• Do they have one example of an author whose career was “destroyed” by critical commentators?

    “What we’d like to see Goodreads do is eradicate from its website anything that has to do with this culture of personally attacking and abusing authors.”

    Some would use that right to squelch negative reviews. And what about authors who do egregious things? Can we not criticize V.I. Naipaul for his behavior? Norman Mailer for stabbing his wife? Ezra Pound for abusing Jews?

  • Rick Carufel

    Typical ploy, try to hide behind free speech. Stalking, bullying and harassment are crimes. Defamation and libel are not protected by the first amendment. And the usual attempt to call vicious personal attacks “Reviews”. Last the ever popular sociopathic logic of blaming the victims.

  • Rick Carufel

    Badreads was designed from the very start to be a platform from which to attack and intimidate indie writers to make them fearful of publishing anywhere except traditional publishing.

  • M.T. Dismuke

    They just destroyed the career of Lauren, a young aspiring author. Does that answer your first question? They have also done it to others.

    Squelching negative reviews is not allowed on Goodreads or Amazon, however, false negative reviews are allowed. Does that answer your question?

    In addition, threats and harassment are illegal and reviews about the author are not reviews about a book, nor is revenge reviewing or hate/bully reviewing. Does that help clear things up?

  • Ni

    We are not talking about critical reviews. This is an example, a mild one, of what I was told is considered a “review” by Goodreads librarian. This book was not read, notice the tag, “shelfblockignore”. Also notice that the inappropriate shelving is insulting the author, and is being used in lieu if an actual review. This shows up on the author’s book pages and there is nothing the author can do, except pay Good reads through some kind of Premium Author program to have it deleted.

  • Concerned reader

    All that is needed is for reviews to be about the books and not their authors. As one reviewer said, eating a book based on if you think you might like it would be like me rating every book in the western genre with one star. At best, goodreads is an unreliable source to determine a books quality and interest. At worst, it a breeding ground for bullies, one that keeps escalating to the point of illegal activity. It’s only a matter if time before the lawsuits start rolling in. Good read could surely protect a readers right to review a book without allowing a bully to bash an author.

  • Rick Carufel

    In other words extort authors to protect their career. That’s a violation of the RICO Act.

  • Concerned reader

    Anyone who supports this behavior seems to be a bully themselves or willfully ignorant. There is a distinct difference between rating a book based on opinion of book versus based on opinion of author. What kind of message do we send to our youth that we acknowledge this bully behavior and do nothing about it? Also this has happened to traditionally published authors too. It’s never okay behavior. I refuse to join goodreads since discovering this information and I encourage others to stay away also, especially authors. I’ve seen reviewers also attacked though for telling the bullies to leave an innocent author alone. To be fair I have seen them incite some authors to the point the author behaves less than professionally, but in my eyes that does not justify bullying them further or falsely rating their books. By posting these “revenge ratings” it doesn’t just hurt the author it hurt readers to by giving them false information and making an otherwise great idea for a site into something that can’t be trusted and is therefore useless. And I bet most of those 20million users are inactive or sock puppet accounts that are a byproduct of the bullies and those trying to combat the bullies. The drama needs to end and the only way it will is if the aggressors will stop. I think I speak for most genuine readers when I say that these bully “reviewers” are not an accurate depiction of what real book reviewers are truly like.

  • Carroll Bryant

    I’m the author who was accused of saying that I wanted to rape a girl when in fact, it was a comment made by a fictional character in my fictional book who basically said he wanted to rape his girlfriend of her troubled past, more or less. The girl who accused me of saying that I wanted to rape a girl later wrote in the comment section of a book review on GR that she “mis-read” the so called “quote” but still failed to offer up a personal apology to me for the damage she may have caused and she also failed to remove her original accusation.

    I have also been called a pedophile and racist through GR book reviews and comments under the book reviews as well as have two current hate blogs established in my honnor by these bullies as well as have dozens of these bullies blogging lies and making libelous comments about me on their blogs.

    These bullies have also attempted to sabotage interviews I was trying to secure for one of my blogs with a rock band and they have attempted to take down all of my blogs, Youtube channel, Twitter account and more.

    The attack on me had nothing at all to do with reviews as I have never complained about a bad review. The attack on me was organized by one girl whom I blocked from emailing me and she promptly began to stalk me through my blogs and even befriended my then blog partner in order to get my blog partner to allow her administrative access to our shared blog under the guise of helping my blog partner to create a new design on our shared blog when in truth, she just wanted to demonstrate that she could get to me anytime she wanted.

    Some of these bullies have even contacted an authors charity to try and get her in trouble with that charity. These bullies on Goodreads are pure concentrated evil. And GR community manager Patrick Brown allows them to get away with their activities. In fact, he protects them!

