Saturday, 2 December 2017

Saturday Series: Love, Hate or Both? - Being An International Blogger.

Hey guys! Today for 'Love, Hate or Both?' I was originally going to talk about Tropes In Fiction, but that's going to have to wait until next time because a new development in the Blogosphere was seen on Twitter today, and I kind of want to talk about what it seems to mean, and my thoughts about it.

Basically if you've been anywhere near Twitter today you might have seen the comments regarding what are new policy changes on Goodreads and Netgalley. The Netgalley one seems more speculated to be honest, from what I've seen any way, but if it's true it spells a second hit of bad luck for any bloggers who aren't in the US. I'll talk about Goodreads first.

Goodreads has introduced a new policy regarding the giveaways posted on their site. Not only do authors and publishers now have to pay to host giveaways (Which for self pubbed/independent authors and publishers, this is not good) but worse for us readers they are all now going to be marked with that dreaded US Only stamp. For US bloggers the chances of giveaways will be slimmer due to the 'paid' aspect now, but for international bloggers like myself, we're just not getting a look in anymore.

Netgalley meanwhile is also rumoured to be favouring US bloggers, with a fair amount of international bloggers stating they've seen the 'wish for it' button a lot more than the 'request' button. This could be just to do with distribution rights, but it's causing an amount of worry in bloggers on Twitter. We can only hope it's a coincidence.

I'll admit my blogging has been somewhat lax for quite a while now for many personal reasons, and I am quite behind on the ARCs/E-ARCs/Review Copies I have, but I'm determined to get back on track and make 2018 my best blogging year yet. I will also quite rightly say that we, as bloggers, feel no entitlement to ARCs etc whatsoever. They're a nice perk of what can be a very demanding hobby, but they're not crucial to our ability to spread the love and joy of books. Yet, when it has been difficult enough as it is to get access to some ARCs (Or even buying finished copies in general!) due to things like distribution rights, and when we don't have the 'convention scene' that the US does (And when flights and baggage fees are so expensive!) it's really disheartening for these two sites to make these changes.

I've seen a few comments on Twitter saying such, and I 100% feel the same, but it's almost like the publishing industry is saying we don't matter. Bloggers have always been happy to do what we do and ask for nothing in return; we always will be. This is our hobby because we love books; nothing more than that. As I said, ARCs are just a nice perk. But when bloggers are being geographically separated, that's less about entitlement as a blogger in general, and more about the notion that some bloggers are better than others, and that's nothing to do with passion or content.

I'll blog for as long as I am always able, even if it's not always very frequent, and I'll love it forever, but whether I continue to use the services of Goodreads and Netgalley is another story.

What are your thoughts on these developments? As always feel free to leave a comment below or @ me on Twitter!

Thanks for reading!

Holly @The_Arts_Shelf

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