Goodreads Gets Bought by Amazon! – Why This is Awesome News

Goodreads Gets Bought by Amazon! - Why This is Awesome News

Today Goodreads announced that they have been bought by Amazon! I personally think this is fabulous news!

Improvements on the horizon!

It’s no secret that Goodreads’ servers suck. They seriously do. How often do you see that “Goodreads is over capacity” page when you try to visit the site? Too often! How often do you see it on Amazon or IMDb? NEVER! (At least I never have..) With Amazon purchasing Goodreads, I think we can expect a much more powerful and reliable site. Amazon has an incredible web presence and surely they’ll be moving Goodreads over to more epic, powerful servers that can handle the amount of visitors the site gets!

Goodreads is Over Capacity

Goodreads integration with Kindle

Check this out from the announcement:

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.


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.

Goodreads Blog

For all you Kindle owners: doesn’t this sound awesome?? Imagine some of the possibilities:

  • You purchase a new book on Kindle and that book automatically gets added to your “To-Read” shelf.
  • You start reading a new book and your Goodreads status automatically updates.
  • You can post Goodreads updates straight from your Kindle as you’re reading!
  • Highlighted passages get synced with your favourite quotes on Goodreads.
  • When you finish a book it automatically gets marked as “Read” on Goodreads.

These aren’t promised features, but these are some of the things that COULD POSSIBLY be on the horizon!

Don’t worry about Amazon taking over

Amazon and Goodreads have both made it pretty clear that Amazon doesn’t intend to take over. A quote in the ABC News article about the purchase states:

“Goodreads is a place for all readers no matter what books they read or how they read them, and we expect to keep it that way,” said Amazon spokeswoman Kinley Pearsall in a statement, citing Zappos and the movie information website IMDb as examples. Amazon owns both but has kept them as stand-alone businesses.
ABC News

IMDb is basically the movie equivalent of Goodreads. It was bought by Amazon 15 years ago and it is doing fabulously. But IMDb is also run as a separate business; it isn’t that well known that Amazon even owns it (I didn’t even know until today).

Given Amazon’s huge influence in the publishing industry, and in the online world, I’m pretty confident that this will be a fantastic change and will help improve Goodreads significantly! Amazon won’t necessarily be involved in the day-to-day maintenance and operation of Goodreads. But the fact that Amazon will now be the owners means that Goodreads will have access to Amazon’s resources, including possibly their high powered servers and strong web development teams. I don’t foresee any huge fundamental changes to the way Goodreads works on its own, but I do see strong advancements in its technological development, web maintenance, and obviously integration with Amazon e-books!

How do you feel about this news?

What is one Goodreads feature that you would love to be integrated with Kindles?

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  1. The only thing that worries me is Goodreads getting the “unlike” type button like they have on Amazon. That really sucks bad enough on Amazon. IMDb has that feature as well but I don’t know if they had it before or after Amazon. (Or if it would have happened regardless of Amazon.)

    I just know Goodreads is having enough issues as it is will bullying and targeting, if it gets that button that just might be the end for me. I don’t worry about it because I think it’s going to happen; I worry because on the off chance it does, it will be so bad. I’m a worrier by nature. That’s why I’m so hesitant to post reviews on Amazon, especially for Indie books and low stars. It’s just an uphill battle that I don’t want to get smeared in.

    Though I can see a lot of good coming from this as well, like all the bug fixes and the suggested features we’ve been suggesting. I’d personally love to be able to hide individual shelves on reviews because sometimes those act as spoilers and people don’t realize it. Like wanting to shelve a book as “Aliens” but that’s a spoiler and I don’t want to hide my entire review because nothing I’ve written is a spoiler.

    As far as the Kindle goes, I can’t really say. I think it would be cool with internet on your Kindle if you could update your Currently Reading status with comments instead of having to go to the Goodreads website. That’s part of the reason why I don’t use that – I go through books too quickly to bother with it at all. (Though I have no idea if that’s even possible.)

    Of course, I’m a Nook reader and everything I get on Amazon gets converted and put on my Nook so I won’t be using the features anyways. I don’t like how Barnes & Noble and Amazon handles somethings, like the times users have had their books deleted, so I mostly do my own thing and love places like Smashwords.

    What does this mean for Amazon’s Shelfari though?

    1. Yeah I really don’t like the “unlike” or “not helpful” kinds of buttons! Hopefully we don’t see that integrated.

  2. man, those sound like great features. I’d love for my books to be updated automatically on gr because I always forget to do it. If I added each book I bought to my to-read shelf then I’d have hundreds on there. Of course I’d still have to update my shelves & progress for physical books but that’s ok

    Avanti recently posted: Wordy Wednesday #19
  3. When I first heard this I thought that Amazon was officially taking over the world. But when you said that Amazon owns IMDb (which I didn’t know either!) I can see them letting Goodreads continue to do their own thing. But I thought Amazon owned Shelfari? Does that mean Shelfari is going out?

    The buying a book and adding it to your shelf gets a big win from me. And the ability to transfer quotes!

    Jessica @ Books: A true story recently posted: Book Review: Darth Plagueis by James Luceno
  4. I’m not sure how I feel about this, but I don’t think it’d end TOO badly. I’d really love it if we could access Goodreads directly from our Kindle, and automatically updating our progress every time we turn the Kindle off/put it to sleep, or every time we log on to Goodreads with the device.