  • reader

    In this post, the writer dismisses Lauren’s apology (Lauren had
    nothing to apologize over) and calls Lauren “stupid”, “liar”, and quotes
    in a prior post: “Wondering how much attention she (Lauren Howard)
    needs before she decides to go ahead and publish?”


    I have reported the bullies to the Internet Crime Complaint Center (IC3).

  • reader

    Only a bully would agree with a bully.

    Did you not see what those bullies did to Lauren? If you don’t care what they did to her, then read the first line in this post.

  • M.T. Dismuke

    That blog you linked to (38) about blaming Lauren is actually TinaNicole’s friend. For those who don’t know about the Lauren incident, TinaNicole is actually one of many who threatened her. Tina was the one that wished “Sodomy” and made an insinuating remark that she be “manhandled in prison” on her shelving comment then later retracted it by stating she wished it upon herself. Nice cover up, but it is what it is, a cover up. The blog owner of 38 and Tina, this very day, have been tweeting to each other trying to twist the facts around and placing blame on Lauren, the victim. It’s their sorry, horrible excuse of an attempt to twist the facts around to save their arses.

  • Ni

    As I mentioned this is a mild example of the kinds of “reviews” left on an author’s book page in place of either an honest critical review or positive review.

  • Ni

    As you can see above there is no evidence of anything remotely explaining the book to potential readers, nor are there any critical points being made. Is this a review? Are these individuals who post this sort of thing under “reviews” on Goodreads correct in saying the author is a “badly behaving author” because they stated that this was inappropriate and reported it to Goodreads staff, who did nothing about it?

    I will let you be the judge.

  • Ni

    These shelves are both stupid and clearly done with malicious intent. It is up to Goodreads to make sure all their members are free from ANY KIND of harassment. This IS a violation of their TOS AND review policy. I can upload a screen shot of that too if any one wants anymore “proof”.

  • Michael Kozlowski

    Do you think that the two friends colluded to build hype around the author under the guise of bullying?

  • Michael Kozlowski


  • Michael Kozlowski

    All of the comments and the entire episode was over the top, hopefully it will draw attention to online bullying and how mob mentality tends to take over.

  • Melissa Douthit

    I’m one of the authors STGRB mentions above. These people looked up my personal identifiable information online and then published it where their gang of friends could read it. Afterwards, I received a nasty phone call from a guy in Oregon threatening me if I didn’t “stop harassing reviewers” which I have never done. They’ve also spread a bunch of rumors around the internet about me, saying I did things I never did. This is just wrong.
    After the nasty phone call, I went to the police, gave them the number, and they filed a police report. I also had to let my neighbors know to watch my house at night. The people who have left comments on this article are correct in saying that the bullies’ behavior has gone too far and passed into the realm of criminal. It really needs to be stopped.

  • Hate the abuse on Goodreads

    Everyone knows that the trolls who attack people keep screenshots of every single comment in their attack threads. If they wanted to shut Lauren and STGRB up, then all they have to do is publish the entire conversation, unedited, to prove their point. Do they? Do they hell! They publish snippets that help their own cause only. The rush to delete comments was comical once the attack had gone viral. Over 40 comments had already gone before anyone even got there. Why would they do this if not to cover their own backs, and cover up a vicious, nasty attack on a young girl with a debut novel.

    I challenge TinaNicole, Linda Hilton and all the others involved to publish the full conversation, unedited, so we can all see once and for all, what really happened.

  • Ni

    Yes it was. Unfortunately, like someone mentioned all that is need is for the behavior to be dealt with. And lets be honest, we can ignore rude comments and I do. However, when the individuals making these comments take it to a personal level and begin to attack my readers in the same way, it has gone to far.

  • lorcadamon

    For what it’s worth, the author mentioned by name in this article has now reversed her claims that she was bullied, states that she will be publishing her book, and also mentions that she’s very angry over the publicity this issue has gotten, especially from Salon.


  • Michael Kozlowski

    Honestly, just reading your article and the Saloon article, what are the chances this is just a publicity stunt? I think the troll comments were very real and people got quickly out of control, but it seems all too convinant that she is reversing herself and publishing the book anyways, at the height of media attention. I would have held out for a few more days, hoping mainstream media picked the story up and she got on TV or something.

  • Rick Carufel

    This should be proof enough these trolls are not about books and reviews at all but about stalking authors and their associates.

  • Aunti Troll Vacuum

    there are more than two

  • Rick Carufel

    Two things worth mention about that thread that are very revealing about badreads.

    First they have the audacity to tell Lauren that she, the owner of the copyright for her book cannot change the cover on her own book. This show that badreads delusionally presumes that once a book is on their site they own it.

    Second, badreads closed comments on the thread not because of any inappropriate comments but to conceal that policy at a time they are under scrutiny.

  • ?

    STGRB is propaganda. Get the facts from Readers Have Rights.

