Amazon coughs up $150K after Kindle eats teen's 1984 homework

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Dec 14, 2012, 4:09 PM EST

Hear that whirring? That's the sound of Orwell spinning a little more slowly in his grave.

Remember how we reported back in July that hundreds of Amazon Kindle owners had their electronic copies of George Orwell's Animal Farm and 1984 deleted from their e-readers overnight because the books had been added to the online retailer's site by a company without the rights to sell them? Well, according to the Los Angeles Times, Amazon has agreed to pay one of them, Justin Gawronski, $150,000 as the result of a lawsuit filed against it.

Turns out Amazon's deletion didn't just remove Gawronski's copies of 1984 and Animal Farm from his Kindle, but also ended up partially destroying his homework. "I was between a quarter and halfway through [the book]," said Gawronski. "I had a good amount of notes." Though the notes survived, they pointed only to strings of characters, where the novel's text had gone missing.

The money, after going to the law firm representing the teen, will be donated to charity.