SciFi and Fantasy Book Club discussion

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All About Goodreads > How do you use GR and SFFBC?

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message 1: by Anna, Circadian heretic (new)

Anna (vegfic) | 9646 comments Mod
With all the talk of app vs. desktop lately, I'd like to know how everyone uses Goodreads and the discussion groups.

Do you only use the app? Which one, Android or iOS? Or do you use the mobile/desktop version even on your phone/tablet?

When on desktop, how do you get to the group discussions? Do you use notifications, come straight to the group homepage, or maybe you use the discussions page?

Here's what I'm mainly interested in, but please also tell me anything else I didn't think to ask!

1. App vs. Desktop/Mobile
A. I mostly use the app (Android or iOS?)
B. I mostly use desktop/mobile
C. I use both

2. Group discussions
A. I use notifications to follow those discussions I'm interested in
B. I use the 'My Group Discussions' dropdown
C. I use the Community/Profile dropdowns to navigate to SFFBC homepage
D. I use the discussions page
E. Something else on desktop/mobile, I'll explain
F. I use the app, I'll explain

3. How do you use the group bookshelves if you only use the app?


message 2: by Anna, Circadian heretic (new)

Anna (vegfic) | 9646 comments Mod
For me it's 1B and 2D. Always. That may be why I'm often surprised by app people not finding things!


message 3: by Jess (new)

Jess Penhallow | 35 comments 1B and 2A, although my notifications are starting to get a bit unwieldy as I've joined more groups.

Does anyone know it there is a way to mute certain threads? I know you can do it with the whole group but sometimes I want to be notified about certain things like buddy reads but not for people's individual challenge threads or those annoying game threads.


message 4: by Faith (new)

Faith | 331 comments 1B I use the desktop site on a tablet or phone, never the app or mobile.

2D I have that page bookmarked. I rarely want notifications on the discussions.


message 5: by Sarah (new)

Sarah | 2611 comments 1C (iOS) and 2A + 2C.

3. I’m not sure you can navigate to the group bookshelf from the app?

Throughout the day I usually use the GoodReads app because it’s simpler. If I’m away from my laptop and want to see something unavailable on the app (spoilers for example) I use my mobile browser and flip it to the full desktop site.


message 6: by Anna, Circadian heretic (new)

Anna (vegfic) | 9646 comments Mod
Sarah, I just found that out, and was wondering how those people who only use the app find out what’s on the shelves. The app seems to suck more and more as I hear more about it.

I do have the iOS app on my phone, but I only (accidentally) open it about once a month, and then quickly close it :D


message 7: by Sarah (new)

Sarah | 2611 comments Anna wrote: "Sarah, I just found that out, and was wondering how those people who only use the app find out what’s on the shelves. The app seems to suck more and more as I hear more about it.

I do have the iOS..."


For me personally- I added most of the group reads I'm interested in to a personal shelf from a desktop. I also use it to track my Read all the Books challenge. My personal bookshelf is accessible from the app.. so that's one workaround.


message 8: by Allison, Fairy Mod-mother (last edited Jul 09, 2018 06:06AM) (new)

Allison Hurd | 13043 comments Mod
1c (Android) and um...2G all of the above?

I usually go off of notifications, since I've turned off the things I'm not interested in (other groups, y'all can't escape me here mwahahaha!) but sometimes we're really chatty and notifications doesn't keep up, so I filter through all the other ways to figure out what's new in SFFBC but um...I may be a bit obsessive, which is likely why I got this gig.

In app, I use almost exclusively notifications. I really only use it when I'm not near a computer. Bookshelves, if I have to see them in app, I either go mobile or use the link in the everything you need to know thread, which, if I may plug it, is quite brilliant and has almost everything related to SFFBC I've ever needed to know. haha!


message 9: by Anna, Circadian heretic (new)

Anna (vegfic) | 9646 comments Mod
Allison wrote: "I may be a bit obsessive, which is likely why I got this gig."

And now I know why you asked me to join you!

