Thursday, 17 September 2020

Why Goodreads is bad for books

quote [ Alongside the lack of incentive, Critchlow also believes that Goodreads ultimately still serves the purpose most people use it for. “I think a ‘better Goodreads’ is alluring because reading books and sharing books is an incredibly emotional experience,” he says. “But… keeping a list of books you’ve read and want to read is actually served pretty well… Most of the imagined features and social ideas are not actually that useful.” ]

That was too interesting to pass on, sorry for the double post. Many links to follow, especially A Proposal for a Decentralized Goodreads featured many nice thoughts.
[SFW] [SE Book Club] [+1 Interesting]
[by Paracetamol@7:46pmGMT]


bbrack said @ 2:51am GMT on 18th Sep [Score:1 Underrated]
I've yet to find an algorithm for any other medium that suggested something I like from lucky hits or blatantly obvious the next in a series rather than consistently predict things I even find tolerable. I don't it's my weird taste as much as when it's relying on user ratings, how people rate will be wildly inconsistent - ex. I can say my 5 stars are much harder to earn than some of my friends who say I really liked it I'm going straight to that, vs. it having to be a favorite book of the year for them.
Paracetamol said @ 2:16pm GMT on 18th Sep
Same here – also, this rating behaviour differs across media. E.g. rating my music is usually pretty fine grained whereas store ratings receive 5 stars or nothing at all.

P.S.: Here's some info on's rating system. It's pretty transparent and directly changes suggestions by similar raters.

P.P.S.: Congrats to your first comment.
Naruki said @ 12:06am GMT on 19th Sep
I play some jigsaw puzzle game on Facebook. After each one, they ask for a 1-5 star rating, and I always give 3 stars unless I'm really pissed off, which is rare. 3 because I have no goddamned sense of what to rate a puzzle.

Pretty sure I'm not all that regulated when judging other things, too.
cb361 said @ 9:58am GMT on 18th Sep [Score:1 Insightful]
Another of the problems with building an alternative for a dominant but poor-value website/company is that if you start getting traction, the dominant company will buy you out or change their product so as to suffocate yours.

If StoryGraph starts making serious gains, Amazon will probably buy them out. Which is fine for the founders, but doesn't solve the problem for the general public.

It wasn't supposed to be this way. So many of the promises of the Internet have come false.
Paracetamol said @ 2:18pm GMT on 18th Sep
There’s No Money in Internet Culture

the truth is that running a platform for culture creation is, increasingly, a charity operation undertaken by larger companies. Servers are expensive, and advertisers would rather just throw money at Facebook than take a chance on your weird, problematic network. Generating and incubating internet culture has little market value in and of itself.

stacyswirl said @ 4:24am GMT on 18th Sep
I use Goodreads to help keep me on track reading comics I'm planning on binding, and so I have a record of what I've read and a general sense of how I liked it. It's very satisfying to see a visual list of what I've read over the course of a year, and "gamifying" my reading (via a yearly reading tally/goal) has helped inspire me to read more. That's everything I use it for, and it's extremely helpful for those things. I sometimes get notified that someone else has liked my reviews of something, which baffles me occasionally, because they're very much written to just remind myself of how I felt about a book, usually with very little detail.

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