  • inukoarashi

    I’m being attacked in one or more places like this, and all my proof is here: https://www.facebook.com/media/set/?set=a.172104812976029.1073741844.136557609864083&type=1 I’ve screen capped this all, and I’ve demanded she quit or legal action. The lady doing this has made it so i can’t find RL employment or training, or even sleep well at night – it’s effecting my family now. “Bad Santa” whatever from Good Reads i guess she finds me from?

  • Rick Carufel

    More proof the trolls ploy of hiding behind reviews is a lie. This is not at all about books or reviews, this is intentional defamation and libel with the malicious intent to cause real damage to reputation, career and livelihood.

  • Rick Carufel

    A lame attempt to do what trolls always do with their sociopathic logic, blame the victims. They always try to play the injured party when in fact they initiate every confrontation.

  • The lack of perspective in some of these comments is near amazing.

    Here’s the thing. Nobody owes you a career, much less success. All that exists is the opportunity. If that opportunity doesn’t pan out then typically that means a few things: either you were unlucky (which happens to many), you’re not as good as you think you are (which probably accounts for most), or you screwed it up for yourself through some means.

    I don’t think that latter case is terminal, especially for someone new. I think it’s fixable, especially if they have their head on straight and – here’s the key – learn to act like a professional. I’ve seen more than one person come into a place like Goodreads like a bull in a China shop, get smacked down for their behavior, and then learn from it, read the rules, and actually try to fit in. For others, though, it’s always someone else’s fault and thus develops this martyr complex that they’re a victim.

    It’s threads like this that are watering down words like bullying, because of people trying to identify themselves with those for whom true crimes have been committed.

    If you’re selling online, you’re (in theory) a business selling products. Many here are screaming “make it all about the products”, but they’re ignoring that they’re the business behind those products and thus open to criticism too. Walmart might sell products I like, but I can still dislike them for the way the company is run. There’s no crime there, and as long as I’m not libelous (which can be fairly hard to prove) I am free to say what I please about their management, despite it having nothing to do with the product in their store.

    As the business you need to accept this fact. If you don’t like it: 1) change the way you do business or 2) ignore it and keep churning out new products.

    Screaming about it publicly or trying to organize “petitions” to get the government involved do little more than convince others than you’re not a business worth investing in.

  • Aitch748

    These people on Goodreads pretend to be book reviewers in order to pick fights with authors.

    The situation is this:

    (1) Reviewers should be free to say what they like, within reason, about the books they review.

    (2) It is unprofessional for an author to protest a negative review of one of his books.

    But the bullies on Goodreads have interpreted this to mean:

    (1) Reviewers get to use whatever gutter language they want and vent their hostility toward the author, personally, in whatever way the reviewers feel like. They get to lie about both the book and the author, and they have no obligation to be professional, civil, truthful, sane, or even readable. They even get to tag the author’s books — all of them, including books the reviewer has never read — on shelves with ugly, childish names that suggest that the author is a misbehaving crybaby who hates free speech and deserves to have felonies committed against him.

    (2) Authors who take the bait and respond to the libel in a review — hell, authors who make any response whatsoever to a review, no matter how civil or justified the response might be — deserve to be destroyed, and the whole Internet needs to know that this author is a walking well of excrement who does not deserve to be read by anyone. In fact, anyone who does read this author’s books and dares to speak up in the author’s defense also deserves attack, because that person is probably a sock puppet that the author created anyway, because nobody sane could possibly like anything this author wrote.

    In other words, these fake book reviewers believe that they have the bully’s perfect setup: a situation where they can bait and pester and harass someone who is in no position to fight back.

    And because the powers-that-be at Goodreads (1) have to be dragged kicking and screaming into reining in even the most disruptive “reviewer,” and (2) are quicker to admonish and even ban authors who talk back to “reviewers,” that means that Goodreads is a hostile environment for authors.

    Yet every once in a while, there is another article on the Web, telling authors that they are missing out on a golden opportunity to promote their books if they are not signed up with Goodreads. So a new author signs up, attempts to promote her work, and learns the hard way that the membership there is extremely hostile to authors promoting their work — and that apologizing for breaking the rules just encourages the “reviewers” to ramp up the harassment further.

    So Goodreads is useless to authors, and it will remain so until the site changes drastically.

  • Concerned Reader

    What the hell does this have to do with threatening someone with rape and murder? Or publishing their PII and calling them to threaten them in their own home? Answer: not a damn thing! It’s your lack of perspective that is amazing, Rick! The focus of this article isn’t books or book reviews or selling books. This article is focusing on the criminal behavior against other people that happens on Goodreads. You really need to get your priorities straight before you make an asinine comment like this.

  • Observer

    How can it be a publicity stunt when she isn’t even publishing the book? Think about it.

  • Booklover

    That site is absolute rubbish. Nothing on it is correct. It is libel and nothing else.

