Saturday, September 21, 2013

Goodreads: Smoke And Mirrors

There certainly appears to be a lot of celebration going on lately. Ever since the "big" announcement on STGRB that Goodreads is "cleaning house" by way of deleting author bashing book shelves. I think there are a lot of people suffering from concussions by way of hitting their heads on their ceilings from jubilation of the news.

What the hell?

Really? This is exciting to you? Goodreads starts deleting author bashing book shelves and you're pissing your pants over it? 

Here's the thing; I'm not buying it. And no, it's not because I'm some disgruntled old man who simply enjoys chasing the unruly teenagers off his lawn either. I'm not buying it because, in the scheme of things, it's small potato's. There are a lot more important things than author bashing book shelves. 

While I might bend just enough to say it "could" be a step in the right direction for Goodreads, let's just call it what it really is; a miniscule step at best. 

I, more accurately, refer to it as simply smoke and mirrors. A dog and pony show. While everyone else seems to be elated to accept Patrick Brown's table scraps, I will reserve my elation until I see actual efforts of goodwill. Meaning; when it comes to doing the right thing, you're either "all in" - or your not. 

Goodreads, Patrick Brown, is not "all in". (Not yet anyway)

So, you're probably asking, "What do you consider to be "all in" Carroll? What is it that you are waiting to see from Goodreads and Patrick Brown that will finally convince you that Goodreads is now finally starting to "change" their ways in regards to this bullying issue?"

Very good question. Allow me to answer.

I will be more impressed when Goodreads starts to delete author bashing reviews. I give those higher priority. Let's face it, if author bashing book shelves are an issue, then why isn't author bashing reviews an issue? See where I'm going with this? 

If calling an author an asshole is wrong for a book shelf then how is it not wrong for a book review? To me, it's more of a priority to delete that as opposed to the book shelves. 

Yes, the book shelves should be deleted. Yes, it's a nice little gesture, but then again, so is opening the door for someone, but who is to say the person opening the door for you won't slam it shut on you once you start to walk through? 

If I were to be given the choice of what to start deleting first, author bashing book shelves would be last on the list. The first thing on it would be, delete the author bashing reviews. 

Then there is account deletion. Yesterday, in all the excitement of the "big" news, many have overlooked that three, count them, three member accounts (at least) that I know of were deleted by Goodreads staff. One account was of Mary Shelly, who saw her account get deleted after she made a comment on STGRB. A second account was deleted of a member who showed support for bullied authors. Her account name was "Sugar Sinn". And finally, another member account was deleted when a girl flagged the reviews on my books that are bully reviews. 

Doesn't sound like Goodreads is doing anything good to me. It sounds like Goodreads is still up to their same old shit. I would be really super-duper impressed if Goodreads actually started to delete the accounts of those who are in fact violating their ToS. You know, the ones leaving those author bashing reviews. People like, "All Hail Gimlock", "Steph Sinclair", "ETA:Soon", "Mrs. Joseph", "Belle", "Ade", "Pete Morin", and the like. 

Instead of stalking my blog and STGRB looking for comments by our supporters, and deleting their accounts, why isn't Goodreads deleting the accounts of those who are actually violating their ToS and bashing authors? And while we're on the subject, why is Patrick Brown and his staff going after people who comment on sites outside of GR and deleting their accounts for simply speaking their opinion and or disdain for GR? Those comments are not being made on Goodreads. Nobody is violating GR ToS by speaking about the matter on an outside blog or website. Talk about attacking people who are exercising their right to free speech. It just looks to suspicious to me, and very unprofessional there, Patrick. Do you have "soft skin"? Well, maybe you should take the bullies advice to authors and grow some thick skin there yourself big boy. 

So yes, instead of deleting membership accounts on Goodreads of members who are not violating GR ToS, how about Goodreads start deleting the membership accounts of those who are? 

And finally, for goodreads to go "all in", maybe a good gesture in that direction would be if GR offered to reinstate those authors (and other former members) who were attacked by the bullies and banned. You know, since no evidence has ever been shown that the people who were banned had ever violated the GR ToS in the first place. You see, that would be a reason for celebration. That would be the miracle. Kind of like watching Jesus turn water into wine. That's what would impress the shit out of me. I would risk my own concussion for that occurrence. 

So you see, while I am happy that, on the surface, some progress appears to have been made, the cold hard fact is, it's not. Not yet anyway. So excuse me if I don't carelessly jump into the pool on this one. There's still more evidence pointing to this as being nothing more than smoke and mirrors. A dog and pony show. A public relations stunt from a website that could use the slightest uplifting story to try and counter balance all the negative ones preceding it. 

And no, I don't see anything that would even remotely suggest to me that Amazon, Goodreads, or Patrick Brown is "all in" when it comes to righting the wrong. Or doing the right thing in general. I'm sorry, I just don't see it. 

I'm Carroll Bryant .... and this is The Looking Glass.


Well, that didn't take long at all. Shortly after this article was posted, I got this email. The identity of this person has been covered.

My thoughts EXACTLY!

