LibraryThing / Booklikes

SnakBooklikers on LibraryThing

Bliv bruger af LibraryThing, hvis du vil skrive et indlæg

LibraryThing / Booklikes

1timspalding
sep 30, 2020, 8:48 am

I wanted to drop in here and say a few words.

First, I've reached out to Booklikes to see if there's anything we can do. We saved Litsy when it was going to die. We could do the same for Booklikes. (I tried with FictFact too, but the technical aspects were too extreme to deal with.) At a minimum, we could help BLers export their holdings—and take them wherever. So far, however, I have gotten no reply. So if anyone has a direct line to the developers, let me know.

Second, I'm all ears if anyone wants to tell me what of BL is missing or could be better on LT. The fundamental "blog" paradigm is not going to happen here anytime soon, but I'm open to other suggestions.

Best,
Tim Spalding
LibraryThing Founder

2BrokenTune
okt 1, 2020, 7:17 am

>1 timspalding: Hi Tim.
Thank you so much for reaching out. I'm not sure how many of us ex-BookLikers are over here and how many have actually seen your message, but I very much appreciate your offer of help.

I'll also have a think about what elements people are missing from BL, aside from the blogging function. The ones that immediately come to my mind are:

- Notifications for posts/comments: If YouKneek had not highlighted your message elsewhere, I'd have missed it as I was focusing on "starred" threads in Talk, and there was no notification of new threads.
- Commenting on reviews / current reads, which is what made a lot of the community come together over on BL.
- Sharing reading updates. I guess this could be done on a thread, but it isn't all that intuitive.

Again, thanks so much for trying to make contact with Booklikes and welcoming us over here.

BrokenTune

P.S. The LT library/database is awesome.

3natcontrary
okt 1, 2020, 11:33 am

>1 timspalding: The ex-Booklikers have found the Booklikes owners to be unresponsive in the last few years, so good luck?

4teastitchread
okt 1, 2020, 12:55 pm

Hi Tim,
I am a former BL'er and a LT member. BookLikes is unresponsive and honestly, more of a headache than you want to take on. I think the best thing for the site to die - it is very clear the owners (whoever they are at this point) don't care about the site or the members who quite frankly did an immense amount of work to make that site useable and a friendly environment conducive to connecting to other bookish people.

I don't know what LT can provide besides from the blogging that you have yet to do now. However, BrokenTune has a few good ideas in their post upthread, so maybe start there? I too only found this message only because I saw the link on GR.

I am glad I started a LT account prior to leaving BL. Thank you for giving us a landing site after the treatment we got at BL.

TeaStitchRead

5SKNF
okt 1, 2020, 12:57 pm

>1 timspalding: BLers have been trying to get in contact with someone from BL since January. There has been no success. I wish you more success.

As far as what I'm looking for, it is the blogging platform. LT has been a great source for me to catalog but that's really it. I'm a little turned off from even commenting on anything or trying to get into any social aspect. The very first time I posted a thread, it was met with "That's not how this works. You need to post that where it belongs."

Also what BrokenTune said about notifications and commenting on reviews. I don't want to have to dig to find things. I want to be able to tell my friends that I appreciated their reviews. BL allowed a little more freedom with comments than GRs currently does. At BL I didn't have to deal with people ripping into me because they disagree with my opinions. Any bullying that might have occurred was stamped out pretty quickly. Other members had your back and were quick to stand up for and with you.

6Familiar_Diversions
okt 1, 2020, 2:50 pm

Like others said, I wouldn't have even known about this thread if others hadn't posted about it on the Outpost group on Booklikes, so some way of setting things up so that you have the option to be notified when new topics are created in groups you're a part of might be nice. I think LibraryThing is too fundamentally different from BL to incorporate what was originally the best thing about it, the blogging aspect, but I've found LT extremely helpful in conjunction with Goodreads. LT is a way for me to catalog and keep track of my books, similar to what I did on Booklikes (except better, because I get to set up the data exactly the way that works best for my purposes).

And the big thing: LT folks are actually responsive. I was amazed when I heard that Tim Spaulding commented in the LT Booklikes group. It's nice to have bookish places we can go that don't feel like they're going to go away at any moment, which is basically what we'd been living with at Booklikes for more years than I'd realized.

7ObsidianBlue
okt 1, 2020, 3:23 pm

I like what BrokenTune has said above. I have nothing more to add then that. I would love it if someone from BL would respond, but they won't and seem focused on just increasing their spam followers. I do miss the blogging aspect and the ability to post GIFs.

