goodreads_famazonSo, we were seriously thinking about titling this post, “Where Writers Win Acquires Amazon” and then shouting “April Fool’s!” in the first line… But these days even a well-timed joke may quickly be misconstrued and the resulting litigation could take a big chunk out of our days… so we opted for a look at the real deal making all the headlines: the recent news that Amazon and Goodreads will become bed fellows by the end of Q2 (Amazon bought Goodreads for a reported $150 million). Welcome to the jungle, eh?

No doubt there’s a great deal of shock and awe surrounding that announcement and so we went looking for what the pundits are saying will be the result of this acquisition, for both companies, for readers, for other publishers and most important, for authors!

Strangely enough, no one seems to be talking about what then happens to Shelfari, Amazon’s existing reader platform (they purchased this one for under $10 million back in 2008), except that Goodreads is the obvious leader on the social connection front. What is also interesting to many is how Apple iBooks will now respond, and do they become vulnerable without an attached social community of their own…

As an excellent article (included below) on AuthorsGuild.org pointed out: “By combining Goodreads’ recommendation database with Amazon’s own vast databases of readers’ purchase histories, Amazon’s control of online bookselling approaches the insurmountable.

One thing is for sure, Amazon just got a whole lot stronger, which makes it one tough gladiator in the publishing arena.

So… what do you think, authors? An even better, even niftier author marketing tool, or is Orwell screaming “1984” in your ear?

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techcrunch.com3/29/13

Following this afternoon’s announcement that Amazon has agreed to acquire Goodreads, I had a few minutes to talk to the Goodreads CEO Otis Chandler and A..

Amazon Acquires Social Reading Site Goodreads, Which Gives The

techcrunch.com3/28/13

Amazon and Goodreads share a passion for reinventing reading. Goodreads has helped change how we discover and discuss books and, with Kindle, Amazon has helped expand reading around the world. In addition, both

Amazon acquires Goodreads, aims to make better – Engadget

www.engadget.com3/28/13

So, Amazon has a reading platform called Kindle. Goodreads has a platform that makes fairly excellent suggestions when it comes to reading materials. You.

What Amazon Really Paid For Goodreads – Business Insider

www.businessinsider.com3/29/13

Lastly, AllThingsD’s Kara Swisher actually talked to some sources and asked them how much Amazon paid for Goodreads, which raised almost $3 million from angel investors and True Ventures. They told her the real number

Actually, Amazon Paid About $150 Million for Goodreads – AllThingsD

allthingsd.com3/29/13

url. According to sources, Amazon paid about $150 million for Goodreads, the popular books recommendation service. But that number could close in on $200 million, if certain performance metrics are met. And, while

“First do no harm”: My interview with Amazon and Goodreads on the

paidcontent.org3/28/13

In an interview Thursday, Goodreads CEO Otis Chandler and Amazon’s VP of Kindle content Russ Grandinetti stressed that Goodreads will not change for the worse following its acquisition by Amazon.

Turow on Amazon/Goodreads: This is how modern monopolies can

www.authorsguild.org3/29/13

Amazon’s garden walls are about to grow much higher. In a truly devastating act of vertical integration, Amazon is buying Goodreads, its only sizable competitor for reader reviews and a site known for the depth and breadth of

Amazon Acquired Goodreads | Nathan Bransford, Author

blog.nathanbransford.com3/29/13

At first glance, an Amazon/Goodreads partnership opens up some exciting possibilities. Amazon could draw upon your relationships on Goodreads to surface your friend’s notes, reviews and progress within an e-book.

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4 thoughts on “Amazon Acquires Goodreads: Yes, But What Does That Means for Authors?

  • April 8, 2013 at 10:28 am
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    I find the purchase extremely sad. The recent changes in publishing were a helpful sign for the market opening up to admit other than best sellers. Now, once again, the emphasis will shift, as it has been on Amazon, to be cheap, cheap, cheap and sell, sell, sell. It has little to do with reading quality or simply reading. I’m sad. And though we won’t say it now, monopolies, which are regularly broken in the US and which has helped the marketplace, large concentrations of power give way to bullies, with little concerns for the author, who make take some time to grow. Sarah Yates, Gemma B. Publishing
    PS Think here of car companies moving to places where they can get it cheaper. And what has that done for the North American economy? Very little positive that I can see. slyh

  • April 1, 2013 at 6:21 pm
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    I suspect this will be a topic for some time as we see how things shake out. This is a difficult one for me as 1) I am truly a satisfied customer of Amazon. From a purely consumer stand-point, they haven’t let me down. 2) As an author, it shakes me to the bone to to think any entity involved in publishing and/or marketing could become so large as to be unyielding. Not to mention the only player involved in shaping the market (e.g. creating rather than supporting trends), controlling discoverability, determining review methodology, which is already in question. But they are here to stay, no doubt about it. They have left Shelfari alone, and that hasn’t done much for Shelfari. So…we’ll see I guess 🙂

    • April 2, 2013 at 12:21 am
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      Agree with the condundrum – as a consumer Amazon is aces; from the publishing standpoint is it a threat to traditional gatekeepers, indie book shops, etc.? Perhaps, but then if they’ve not taken care to develop the market research about their customers that Amazon has, and have had, oh, a century’s head start to do so, well then…

      Hoping to continue sitting the fence on this one without getting slivers up our butts 🙂 But it sure is an exciting time for authors!!!

  • April 1, 2013 at 12:14 pm
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    Thank you for explaining the situation and how we can best move forward as creative folks!

Comments are closed.