  • Observer

    Yes, she is saying this because she is giving into the pressure from the people who are harassing her. They are bullying her into an apology and now using it against her. I’ve seen this happen before. This is how the GR bullies operate on authors.

  • Alex

    Oh good lord! There are no facts on Readers Have Rights. Only a string of false claims against innocent people. None of the “evidence” on that site would ever hold up in a court of law. STGRB, on the other hand, always backs up their stories with hard evidence. They have police reports, screenshots, and links. They prove everything they say.

  • Carroll Bryant

    Let us not forget about the sexual role playing going on at Goodreads between adults and minors. Another reason not to join that site.

  • Oh, you mean those rape and murder threats that the author herself
    refuted? Yeah, but let’s not let silly things like facts or digging
    deeper to find the whole story stand in the way of frothing at the mouth
    righteous anger.

    Oh and I agree that doxxing (publishing personal information) is wrong. However, I don’t know about you, but I’ve seen it done far more times by the site mentioned in these comments, professing to be against GR Bullies, than I have elsewhere. If you’re sincere in what you’re saying, then I shall assume you’re against this reprehensible practice there too.

  • lorcadamon

    I think some of the concern is the shelves and actions themselves. While the author has now said she only “perceived” the names of the shelves as threats, we cannot forget that Goodreads allows the existence of shelves with names akin to “authors who need to be sodomized with garden tools.” Also, several Goodreads users took to Twitter to say they had received mass messages inciting others to make negative statements about the author and her book. It’s no longer my honest book review if I contact other people and tell them to all review the book in the same way that I did, but rather, a smear campaign.

    Of course, none of these were book reviews, since none of the parties involved had read the book. Very real purchasing decisions are being made based on information that Goodreads has been told is false.

    I fully agree that authors must behave like businessmen, but how is it wrong to reach out POLITELY (that word is so important in this issue) to a “customer” and say, “I’m sorry you were disappointed in my ‘product.'” If I took to Facebook and complained on a product’s page, I would expect a response or I would never patronize that company again.

    But in the case of authors, they are somehow held to a higher standard and expected to keep quiet while people comment on their “products.” We cannot have it both ways. Either this is their art and they are driven largely by the emotions they poured into it, OR they are businessmen and need to treat their customers fairly.

  • Rick Carufel

    Or to close it. 🙂

  • lorcadamon

    In the interest of pointing out true information, I did go to that site and they raise interesting points, BUT I honestly did not see any proof. If anyone from Readers Have Rights would like to speak for an article, I’m happy to present the other side of the issue.

  • lorcadamon

    At the time your info was accurate, but she has now stated that she’s pursuing releasing the book with a different cover, and possibly a different name. It is odd that she would announce that intention on the very page where she’s been harassed.

  • I agree with this. I’m not a big fan of over reaction from either side. In the example you cited, I wouldn’t fault the author if they took a route like that.

    I’ve seen it done successfully and it’s awesome.

    The problem, though, is that things tend to escalate. I would put the onus on the business to walk away first if things become heated. If Best Buy contacts me after a lousy product review to ask how they can help and I completely go off the hinges on them, then I would expect them to just back slowly away…not call me an uneducated moron who wouldn’t know a good shopping experience if they got beaten with it.

    In most of the cases I’d cite, things went too far and the author, rather than backing away or trying to end things politely, got increasingly snippy back. Even then, I can understand that some people have a bad day and occasionally things get heated. Follow through is everything, though, and if it’s negative that tells me something about that business.

  • lorcadamon

    That is a problem that I can completely agree with you on. It’s one thing to be professional. I personally know two authors who simply reply with, “I’m so sorry you were disappointed in the book, but thank you for sharing your views.” One of the two even says, “I’m happy to refund the price of the book to you,” just as any good business owner would say. Unfortunately, THAT response has led to abusive allegations that she’s sarcastic and that she browbeats her readers. Twice, she’s had reviewers change their review AFTER she commented and a discussion ensued, so then she was accused of bullying people into changing their reviews.

    The problem is, people are allowed to take to social media and attack an author for this behavior. It’s going to happen, just like it does with YouTube videos or Yahoo! news articles. The difference is, Goodreads knows it’s happening and has made it a policy not to interfere. The Goodreads API is available to retail sales platforms, so customers who are NOT Goodreads users are seeing reviews on their favorite ebook purchasing sites, and making purchasing decisions based on what Goodreads knows to be false information about a book.

    I don’t feel there’s any blame here for authors or for Goodreads users because it’s difficult to control people’s behavior online short of an actual crime being committed. What Goodreads (and its owner, Amazon) can do is simply remove these statements when they are brought to their attention. Amazon will remove a book review if they feel like the author has a strong relationship with the reviewer, down to even the IP address being too closely associated with the author. Yet nothing can be done about blatant ugliness? Even Yahoo! has the ability to hide remarks that it feels are too inflammatory or have been voted down too many times. But Goodreads will not do so.

