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Discussion Post: How to be a considerate book blogger on Twitter

Hey all,

This week has been so busy for me and instead of catching up on the things I should have been doing to make my life easier I got caught up on Twitter, haha. Let it be known that I’m the Queen of Procrastination when it comes to doing things I don’t want to do.

With that said, I was caught off guard in my Twitter procrastination habit when I came across some quite negative threads. I’m not opposed to or even unaware of the negative side of Twitter (I think it’s just a reflection of how negative some people can be in ‘real life’) but I hadn’t seen anything so strongly discussed in the bookish community before. The topic was: tagging or not tagging authors in reviews. Some of the authors’ comments had me reeling…

I hadn’t even considered before this point whether it would be contrived as ‘rude’ to tag an author in a positive review. I mean… no one wants to hear bad comments about their pride and joy but positive comments? I found that so strange and quite frankly a bit inconsiderate. Here is a community that literally spends ALL OF THEIR FREE TIME supporting books, reading and the authors they love. Why would a positive reflection of that in reviews be considered rude?

I have to admit, I’ve been guilty of tagging some authors in my reviews (the positive ones, of course) and seeing the threads on Twitter had me panicking for a moment. Had I been unintentionally rude to someone by tagging them?! I have a small fear of offending people so this wasn’t a pleasant reflective experience for me. With that said, I soon began to think about some authors who had commented back on my tags. Their replies had literally made my day. Authors that come to mind are Cassandra Clare, Jill Mansell, Madeline Ash, Mariana Zapata and William A.E. Ford. Why is there anything wrong with that? I mean… we’re practically free marketing right?

At the end of the day, regardless of how ‘famous’ an author is, they still rely on their readers to maintain their status. If no one reads, or enjoys, their latest release? It’s a flop, right? In my opinion, regardless of stature, authors should be more open to being tagged in positive reviews. In the same vain, reviewers should be considerate of the nature of their review and make sure to never review the author but rather the book. In the end, aren’t we all just people trying to get along and do the things we enjoy? Let’s be nice to one another!

What about you? What are your thoughts on this topic?

Jen

15 thoughts on “Discussion Post: How to be a considerate book blogger on Twitter

  1. Oh my goodness yes to this all. I had a minor anxiety breakdown and ‘what am I doing’ crisis when that don’t tag ever stuff broke it’s bad enough with non bookish people getting us mixed up with the money making of fashion/beauty/doing odd things for attention influencers but to be told basically that authors wants us to read their words but don’t care about ours even though we may be helping get the word out about their books was a bit harsh.
    Sure don’t tag negative that’s just rude, and for some authors in the scheme of things a bloggers review may be a drop in the ocean of their day, and never contribute anything meaningful to their sales as they are popular already, maybe the review is never read, or never even noticed as they mute any notifications from people they don’t follow and that’s cool.
    But there’s also authors out there that may be struggling and your review makes their day that someone read and liked their book after being in a bubble about the book so long. Ive been told by one author they printed out my review and pinned it on their motivation board so they knew that children somewhere loved their books.
    I think now I’m calmer the author who said don’t tag ever was naive to blanket statement, sure say for me and some of my author friends I don’t want to know and that’s cool whether for their mental health reasons or they just don’t give a monkeys bum that’s fine, just don’t speak for others!
    But yeah it was a real kick in the teeth for many of us.

    Liked by 2 people

    1. You’ve summed it up exactly Lily! It was definitely quite hurtful and panic-inducing when the ‘don’t tag ever’ started. I’m glad that things eventually worked themselves out in the sense that less well known authors stood up for their right to choose being tagged or not. Blanket statements aren’t considerate of the whole, regardless of the topic. Everyone’s different and at the end of the day appreciation for people’s positive words on your work should be the norm.

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Oh wow- they were commenting that being tagged in a positive review was rude? How so?!

    Blogging is basically a part time job for me. Just one that pays me in books. Which in the end means more work.

