Will sanity ever rule?


While it is abundantly clear to anyone in the industry that Goodreads has finally become a cesspool of corruption and lies as well as a haven for a tiny minority of mentally unbalanced individuals, is there anyone within the site’s hierarchy brave enough to stop the rot? How much longer will it be before the writers of the books for which the site was initially set up to introduce their work to the millions of genuine readers, close their accounts?

When will the management of the site finally realise that the vast majority of one star reviews written by their pet trolls actually do no harm at all when it comes to sales? When will they also realise that by deleting genuine reviews by real readers, all they are doing is actively discouraging those same readers from bothering with their site as another source for finding books in the future?

While the current FBI led investigation into the charges of cyber bullying by certain individuals on Goodreads slowly gathers momentum, how long will it be before Goodreads’ parent company Amazon cuts its losses and rapidly disassociates itself from its wayward offspring? Come to that, how long will it be before Amazon cleans its own house, ridding itself of its connection with, and encouragement of, those self-same trolls who migrated to Goodreads?

What is currently happening within Goodreads and Amazon regarding the cyber bullying and stalking of authors, along with the current totally nonsensical practice of eliminating genuine four and five star reviews, needs to become widely known. What is happening must to be brought to the attention of all major newspapers and leading publications like Time magazine. It certainly needs to be aired on all the major television channels news slots. Unless or until this happens, it will only be seen as a spat between writers, Goodreads, Amazon and their trolls. While as writers we all moan and groan among ourselves, the outside world is oblivious to what is going on.

For goodness sake make it public knowledge!

To anyone reading this that has a connection to the news media in the USA and in the UK, please spread the word. After all, the news media are quick to condemn those individuals who hack people’s phones or cyber stalk and bully. Is what is currently happening to writers on book sites like Goodreads and Amazon any different? There must be at least one inquisitive reporter out there with the nose for a good story, and more importantly, with the balls to investigate and expose the current underhand practices of Goodreads and Amazon.

You have seen the title of this post. It should also be subtitled “Will commonsense and common decency ever become the industry standard?”

12 thoughts on “Will sanity ever rule?

  1. There seems to be a huge reluctance by news media to dig deeply into any contentious issue. They don’t like to be the first to point the finger, but join in with great glee when someone else starts reporting on an issue. They will often gang up on someone and become bullies themselves. They crave drama and headline-grabbing issues and are not concerned with issues that do not concern themselves or their friends. As you will notice, the issues covered by TV news are often one sided and lack balance as you will find if you seek other news sources on the internet. I am afraid, Jack, that this issue is not “glamorous” enough to grab headlines, and journalists do not care about such issues because they are not affected.


    • I fear you are right Peter. While what is happening infuriates the writers involved, judging by the criteria of most of today’s major news channels, its hardly more than a flea bite. Now, if one or two of the writers concerned were ‘well known names’, things might be different.


  2. I know a person who argued (politely and with facts) on a thread on Goodreads; the person had the misfortune to argue with a librarian and a user who did nothing else but to flame. A short time after the argument ended, the person in question had all his reviews deleted and his account closed – despite the fact that his reviews were genuine. They probably hated him for being generous with the stars and for having the nerve to actually debate politely, which of course, infuriated the troll librarian. Such people are so petty…

    Liked by 1 person

    • The scenario you paint is all to common when it comes to Goodreads. The words polite, genuine and fact are not within the vocabulary of anyone on that site it would seem. Nor is generosity. The very name of the site is a misnomer. There is nothing remotely ‘good’ about it.


  3. Sadly, Peter as I type this the Amazon trolls are working over a suicidal writer, in the Amazon forums, who has already attempted suicide once. When they are done with him he will try again. This issue is like trying to get a stop light on a dangerous corner, nobody will do anything until someone dies. Then of course GR and Amazon, who supported and encouraged the troll persecution of indie writers, will promptly throw them under the bus and blame them for everything.

    Liked by 1 person

    • As I said in the post Rick, the whole sorry mess needs to be made public. But until the trolls start attacking ‘well known writers’, nothing will happen. No one gives a damn about a few ‘indies’ like us…


      • Well, the problem is when they do attack well-known writers (like J.K. Rowlings), it doesn’t really affect them much. So they just ignore them as the fleas they are to them.

        I’ve been mostly keeping my head down over there for almost a year, and I still occasionally see snippets where people I’ve never met, and never interacted with, are discussing me like they know me. It makes me shake my head.

        Liked by 1 person

      • Another problem is that you can now be considered a legitimate target by the trolls if they find out that you are friendly with any of their prime targets Katya. Many of my fellow writers and I have been subjected to the disgusting treatment meted out simply because we are the online friends of one specific writer. So even keeping your head down won’t save you I’m afraid to say…


  4. Meh, they’ve been giving me a hard time for almost a year now. I mostly ignore/block them and just try to be a decent person. Perceptive people will be able to see truth.

    Liked by 1 person

      • I’m not a writer. But I have stuck up for several people, and thus is why they talk about me. *shrug* Also why I’ve been keeping my head down the last year.


      • Then allow me to thank you for your brave stance Katy. If only more readers followed your example. What is needed is a campaign of resistance against the trolls, no matter which site they currently occupy, something we writers simply cannot afford to enter into. For us to do so is the equivalent to literary suicide. 🙂


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