    Bec @ Ransom Reads recently posted: King's Ransom: Clockwork Princess
  5. I really hope that a lot of that integrating suggestions are opt-in every single time as I often read things I don’t particularly want my Goodreads friends to know about.

    I’m not sure how I feel about it other than that. I would love for Goodreads to get some improvements and I think it might be easier to monetize my reviews, but other than that I’m just not sure.

    1. I’m sure it probably will be optional! If not for each book, then at least overall. I guess only time will tell though! 🙂

  6. I love those ideas you have and I really hope Amazon uses them. The one thing I am DREADING is filtering of reviews. It’s such a pain in the ass posting reviews on Amazon because of the filtering. I can’t say a character was kick-ass or that I wanted to slap that bitch even though that’s how I feel! Sometimes the only way to express myself is with cuss words…
    I hope this is a good move. Fingers crossed!

    Nereyda @Mostly YA Book Obsessed recently posted: Review: Never Too Far by Abbi Glines!
    1. I doubt Amazon would suddenly impose filtering restrictions! I guess it’s only activated on Amazon because Amazon is supposed to be a “family friendly site” or something. But Goodreads would still be a separate entity, just owned by Amazon. But I agree, I HATE having to censor myself when I cross-post onto Amazon. UGH!

  7. I only read about it this morning, so I’m still thinking about it. I’m not a Kindle owner, I have the Kindle app on my iPad which is where I read ebooks, so I’m worrying a bit whether Goodreads will go ALL Kindle or not. And like Molli said above, whether we can post reviews before the release date or not. Also, there are still apparently country restrictions on buying some books for kindle on amazon (one of the reasons I didn’t go Kindle as being in Australia I don’t like the thought of not being able to buy an ebook cos of where I am) – so I wonder how much of the integration it’s going to be. If it’s just ADDING stuff to goodreads and the site basically stays the same, then ok. But if they “amazon” it, I’m not sure.

  8. I think that Kindle could benefit a lot by some of the features available in Goodreads, and I’m sure that there will be a way to turn on/off some of the automatic updating for those that don’t want that.

  9. I kinda agree with you, Ashley. A lot of people are up in arms over this takeover, and yeah, it does kinda suck that Amazon practically own everything now and I do worry about the publishing industry, but…some of those features sound super cool. I am especially excited about the Kindle integration and better servers. But…I hope they don’t add more censorship because that is what makes Goodreads great. Either way, I’m not freaking out over this until I see some major changes. I don’t think that much is going to change. And…I fucking love IMDB.

    Kara @ Great Imaginations recently posted: Stacking the Shelves #36
  10. Nice to hear a positive take! I guess I will be cautiously optimistic. I’m not anti-AZ – I love my kindle. Not sure I want my underlines automatically cross posted – sometimes those are just for review purposes. And I agree with those who say they avoid posting on Az because of drama, various censoring issues and also not being able to post pre-release date. I also just appreciate the fact that GR doesnt try to drive sales to one retailer over another. I want indie stores and B & N to survive!

    Jen Ryland recently posted: Be a Better Blogger: Set Up Text Expander
  11. The only thing about it putting what books you are reading on Goodreads synced would be that I share my Kindle with my son and he’s always reading books that I wouldn’t want to. I use my Amazon account to buy all his books like Magic Treehouse and the Artemis Fowl books and wouldn’t want it to put that I’m currently reading those up on Goodreads. Hopefully this would be a feature that you could turn on for the people that it would greatly benefit and off for those like me that buy so many books for my child. Great post, though! This is pretty exciting news. What you said about the server capacity is right on the mark. Jaclyn @ JC’s Book Haven

  12. I love that we’ll be able to (possibly) post updates straight from your Kindle as we’re reading. I don’t want my highlighted passages to be quotes, though. I’m really glad that you wrote this post; I was feeling negative about it but feel much better now.

    I’m definitely concerned about not being able to post reviews prior to publication date, like on Amazon, though.

    Kassiah recently posted: {Hop} Blooming Love Spring Blog Hop
    1. I don’t think Amazon will change the fundamental functionality of Goodreads. Like, I doubt they will prevent people from reviewing before release or enforcing a content filter. But I guess we can’t really be sure and only time will tell! Fingers crossed that they don’t though.

  13. I’m afraid Goodreads will become an advertising space for authors now, even more than it is already.
    And I would definitely not want my kindle purchases to go directly to my TBR shelf on Goodreads, nor would I like my highlights to go automatically to my status updates. I guess I want to keep some information separate – too much linking (FB, GR, AMZ) makes it a lot more Big Brother-ish in my opinion.
    I am observing what’s going on with GR right now, but I also have a Librarything account, I need GR more for cataloging my books than anything else, and I really don’t feel comfortable with a bookseller knowing about all the books I’m interested in.

  14. What about B&N though? Goodreads was kind of neutral territory before. We all love going in to an actual book store, which is something Amazon doesn’t provide. As long as Amazon doesn’t fundamentally change Goodreads, I’ve decided not to care. I’m a Nook owner so the whole Kindle props won’t matter for me. My main concern is the fact that B&N doesn’t have the type of online presence Amazon does.

    Stephanie B recently posted: Friday Couple: Jace & Clary

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