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Old 01-21-2012, 06:56 PM   #1
ANicolai
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Goodreads is no longer accepting book data from Amazon. Anyone know why?

Mods, if this is in the wrong forum, please move it - I put it here because as a self-published author this could potentially impact me pretty hard if I didn't catch it. I wanted to get the word out, and see if anyone else had any more details.

This morning I saw the following on Goodreads:

"Dear Adam, At Goodreads, we make it a priority to use book information from the most reliable and open data sources, because it helps us build the best experience for our members. To that end, we're making a major change.
On January 30, Goodreads will no longer display book information that comes from Amazon.

This includes data such as titles, author names, page counts, and publication dates. For the vast majority of book editions, we have imported this data from other sources. Those few remaining editions for which we haven't found an alternative source of information will be removed from Goodreads."

It goes on to state that your data (reviews, ratings, shelves) will be safe, but the book title and author will be removed. This, obviously, would be disastrous if your marketing plan has Goodreads as a major component (mine does).

I'm going to go ahead and update all the info for my novel right now. Make sure if you have a book on Goodreads and find it a valuable tool, you do the same.

They mention that they don't want to take any more data from booksellers, which might explain why they're dumping Amazon as a data source, but I'm still curious what triggered this. Was there some particular event or customer complaint? Weird.
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Old 01-21-2012, 07:36 PM   #2
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Strange, it says on their author program:

Quote:
The Author Program is designed for people with published books, or who are in the process of publishing a book. It's best if your work is on a bookseller's website, such as Amazon.com or BN.com, but we will accept any author who has published a book. This includes authors from other countries as well as authors who are self-published (such as through Barnes & Noble pubit! or services like Lulu). If your book is self-published and is not yet in the Goodreads database, you may manually add it.
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Old 01-21-2012, 11:14 PM   #3
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"we make it a priority to use book information from the most reliable and open data sources."

So they're saying Amazon isn't reliable? That's odd.

"They mention that they don't want to take any more data from booksellers."

Maybe it's just me, but I'd think booksellers would be a great place to get info on books.
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Old 01-22-2012, 05:26 AM   #4
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I'm glad you posted this. I was checking Goodreads last night as I have a giveaway that ends on Monday and I was checking to see how many people had entered. When I clicked on my book, I received a notice that said something like, This book is in danger of being removed from Goodreads, will you save it? I followed the link and read the same message you posted above. I updated all my books, including cover images. Scary to think they would have missing information all of a sudden.
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Old 01-22-2012, 07:51 PM   #5
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They said it has something to do with Amazon putting too many restrictions on how the use the data, I believe. I can see this causing a lot of books to be lost if authors don't rescue them, however, since so many self-published books are exclusively listed on Amazon. I already rescued mine, so I'm hoping it won't be affected once the 30th rolls around.
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Old 01-22-2012, 10:28 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by AllisonK View Post
I can see this causing a lot of books to be lost if authors don't rescue them, however, since so many self-published books are exclusively listed on Amazon. I already rescued mine, so I'm hoping it won't be affected once the 30th rolls around.
Same. I check my various listings several times a day, but I could see someone who'd had a book out for quite awhile not doing that. I think those folks will be most likely to be affected.
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Old 01-23-2012, 04:49 AM   #7
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Wow. That really...

Thanks for posting this. I would have totally missed it!
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Old 01-23-2012, 06:24 AM   #8
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There have been other problems with Amazon and sites using Amazon's API.

It's not reflecting well on Amazon.

I suspect that it mostly has to do Amazon having bought Shelfari a few years ago (a competing site in terms of books and social networking).

I'm a Librarian on Good Reads; let me know if you need help (PM me).
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Old 01-23-2012, 06:26 AM   #9
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mshaw2268 View Post
"we make it a priority to use book information from the most reliable and open data sources."

So they're saying Amazon isn't reliable? That's odd.

"They mention that they don't want to take any more data from booksellers."

Maybe it's just me, but I'd think booksellers would be a great place to get info on books.
That was my question when I saw this on my Goodreads Author Page last night...
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Old 01-23-2012, 07:27 AM   #10
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Quote:
Originally Posted by mshaw2268 View Post
"we make it a priority to use book information from the most reliable and open data sources."

So they're saying Amazon isn't reliable? That's odd.
Actually, there's two parts to that. Amazon might be reliable, but not very open. Someone else mentioned restrictions that Amazon places on use of their data.
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Old 01-23-2012, 10:53 AM   #11
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How is Goodreads going to handle books which only exist as Kindle editions if it won't take information from Amazon?
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Old 01-23-2012, 11:25 AM   #12
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Old Hack View Post
How is Goodreads going to handle books which only exist as Kindle editions if it won't take information from Amazon?
People will have to add them.

I've been adding them for books I have or authors I know.

Overdrive is another source . . . one offered by my local public libraries.
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Old 01-23-2012, 10:05 PM   #13
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I'm a Goodreads librarian too. I imagine this might have something to do with the constant flood of "books" by LLC and other shady operators who put together compilations of Wikipedia articles and sell them on Amazon with misleading titles. Those automatically get imported into Goodreads and show up when you search for a book title.

Also, I'm okay with every self-published Kindle book not automatically being imported into Goodreads. If the author or fans want it entered, they can do it easily enough.
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Old 01-23-2012, 10:41 PM   #14
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Quote:
Originally Posted by Amadan View Post
I'm a Goodreads librarian too. I imagine this might have something to do with the constant flood of "books" by LLC and other shady operators who put together compilations of Wikipedia articles and sell them on Amazon with misleading titles. Those automatically get imported into Goodreads and show up when you search for a book title.

Also, I'm okay with every self-published Kindle book not automatically being imported into Goodreads. If the author or fans want it entered, they can do it easily enough.
Thanks for that advice!
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Old 01-24-2012, 10:13 AM   #15
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Just wanted to say that this is not just a self-publishing issue. My trade published books also needed to be rescued. See this thread:
http://absolutewrite.com/forums/show...=1#post6942347
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Old 01-24-2012, 11:09 AM   #16
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Thanks for posting this - my US editions seem fine, but my UK paperback needed "rescuing". Vital to ensure that people who use the barcode scanner don't come up blank!
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Old 01-24-2012, 01:52 PM   #17
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It doesn't have to be the author of the book. I'm a librarian too and I've been saving any I come across by authors I know.
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Old 01-24-2012, 06:35 PM   #18
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I've rescued some and will do others as I come across them. What a PITA. My own are fine, since I put them on myself - being a librarian and being far too impatient to wait for anyone else to do it.
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