Tag Archives: Scammers

Goodreads Ransom Scam by Alina Leonova


Goodreads Ransom Scam And The Platform’s Astonishing Indifference

January 13th, 2021

A number of authors are being attacked by scammers who first post multiple fake 1-star reviews and ratings on Goodreads and then demand ransom to take them down.

If you are not a book geek, you might not be familiar with Goodreads. They are ‘the largest site for readers and book recommendations’ as they claim on Twitter. They are, essentially, a social network built around books. People track their reading, write reviews, discuss books, etc.

A lot of folks have criticized Goodreads because the website is obsolete and unituitive and hasn’t been improved in years. It was also bought by Amazon several years ago, which is viewed by many as a conflict of interest. All of it is true, but despite that, it still has millions of users who create all the value the website provides. It has a vibrant community of book geeks, a wealth of reviews that have been gathered for over 10 years (!) and book lists for every taste and whim. I’ve found some amazing books there just asking people for recommendations, connected with other authors and had a lot of fun discussing books. Until…

I stumbled upon a thread that was initially about something else, but quickly turned into several authors complaining about falling victim to the same scam. Dozens of 1-star ratings and reviews appeared under their books at the same time. They were all one-liners from private accounts without photos and said things like ‘Full Misogyny’ (always capitalized and this exact wording :D), racism, sexism, religious bigotry, etc. A few days later, someone contacted the authors saying they noticed they had a lot of bad reviews and offered to fix that for a fee and provide good ratings.

No need to be a detective to see a criminal pattern here.

It got even more interesting when within the next day everyone on the thread was attacked by the same scammers, including me. It was the first time for some of us, while others just got hit again.


Read More Here

Authors who Bully…Breaking your Trust

Yes it happened.  No real fault of my own.  I like to help. I don’t like been taken advantage of, I don’t like been bullied by overly arrogant people.  However we meet them as we go through our lives.  On a personal level I’ve tried to be proactive and positive.  Of course, there is nearly always a stumbling block put in your way.  A negative if you wish.

Many of you know I do FREE work or SWAP work with others.  I run a non-profit business right now, while I build up my reputation and skills.  This is an advantage for both my clients and myself.  Most of us have a blast working together.  Then you get the odd one who turns into a bully and this is where my world and possible business may very well fall apart.

There are always people we wish we’d never met, though God in his wise ways knows we need them to push through to a better space.  So be it.  I’ve done all I can to sort this mess out.  FREE for FREE doesn’t always work nor does SWAPPING work for something you can’t do or aren’t good at.  So take care in who you trust.  I would hate to see any of you get bitten on the butt because of poor judgement or even overly trusting a person who is going to end up bullying you.  I dislike arrogance, and conversations which don’t go into depth of what the true issue is.  Also make sure you keep all emails and track all invoices and payments (if there were any). Of course with FREE and SWAP work this shouldn’t happen.  Until the bully imagines it…

This to me was as bad as those SCAM Publishers except this time I was the one being SCAMMED by an author. It hurt, especially when you think it is someone you can trust.

The issue – as far as I’m aware had been sorted, until it raises its ugly head again, except I will go to small claims court if it does. I refuse to put up with bullies so don’t try it. I’m certainly not as trusting anymore.  Most of my clients have been amazing to work with, we’ve had fun, learning curves, and great communication. I’m pleased with how my business my business is growing though I really need an Income. As for the FREE stuff!  They are my Anthologies and my Indie Publishing News Magazine which is a FREE Marketing Magazine for Indie Authors and those who support them.  The SWAPs of work…have ended. I won’t be doing anymore.

In the future I will be putting each magazine issue on this blog for everyone to read. If you email me I can add you to the email list and then you’ll get a copy automatically.  If you wish to get off the email list you’ll need to email me due to not yet having a Unsubscribe button…I’m still working on this issue.

Thanks for listening