8Themis-Athena
okt 1, 2020, 4:28 pm

Hi Tim,

I echo everybody else in saying thanks for getting in touch -- and on substance, BrokenTune's comments especially.

Re: Contacting anybody at BookLikes, the site is owned by Legimi; their (= Legimi's) business address and Polish registration details can be gleaned from the German edition of their website (https://www.legimi.de/impressum/). Legimi's CEO is also on Twitter -- he has disabled the option to contact him there, but anyway, this is him: https://twitter.com/malaczynski
BookLikes's business address, as per booklikes.com/contact-us, is:

BookLikes
Wojskowa 6/B9
60-792 Poznań
Poland

In the past, every once in a blue moon BookLikes made an announcement on their Facebook site, and those of us who had contacted them via (FB) messenger before they turned off that option seem to have been able to continue doing that -- without ever getting any sort of response, though. Ditto, as the others have already said, via any other means of communication. I don't think any of us have any idea whether getting something more "official" from Librarything would make any difference to BL (or Legimi).

Re: book data, as BookLikes didn't / doesn't have a library export function, it was / is rather cumbersome to back up our bookshelves there so as to be able to import them here (I've always kept a separate running backup in Calibre as well as a (monster) Excel sheet, so I could import to LibraryThing from there, but I'm pretty sure most people won't have gone to that length -- and most of us also don't have the IT skills to create new or tweak / use existing APIs to fleece our BL data.) I'm not certain how much you can do about that unilaterally?

(Re: The import-into-LT experience, though, I loved how easy LT's settings made the post-import cleanup -- collections, tags, mass / power editing, etc. I have a large library, but I was still done with it all in a fraction of the time it used to take me elsewhere. Truly impressive stuff. -- And on a related note, thank you for creating a "track your series reading on LT" feature ... in lieu of the sadly expired FictFact.)

As for features here on LibraryThing, would it be possible to create a way for us to automatically share posted reviews and reading status updates in certain groups where we select to share them (or in some other sort of forum within LT) *IF* we want to do this? As some of the others have said, one of the features many of us loved at BookLikes was the joint "dashboard" feed that allowed us all to see everybody else's posts in one central place. -- I get that creating an actual blogging format isn't something you're contemplating. But LT's dashboard works differently than that of BookLikes (or, for that matter, GR's IMHO pretty useless home feed) -- yet, auto-sharing reviews and status updates in a forum designed for interaction anyway would instantly bring those reviews / status updates to the attention of those who might be interested in reading and responding to them, without having to take the extra step of seeking out that particular reviewer's profile (or the book pages in question). I'm not sure an auto-share "without the option (to say no)" would work with the LT community at large, but maybe it could be designed as an "opt-in" thing (i.e., you only share if you check off that option and if you also specify the group(s) where you want to share your review / reading status update)?

Also, is there possibly a way in which you could help with features making it easier for those of us who have external blogs (Wordpress, Blogger, etc.) to replicate the basic BookLikes format there (blog + associated book database)? I know there are a number of LT widgets already, and I'm sure you're being pestered enough about the Wordpress / no Javascript thing so I'm not even going to go there, too; but maybe some sort of plugin (or widget, or whatever) could be developed that would allow bloggers to quickly / automatically load certain data of individual books from their LibraryThing (or TinyCat) records (e.g., cover image, star rating, tags and collections) and integrate them into their blog posts relating to those specific books ... and / or, going the other way, import reviews posted on our blogs into LT (other than by copying and pasting, that is, or by just pasting a link)?

Sorry for such a long reply. And thanks again for reaching out and making us feel welcome!

ThemisAthena

9AVoraciousReader
okt 1, 2020, 7:25 pm

Hi Tim,

Thanks for reaching out. I've been on LT since 2012, but I've never really explored the site. I've used it mostly to keep track of books and post my reviews. As far as BL is concerned, I will confirm what everyone else has said and add that trying to save it is probably a 99.99% lost cause. They are unresponsive and when they actually do announce something it's never about what we've been near begging for. I left for good this year and that was after taking a 2 yr break from it when it was horrible. I returned when I heard it was running better, but that was short lived. And the spammers are rampant - so gross.

Anyway, other than echoing the want of a blogging feature, I can't think of anything to add that hasn't already been said.

AVR

10timspalding
okt 1, 2020, 11:18 pm

I just spend a half hour trying to send them a bouquet of flowers. But, alas, I need their phone number to do it.

