So, just read this article.
Quick summary: some publishers want to quit sending heaps of free books to bloggers who may or may not review them close to their release dates; some bloggers are offended at being required to keep their reviews timely in order to continue receiving free books.
I’ve seen this sort of article before, and you know what? WHAT A NONISSUE.
a) If publishers don’t want to send out hundreds of free books to bloggers who might or might not review them, well, who can blame them?
b) If bloggers don’t want to be constrained as to when they must review books, then that’s fine, nobody says they have to agree to receive tons of free books with that restriction attached. It’s not like a blogger is likely to run out of books to read if they don’t receive heaps o’ loot from publishers, right?
This stands out from the comments:
“They [bloggers who review books] are a dime a dozen and this will sort out the reviewers who blog for the love of it, from the masses who are in it for the free books.”
There are “masses” of bloggers who are “in it for the free books”? Really?
Because I don’t believe it. I don’t need publishers to send me heaps of free books in order to have my TBR pile increase to the point where the books on the bottom are in danger of fossilizing or turning into oil or whatever happens to paper subjected to great pressure for eons. And I bet most book bloggers have piles like that, too.
And here’s an even weirder comment regarding bloggers’ decision to accept only a few books from publishers and only if they expect to enjoy reading them:
“So there’s another distinction between professional reviewers and many online reviewers. An objective professional reviewer can’t just review books of his or her personal choice . . . If reviews are to be regarded as a service to readers, then the selection should not be confined to one reviewer’s subjective pre-conception about enjoyment.”
What is that? Reviewers aren’t trustworthy if they pick up only books they expect to enjoy? No kidding? For heaven’s sake, does anybody honestly think bloggers review books because they think of reviewing as a JOB requiring them to selflessly slog through books they hate as a public service? Maybe many of them think of it as, I don’t know, a FUN HOBBY which also happens to be a service to people who like the same kinds of books they do?
Or am I missing something?
I buy many, many books because of reviews at The Book Smugglers and other book review blogs. I think book review blogs are very important and will become even more important as self-publishing leads to increasingly huge heaping hordes of ungatekeepered books becoming available.
But I don’t think anybody thinks that bloggers will run out of books to review if the stop getting tons of random free books from publishers.