Why Goodreads told Amazon to get lost

Reading NewsThere’s, of course, a fair amount of articles in book reading circles on the web about the abrupt break-up between Goodreads and Amazon.

Thus a few more details about why has emerged. Apparently it’s primarily two restrictions in the latest API license agreement that really makes the API unusable for a site like Goodreads. According to the site TeleRead (and many others) these are.

In particular, Amazon will not allow sites using the API to link to the book on any other on-line retailer except Amazon, but Goodreads provides links to titles on multiple retailers. Also, Amazon will not allow content from its API to be used in mobile sites or applications.

Obviously such restrictions are totally unacceptable for a book-centered social site. Given that Goodreads is not a book selling site but a social site it should have been fairly simple to give these people an exception to these rules but, unfortunately, we’re talking about dumbass lawyers here. So instead Amazon have chosen to piss off what is, essentially, a large group of both actual and potential clients.

This morning I found that another bunch of my books, which wasn’t on the original list of books in danger, have lost their cover images and other information. This is of course super-annoying. I’m going to leave it for a while to see if the Goodreads librarians manage to clean up the mess. If not I guess I have to just re-enter these books as well.

3 thoughts on “Why Goodreads told Amazon to get lost

  1. Ah, I wondered why books were disappearing! That’s so sad, you’d think an Internet company would understand that the best attitude to adopt in a social media world is an open, friendly one. Acting like an evil corporation is a sure-fire way to earn yourself bad press. But perhaps they don’t care; their beating the bookstores and they’re beating the other ereaders. Can Amazon afford to act evil?


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