It's possible that they have left that location, replaced by DigitalSignage, or that they are the same people. ( See https://www.google.com/search?client=safari&rls=en&q=6/B9+60-792+Pozna%C... )

I may just call them up tomorrow and see if I can get through. Does anyone have any more information?

11Themis-Athena
okt 2, 2020, 8:16 am

According to this page on the Polish Legimi site: https://support.legimi.com/hc/pl/requests/new , their customer contact phone no. is
+48 22 307 65 40. (That would probably be 01148 - 22 - 307 65 40 from the U.S.)

If I'm guessing the meaning of the additional notation on the page correctly, the phone is manned from 10:00 am to 4:00 pm CET (= EST + 6 hours) -- for purposes of verification, I'm posting this at 02:16 PM CET (I am in Germany).

I don't think BookLikes ever published a phone no. where they could be reached directly.

You better pray the person you reach at the Legimi phone no. (if any) speaks English, because all of their other communications are in Polish.

12Charrlygirl
okt 2, 2020, 8:43 am

Another Bookliker here that appreciates your efforts.

13timspalding
Redigeret: okt 2, 2020, 12:31 pm

Some people on Twitter helped me find Legimi. I tweeted them. Honestly, they should at least shut the site down cleanly. They're an ebook company in Poland—apparently a big one. Do you want to go with an ebook company that does this to its other products? What possible security would you have that they weren't going to do it to your books?

14BrokenTune
okt 2, 2020, 12:49 pm

>13 timspalding: LoL. Nothing I have seen from them since they bought the site from the original owners has had even a whiff of professionalism about it.

15AVoraciousReader
okt 2, 2020, 2:17 pm

Having Polish heritage my son has been learning Polish on Duolingo this year, but he is not proficient enough to help with a phone call. lol Honestly I should be learning right along with him now that my gr-grands, grands, and my dad are gone.

16murderbydeath
Redigeret: okt 3, 2020, 2:56 am

>13 timspalding: You have no idea how much your efforts mean to me (and I know, some other BL'ers). I have fantasied about emailing you and begging you to do a "Litsy" with BookLikes but would never be so cheeky, and here you are reading my mind, granting me my fondest wish.

I've been on GR, which I hate with the fiery passion of 10k suns, and LT for a long time. And I adore the geek level of book databasing LibraryThing offers and have always appreciated the level of engagement the LT team has with its users. But if we put the small, niggling desire for adjustments aside, I think the bones of BookLikes is just about the perfect platform for an actual reading community. I'm not a blogger, though I'm building out my WP site because BL has been so bad lately (not a fan of WP btw), but BookLikes wasn't so much Blogging in the capital B sense. You had your own site, it's true, but the real action, the real community, was on the dashboard, where you saw all the posts, books added, reading status updates, etc. of the people you chose to follow, with the ability to comment on those posts right there from the dashboard. 90% of the posts were purely book reviews, but we also posted book hauls, shelfies, hosted book games (Bingo, advent calendars, and reading games based on Clue!, Monopoly and Snakes and Ladders. Less occasionally we posted about recent trips we made or other news we thought would interest our friends. The site was all about the books, but those non-book posts heightened the sense of community to such an extent that since BL has gotten so bad we're like a travelling band of refugees, moving around together in a herd looking for a new town (forgive the mixed metaphors please?). That dashboard was so pivotal that even though BookLikes has groups (and a neat BookClub function), they almost never got used, because even when we tried to, we found we still gravitated back towards conversations taking place directly on posts we saw on our dashboard feed.

So, short of being able to buyout BookLikes and run is separately (see my further suggestions for contacting them at the end), I know LT will never re-create that blogging capability and understand that: LT is LT and should stay that way. BUT, if:

- like Themis-Athena suggested above, it was feasible within LT's core values, to add an option for a central feed where we could see our friends reviews, status updates, etc. and be able to comment on them directly, that would be huge.

- echoing Themis-Athena again, the possibility of tying LT data from our LT accounts into our WP feeds would also be amazing. I've paid money for a plug in that would allow me to build my own book database, but there's no mass import function, and I've been wishing I could somehow either import my LT/TinyCat data into a WP database on a per-book basis, or have a way to embed the LT book data into my posts in a way that keeps users on the page if they want more info about a book I'm talking about in a post.

