figure out what kind of business logic gets you from “author emails in asking for help resolving this issue” to “kick the author off the system”, with no intervening steps in between.

Any of these scenarios might be possible here:

  1. I don’t make enough sales on their system to have it be worth their time to let me keep an account, but if that was the case, I wish they would have just said that, I could have respected that for honesty even if I’d found it to be a shitty decision.
  2. They might have thought I was somebody trying to hack into my account, but if they thought that, why the hell didn’t they ask me directly for proof of my identity, rather than just jumping straight to cutting me off? And if they thought that, why did they then also give me the tiny, tiny sales numbers off the account? Either they think I’m who I am, or they don’t! These actions were completely contradictory and make no goddamn sense.
  3. For all I know, D2D is possibly getting hit with the same damn flood of AI-generated crap that’s swamping Amazon, so they have to crack down on accounts of any dubious status at all. But if my account had gotten into a dubious status just because I hadn’t logged into it in months, again, why the hell didn’t they ask me to provide proof of my identity when I reached out to them to explicitly ask for help?

Regardless of motivations on their side, now I’m screwed. My account on Draft2Digital is dead, and only if I feel like sending them a letter in writing do I have any recourse for appeal.

Right now, though, fuck it. If escalating straight to “we’re kicking you off our site and you can never have an account with us again” is what they do in response to a simple request for help, I don’t want an account on their system ever again.

In the meantime, this means three things:

  1. I’m going to have to consider shutting down my Smashwords account too, because Draft2Digital now owns Smashwords, and if this is how their customer support policies work, I can’t trust my Smashwords account to not eventually vanish out from under me
  2. Until such time as I decide whether to also nuke the Smashwords account, I’ll have to set it back to pushing Faerie Blood and Bone Walker out to Kobo and a couple other places that D2D had previously covered
  3. I’ll have to consider reactivating my direct accounts on B&N’,s Kobo’s, and Apple’s publishing systems

And all of those are going to have to be dealt with when I can find the brain and cycles for them. See above commentary re: high pressure day job and stress over the ongoing pandemic situation.

So if y’all see any of my books vanish unexpectedly from channels where I’ve been previously selling them, all of this is why.

I apologize in advance for any weirdness, while I’m over here screaming about Draft2Digital.

Again, if you’re an indie writer who has an account with them, be damned sure to regularly log into it if you want to keep it.

But you might want to put serious thought into that, because gods forbid you reach out to them for any support help.

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Author of the Free Court of Seattle series as Angela Korra'ti, and of the Rebels of Adalonia series as Angela Highland. Geek, fangirl, musician, and raving admirer of Newfoundland and Quebecois traditional music. Also a.k.a. Anna the Piper!

2 thoughts on “Draft2Digital killed my account

  1. Exact same thing happened to me last December. I also eventually got through the fury and decided they were beneath contempt and I wanted nothing more to do with them. Life’s too short.


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