Goodreads Blog

Exciting News About Goodreads: We're Joining the Amazon Family!

Posted by Otis on March 28, 2013 1

When Elizabeth and I started Goodreads from my living room seven years ago, we set out to create a better way for people to find and share books they love. It's been a wild ride seeing how the company has grown and watching as more than 16 million readers from across the globe have joined Goodreads and connected over a passion for books.

Today I'm really happy to announce a new milestone for Goodreads: We are joining the Amazon family. We truly could not think of a more perfect partner for Goodreads as we both share a love of books and an appreciation for the authors who write them. We also both love to invent products and services that touch millions of people.

I'm excited about this for three reasons:

1. With the reach and resources of Amazon, Goodreads can introduce more readers to our vibrant community of book lovers and create an even better experience for our members.
2. Our members have been asking us to bring the Goodreads experience to an e-reader for a long time. Now we're looking forward to bringing Goodreads to the most popular e-reader in the world, Kindle, and further reinventing what reading can be.
3. Amazon supports us continuing to grow our vision as an independent entity, under the Goodreads brand and with our unique culture.

It's important to be clear that Goodreads and the awesome team behind it are not going away. Goodreads will continue to be the wonderful community that we all cherish. We plan to continue offering you everything that you love about the site—the ability to track what you read, discover great books, discuss and share them with fellow book lovers, and connect directly with your favorite authors—and your reviews and ratings will remain here on Goodreads. And it's incredibly important to us that we remain a home for all types of readers, no matter if you read on paper, audio, digitally, from scrolls, or even stone tablets.

For all of you Kindle readers, there's obviously an extra bonus in this announcement. You've asked us for a long time to be able to integrate your Kindle and Goodreads experiences. Making that option a reality is one of our top priorities.

Our team gets out of bed every day motivated by the belief that the right book in the right hands can change the world. Now Goodreads can help make that happen in an even bigger and more meaningful way thanks to joining the Amazon family. (And if you want to be part of this, please check out our Jobs page for open positions. We've got a lot of hires to make!)

This is an emotional day for me. Goodreads is more than a company to me – it's something that Elizabeth and I created because we wanted it to exist. Since then it has grown a lot and become a place we love working at, full of incredibly smart and passionate people who also believe in our mission. I feel a little like a college graduate – happy to come to this milestone, nostalgic for the past amazing seven years, and incredibly, incredibly, excited for the future.

Otis

P.S. For the more official version of the announcement, here's the press release that went out today.

P.P.S. Please let us know – what integration with Kindle would you love to see the most?



Comments (showing 251-300 of 2,309) (2309 new)


message 251: by Richard (new)

Richard Congrats. I know it's a big deal for you guys. And I'm sure it will be nice for some purposes...

I just hope that none of my personal info or reading habits or reviews will be shared with Amazon unless I explicitly opt-in (which I personally wouldn't do). They already know what I buy from them and what I had for breakfast. They market at me relentlessly even in my sleep. And they're probably hiding under by bed right now...


message 252: by Ashley (new)

Ashley OH, and I second what someone else wrote about Amazon reviews being disgusting. There's a reason we all came to goodreads and post our reviews here and not on Amazon. Amazon reviews are weird and off topic, and can never be trusted. People have come to Goodreads because this is where real reviews and real book lovers are. If Amazon's horrible reviews and their weird reviewers are going to flood the site, then everything wonderful about Goodreads is over...


message 253: by David (new)

David Well this is kind of a bummer. A lot of money to be made from crowd sourcing I guess. Looks like the GR member content made a lot of money for a select few. A few more millionaires strutting around Mission Ave.


message 254: by Ruby (new)

Ruby Kristia wrote: "I'm a kindle owner and a happy Amazon customer, but I can't say I'm excited about the news. I just hope nothing major changes, I like goodreads the way it is."

My thoughts exactly. I <3 my kindle, but I like having them separate from one another. Very, very ambivalent about this. In light of this news, they need to prove to us that they truly do care about their members and that that they will strive to keep their reader's interests at heart, rather than viewing their members simply as "consumers ." If and when they start with that bs, I'm out and I'm taking my books with me.


message 255: by Kelbian (last edited Mar 28, 2013 02:24PM) (new)

Kelbian Noel I wonder if Goodreads reviews and ratings will still be linked to Kobo. If so, will the same apply for Amazon? This seems like a great new feature for authors, but I hope it doesn't change the authentic Goodreads experience. Goodreads is like my facebook :(


message 256: by Sandra (new)

Sandra I don't own a Kindle and have very limited Amazon experience, other than buying the odd book. I LOVE Goodreads and really hope nothing changes...


message 257: by Stacy (new)

Stacy Thanks for effectively driving the nails into Barnes & Noble (MANY of us have NOOKs instead of Kindles), and the smaller bookstores who are already struggling. I'm already frustrated enough that a lot of publishers ignore the Nook format. You've just given them more reason to continue to do that. *SIGH*


message 258: by Brad (new)

Brad I really don't want this to change Goodreads. This site should be all about the reading experience, not the commerce experience. If you comment on Goodreads, it shouldn't be available to Amazon, and vice versa. I enjoy Goodreads and do not want to see it tainted.


message 259: by Marni (new)

Marni Well, that's another app I will be deleting from my iPad! I support Kobo books, Kobo ereaders, and independent bookstores.


message 260: by Hilary (last edited Mar 28, 2013 02:36PM) (new)

Hilary Ideally, GR reviews would feed to Amazon (but not the other way around) and we'd have the option to add purchased books to our to-read shelf, and Amazon does *not* get to use your database to try to sell us more stuff.

