A few days ago, I emerged from my nearly internet-free cave to find much wailing and gnashing of teeth over Goodreads. Considering it was a day ending in "y," discovering more Goodreads drama among the book reviewer set was not a surprise. Finding mention after mention of bloggers trying out BookLikes, however, that was new for me.
Last week Goodreads started deleting shelves and reviews that they deemed were more about the author than the book. I've heard complaints that many reviews that allegedly were not against the guidelines were also removed. Considering how many reviews are on Goodreads, this doesn't exactly shock me. I doubt a person reviewed each one and bots are not known for their discretion. Small consolation when you find your reviews gone, but the jaded me has come to expect this when sites make sweeping changes. Here is the Goodreads announcement regarding their policy. At the end they note that in the future they will send deletion warnings.
I don't think any of my reviews were removed. I didn't have any "authors who should eat shit and die" shelves, so I doubt I had much to worry about. However, it did remind me that I've put a few years of reviews and TBR lists into Goodreads, so backing up that information seemed prudent. A cursory look at BookLikes showed that not only could I import my Goodreads shelves, but also synch my two accounts. It looked like a solution was there, wrapped up in a neat, tidy bow.
I started by exporting my shelves from Goodreads. First, click My Books, then Import/Export (it's on the left of the screen, scroll down past your shelves to Tools). Then click "export to a csv file" (on the far right, it's a smaller link so look carefully). That's it.
Now I was ready to back everything up on BookLikes. Sign up was easy, although the site did seem a little slow. I started the import process and BAM - Estimated Time Left: 2,175 hours.
I should probably note that I had over 3,400 books on my shelves, as well as over 900 reviews. Also, I'm pretty sure a lot of the folks who have jumped to BookLikes have similar, if not higher, book totals. Happily, in the 36 hours since I started the process, the estimated time has gone down to 1,610 hours, so I'm sure my books will be populated ahead of the estimate.
Until then I am slowly following some reviewers and authors. I'm not going to do anything to my blog, timeline or shelves until the import process is complete, so I can't write about the ease of that just yet. The interface feels pretty intuitive at first glance. I did add a profile pic without any issue. If you are on BookLikes too, you can find me at http://kindleaholic.booklikes.
Does this mean I am abandoning Goodreads for the new, shiny, pretty site? No. Goodreads has been good to me. I feel like I've carved out a little space for myself that has been relatively drama free and I've met some phenomenal fellow readers. However, with the ability to synch my reviews across both sites, I might replace my current little book blog with my BookLikes blog. Time will tell. Also, I am sure that very soon we will be hearing about the latest "BookLikes drama." It's inevitable. I'll just keep on my usual course and try to remember the real reason I started reviewing books: I love them and like to talk about them. And I really try to not be a dick when dealing with people.
How about you, are you jumping to BookLikes or another site?