I guess those are the two biggest things, though group notifications are an issue; if YouKneeK hadn't let us know about your post offering help, I'd have never known about it, and given my fondest wishing, that would have proved cruelly ironic.

LT overwhelms me, which is embarrassing to admit after decades in IT; I *know* how powerful it is, but I've never been able to make it my own in terms of community. Having my friends' activity in one place, where I could also engage with them, would go a long way (and yes, this should be an optional thing - perhaps a tile on each users homepage in the same way Groups, Your Books, Recently Added, etc. are).

In terms of contacting BookLikes, Themis-Athena has the best information to date on contacting the current administrators of the site, but I'm wondering if you'd have any luck contacting them through the previous owners? I follow them on Facebook - they don't post often, but a PM might reach them (they speak English) and they *might* have contact information you could use:

https://www.facebook.com/joanna.grzelak
https://www.facebook.com/profile.php?id=1259054556

Again - thank you so much for your efforts with this. I for one will always remember and appreciate it and your willingness to have a dialog with us about it.

17Themis-Athena
okt 3, 2020, 8:39 am

>13 timspalding: I just checked and saw you are on LinkedIn. So are Mikołaj Małaczyński and his Legimi co-founder and co-board member Mateusz Frukacz:

https://www.linkedin.com/in/malaczynski/
https://www.linkedin.com/in/mateuszfrukacz/

... as well as, for that matter (good thinking, MbD!) Dawid Piaskowski and his wife Joanna Grzelak:

https://www.linkedin.com/in/dawidpiaskowski/
https://www.linkedin.com/in/joannagrzelak/

With some major help from Google translate, I was also able to check the Polish commercial register ("KRS" -- https://ekrs.ms.gov.pl/web/wyszukiwarka-krs/strona-glowna/index.html ): It appears that BookLikes -- KRS registration no. 0000398994 -- may indeed have changed its business address; in any event, the address given in the commercial register is

UL. SZELĄGOWSKA 49, 61-626 POZNAŃ

On Google Streetview ( https://tinyurl.com/y3lhncgc ), the (moderately decrepit) building at that address has a big sign saying something like "Innovation Center" on the outside, with some smaller signs next to it which unfortunately are not legible in the Streetview image.

In the KRS data, Mikołaj Małaczyński is listed as BookLikes's managing director (= roughly, the Polish limited company equivalent of a CEO).

The Legimi business address given on their German website (Obornicka 330, 60-689 Poznan, see link -- https://www.legimi.de/impressum/ -- included in my first response) is confirmed by that company's KRS data (KRS registration no. 0000405366).

On Streetview, this looks like a commercial building in a fairly recent, purely commercial / industrial neighborhood far to the north of the city ( https://tinyurl.com/y56fxa22 )

I can't make out a sign for *any* business near the entrance of this building (neither Legimi nor any other). To one side of the building (visible if you direct Streetview into the alley to the right) is a huge placard advertising the services of a company called "Inkubator Biznez Nauka", but I can't tell whether that's just an advertisement for a company unrelated to the premises or an advertisement for the company that owns / manages this particular building.

18AVoraciousReader
okt 3, 2020, 10:13 am

I want to strenuously echo MBD's Dashboard feed request. I know it's tied into having our own "blogs" on BL but I really really REALLY miss being able to sit and scroll and see what my friends have been up to.

19murderbydeath
okt 3, 2020, 5:33 pm

I just want to reassure Tim that this is worth the effort - it's not just us, the small core left that want BL back. When Dawid Piaskowski and his wife Joanna Grzelak owned BookLikes and were actively developing it and engaging with the users weekly, people joined in droves. It was only after Joanna's health issues forced them to leave the company (and Poland) that the site started to stagnate and people started leaving. Things got better when an original BL employee, Kate, came back, until she too had to leave few years ago for health issues; now nobody is there keeping things running and the spammers are strangling the site. But when it had an active management team, it was amazing and growing by leaps and bounds.

If I had the resources, I'd have tried to buy them out myself, but barring magical lottery winnings, please know that I'd happily pay an annual or one-time membership fee to keep BookLikes and support having a staff for it.

20stellar_raven
okt 4, 2020, 3:54 pm

>13 timspalding: I also wanted to add my thanks for your efforts to reach out not only to BL users, but the ownership in an effort to help. It truly means a lot to us.

Personally, outside of the blogging aspect-- though I understand and accept that we won't get that here--the thing I miss most about BL is the dashboard. The ability to see and comment on my and my friends' posts and status updates in one central location really helped to form the tight knit group that we had over there.