Update: 09-24-2013:

I just found out recently that Mary Shelly was really Rick Carufel. Do I feel a bit humiliated about it right now? Yes. But I'm a big boy so I guess I'll get over it. However, the other people who had their accounts deleted on Goodreads, to my knowledge, were not socks. If I learn different in the future, I'll update this post again. 

Things We Learned Today:

* Deleting author bashing book shelves is fine, but what about the author bashing reviews?

* My supporters and those of STGRB are still having their accounts deleted for things they say away from Goodreads

* The Goodreads staff are still stalking my blog and STGRB 

* The GR bullies accounts are not being deleted

* Dog and Pony shows are cute, but this one being performed by Patrick Brown and Goodreads is not

* Concussions are bad for you

* Carroll Bryant isn't buying that Goodreads really wants to put an end to bullying on their website, or are enforcing their ToS fairly and evenly 

* Goodreads bullies are still getting preferential treatment from the GR staff 




  1. I just wanted to add Carroll that gr can monitor all member movements on their site when signed in. If anyone is signing into gr and gathering book shelf links, gr knows it. Those accounts will be deleted.

    1. Very good point! I forgot to mention that in my post. Thank you very much for mentioning it.

      And yes, everyone, when you sign into your Goodreads account, they can track all of your movements. Where you go, any messages you send, etc. So if you do decide to "trust" GR and go in to gather links for book shelves, just know they can see what you're doing and they may take you for an STGRB or Carroll Bryant sympathizer and more than likely, they will delete your account. So if you do gather any links for STGRB, do it without signing in to your account.

      I was requested yesterday to do it but I declined. Although I doubt the person who made the request had any ulterior motives, the person who may have sent that person to make the request to me might have ulterior motives. Like maybe, seeing if I would sign into my undercover account to gather up the links so GR could find out who my secret account is and delete it. No dice Patrick! You will never uncover my undercover account on Goodreads. Better luck next time champ.

      Again, thank you anon for posting that comment.

  2. The crazy thing here is that the officials of the site are developing the site purely to sell books for a handful of troll authors who are their sexual partners, family, and close friends - like for Angela Horn aka ETA:soon. It is the officials of the site who are trashing all other authors' books purely in order to sell the books of their "troll family". The officials ARE the Troll Family.

    What removal of author abuse? All author abuse is right there and more intensified. That announcement was fake to fool Amazon and the standards authorities.

  3. Want to hear something funny? Your skepticism to this event, Carrol, is one I would have thought stgrb would take. Their response is one of which I thought you would take. I am on board with you, and I feel that stgrb is throwing pie in the sky hopes to their readers over this and I find that a bit irresponsible of them. They're saying this is a victory, but I'm not feelin it. A victory for who? Certainly not for those of us who have been attacked. It's just bookshelves! Who gives a damn about that? I'm starting to trust you more now. Something isn't adding up and I'm beginning to think stgrb isn't laying all their cards on the table. They've never trusted gr like this before. Even after those member accounts being deleted, they've remained quiet about it. That is so out of character for them.

    1. Have you heard of what STGRB has done to Rick Carufel? I just googled STGRB and initially they were doing the same as Rick, announcing the real identities of the trolls. He is doing nothing more than many of the celebrities in the article he posted did - investigate and expose the bullies - and that is not illegal.

      And apparently STGRB are blocking any posts about these facts they have got wrong too.

      STGRB seems to have gone over to the other side.

  4. Great job as usual Carroll. You missed a very important and disturbing fact. GR has changed the author guidelines, just as the trolls have wanted, to defines any comment, post, message or friend invite, spam.

    Don’t spam. Do not contact (via comments/messages/friend requests) all or most of the people who add your book or a related work. You should also avoid tactics like thanking everyone who has added your book. Do not send unwanted messages or friend requests. While well intentioned, these kinds of behaviors will result in people flagging you as a spammer, and we will have to take action.

    The line Do not contact all/most of the people who add your book or a related work, is the most disturbing. that pretty much covers any comment you could make as an author. So anything an author could say in any way on GR is now considered spam.

    1. When you're right, you're right, and you sir are right. I forgot to mention that too.

      I don't see how any author could promote their work if they're not allowed to interact. But wait! I thought that was Otis Chandler's sell pitch to new authors to join their site? To join and mingle and promote their books? How can authors do that if Goodreads won't let them mingle and interact with their fans?

      Oh crap! I just went crossed eyed again.

      Warning/advice to new authors thinking about joining Goodreads: READ THE FINE PRINT FIRST!!!! ...... You're honestly not welcomed there. They just want your money, and your copyrighted material.

      Thanks Rick.

  5. That announcement was a fake marketing scam. Even the Lauren Pippa abuse detailed in that article is still there. Can we post a challenge to ANY author who has had his or her abuse deleted to come forward?

    I agree with you, when you posted that friends who supported you and flagged your abuse got deleted I thought it must have been a scam to get your supporters out.

    1. Great idea.

      Any author who has had any bully reviews removed from your book(s) on gooodreads, feel free to come here and let us know.

      Now to hold my breath ........ BAZINGA! I'm not really going to hold it.


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