How to turn off Amazon's automatic backup of your annotations

I wrote earlier about the needless concern over Amazon’s new “Popular Highlights” service, which anonymously collects highlights from customers’ Kindle ebooks and combines them into one giant pool for everyone to browse. I still say that in the world of online privacy, this is harmless; if you’re really concerned about a website keeping data on you, you shouldn’t be using an Amazon Kindle in the first place. (I’m not being a smart-aleck; seriously, you shouldn’t.)

But if you disagree with me, take heart; there’s an easy way to turn off participation in the program, and in fact to turn off Amazon’s automatic backup of your notes, bookmarks, and highlights completely. You can do it directly from your Kindle:

  • On your Kindle, press the Menu button.
  • In the pop-up menu, scroll down and select Settings.
  • You’ll see your “Settings & Device Information” screen with your Registration info, Device Name, etc. Click the Menu button again.
  • In the pop-up menu, scroll down to “Disable Annotations Backup” and click it.
  • Now your bookmarks, notes, and highlights won’t be stored on Amazon’s servers.

Amazon says this option to turn off the service will be included in future versions of Kindle App software, but for now you can only turn it off via your Kindle device.

(Photo: HÃ¥var og Solveig)

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