Thank you again for your efforts.

21timspalding
okt 4, 2020, 4:00 pm

Can you tell me a little more about what the dashboard was. It's been a while since I've been able to get into BookLikes.

22YouKneeK
okt 4, 2020, 4:49 pm

>21 timspalding: The Dashboard was basically a feed, similar in concept but very different in functionality to the “Connection News” on LT. It’s maybe a little closer to the “Updates” feed on Goodreads’ home page, but still not quite the same. It might be closest to the WordPress feed, but I have barely used that at all so can't say for sure. I was able to log into my old account and grab a couple screen shots below. It isn’t the best of examples because hardly anybody is posting there, plus each post takes up a lot of space on the screen so you can’t see too much without scrolling down.

Basically it's the place where all the blog posts show up from the people you were following, in sequential order (newest sorted to the top) so you didn't have to go to the individual blog pages. From there, you could click “Like” on their posts or add comments. If anybody else had commented, you could read and reply to those comments here. The blog owner had the power to delete comments to their own blog posts if they wanted to. You could elect to follow the activity on a post (this happened automatically for your own) so that you’d be notified if there was a comment on it. The dashboard would also show shelving updates, or if somebody rated a book without writing a review, but you couldn’t interact with those. Examples of those are the smaller entries at the bottom of my first screen shot. They showed up sequentially along with all the posts.

Members could post anything they wanted -- reviews, reading updates, or just general posts that may or may not have anything to do with books, to their blog. I haven’t used the site for 3 years, so I’m a little out of practice, but I believe they started a post with the menu bar near the top of my first screen shot (Text / Quote / Photo / Video / URL), then they were presented with a screen like the one in my second screen shot. When posting a review, it would automatically display the cover of the book and a star rating and tie to the book’s page, so that you could see all the related reviews on the book page as well. The person writing the post could save it as a draft if they weren't ready to make something public and needed more time to finish it. Once they published it, it would show up on their follower's dashboards as well as on their own blog page.




23timspalding
okt 4, 2020, 5:22 pm

Have you guys looked at Litsy? Anyone?

24BrokenTune
okt 4, 2020, 5:50 pm

>23 timspalding: Re Litsy - Yes, I have. I created an account and trialled it for a couple of weeks not long ago (when BL first stopped loading earlier this year). It's not a platform I am looking to use. It seems very superficial, i.e. heavy on photos, but not inviting a lot of conversation/discussion.

25stellar_raven
okt 4, 2020, 5:55 pm

>23 timspalding: I agree with BrokenTune. I've had an account there for four years, and her assessment is the same as mine.

26timspalding
okt 4, 2020, 6:29 pm

Yeah. It's feed-y, but different.

27murderbydeath
okt 4, 2020, 8:22 pm

Just logged in to catch up on the thread, but before I do, Themis-Athena emailed me privately to ask me to post a response here - she said she was able to read the posts, but when she tried to respond got an 'access forbidden' message, which she then received trying to access any part of LT. I know she's under gun in RL at the moment, work-wise, so probably hasn't had time to properly troubleshoot.

Anyway, here is her message:

FROM THEMIS-ATHENA:
I've come to think of the BL Dashboard as a sort of common room (think college or, for that matter, Harry Potter) -- the place that everybody saw first thing upon logging into BL, and where everybody congregated, chatted, etc. (which is why groups etc. had a fairly limited used for us).

Technically, it was a continuous feed where you saw practically all the activities of everybody you were following (and ONLY the people you were following): bookshelf additions / updates, reviews, other blog posts, images, etc. -- the full version of all of those activities, that is, not merely an abbreviated preview. (We had the option to cut off very long posts with a page break and "read more" notation, but it was up to us whether we wanted to make use of that option; it wasn't forced on us by the system.)

On some of the items included in the Dashboard feed (most notably, alas, bookshelf additions / updates) you couldn't comment, but on most things you could -- particularly of course on reviews and other posts. So as it turned out, almost all our exchanges occurred in the comments sections of our blog posts (or by responding to someone else's post or comment with a post of your own) -- because everybody instantly saw them, and you could comment / respond straight off the Dash without having to click on a given post in order to access its comments section. As MurderbyDeath explained, our reviews and other contributions were only formally hosted on our blogs; the real "action" was happening on the Dashboard, where every post was automatically published simultaneously with its blog publication.

