So following the re-release of Imminent Danger, I was over on Goodreads doing some editing — making sure the new purple cover shows up when you search for the book, making sure the reviews transferred over from the old edition, etc. And I discovered something very odd.
A gentleman named John Hayward (probably not his real name) had given a 1 star rating to all three of my published works — i.e., Imminent Danger, as well as the two free short stories. Fair enough. He hates my writing. A bit weird that he didn’t bother reviewing any, just slapped on 1 star ratings and called it a day, but whatever. No, wait, that is really weird …
So I went to his profile page. He joined Goodreads December 2014. He left three 1 star reviews — all for my books — on the same day in the span of 3 minutes. He hasn’t posted a single rating or review since then.
Yeah, something fishy’s going on.
I contacted Goodreads about it — this guy is obviously trolling — and I got an email back from them yesterday. The bottom line is they do have a system in place for removing false ratings and reviews, but this user didn’t have enough red flags on his account to justify an investigation. Basically, they were sorry about it, but they can’t do anything. They were very professional and polite, and they urged me to contact them again in the future if I found more suspicious circumstances.
Here’s a screencap of Mister Hayward’s profile page for your viewing enjoyment:
And here’s his profile page if you want to see for yourself: https://www.goodreads.com/user/show/37879516-john-hayward
I don’t blame Goodreads for not taking down this guy’s ratings — they have a system, and I get that. So that leaves me to wonder what I’m supposed to do about it. It also makes me wonder what this guy’s deal is. Did he really, honestly, truly read all three of my books, hate them all, and create a Goodreads account just so he could leave 1 star ratings? Is he someone I’ve pissed off, and he’s trying to get back at me via online ratings? Is it some random troll just passing through? Only time will tell.
Thus ends my tale. Any insight is welcome and appreciated!
Unrelated media of the day:
Prepare yourself for some major feels (i.e., sad feelings) …