I (probably amongst others) deliberately chose to give GR more of my info than Amazon because I think they've got plenty of data on me already. And I review and read reviews here because I can trust them; too many reviews on Amazon seem weighted to 5-stars to be real.


message 261: by Andrés (last edited Mar 28, 2013 02:24PM) (new)

Andrés And it still looks like Amazon is doing everything to kill the publishing industry. I want to say that I'm excited, but I can't. We'll see how this plays out.


message 262: by Jenn (new)

Jenn This is just depressing. I get it. I really do but I really liked the fact that goodreads wasn't connected with anyone else. There was no corporate pressure behind it. If you think they are going to leave you alone, you've got another thing coming. UGH.


message 263: by Мила (new)

Мила Wish you luck! Goodreads is a great experience :)


message 264: by [deleted user] (last edited Mar 28, 2013 02:25PM) (new)

Today Goodreads died!


message 265: by Lisa (new)

Lisa Mixed emotions on this. I'll guess I'll have to see how it turns out. I don't want Amazon trying to sell me something based on my To Read list. I also don't want Goodreads' recommendations to go away. They've always been more on target than Amazon. I don't want all of my Goodreads info to be accessed by Amazon users either.


message 266: by Jess (new)

Jess Boo.

Goodbye community, hello corporation! If I wanted to review books so amazon could sell them, I'd review on amazon.


message 267: by William (new)

William Otis:

Will's father chiming in here. He just sent me the press release.
I truly hope you can maintain the great culture you have established at Goodreads. And as an Amazon customer for many years I look forward to the integration.
I hope the synergy works for you as you anticipate.

the other William...


message 268: by Kelbian (new)

Kelbian Noel Liza wrote: "One thing that I love about Goodreads is that we don't have to give stars, we can just write a review. I hope that won't change because I think it's a strength of this site. When I use Amazon, star..."

I agree! As well, with Amazon a text review is required, whereas with Goodreads it's optional. I hope that doesn't change either.


message 269: by Amy (new)

Amy I'm an Amazon customer, and I love my Kindle, however...

I don't really want integration with Kindle.

What I want is an independent site where I can feel comfortable discussing books, feel comfortable reading reviews, feel comfortable as an author and a reader...

I'm disappointed right now. I'll wait to see how things play out, but if Goodreads becomes just another tab on Amazon instead of remaining a small independent community of genuine book lovers, I doubt I'll stick around.


message 270: by Cherylann (new)

Cherylann I'm just so disappointed by this news.


message 271: by Lilac (new)

Lilac Damn. Wish you hadn't done that, Goodreads. I might have to go in search of another booky site. :(


message 272: by [deleted user] (new)

Does this mean Amazon owns our reviews now, and by extension, our existence in the realm of GR? Will I see any percentages of net revenue, if so?


message 273: by Patrick (last edited Mar 28, 2013 02:28PM) (new)

Patrick Brown Thanks for all of the comments and thoughts so far. To answer a few questions that have been asked:

* We don't expect to make changes to our review policy. Our reviews are obviously a strength of our site, and we don't plan to change how we handle them.

* As we said in our blog post, we are going to remain a home for all kinds of readers, whether you read on a Kindle, another ereader, printed book, or audiobook. We have no plans to change how the links on our book pages work. That being said, if you do read on a Kindle, we expect to be able to integrate your Goodreads and Amazon experience, should you choose to do so, in exciting ways.


message 274: by Beverly (new)

Beverly Sad. Amazon's reviews are clunky and difficult to use, and I don't like the way they collect and use data about what I read. I hope we will get to keep the current Goodreads interface.


message 275: by Lori (new)

Lori We'd like you to integrate with all e-readers. Silly us, we assumed Goodreads was for readers period, not buyers only from one source.


message 276: by JoAnn (new)

JoAnn I hope this news doesn't turn Goodreads into a non-stop commercial for Amazon and Kindle. If that turns out to be the case, I'm gone.


message 277: by Sarah (new)

Sarah HORRIBLE! Amazon is evil and over-censoring of its users.

$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$$


message 278: by Diane (new)

Diane Will Please please please don't let Amazon ruin this lovely site. I love using this place. Don't let them change a thing...please


message 279: by Ted (new)

Ted Feyler sad news indeed


message 280: by Bill (new)

Bill McGuire I have mixed feelings. My first thought is to delete all of my books, reviews and delete my account.