    It’s crazy to me that some think it rude. 🙄

    I don’t usually tag the author. I try to # the book so that if the author searches and tries to find it, they can see my tweet and like/respond (or ignore) as they see fit. What I am not very good at, is highlighting in the tweet how I felt about the book, so the author can easily avoid if they assume it will mostly be negative.

    I’ve had a few that bothered to like them and reply. I especially love when I get a kind and thoughtful comment on GoodReads, where it’s sort of permamarked for all to see. Best comment I ever got was from John Kessel for my review of The Moon and the Other, and it was something along the lines of: “I try not to read reviews as a habit, but I just wanted to thank you for this. You read the book I hoped to write.” And I was just so touched!

    Either way- so noted. Thanks for sharing!

    Liked by 2 people

    1. Thanks for the comment Sarah! I’m glad it wasn’t just me that thought it was a bit rude. Despite the fact that blanket statements of ‘not tagging ever’ aren’t considerate of blogger and authors as a whole. I get so excited when authors notice my positive reviews and as an aspiring author positive comments from others on my drafts can make all the difference!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. I think this has been a very interesting discussion, both in Twitter and here in your blog 😊 I don’t get very emotional about it because I have never tagged authors in reviews unless a publisher who has given me a review copy demands that I do so. I believe that authors can find these reviews if they want to – simply by searching twitter with their own name or by going to Goodreads. I think that tagging an author forces them to react to the review. Authors may feel that if they have been tagged to a positive review, they HAVE TO say something like “Thank you so much I loved your review, much love!!” and for many authors that would include a lot of extra work if they get tagged multiple times a day. Maybe tagging an author forces that author to respond or be considered rude? Also, some authors may feel very very sensitive towards their work. For example, reading a 4-star review may be devastating to them if they simply keep focusing and obsessing over the few negative points. Then in this case the author might feel that they would rather not be tagged at all. I equally understand the side of tagging – it can be uplifting to an author to see positive reviews and that author’s response rewards the blogger as well. However, personally I think reviews are supposed to be for the readers and not for the authors and that’s why I prefer not to tag authors. I don’t want authors to read my blog and by accident find their own book in my list of worst books 😬 Also I personally think those reactions from authors in twitter are primarily awkward to me, I never know what to respond 😅

    Liked by 1 person

    1. You make some very good points and have summed up the nuanced nature of what you’d think was a small part of our day. It takes more consideration than expected and I’m glad that at least the topic was fully discussed and some understanding from both sides has come to light. I find interactions with authors a little bit awkward as well! Especially if the book didn’t receive a highly starred rating. Thanks for commenting! 😀

      Like

  4. I only tag authors with blog tour posts because it is kind of expected, but I never thought tagging authors even for a positive review can be construed as ‘rude.’ I was momentarily floored to be honest! I don’t think I will ever tag authors for negative reviews (no one wants to read negative reviews for their pride and joy…), but even so, I would like authors to be open to reviews whether they be negative or positive. Great post!

    Liked by 1 person

    1. Thanks Noriko, I’m glad you also agree on a few of these points. At the end of the day the discussion on twitter helped to create clearer guidelines on how to politely tag authors. I still tag them in positive reviews and blog tours though 😛

      Liked by 1 person

  5. Most of the time, even though I’m on Twitter, I don’t even notice this kind of threads/drama because I don’t spend a lot of time on it but for once I saw this one. I wish I didn’t because now everytime I’m tagging an author I second guess myself. Anyway, there were a lot of authors that tweeted that they liked to be tagged in positive reviews and I think maybe those who don’t like and don’t want to be tagged are the minority. However, it definitely made me worry about it. 😕

    Liked by 1 person

    1. It made me worry a bit too at the start. I’m so glad for the other authors who spoke up and negated the blanket statement of ‘don’t tag at all’ that some other authors had put out there. Not all people are the same and it’s made it a bit easier to know who likes/disliked being tagged now. Still, I like to err on the side of caution and barely tag anymore unless I’m sure about who I’m tagging and whether I think they’d respond well to it 😛

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