That's what made me ask whether there could be some sort of similar sharing here: maybe not with the community at large; LT is probably too big for that (and the Goodreads feed, which in theory is trying to do something similar -- or used to, once upon a time -- is hopelessly cluttered with stuff that's of no use to anybody); but within the confines of a discussion group or some other more circumscribed forum.

But even above and beyond the exchange with our friends, for every blogger's own purposes, too, the BL Dashboard was where "it" was all (or almost all) happening; e.g., you could also edit your posts / contributions straight off the Dash without having to access you blog for the purpose.

And as book-related blog posts (reviews or otherwise) typically came with a hyperlinked book cover that would take you straight to the relevant book page, you could also add books to your personal library almost directly off someone else's post that you'd seen in your dashboard feed.

All this reads like a fairly sober description; the truth is, the Dashboard was the heart of the BookLikes community: MurderbyDeath has described its emotional impact and value much better than I ever could. As I said at the beginning of this response: think common room or, for that matter, the cozy living room of a house inhabited by a large family, complete with log fire, candles, or whatever else makes your living room the center of your home in your own world. That's why we are missing it so much -- and that's why it would matter so much to us to be able to recreate it somewhere ... or better yet, to see it rescued, if at all possible.

Again, thank you for reaching out and helping with what we could never have done ourselves!

28murderbydeath
Redigeret: okt 4, 2020, 9:18 pm

I'll be straight: I think part of what made our community as insanely tight-knit as it is, isn't just the technical functionality of the dashboard, though that's a big part, but the ability to share posts/thoughts beyond the strict book review. The reviews are definitely the prime focus - we're there because we want to share and find new books - but sharing shelfies, or book hauls, or your plans to conquer your TBR pile for the coming year, or sharing how your reading has been going for the month, year, etc. complete with stats and pie charts for many, went beyond what other book sites are offering. When BL first started I didn't think the whole 'post whatever you want' would ever possibly work. It did, because we could follow whomever we wanted, so if you didn't want to see a lot of non-book related stuff, you didn't follow someone who posted it. Similarly, a lot of us didn't follow people who focused mostly on the typical 'blog' stuff: author spotlights, cover reveals, blog tours.

Within our individual parameters, we got to know one another on a personal level. Several have met up in real life, and almost all of us have been involved in some kind of book swap/gift giving at one point or another. And we had no trolls. None. No fights, no drama save for once I can think of, and it was quickly and respectfully resolved. People feel safe on BookLikes because of this. And we all know BookLikes isn't doing anything special to ward off bad behaviour; it's because users have control over who follows them/comments on their posts, but also because we all get to know each other just that little bit better and it's hard to troll someone you've shared shelfies with, or swapped books. At the end of this post, I'll include a few links to non-review book related posts to give you an idea of what I'm talking about.

I know that non-review posting is outside of LT's purview, and I understand that. I just wanted to try to illustrate the importance of BookLikes in terms of not better - because objectively speaking LT's book database is unbeatable - but different; allowing a completely different kind of community. Which is why I hold on to a thin thread of hope that you can reach BL's administrators and work something out.

Pragmatically speaking though, the technical functionality of the dashboard is very much as YouKneeK described in message 22. I'll post my own screenshot here because I have an ad-blocker (as a librarian on BL, I work for my ad-free state) so you can see more of what we love:



(hopefully that works - might be slow since the image is actually on BL servers)

As you can see, the dashboard includes:

- notifications at the very top, showing new comments, or if someone started following you, as well as notifications of PMs.

- a reading challenge widget (currently not working b/c the developer screwed up something when he added '2020' to the db, so no book can be recorded as having been read in 2020).

- the feed that includes posts and any post comments, with the ability to add your comments or respond to others, bookshelf additions, reading status' and if a new list is created or someone follows that list. Book clubs you belonged to showed notifications here too.

- on the right side, you can filter if you want to see all the posts, or just the reviews; as well as Liked Posts and tags, which, I've never used. If you're currently reading any books, they're listed there with the ability to either mark them as finished or update their status (page #/%/mins read with the option of writing comments).

Pretty much a one-stop shop of just about everybody's activity and the ability to do 90% of what most people wanted to do daily. (my screenshot doesn't include the top bar, b/c I was trying to get more of the feed into it)

If we could have some similar option on LT, on the home page as an opt-in, that would allow us to see a feed of our friends reviews, with the ability to comment on them from that feed, it would be great. Maybe that feed could include notifications of new posts in the groups we follow too, which would make it easier to have a few of those book related posts that aren't strictly reviews, with an easy place to see them. LT doesn't do reading update/progress bars does it? I can't find it, if so, but it would be great to see those too. Sometimes - a lot of times - you have thoughts while reading a book that are worth sharing but not always have a place in the final reviews.