  • Judyann McCole

    Lol where were you guys last month! Seriously I thought I was so alone. When I was attacked I honestly wanted to hide in a hole and never step out. I was bashed on twitter, Facebook, and goodreads all because this one blogger claimed I was a sock puppet or had sock puppets. Because of her and her post. I felt goodreads and I doubt I will ever get back on…Now a month later I feel safe enough to blog about it…http://thetorturednovelist.wordpress.com/2013/08/24/what-happened-to-me-on-goodreads-myauthornightmares/

  • Jarrod

    Refuted? I don’t think that’s what she did, Rick. She said that she perceived the shelves as being directed at her. Why? Because they were. There is a screencap of one of them and a credible witness who said she saw dozens of threats before they were removed. Unless you want to call Anne R. Allen a liar, which she’s not. Lauren was bullied into apologizing. Plain and simple.

  • Jarrod

    I would agree with you here if it wasn’t for the fact that so many authors are continuously harassed and bullied on Goodreads and it’s ALWAYS by the same group of people. It has been shown incontrovertibly that Lauren’s case is not an isolated one, but rather part of a pattern on Goodreads that’s growing increasingly disturbing. I have my suspicions as to who’s behind it or rather which organizations are behind it

  • Just because you say these things as if they’re fact, doesn’t make it so.

    She may have perceived things one way, but that doesn’t make it true. I’ve seen plenty of negative shelves on Goodreads. I typically perceive them as being directed at other readers…even the ones I’m listed on (unless they just so happen to say “Hey Rick G, this shelf is personally calling you out as a XXXXXXX”, which most don’t). She even said as much.

    So now she was bullied into apologizing? Is that so? Citation for that or just making up the reality you prefer to believe? Also, you’re being kind of dismissive of her by saying such. I get the idea from her post that she wants to to move on from this and not play the victim card.

    As for the name dropping, sorry but I don’t know Anne R Allen from a hole in the wall. Never interacted with her. Not going to disparage her word just for the sake of doing so, but throwing her out there to me as some sort of challenge is meaningless. All I will say is that assuming that even JK Rowling is beyond reproach just because she’s sold a lot of books is silly at best.

  • Of course it’s not an isolated case. There are 2 million ebooks on Amazon alone. There are tons of new authors uploading books every day. There are 20 million users on Goodreads. There’s no doubt some are going to run afoul of each other. It’s been going on for at least as long as I’ve been doing this. If anything, I’d say it’s getting better as more and more authors are abandoning the whole ‘band of brothers’ concept that used to be prevalent and taking a more active stand against those who are giving the industry a bad name.

    Organizations? Please don’t say the Big 6 are funding this.

  • Michael Kozlowski

    What is this game, do you have a link? This is shady.

  • Michael Kozlowski

    So you were getting phone calls from reviewers of your book? Did they threaten you on the phone?

  • I bet he was alluding to competitors sites. Don’t forget, goodreads API was being used by both Sony and Kobo, until Sony ditched GoodReads and went with iDreambooks. I wonder how all the companies that use GoodReads API to fetch rating and reviews have all of this hatred on their ebook stores.

  • Jarrod

    “aggressive male affection in prison”, “sodomy by lawn sculpture”? These were directed at other readers? Uh, I don’t think so. And they have nothing to do with the subject of the book. It’s clear at whom these shelves were directed. It’s clear they were created to intimidate Lauren. The only thing I’m wondering now is why you are so passionate about defending the people who attacked her.

  • Rick Carufel

    Here’s the email badreads sends to all their victims.
    On Jun 10, 2013, at 2:30 PM, Goodreads wrote:

    Hi XXXXX,

    We’re so sorry to hear about this situation. Unfortunately, we cannot remove the shelf notations, as it’s not our policy to censor how users choose to organize their own book collections. If users would like to keep track of books they won’t read, that’s up to them. Sorry about that.

    The quotes section of the site is reserved for direct quotations from books or notable sayings from published authors and celebrities. If your quote did not meet this criteria, it’s possible that a Goodreads librarian – a volunteer who helps us with metadata – removed it. If you would like to send us the quote, we can see if it meets our standards for inclusion in the quotes section.

    The Goodreads Team

    Now if what they say is true, and it’s not, actually it is an insult to the intellegence of anyone. Of course anything posted on a website can be removed. But going by their emails I would like them to explain why when authors complain they are given a BS story but when badreads needs to do damage control, as they are as I type this, they have no problem removing insulting lists? Right now the insulting lists are virtually flying off the site. Sure seem they have no problem with censorship when it comes to covering their ass does it? Just more proof that the world would be a better place without badreads.