Prove me wrong. I will give you 120 days.


message 281: by Claire (new)

Claire Not happy at all. I try to stear clear of Amazon as much as I can and the idea of writing reviews and rating books for them to use doesn't sit well with me.


message 282: by Bina (new)

Bina I am so disappointed by this decision, although I understand that there are financial issues. But as a reader and a supporter of independent bookstores, I am hard put to be glad of this. loved being able to track my reading history independent of ANY retail choices or influences. Now I have concerns about supporting a megabusiness which has put the little guy out of business and has not put money back into the local economy.
I am considering withdrawing from Goodreads because of this.


message 283: by Aubrey (new)

Aubrey Happy for the team at Goodreads. Please don't let Amazon destroy the integrity and community of your great database!


message 284: by Jaymie (new)

Jaymie Despite being a Kindle owner and understanding the POSSIBLE benefits of this change, I am really saddened by it. I also have a tablet and read books in all formats, as well as still buying many many books from independent bookstores. Amazon has put a good many small bookstores out of business and I hate to see an independent site taken over by the mega-super-web-store.


message 285: by Ryan (new)

Ryan I'm exporting all my data and getting out of here for good.

The main issue is that Amazon owns all, or a stake in, every book management/social network service.


message 286: by Irina (new)

Irina Amy wrote: "I think in celebration of the announcement, Amazon should give all current Goodreads subscribers a free new Kindle. Who's with me?"

If they did that to me I'd throw it back in their faces. So hard it broke, probably. I don't want the Amazon spy machine.

So sad you sold out and chose capital over community.


message 287: by Renee (new)

Renee Hall Anne wrote: "I'm an amazon customer and certainly don't hate the company and I am happy that people who took the initiative to put goodreads together are being rewarded financially. That said, this news strike..."

You've summed up my feelings on this exactly.


message 288: by [deleted user] (new)

Melissa wrote: ... I"would like some assurances that my personal information, reviews, and posts, etc will remain ONLY on Goodreads and not become part of the Amazon conglomerate. If not, I may have to reconsider remaining a part of the community which makes me sad considering the number of years I have been on here. "

Same. I feel sick to my stomach at Amazon reaching its claws into my space here, having access to the lists of titles I've read & want to read, etc. Very disturbing news. :-((


message 289: by Paul (last edited Mar 28, 2013 02:33PM) (new)

Paul Harmon P.S. I dont use a kindle I use a Samsung Galaxy tab 2 7.0 its WAYYYY better and Best Buy has had it as low as 179 so kindle integration means nothing to me.


message 290: by [deleted user] (new)

Well, I'm leaving goodreads AFTER I delete all my reviews. I guess it's time to go check out librarything.

Amazon owns everything, and now goodreads. A sad, sad day. I could have been grumpy and kept using you...but you didn't even care to go over it with your audience either before selling out. That means I have lost complete respect for this site.

I'm out of here.


message 291: by Cynthia (new)

Cynthia Well, I guess all good things must come to an end. I can already imagine what Goodreads will become and I'm not excited about it :/


message 292: by Elise (new)

Elise Not terribly pleased to hear about this. Amazon takes over everything to the detriment of local economies. Amazon, take note: I still will not buy books from you.


message 293: by Mandy*reads obsessively* (last edited Mar 28, 2013 02:37PM) (new)

Mandy*reads obsessively* Thank you Patrick, let's hope not expecting to change, actually means not changing the policies.
And that all options are opt-in and not all automatic, any information you can give us as to the access amazon will have to our reviews?


message 294: by Karen (new)

Karen NOT happy with this! I own a Nook and hope I'm not spammed even more by Amazon or that Nooks are discriminated against.


message 295: by Teufel (new)

Teufel Wolf Bird Brian wrote: "Where have you been all my life?

Stirring up trouble on Facebook mostly.


message 296: by James (new)

James Or how about 2% off Amazon books ordered through the Goodreads site?


message 297: by Haikufall (new)

Haikufall Amy wrote: "What about us Nookies?"

I would love to have a better app for B&N on my nook.


message 298: by Judy (new)

Judy Croome Several points:

1. Please do not automatically sync the books on my kindle with my goodreads account - there are many books on my kindle which I do not want appearing on my GR shelf for everyone to see

2. The censorship and control Amazon exercises over book reviews cannot be allowed to infiltrate GR

3. The aggressive bullying tactics by other Amazon readers who don't agree with a review is distressing - GR has always felt like a safer, kinder and more courteous place to express an opinion about a book; I hope this culture is maintained

4. What will happen to independent author advertising programs and giveaways?

5. Will we now be able to do eBook ( presumably Kindle only) giveaways?

Judy Croome
South Africa


message 299: by Margie (new)

Margie Jennifer wrote: "Now I know on Amazon your reviews are no longer your own, but Amazon's, does this mean that my reviews on GR will belong to Amazon?"

My question, too.


message 300: by Julie (new)

Julie Wann I must admit, I am leery about this. When big company gobbles up a little one, it's not usually a good thing. I hope I'm not disappointed. I have been enjoying my goodreads experience for several years now.


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