Allison wrote: "Bookshelves, if I have to see them in app, I ... use the link in the everything you need to know thread, which, if I may plug it, is quite brilliant and has almost everything related to SFFBC I've ever needed to know."

That's a great idea! And yes, it is brilliant!

Are there other things one can't access on the app we should add links to?


message 10: by colleen the convivial curmudgeon (last edited Jul 09, 2018 06:22AM) (new)

colleen the convivial curmudgeon (blackrose13) | 2674 comments 1B and 2D, always.

I access goodreads from my phone a lot, but I use the desktop version of the site on my phone, and, despite what goodreads seems to think, it's quite usable - for me - from the phone.

I tried to app when it first came out, and found it unusable. The fact that you can't sort group discussions by most recent just made it impossible for me. I haven't checked to see if this functionality has changed at all, but I somehow doubt it.


message 11: by Ariana (new)

Ariana | 657 comments 1B and 2A.

I tried using the app but it was so terrible I switched to using the desktop site on my phone. It's awkward, but so much more functional than the app.


message 12: by Allison, Fairy Mod-mother (new)

Allison Hurd | 13043 comments Mod
colleen the convivial curmudgeon wrote: "1B and 2D, always.

I access goodreads from my phone a lot, but I use the desktop version of the site on my phone, and, despite what goodreads seems to think, it's quite usable - for me - from the ..."


Keep doubting. lol


message 13: by Anna, Circadian heretic (new)

Anna (vegfic) | 9646 comments Mod
OK app people, I added a link to the group bookshelf into the description on the SFFBC homepage It's where it says 'monthly reads'.


message 14: by Anna, Circadian heretic (last edited Jul 09, 2018 06:53AM) (new)

Anna (vegfic) | 9646 comments Mod
Nicki wrote: "GR is so determined to make the desktop site more like the app."

Yes and I hate them for it! I'm so f'king angry, don't get me started!


message 15: by Rachel (new)

Rachel | 1327 comments I use almost exclusively the app and therefore I also use my notifications almost exclusively (I’d say 90% for each) as the notifications are the only thing that’s better in the app than the website.

I always find myself leaving the mobile site as fast as I can when ai find myself in it so ... maybe it’s iPhones?

I do not access the group bookshelf and can only access polls or next month’s reads through the previous month’s newsletter


message 16: by Anna, Circadian heretic (last edited Jul 09, 2018 06:58AM) (new)

Anna (vegfic) | 9646 comments Mod
Rachel, would it help to have a link to the polls in the group description?

edit: Well, I added it.


message 17: by Silvana (new)

Silvana (silvaubrey) | 2526 comments 1C (Android when mobile, desktop at the office) but for convinience definite my phone

2D... I bookmarked the discussion page and put it in the google chrome browser quick links tab.

I don't open groupshelves in mobile, too complicated to search, unless there is a direct html link inside the discussions.

Actually, I also do 2A since I put notifications for thread on future and current BRs, and also book sales.


MrsJoseph *grouchy* (mrsjoseph) | 2207 comments 1. App vs. Desktop/Mobile
B. I mostly use desktop/mobile


2. Group discussions
A. I use notifications to follow those discussions I'm interested in
D. I use the discussions page


message 19: by Anna, Circadian heretic (last edited Jul 09, 2018 07:57AM) (new)

Anna (vegfic) | 9646 comments Mod
This is great, I want to know more things you can't do on the app, but that would be easy to link to in the group description!

Just to recap, right now there are links to:

- Group bookshelf (monthly reads)
- Challenges
- Polls

edit: Looks like the challenge link doesn't work on the (iOS) app.


message 20: by Maarit (new)

Maarit | 135 comments 1. B. I mostly use desktop/mobile
Won't use the app, it's just not for me.