  • Jarrod

    If she is publishing her book with a different title and cover, under a pseudonym, then how is any of this publicity going to help her? The fact is that it wasn’t a publicity stunt at all.

  • Melissa Douthit

    I don’t know who it was. He didn’t identify himself. Stalkers usually don’t. He called me a few unsavory names and told me that I should “watch my back” and to stop “harassing reviewers”. I’ve never harassed reviewers of my books. He made it clear that he thought I was the one behind STGRB and I’m not. I’ve never had anything to do with the site. When I told him that I had his number and was going to report it to the police, he hung up. When the police investigated it, they found it was no longer in service.

    I know that the creators of STGRB have gotten a lot of flak for not revealing who they are but they are right not to. If they did, they would be stalked and threatened like I was and they have families and children to protect. I know this because I read their posts on Goodreads allowing sexual roleplay between children and adults in the past. The post said that this activity was reported to Patrick Brown years ago but he ignored the reports. When the subject was brought to light by Carroll Bryant and STGRB and the media got hold of it, that’s when Goodreads all the sudden took action. Anyhow, I read that that was when some of the people running STGRB pulled their families out of Goodreads, to protect their children.

  • Alex

    He is defending them because he is one of their crew. He was a member of Angela Horn’s Anti-Asshat group:


    Might I mention that Angela Horn was banned from Goodreads for her behavior:


  • Jarrod

    Ah! Now it makes sense.

  • Carroll Bryant

    The problem with Readers Have Rights is, they show no evidence what-so-ever to support their claims. You should read my post on The Looking Glass of Carroll Bryant called “Readers have Rights” where I address some of their false claims. STGRB shows screenshots to support their claims, Readers Have Rights does not. It’s a hack blog created by children.

  • Carroll Bryant

    One of their false claims is that I behaved inappropriately with underage girls. Yet, they never seem to produce any screenshot of me being inappropriate with anyone, let alone with underage girls. But that is because the claim is a blatant lie, meant only for the purpose of trying to ruin my writing career.

    You have to keep in mind that this is not a battle between authors and readers. It is a battle between authors and bullies. Real readers do not bully people. This is not about bad reviews. It’s about a group of people on Goodreads who have taken the ToS into their own hands. They appointed themselves judge, jury and executioners of authors and their career.

    Even if an author were to complain about a bad review, is the punishment of destroying their books sales and careers rendered to them the going rate? Evidently, it is because that has been the punishment handed out thus far by these bullies. Make one mistake, and you’re history. They never accept apologies, and they never accept anything less than destroying people’s dreams.

  • Carroll Bryant

    The thing is, I have never seen any evidence that an author goes after a reader for a bad review. I only see screenshots of your friends, Rick, going after authors. In June and July, your friends, Rick, started targeting other readers! And go tthem banned by accusing them to be sock puppets – which they later turned out not to be. This is why GR is falling in the Alexa rankings. Legit readers don’t want to have to look over their shoulders, where you and your friends are waiting to punce on anyone who doesn’t agree with you. Why else would you attack another author and their book(s) just because they like a book or author that appears on your crap-list?

  • Carroll Bryant

    You and your friends, Rick, are the only ones who say things without providing any proof to support it. STGRB supplies screenshots of their claims. Just because you and your friends says something, doesn’t make it true. It’s been well over a year now and I am still waiting for evidence showing that I complained about a bad review, stalked underage girls, acted inappropriately with anyone, much less with underage girls as you and your friends accuse of. All I ask is for one screenshot of anything that you people accuse me of. Just one! And so far, none of you have been able to even provide that. So my question is, why say it if you can’t prove it?

  • Carroll Bryant

    You know Rick, you need to go look up the definition of “gang violence” because whenever an author makes a perceived mistake, as decided by you and your friends, it’s not just one or two or even maybe three people that deal with it, you send in a whole army of people to attack that author.

    When a problem between an author and a reader arises, it should be dealt with strictly by that author and that reader, not anybody else. Yet every time, when something arises, you and your friends rush in to intimidate, bully, and attack that author by your nasty book shelves, libelous comments, threats, you name it. It is internet terrorism because the only purpose I can think of for it is to demonstrate to others what will happen to them if you and your friends don’t like what an author does or says.

    How can you ever justify that? …. You can’t! …. And how can you justify ruining somebody’s career simply for one mistake? A mistake that you and your friends get to decide if it is a mistake or not? …. You and your friends, Rick, are not the moderators of Goodreads. You people are not the GR police. So stop acting like you are. You’re a bully. Your friends are bullies. End of story!

  • Carroll Bryant

    You can get information at “The Looking Glass of Carroll Bryant” – and on STGRB aboout the games.

  • Observer

    What he said.

  • Just FYI, it’s a public group now, y’know before you go patting yourself on the back too hard.

    And I think the name stands for itself and why I’m in it.

