Amazon’s Acquisition of Goodreads. You knew this was coming right? I had to have some thoughts on this. Well here they are!
- Community. Amazon is a company that loves books. Jeff Bezos built the company on books. The Kindle revolutionized reading as we knew it and rekindled (hehe) readers. However, despite their love of books, I don’t get the warm, snuggly book lovers feel at Amazon as I get at Goodreads. Plain and simple. In addition to their book business, Amazon has become everything else to every one else, and I think that’s damaged their public book lover credibility.
- Integrity of Reviews. I have heard of publisher’s providing rigged reviews on Goodreads, but I’ve yet to see actual evidence. However, Amazon’s troubled history with reviews by authors and their affiliates is one of legend. Fights occur over reviews when one reviewer (possibly the author or an affiliate of the author) disagrees in an alarmingly strong way with a legitimate review. This doesn’t make a strong, happy community.
- Kindle Compatibility. As a Nook owner (and lover), the advantages of tying a Kindle to my Goodreads account hold no appeal to me. Futhermore, I’m generally a fan of purchasing physical books in person and only look to Amazon for everything else.
So what am I going to do? Um, well, not much. For the time being, I’m keeping my Goodreads account. There’s been plenty of hand wringing about this across the web. While, I’m not really happy about this, Goodreads is still warm, welcoming and a great place to keep tabs on books I want to read, track my reading, share reviews and make friends. (Hi, Goodreads friends!). And for what little it might be worth, I am happy that a little startup like Goodreads could grow to be such a promising acquisition for Amazon. The founders and staff at Goodreads do have a lot (more than lots of money) to be proud of.
So, what are your thoughts on this deal? Do you use and love Goodreads?
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