Befriending people on Goodreads

Why do people befriend other people on Goodreads? I can imagine only a couple of reasons.

  • They like the same kind of books and therefore want to know what those people are up to reading wise.
  • They know the other person through book blogging or personally and want to keep in touch, like a bookish Facebook.
    If there is another reason – and there might be –, I would expect the “befriender” to send a short message to the “befriendee” why they want to be friends. Why would I approve a friendship with someone I have never heard of before and who has no books in common with me? GR_friends
    Recently I received a number of friend requests from people who have about 20 books in their “read books” list, none “to read” and who had about 315 friends (or many more). Needless to say a quick book compare showed that we had none in common, not one. Why, oh why, would I want to be friends with a Goodreads whore? 

10 Comments Write a comment

  1. I think people conceive Goodreads friendship quite differently. I’ve got plenty of other bloggers as “friends” here solely because I’m curious about the books they read. I’ve seen folks who’ve got literally hundreds of “friends” here which is a bit strange, then again, many have hundreds of friends on Facebook and I think that’s weird too. And besides, you can still follow other people’s reviews without being their friend.
    Apropos few books on the Goodreads shelves … I haven’t got all that many and am only adding the ones I’m currently reading. The reason? My full library (well, the books I still own) are all over at LibraryThing and I have no idea how messy my book list would get if I exported my data from one to the other.
    Birgit’s last post ..A Writer’s Life – The secret language of writers

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    • Oh, yes, the Facebook firned hoarders are just the same thing, if not worse.
      I can see why someone who is on Library Thing and has a big shelf there wouldn’t want to import it all into Goodreads. However, I think a lot of those people have no shelf anywhere else either.

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  2. I think it’s another way of collecting friends, like FB or Twitter. I personally don’t understand it nor support it, but that’s one of the bad things of social networks…
    Elena’s last post ..Dear 2012…

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    • I think Twitter is a bit different because it is one sided. But, yes FB and GR are basically the same as far as “friendship” goes.

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  3. Ugh, friend collectors, you’ve hit on my pet hate!

    My GR friend list is already looking a little long. I tend to clean it out often. I friend people if they leave me a message saying where they know me. Usually if it’s through blogging or a GR group, or if we’ve had some sort of convo elsewhere. I don’t mind if they leave a nice message. One person put a lot of effort into their friend request and though I’d never seen him in groups or otherwise, I was quite touched because it was more “hey, I read the same books as you” kind of request.

    I don’t care if they like Justin Beiber or if (with twitter) they’ll follow me back. It’s why I’ve gone back to protected tweets rather then public simply because I got fed up with having to block those irritating little people. And what’s it with the gangsta people? Hoes and bitches – why’d I wanna follow a loser like that?

    There’s a particularly strange friend collector on GR who has read about 5 books or so and has about a million friends. He sent me a message (after multiple friend requests) saying ‘doesn’t everyone need a friend’ oh because I’m really going to be your ‘friend’ along with those million others you have, sure, why bother having a GR account? What is the point in social media networks if you aren’t actually going to be social?
    Fiona’s last post ..2011: The Best Of

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    • Agreed on everything, Fiona.
      Yes, I also like it when people send a little message with their request, so you know who they are, you sometimes wouldn’t know just from the name. But there ARE a lot of people on Goodreads where I am wondering whether they even read at all.
      So funny, “doesn’t everyone need a friend”. Yeah, if you have no friends the best thing you can get is a “friend” on Goodreads!

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    • I suppose you are right, Heather. But how misguided to think the more “friends” you have, the cooler you are!

      Reply

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