2. E. Something else on desktop/mobile, I'll explain

My method is a mixture of A and C choices, but with a twist. If there are no notifications of SFFBC discussions avaiable, I will go to option C. If there are notifications avaiable, I will open them all, read one of them through and use it to go to SFFBC front page, then read the rest of the tabs I've opened from the notifications and close them, leaving open the one with the SFFBC front page. After this, I just see if any of the other discussions I'm interested in have a new marked in them. If there are some, I open them all in their own tabs. If there are none, I just go back to my Goodreads feed page or logout, depending on what I'm doing.


message 21: by Hank (new)

Hank (hankenstein) | 1130 comments 1. B
2. A

I will use the browser on my phone instead of the app.
2 is more what Sarah said, I do all of the above but mostly just get to the group via the notifications although I would not have seen this thread without the discussion drop down menu.


message 22: by Shanna (new)

Shanna | 43 comments 1B Desktop exclusively, app is not on my phone and I have no interest in putting it there.

2A I have only been using notifications.


message 23: by Tomas (new)

Tomas Grizzly | 444 comments I use pretty much exclusively the website on a desktop computer, the mobile app is limited to updating progress when I'm without access to my computer for a longer time (3+ days) but that's because I find keyboard more practical in general and will use a desktop computer over a smartphone any time I can - typing on a touchscreen is a nightmare for me.

As for discussions... I have those I am most interested in on notifications and keep an eye on the others by going to group page -> discussion most of the time. I can also get there from a thread with notification by going up to the page and just go up to the folder - and repeat if necessary.


message 24: by Shomeret (new)

Shomeret | 404 comments Since I have no access to the internet on a mobile device (yes, I live in the stone age and am sending these messages "back to the future"), I am totally 1B and I use notifications for discussions.


message 25: by Alondra (last edited Jul 09, 2018 10:25AM) (new)

Alondra Miller Anna wrote: "1. App vs. Desktop/Mobile

B. I mostly use desktop/mobile. The only time I use the mobile app is when I go to the bookstore and want to scan books in before purchase. I like to make sure that I don't already own a book, ya know!?? LOL


2. Group discussions
A. I use notifications to follow those discussions I'm interested in.

&

D. I use the discussions page


message 26: by YouKneeK (new)

YouKneeK | 1397 comments Anna wrote: "With all the talk of app vs. desktop lately, I'd like to know how everyone uses Goodreads and the discussion groups."

---

Question: App vs. Desktop/Mobile

My Answer: “B. I mostly use desktop/mobile”

Additional, unasked for details: I usually use my desktop. Sometimes I’ll use my phone or tablet to read posts or messages, especially if I received an e-mail alert, but I never use the app. I almost always wait until I’m at a PC to reply to anything though, even if my reply is short. (Yes, I do type short replies sometimes!) I type 130+ wpm on normal keyboards but I feel like I type 1.3 wpm on mobile keyboards.

---

Question: Group discussions

My Answer: “D. I use the discussions page”. Also a little bit of “A. I use notifications to follow those discussions I'm interested in”.

Additional, unasked for details: If I reply to a topic, I usually leave the “Notify me when people reply” checkbox selected for a while. If the discussion goes on too long or I lose interest in it, I’ll cancel the notifications. I often read those posts more quickly, usually on my phone when I see the e-mail come through. I always go through the latest batch of unread posts from the discussions page, though. I usually do that a couple times a day.


message 27: by Donald (new)

Donald | 240 comments 1.

C. I'll use the app on occasion to manage my book reading and shelves, but for discussion groups I almost always only use the desktop. The app is really bad for them, as there doesn't seem to be a sensible way to jump to unread posts.

2.

B, but I probably should switch to D given how I actually use it.

3.

I don't use the group bookshelves at all. I get the emails about us being about to read X, and use that. I don't find a history of what the group has read all that interesting most of the time.


message 28: by CBRetriever (new)

CBRetriever | 4627 comments Laptop (Home) or Desktop PC or Linux workstation (I have both at work)

B. I use the 'My Group Discussions' dropdown but I might browse the forum if I've been away for a while


message 29: by Kristin B. (new)

Kristin B. Bodreau (krissy22247) | 719 comments 1. App vs. Desktop/Mobile
B. I mostly use desktop/mobile

2. Group discussions
A. I use notifications to follow those discussions I'm interested in


message 30: by Aleksandra (new)

Aleksandra Gogić (aleks_g) | 197 comments 1C - for threads without spoilers it's almost always app, but with spoilers included I use GR in browser (mobile and laptop)

2A and 2D - I use 2D to find discussions which can be interesting to me, and once found I follow them (I use notifications - 2A for updates). Also, I use option "discussions -> unread" to check what's going on in the group in case I've missed something.

