I usually refrain from offering up my two cents on these author/blogger debacles, unless they involve a friend, and only then to comfort said friend. But this change in the Goodreads ToS affects us all, some more than others, obviously. (I didn't have an author-related shelf on Goodreads. At least, it wasn't labeled as such. It's simply listed as "not in this lifetime", but the objective is the same as those who had "due to author" or "authors behaving badly" as their shelf titles.)
I agree with so many others before me that this move seems very pro-author. Goodreads has always been a site for readers, for book lovers, for people who just genuinely want to discuss books. We don't always like the same books, and for the most part, we've always been okay with that. There are some trolls out there who will never stop trying to convince us of this or that book's superiority, but there are far more honest-to-goodness book lovers on the site.
I didn't interact with authors all that much in the beginning on Goodreads, and to be honest, I still don't really. I've added some as friends, but for the most part, my interactions with authors, at least on Goodreads, has been very limited. I've only had a few comment on my reviews, and it's usually a pleasant experience. I called one a debut author in my review, and she politely pointed out that the book was actually her second novel. Another simply wanted to thank me for taking the time to read her book. Those interactions are nice. I've never had a not-nice situation with an author, luckily.
But to be truthful, I've always believed Goodreads should have remained a place for readers to interact with each other. I understand that authors are readers, too, but their presence on Goodreads should remain as such. Especially when it seems that so many of them cannot take constructive criticism. It's unbelievable how some have treated our fellow reviewers. I daresay they'd think twice about attacking a reviewer from a major publication. But we're no one to them and so we're easy targets.
At first, I wasn't going to say or do anything. And then I read more and more of that thread and got more and more incensed. It does almost seem as if Goodreads is rewarding bad author behavior. I know, I know. They're cracking down on that, too, or so they say. I understand where Goodreads is coming from...they just want everyone to go back to their separate corners, call the fight over. Honestly, isn't that what we all want? But is this change the way to go about it?
I like Goodreads...I didn't want to abandon ship after several great years. And I still haven't completely because they provide valuable content that, so far, isn't easily accessible all in one place. I know a lot of people are heading to one of Goodreads' competitors: LibraryThing, Shelfari, or BookLikes. I debated if any of these were right for me, or if should suck it up and hope that Goodreads would set things right. They've tried to make amends, but for some, it's too little, too late. In the end, I decided to make a new home for myself over at BookLikes. I think it's the only of these sites that isn't at least partially owned by Amazon. In general, and from a purchasing standpoint, I like Amazon. But they have no place on a site made for readers. Not when all they're attempting to do is collect data from us and line their own pockets. And definitely not when, because of their influence, a site I favor over all other social media has struck out against its very own users.
How are the rest of you coping with these changes? Were you affected? Are you completely abandoning Goodreads, or are you still feeling things out like me?
If you've moved to BookLikes, feel free to add me; I'm under starryeyedjen.