I'm going to shut up now. But here's a few random links to book-related posts. Hopefully they'll open for you. If you're REALLY patient, the comments should load too (comments and images appear to be stored in a seperate database and it is by far the much slower, less responsive one).

Apologies if I've linked to anyone's site who'd rather I not; I was going from memory and figured the blogs are public. If anyone wants me to remove the links, let me know and I'll get it done ASAP.

http://brokentune.booklikes.com/post/2827174/reading-progress-update-i-ve-read-3...
http://brokentune.booklikes.com/post/2799576/the-2020-mount-tbr-project-end-of-j...
http://themisathena.booklikes.com/post/1827257/around-the-world-in-80-books-most...
http://jenn.booklikes.com/post/1903369/mbd-s-essential-ish-books-could-be-the-fi... (this was part of a larger, community project you can see if you click on the essential books tag)
http://tannat.booklikes.com/post/2811402/mid-year-wrap-up
http://jenn.booklikes.com/post/2032710/glingleglingle-the-bookshelf-fairy-finall...

29Themis-Athena
okt 5, 2020, 10:19 am

First things first: a big THANK YOU

- To MbD for (a) posting my "dashboard" response in absentiam (which it turns out pretty much duplicates everybody else's contributions) and (b) for clobbering Tim with my "Access forbidden" scare in the intro to her post before I even had a chance to contact LT support myself; and
- To Tim and the LT team for resolving the "access" issue matter super-fast and completely noiselessly. You guys totally rock.

And I guess after the last three posts, I won't ever again feel the need to apologize for running on too long ... :)

I guess, Tim, if you're not taking away anything else from our last responses, the one thing I hope we have managed to convey is that the BookLikes dash was as close to the soul of BookLikes as a technical feature can ever get -- because it allowed the souls behind the blog posts to come together in one place. Yeah, I know ... purple prose and all that. But anyway, that's why it meant so much to us. And even the posts that MbD shared at the end of her response only tell the bookish side of the story -- as she said, there was so much more; reading games, strictly "off topic" posts, etc. Not to mention that for many of us the BookLikes community (i.e., the BookLikes dash, technically speaking) also was a major point of support and comfort in the face of the pandemic -- regardless whether we ourselves or close family were affected personally, or whether we just needed a place to vent or to take our sadness / depression / anger / whatever else.

30Charrlygirl
okt 5, 2020, 1:19 pm

Just adding my voice to what everyone here has already said. I've made lasting friendships on BL and I miss that SO MUCH. Themis-Athena said everything I wanted to say in the last paragraph of her last post. Thanks for even trying to take this on. It is much appreciated.

31chalton
okt 5, 2020, 2:45 pm

Hi Tim, just wanted to add my thanks and appreciation for everything you're doing or are trying to do.
And kudos to everyone else who has left such informative information.

32Peregrinations
Redigeret: okt 5, 2020, 5:15 pm

Thank you, Tim.

We appreciate your reaching out to us and we appreciate your offer of help.

I wish that you could have seen BL in its heyday, once it had found its stride and before it was sold off and overrun by spammers -- or at least the small part of it that I interacted with. BL became what it was only partially because of what the platform offered-- book catalog, discussion forums, book reviews and blogging on the same platform, with a way of bringing them together on one screen (Dashboard).

There was also an X factor -- and that was the dedication of a few of the members who worked to actively create a warm, welcoming community. BL would have failed before it even got off the ground were it not for that small group of members working hard to welcome new members, to tell others about new blogs -- and that used reading games and challenges to build community. They took over when the original owners/community managers took off. They answered questions and responded to complaints even if they could not fix things; they worked on updating the database when automatic updating ceased. BL became book club, kaffeeklatch and backyard fence rolled into one. Also, BL was free, it was ad-free and it was not part of Amazon.

Other than that, ditto what BrokenTune has said. Plus, a comment about the inability to import books by ASIN.

Finally, sorry. I started this post days ago when there were only two posts and I thought this was post number 3 or 4. So much for real life getting in the way. That explains why this sounds so out of step. So, now you see what I mean by the X-factor and you have met a number of them.

