Today was sad. I had to remove a few friends from facebook, blogpot and goodreads. There was a scathing book review. Which wasn't the problem. It came from a prominent and well known Goodreads reviewer. While the review was very scathing, its there opinion of the book. But then the reviewer posted a picture of the author and began to ridicule the author and encouraged her friends to join in on the trashing. I won't put up with bullies. Nor will I associate my name with people who engage in such activities.
But what is more sad, is that several of the people joining in on the bullying, were goodreads librarians, book reviewers from prominent book review sites and even another author whose book is soon to release (which I will never buy or endorse based on what I saw today). These were people in the industry!
Word got around quickly and many of us came to fend off the bullies, causing the original bully reviewer to delete the thread and alter her review. Then she had the audacity to get upset at the people for being offended at her bully fest. Now, my small token effort of deleting these people, marking them, so that my publishers are aware and hopefully will avoid these reviewers and the author as well... it still just irks me. Frankly, I'm outraged.
There is little more cowardly than to sit behind an anonymous handle on the internet and gang up on someone whose only crime it seems, was to write a book the reviewer did not like. And dress in a manner the reviewer did not like as well. To maintain a weight level the reviewer did not like. When her gang was outnumbered by the protesters, she started crying foul, that SHE was the one being bullied... As if!!!!!
Look, good or bad, a review should be honest. But it is for the book. Not the author. Trash a book? Sure. No problem. But trash the author and you'll find there are many in this industry who insist on a certain level of maturity, respect and professionalism that was grossly vacant in this review. I remember those people and while I have little significance in the industry, what little I do, will be to fight against those who tear at its respect and integrity.
And one last bit of bitter disappointment, is Goodreads did nothing about the flagged reports. The reviewer removed the content on their own. The Goodreads librarians, whose job is it to monitor and intervene in this sort of activity, did nothing and in fact, several joined in on the bullying. It leaves this author wondering about the validity and integrity of Goodreads in the publishing industry.