I don't use group bookshelves at all.


message 31: by Jacqueline (new)

Jacqueline | 2306 comments 1. 1A mostly but if I’m up st the Farm it’s 1C. I don’t use the desktop one on my mobile very often. It annoys me trying to find everything.

2. As with 1 it depends where I am. 2A because if I’m interested in something I hit the topic notification settings at the bottom of the thread in the app and get the notification for it. If I’m on the computer or using the
Mobile desktop thingo I use the groups dropdown 2B to find the group and then I always just go to unread threads. 2F When I’m just using the app which is all the time I always go more(the dots at the end of the line), groups, page of BC I want and then hit unread to see what I’ve missed.

3. There are group bookshelves? Actually I knew there were but since I use the app mostly I don’t see them so I don’t use them.


message 32: by HeyT (new)

HeyT | 445 comments I only ever use the iOS app to scan look up books in stores to see what the reviews are on books that look interesting. I only ever access the group through the website on pc using the group messages drop down because it links to unread messages. I open the threads I'm interested and mark all read the ones I don't care about.


message 33: by Cheryl (new)

Cheryl  (cherylllr) | 2287 comments 1. App vs. Desktop/Mobile

B. I mostly use desktop/mobile

I have an android tablet but I almost always use my PC for goodreads... I don't believe I've *ever* used tablet for group discussions, only (rarely) to view my shelves or read a certain book's reviews.

2. Group discussions

E. Something else on desktop/mobile, I'll explain

I get notifications of everything through email and click through from email to the group discussion. Yes I do get a lot of emails from Goodreads. No, I do not use the on-site notifications. Very rarely (less than 1 time per month per group) I will go to the homepage to see if there's a new discussion activity that I may have missed (if it seems like there should have been some sort of activity).


message 34: by Beth (new)

Beth (rosewoodpip) | 1686 comments 1B.
The app is unusable in comparison, imo, so I don't use it often.

2E.
Explanation: digest e-mails. Welcome to 1995! Useful concessions to the 21st century are clickable links, including a "reply to post" link on each post, and a header link where you can jump to the thread itself on GR.

3.
n/a, since I don't use the app.


message 35: by Gary (new)

Gary Gillen | 145 comments 1C: I use the desktop for comments and adding books, I use the app for updating page counts.
2D: I go to the discussions page and look for interesting topics.
3: N/A: I don't use it.


message 36: by Leonie (new)

Leonie (leonierogers) | 1019 comments 1.B.
2.A and C
3. Use it occasionally.


message 37: by Anna, Circadian heretic (new)

Anna (vegfic) | 9646 comments Mod
Friends! I got an Android phone today, and got to see the Goodreads Android app for the first time. I'm appalled! I always thought the iOS app was the sucky one, because it's pretty sucky, but wow it's magnificent compared to the Android app!

So, now I'm even more interested than before to hear from those people who only (or mostly) use the app. How do you do it?! How are you still sane? :o How do you find anything in this group?! I can't even open the links in the group description, and those are there in part to help app users :S I also can't open any links in discussions, and then what's the point of the app, what *can* you do with it? Whew, sorry, rant over, but please share if there's a trick to using the Android app (I won't be using it, but if some other poor unfortunate soul is), and also just tell me if you are one of those poor unfortunate souls, so I can take pity on you the next time you can't find something :(

Wow, I am shooketh.


message 38: by Michelle (new)

Michelle (michellehartline) | 1777 comments I actually use the app on my kindle fire 10, and not my iphone, because the iphone's screen is too small! But I agree- it's pretty sucky. You would think if it's on a kindle it would be better, but alas...


message 39: by Michelle (new)

Michelle (michellehartline) | 1777 comments What drives me especially crazy is the lack of the ability to add book links, or to reply properly to someone further up in the discussion!


