So anyone who isn't familiar with Goodreads updating their review policy, read up on it here.
For those of you who just want a gist of what exactly it is that they are changing, they are taking down reviews that have to do with authors behaving badly, negative feelings about the author or reviews that mention more about how the author behaves.
Libby and I have really mixed reviews about them changing their policies. While we both agree that some reviewers like to personally attack authors and take it way too far sometimes, we don't think that SILENCING reviewers is the problem. Because let's face it, that is exactly what Goodreads is doing, SILENCING THE REVIEWERS.
With the new wave of Indie authors choosing self publishing over traditional, there is one thing Indie authors aren't used to dealing with, and that is REJECTION.
Think about it. Traditionally published authors have stacks upon stacks of rejection letters piled up before someone finally takes a chance on them . Many of them(i'm not saying all) know how to deal with and handle people not being in love with their books.
Plus I'm pretty sure some of them have lots of resources(aka budgets to pay for reviews)to help build their reputations in a positive light. So even if they have 100 bad reviews, perhaps they have 500 good ones. So why sweat the bad ones, right?
On the other hand many Indie authors may bypass the whole querying agents, publishers and editor process altogether diving head first into the self publishing community. No one has probably seen their books outside of family and friends, but from their peers they've gotten nothing but positive feedback. Those close to them loved it, so they believe other will love it too. They spend the next weeks, probably months researching book bloggers and reviewers that they think will also love their book. Maybe even 75% will, but then comes that one bad review, or two, or three.......I'm sure this could drive one mad. I know bad reviews look like bad coverage, especially if you sought the reviewers out yourself. But how you handle the bad reviews is all up to you. They don't have to turn out bad. Learn from them! Don't make it a negative altercation!
As aspiring authors ourselves, we get it! You've hard on your story and it's not easy to write a book. It sucks for people to leave you a bad review but read the bad review and MOVE ON! The reason why a lot of these reviewer/author situations get escalated is because some authors instead of ignoring a not so glowing review(large concentration being Indie)will go on the troll, stalk and personally attack reviewers and in some cases enlist friends to do the same! This is where the "Authors behaving badly" comes in to work!
Reviews are important, they're what brings buzz to a book.But it seems as though Goodreads wants tear down the reviewers who are honest and open with their reviews!
In a sense this is a little bit of censorship at it's finest!While authors are benefiting from this new policy, we reviewers are being punished for being honest about calling trolling authors out on their b*lls&Yt and poor online social etiquette. I for one think it's somewhat important for reviewers to know that the authors they end up dealing with, may be a pain in the butt to deal with!
Sometimes you post your review innocently thinking "I can't be the only one who didn't connect with this, hopefully my review goes unnoticed". *~*
Days circulate and you get an unhappy email from the author that is not only mean spirited but unappreciative. You took the time out to read their book and they're ripping you a new one because outside of you, their book has gotten nothing but 5 stars reviews, so clearly you're not sophisticated enough to understand true art........Yea, Right? ^o^
Let's talk about the Airbender movie, HATED IT! But lots of people went to go see it and it surely hasn't stopped M.Night Shyamalan from making movies, perhaps he chooses to ignore the negative backlash because at the end of the day it would weigh heavy on his career as a filmmaker. Authors should see that a few bad reviews are worth ignoring.
Not to be blunt but Authors need us. We work hard too and often don't see a royalties check for blogging about the books we review. We do because we love books! In fact my sister and I spend a lot of our free nights trying to bang books out of our TBR list, just to get them done when an author needs them. We both work full time, go to school part time and the little time we have left to ourselves is dedicated to reading, the gym and just maybe contributing to our own book we plan on publishing in the next few months. So the fact that many authors are going against some reviewer full throttle by censoring our opinions is what is making some reviewers not even want to accept books from Indie authors. Ultimately I see paying for reviews to be a common practice for Indie authors because sooner or later, reviewers are going to feel so alienated, no one is going to want to read an Indie book for free!
In the end, this may make a lot of reviewers leave Goodreads. Perhaps not us altogether, because we've invested a lot into Goodreads; but we're definitely looking into some other online book communities that haven't been tainted by some huge corporation like Amazon. Here are some ones we've found along the way. Be sure to check them out below....
Booklikes (we're already on here, follow Libertad and follow Guinevere)
Shelfari ( on here too, if anyonenis interested in following find Libertad and Guinevere)
Just to name a few.....
Some other bloggers feelings about Goodreads new policy:
Bookistry-Way to effin go Goodreads
Book Reviews with the Blog Monstar-Incase you've missed my latest GR status
BookishTreasures-So Goodreads finally tightened their review guidelines
Informative link on how some authors can throw some things way out of proportion:
How not telling the truth can hurt us as reviewers!
photo credit: bark via photopin cc
photo credit: yuri__lima via photopin cc
Over at Kirkus: Brother’s Ruin by Emma Newman
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