    Too many writers have gone out of their way to ruin the words “self-published” or “indie” author, through their nastiness, harassment, unprofessional behavior, or just general craziness. I don’t like it and I care to take a stand against it.

    I’m sure many of you here will argue why this is a bad thing, screaming out your war cries of “bully” and “troll”. That’s fine. I won’t answer name calling in kind. I think anyone who truly cares to do their own research and discover the truth can and will do so…and when they do, I have little doubt that truth will be quite different than how many here are trying to paint it.

  • Nice job at trying to turn my statements around into something they aren’t, but a little ham fisted in the end.

    Once again, stating items as facts doesn’t make them so.

    As for my defending anyone, not sure where you pulled that from (especially the passionate part…really??). I’m stating my own personal observations. I’m sure people here would love to paintt me as representing others, but at the end of the day I speak only for myself.

    The truth of the matter is I don’t like this sort of drama. I’m a writer and thus I consider my main focus to be writing. I am very grateful for the chance that sites like Amazon and Barnes and Noble have given to me. I am even more grateful to those who have given my books a chance. I believe this is a wonderful opportunity and industry at its core. However, as much as I would like to keep my head buried in the sand, I see too many running roughshod and doing their best to ruin this fledgling industry for as many as they can. The vast majority of the time these people aren’t readers, they’re authors bitter because they didn’t become instant JK Rowlings. Too often these authors will take their own problems and try to make it an issue of “Us vs. Them” as if they speak for all authors…this in turn leads to people painting the entirety of the indie crowd in the same negative light. I for one am tired of it.

    There are plenty of authors who thrive on Goodreads and the Amazon forums. There are tons of success stories from the indie side of the equation. There are scores of indie authors who do nothing to hide who they are and yet remain free from the “bullying” that some here claim is epidemic.

    It comes down to individuals who don’t want to admit that perhaps they’re the problem, and want instead to form a rallying cry against a fictional enemy when in reality the only enemy is themselves.

  • Alex

    The only people who ruin the words “self-published” and “indie” are people like you and of course, Angela Horn. The behavior all of you exhibit really proves that. Did I mention that she was BANNED for it?

  • As were many of the people posting in this thread. Goodreads has rules. You break them, you can get banned. Your point?

  • dsf1960

    Thank you for this. I have just permanently deleted my Goodreads account.

  • dsf1960

    Whatever. She isnt the only one saying this happened. Others have said as much and I wont stick around to be trashed…

  • Alex

    The only person on this thread who was banned was Carroll. He was unjustly banned for being attacked. Angela was banned for consistently attacking others. There’s the difference.

  • Johnny Cage
  • Johnny Cage

    I’ll call Ann R. Allen a liar, because she is. Lauren herself posted- and quickly deleted- twice about how it never happened. Luckily, they were all screencapped. Go to my comment at the top of the page to see the links to where they were posted. If you dare.

  • Carroll Bryant

    The Goodreads bullies are now attacking an author and a mod of a Goodreads group. They admit having help from GR staff and librarians. You can read about it on my Looking Glass blog. This nonsense has got to stop. It has absolutely nothing at all to do with reviews.

  • inukoarashi

    I actually no longer am involved with this, because my reputation was taken down ten notches by content readily available on the internet, that you’ve constantly denied. I’ve stopped my involvement with STGRB … However i’m not discrediting your profile on the internet Rick, nor am i trolling you back, just I don’t need the drama that this whole troll situation caused me. It wasn’t reviews Rick, my book isn’t even OUT yet, it was something i’d said in return to you – that was posted to me by someone who may just be their trolle-tte, and she may not be i don’t know (I’m not posting names) – I just know that STGRB is rolling around in the same drama that the trolls create. I’m down to gnat level, let’s keep it that way. I don’t need some big ass dramatic lawyer fit right before my book comes out, i’ll never get sales that way.. bad press can be good press, but only if it’s something true.

  • inukoarashi

    I ment to note that i’d sent in screencaps, if you’ve used them, please by all means remove them – I’m not out to defame or involve myself in a bad press routine to get attention just to lose sleep and fans.

  • Rick Carufel

    “I actually no longer am involved with this, because my reputation was taken down ten notches by content readily available on the internet, that you’ve constantly denied.” What content are you talking about?

  • applepie

    So true. Goodreads is useless for authors.

  • SEO-Geek

    I know a few big 6 authors who’ve had bad reviews on Goodreads and Amazon. But on Amazon, they’ve miraculously disappeared. I’m certain the authors had no part in this, but someone had the almighty power to have the reviews removed.

    However indirectly, on some level there is anti-marketing happening on Goodreads. All it takes is a big publisher to hire a shady marketing company, and it’s black-hat goes on, and the trolls come out.