Thanks for listening,
Peregrinations

33murderbydeath
okt 5, 2020, 6:08 pm

>23 timspalding: Yes, I looked at Litsy ages ago, but it was a mobile only platform and while I might be an IT professional, I'm a philistine when it comes to mobile; I will not surf anything with my phone willingly, so it didn't work for me. When you bought it, I looked again, and started following Litsy's FB group to see what new developments were made. I see there's now a desktop feature, which makes it more attractive, but while it fills the book-related-but-not-reviews niche in terms of shelfies, hauls, etc. it's ultimately too shallow a site for me - in terms of features; I want the robust database, the robust reviewing options, the ability to shelve MY additions, etc. So I'm not really a good fit with its target demographic.

34AVoraciousReader
okt 6, 2020, 11:04 pm

I just joined Litsy and tried to add 5 books I was reading/just finished and none of them came up. So, I don't see myself ever using the platform.

35Peregrinations
Redigeret: okt 7, 2020, 10:36 pm



SORRY! Somehow my post got posted twice. So I'm deleting this one. No idea what happened.

36Themis-Athena
Redigeret: okt 8, 2020, 6:53 am

>23 timspalding: My impression is that by and large the BookLikes community is at the other end of the spectrum from Litsy when it comes to online book communities: We may or may not be introverts in RL, but as this thread shows, when we get passionate about something ... we get *really* passionate, and that more often than not translates into a verbal outpouring. And even if it's not a downright torrent, it's not something that easily lends itself to being channeled into 280 characters.

Even when we're posting photos of book hauls (which seems to be kind of a thing on Litsy) -- while our posts may be something as short as this: http://themisathena.booklikes.com/post/1613541/tannat-buddy-read-francais
... they might just as well also go to vastly greater lengths:
http://themisathena.booklikes.com/post/1440585/summer-splurges-aka-be-good-to-yo...

Plus, as some of the others have already said, many of us are really, really particular (1) about being able to add *all* our books to our libraries (including those that are long OOP or were published only for a very limited audience), and (2) about having our online libraries reflect the specific editions we own / have read. ETA: We also care a lot about a book's "environment", e.g., its place in a particular series or in the universe created by the author, etc. That makes LibraryThing, with its spectacular array of librarian features, a great fit for us -- Litsy decidedly less so. (That is true even now that Litsy is available in desktop format; in its initial format as an app, the issue was an even bigger one.)

What I will say is that when I did join Litsy to check it out a few years ago (when it was still only an app), I was instantly welcomed by the community, which at the time seemed to have a similar "welcome / integrate new members" initiative to the one we had on BookLikes -- and I thought that was very nice (and certainly unexpected). But ultimately, like most of the others who have already answered, I found what Litsy offers in terms of features isn't what I'm looking for ... and what I'm looking for, Litsy doesn't have (and is, in fact, designed not to have). :(

37Peregrinations
okt 7, 2020, 2:22 pm

I checked out Litsy and was not impressed. I think I'm just too old to gulled by the gloss and floss. I was turned off before I even navigated to the site with these words in the Wikipedia description blurb that came up on Google:
Some book releasers have used it for their marketing. The word is PUBLISHER!!! Whether we are talking Simon & Shuster or me and my little desktop printer! Then there was the idea of being a LITFLUENCER! Oh, just gag me with a spoon!

The only thing I saw that impressed me was the fact that they block Google.

38BrokenTune
okt 19, 2020, 9:19 am

>26 timspalding: Hi Tim. I was just wondering if you had had any luck making contact with the people from BL? I'm not holding out hope, but I am curious.

Also, as you were asking for suggestions for LT: As many of us have mentioned, the Dashboard on BL was the main feature that brought the community together.
While I like the thread system here on LT (even if it is not as great as the BL dash), I find it really difficult to find people's threads without asking them for a link (or trailing though pages of topics in the hope that I spot what I am looking for). I.e. there is no link on the LT member's profile that links to their threads (unless they add the link themselves in their profile description).

39Themis-Athena
jan 5, 2021, 8:41 pm

>13 timspalding: Hello and Happy New Year, Tim.

Just wondering -- did you ever make any headway with the folks at BookLikes, or have you given up? In the latter event, please let us know ... as BT and others said, not many of us are / have been holding out much hope, but if there's something definite to be said, I think we'd still prefer to hear it.

Also, has the LT team had an opportunity to look at our other suggestions (re: discussion thread feeds etc.)?