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Bob Dylan’s publisher offers refund of $600 ‘handsigned’ book after admitting autograph printing

Bob Dylan’s publisher apologizes and offers refunds on his $600 “hand-signed” book after admitting that the autograph was indeed printed with “autopen”

  • Fans grew suspicious after comparing photos of autographs online
  • The publisher insisted signatures were real after complaints before changing his mind
  • A limited edition of only 900 books was offered, including a certificate of authenticity
  • Letter read: ‘the book you hold in your hand is hand signed by Bob Dylan’

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Bob Dylan fans have been refunded for the singer’s $600 hand-signed book after the publisher admitted that a machine was used to sign them.

A limited edition of 900 signed copies of the singer’s book, The Philosophy of Modern Song, had been released by publisher Simon & Schuster, which advertised them as being signed by the legendary artist himself.

However, after receiving the books on Friday, fans quickly noticed something was off after comparing autograph photos and discovering similarities between them.

Images of Bob Dylan’s “signature” were collected by suspicious fans and shared online, including this grab from Twitter

American musician Bob Dylan performs at The Hop Festival in Paddock Wood, Kent, UK on June 30, 2012

American musician Bob Dylan performs at The Hop Festival in Paddock Wood, Kent, UK on June 30, 2012

American musician Bob Dylan performs at The Hop Festival in Paddock Wood, Kent, UK on June 30, 2012

Readers quickly accused the publisher of using an autopen, a device used to mechanically create signatures from an original pre-stored version.

After initially insisting that the signatures were genuine, the publisher refused to offer readers a refund, citing the letter of authenticity included with each copy.

The letter, signed by the publishing company’s president-CEO, read: ‘You have something very special in your hands, one of only 900 copies available in the US.

“This letter is confirmation that the copy of the book you are holding is hand signed by Bob Dylan.”

However, on Sunday it had changed its mind and posted on Twitter: “To those who purchased the limited edition of ‘Philosophy of Modern Song’, we would like to apologize.

The publisher of Bob Dylan's hand-signed book has promised refunds to buyers by posting this apology online

The publisher of Bob Dylan's hand-signed book has promised refunds to buyers by posting this apology online

The publisher of Bob Dylan’s hand-signed book has promised refunds to buyers by posting this apology online

This cover image released by Simon & Schuster shows The Philosophy of Modern Song by Bob Dylan

This cover image released by Simon & Schuster shows The Philosophy of Modern Song by Bob Dylan

This cover image released by Simon & Schuster shows The Philosophy of Modern Song by Bob Dylan

What is a direct debit?

An autopen is a machine used to automatically create a signature or autograph from a pre-stored original. Some work by moving a mechanical arm that holds a pen, while others work more like a traditional printer, with their own ink distribution mechanisms.

An autopen is a machine used to make exact copies of a signature or autograph

An autopen is a machine used to make exact copies of a signature or autograph

An autopen is a machine used to make exact copies of a signature or autograph

It turns out that the limited edition books contain Bob’s original signature, but in a written replica form. We are addressing this immediately by giving every buyer an immediate refund.”

The publisher also sent emails to people who purchased a copy of the book, telling them, “We apologize for the error that was made and we are offering a full refund of your purchase.

“Keep your copy of The Philosophy of Modern Song for free. We hope you will enjoy reading it.’

The issue only surfaced after suspicious fans scrutinized each other’s images of their signed books on forums and social media.

While car pens are taboo in the world of celebrity autograph seekers, they have more practical uses – even by world leaders.

Most famously, former President Barack Obama made headlines in 2011 when he authorized the use of an autopen to sign a bill into law for the first time in US history.

Obama authorized the White House Secretary of Staff to use the autopen to sign the bill.

The former leader was 6,000 miles from Washington at the G8 summit in France, where he had a midnight deadline to prevent the provisions of the Patriot Act from expiring.

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