    I suspect a large part of it is black-hat SEO that is billed to the big publishing houses as social media marketing. They may not even be aware they’re paying for it, but it doesn’t mean it isn’t happening.

  • Reviewer

    Well said! I agree. This is what I was going to say, but I guess I can go home now. 🙂

    The nasty insulting shelves seem to be at the heart of the matter. Yes, the author overreacted (which she has now acknowledged), but would it have provoked such a response if the shelf name was “read and reviewed?”

    I’ve been to several sites (on both sides) and there are extreme people (on both sides).There are a few things that I think gets overlooked sometimes in these arguments.

    1. Most of these “mobbers” are pretty childish. They are better at being childish than any author.
    2. Goodreads.com as site is GREAT! Both for authors and readers. Don’t throw out the baby with the bathwater.
    3. Social media promotes/rewards trolling.

    That said, as a reader I never read a review by anyone who has insulting shelves. I think that most readers on goodreads.com have wised up to this and I don’t think that those kind of negative reviews have much impact on whether a person decides to read a book or not.

  • Reviewer

    You probably didn’t write the review to Best Buys with a user name like “customer service sucks at BB.” I agree with you about being polite and respectful, but I’ve seen the increased nastiness of reviews and it’s heard to be polite to people acting like jerks.

  • I’ve noticed that STGRB is nothing more than a bunch of people who’ve gotten butthurt sadly over something they may have accidently initiated. After they convinced me to join their bandwagon, i had several bad blog posts written about me. This was also initiated by me using one of THE most hated words on the internet. Sure, the BBA promised to stop writing about me and take crap down, but hey – at least i’m behaving now. BBA has stopped for now posting about me, but it lead to a crapload of idiots marking my yet to be published novel as “NOT WORTH READING”. Thing is, watch what you say, and watch who you get involved with on the internet. After i stopped associating with one of the STGRB buddies (he’ll remain nameless) things settled down. Before that it was threats to my personal life, and things that made no sense. Get the circle of lies now? 🙂

  • THE ONLY review i dislike are those of a book that isn’t even out yet LOL. Other than that they can read my book or not after it’s out and yell at me for how rude and condescending i am. Before that, they can shove it 😛

  • STGRB can be a hinderance though, so highly be careful – chances are really good people found something you said and twisted it and then STGRB decided to come to your rescue. Thing is, it’s the internet… if you say something stupid, or incorrect to someone like STGRB OR BBA – you’ll be on everyone’s shit list. I’m just lucky i’m not stateside.

  • Well said.

  • You’re just suprised BBA hasn’t kept up with your stupid retorts. Honest to god Rick, give it up man. IF you keep countertrolling, people like me and everyone else will be better off. Stop fighting the invetiable.. half the BBA issues are cause you keep targeting some of us that have been attacked ONCE or less and getting us on your TIRADE BANDWAGON. Sure, you don’t deserve trolls – but if you’re going to deny your court records being across the internet go ahead and just lay in your own mess. You’re a good guy, but you are sorely mistaken on how much you help anyone when being attached to your “Cause” only hurts those in the path.

  • STGRB did nothing to help me in fact that was EXACTLY why BBA was targeting me. Other than the nasty stupid R word i’d said about them once! 😛

  • Rick Carufel

    I can’t understand what you’re trying to say. Reports of criminal convictions completely false. If I had been sent to prison I wouldn’t be online would I? There is no internet access in the prisons in this state.

  • Mike

    You’re not being truthful, Jill. I asked Athena about you and she said you got involved with Rick Carufel and that’s what got you on troll radar. Rick is not an “STGRB buddy.” They claim no affiliation with him and have condemned his aggressive tactics. Read their sidebar! You also got yourself in trouble because you used the word “retard” and Angela Horn attacks anyone she sees using that word inappropriately, well, according to her. She is sensitive to that word because her sons are mentally retarded. Athena said you never contacted her for help. Instead, you left Rick’s group and started talking smack about STGRB, who is NOT affiliated with him. Don’t worry. We’re onto you. Everyone knows your game.

  • Mike

    I asked Athena and she said you never contacted her for help. You got involved with Rick Carufel, not STGRB, and that’s why the BBA crowd targeted you. Rick is not affiliated with STGRB at all. They have denounced him and his aggressive tactics. You need to get your facts straight and stop lying and blaming STGRB for something they never did.

  • Mike

    Agreed. Readers Have Rights is such a pathetic attempt to discredit STGRB and all the good they have done. It also points the finger at innocent people which is BS.

  • Jenn

    I see your plugging your own blog again, Carroll. As always. Bad form, dude.

  • Carroll Bryant

    You’re just noticing that now? LOL That comment was posted like 7 months ago. And of course I am going to plug my blog when I have evidence to show. SMH

  • Pamza

    You are a bully.

  • Rick Carufel

    And the sociopath says, “The victims are always at fault and to blame.”

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