message 40: by Anna, Circadian heretic (last edited Dec 04, 2020 07:34AM) (new)

Anna (vegfic) | 9646 comments Mod
Oh right, I didn't even think that there might be a Kindle app, I never remember that Kindles aren't just e-ink readers! But yes, I would've assumed that a Kindle app (which to me means the Kindle reading app on an Android or iPhone) would be the best one! What's the Kindle Fire OS called? Fire OS? OK, I'd assume the Fire app (this sounds all kinds of wrong) would be optimized for easy GR usage.

edit: I guess Fire OS is based on Android, so that explains it. But doesn't explain why the iOS app is better, which I still can't type without shaking my head in disbelief.


message 41: by Kristenelle (new)

Kristenelle | 105 comments Michelle wrote: "What drives me especially crazy is the lack of the ability to add book links, or to reply properly to someone further up in the discussion!"

Yes! And I hate how you can't click on spoilers in the app.

I use the app and desktop. Mostly I use the app to see that I have notifications, but then I do most of my interacting on desktop.


message 42: by Allison, Fairy Mod-mother (new)

Allison Hurd | 13043 comments Mod
I survive on notifications on my phone. If I need anything in group, I click the current events tab in the intro and go from there.


message 43: by Anna, Circadian heretic (last edited Dec 04, 2020 07:37AM) (new)

Anna (vegfic) | 9646 comments Mod
Allison wrote: "If I need anything in group, I click the current events tab in the intro and go from there."

That's what I'd do, and that's why it's there, but it doesn't work on my Android? Or any other link, either.

edit: Inside the app that is, it obviously works if I open it in a browser.


message 44: by Michelle (new)

Michelle (michellehartline) | 1777 comments It's pretty silly. You'd think they (amazon) would have this straightened out by now.


message 45: by Anna, Circadian heretic (new)

Anna (vegfic) | 9646 comments Mod
Also, it's nice to hear Allison also uses Current Events. I do all the time, but I never know if anyone else does, so I always imagine it's like my own private link collection :D Maybe someday I'll edit it, maybe full of capybara pics or something, to see if anyone complains!


message 46: by Ian (new)

Ian Slater (yohanan) | 231 comments Kristenelle wrote: "Mostly I use the app to see that I have notifications, but then I do most of my interacting on desktop...."

I also find that the Goodreads app on my iPhone is good for notifications, but little else. It offers a longer list on the first look, so I use it quite frequently just to see if there is something I would want to respond to, and generally do pretty much everything else on my Mac.

(The iPhone is of course also handy for checking e-mail notices from Goodreads, particularly for group and buddy reads I've flagged as being of interest so there is a lot of duplication. I rarely try to respond on the phone -- I'm rather clumsy with its virtual keyboard.)


message 47: by CBRetriever (new)

CBRetriever | 4627 comments can't you use the browser on Android/IOS devices to access Goodreads? I know you can on the Fire tablets (they run a forked Android system)


message 48: by Allison, Fairy Mod-mother (new)

Allison Hurd | 13043 comments Mod
Anna wrote: "Allison wrote: "If I need anything in group, I click the current events tab in the intro and go from there."

That's what I'd do, and that's why it's there, but it doesn't work on my Android? Or an..."


Huh! Weird. If I go to groups and click Current Events it takes me to the browser on my Android, which I infuriatingly can't get to otherwise. If I try to open the browser version since the last big change, it takes me instead to the app.


message 49: by Anna, Circadian heretic (new)

Anna (vegfic) | 9646 comments Mod
I also rely on the notifications from the iOS app, but that's the only reason the app is on my phone. I never open the notifs on the app, I open the desktop notif page on the browser instead. Either on the phone or on the laptop if I'm near it.


message 50: by Anna, Circadian heretic (new)

Anna (vegfic) | 9646 comments Mod
CBRetriever wrote: "can't you use the browser on Android/IOS devices to access Goodreads?"

Yes and that's what I and many others do, but some people don't want to, because an app is more convenient?


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