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Erastes [userpic]

Amazon goes flop-bott.

April 10th, 2009 (03:26 pm)

I don’t know what Amazon is buggering around at at the moment but it seems that a hell of a lot of gay romances have had the “ratings” rank stripped from the description for some odd reason.  I knew it had happened to False Colors and Transgressions but then I went and looked at the Gay Romance best sellers and I couldn’t beleieve what I was seeing – who the hell were all these people?  Where was The Tin Star or G A Hauser’s books.  So I checked on the description pages for The Tin Star and My Fair Captain and lo and behold, they don’t have any ratings rank either, meaning that they won’t appear in any of the best sellers lists.

Frankly I think that it’s probably authors who worry about this kind of thing a lot more than readers, but it does give us some indication of how our books are doing.



Posted by: eroticjames (eroticjames)
Posted at: April 10th, 2009 02:36 pm (UTC)

Hard Fall has yet to appear in a ranking. I know my overall sales rank...even though it's been tagged as gay romance by close to a dozen people, it's never shown up in the gay romance rankings. This has been going on since it came out. None of my other books took more than a week to show up in the gay romance catagory.

Posted by: Plutonian #2 (moreteadk)
Posted at: April 10th, 2009 02:37 pm (UTC)

Could it be something like you can only stay on the list for a given amount of time? Sort of to give other books a chance to be in the lime light? I'll admit that it does give a false indication of what a 'bestseller list' is, but I could imagine that might be it.
Or maybe it's just a bug that will go away. Could be a simple screw-up somewhere.

Posted by: Chris Owen (chris_owen)
Posted at: April 10th, 2009 02:57 pm (UTC)

Nah, Tin Star and Bareback have been on the list for years and have gone poof. It's ... interesting.

Posted by: elisa_rolle (elisa_rolle)
Posted at: April 10th, 2009 02:39 pm (UTC)

The strangeness of that Amazon selling list is what convinced me to not use it anymore for the list I was maintaining. I prefer to trust LibraryThing owned copies as parameter for popularity. And periodically add the new releases.


Posted by: elisa_rolle (elisa_rolle)
Posted at: April 10th, 2009 02:50 pm (UTC)

I went for a fast browse on the Bestselling List on Gay and Lesbian Fiction (Romance and Gay), and I notice that the first 25 position, for both subcategory, are Kindle available titles... maybe it means something?


Edited at 2009-04-10 02:51 pm (UTC)

Posted by: Jess Faraday (jess_faraday)
Posted at: April 10th, 2009 02:43 pm (UTC)

Publishers should be concerned too, especially small publishers, and especially after all the rubbish they've been through with Amazon recently.

Posted by: Steve (mroctober)
Posted at: April 10th, 2009 05:03 pm (UTC)

My books all have their ranking still. How weird.

Posted by: Mark R. Probst (markprobst)
Posted at: April 10th, 2009 07:45 pm (UTC)

Looking at your bibliography on your Amazon profile, it appears more than half your books have lost their rankings. It seems to be restricted to the "Gay & Lesbian" categories. Since "Vintage" was not in that category but rather the "teens" category it wasn't affected. Many other Lethe titles have been stripped too including "The Phoenix" and "Whistling in the Dark".


Posted by: Steve (mroctober)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 01:52 pm (UTC)

Ahh, now I see it. Thanks, Mark. How curious. I wonder what happened.

Posted by: Rikibeth (rikibeth)
Posted at: April 10th, 2009 02:46 pm (UTC)

Do you remember what the treatment was for flop-bott? It sounds remarkably appropriate for this particular bit of idiocy.

Let's hope they don't go completely crackerdog.

Posted by: Erastes (erastes)
Posted at: April 10th, 2009 03:01 pm (UTC)


I love my flist.

Posted by: Rikibeth (rikibeth)
Posted at: April 10th, 2009 03:05 pm (UTC)

I grew up reading the books -- they were all on the bookshelf of the beach house we rented in the summer, and it was a ritual for me, as soon as we got in and unpacked, I'd curl up in the big armchair and re-read them -- and watching the TV show on PBS. When we visited England in 1986 we even got to meet him at his weekly book-signing!

This past winter I made eternaleponine get the shows from Netflix and now she knows all about flop-bott and crackerdog too.

Posted by: storm_grant (gina_stormgrant)
Posted at: April 10th, 2009 03:23 pm (UTC)

The ranking line disappeared from GYM DANDY this morning between 9:00 and 10:00 when I hit refresh. (I'd been hitting refresh on the hour since 6:00 a.m.)

It's gone from m/f erotica too. And menage.

Posted by: annebrooke (annebrooke)
Posted at: April 10th, 2009 05:32 pm (UTC)

At least you're still there! Maloney's Law has disappeared entirely from Amazon.com ...


Posted by: Jennifer aka: Maverick (Mav) (madrigalist)
Posted at: April 10th, 2009 06:46 pm (UTC)

Could it be a glitch? Last week Amazon deleted all my reviews. One evil author email later and they were all restored. No explaination on behalf of Amazon....

Posted by: Erastes (erastes)
Posted at: April 10th, 2009 08:46 pm (UTC)

Let's hope so, it seems to be affecting many many writers.

Posted by: lee_rowan (lee_rowan)
Posted at: April 10th, 2009 09:29 pm (UTC)

The vanishing reviews were part of an overall glitch caused by updates, and I'll bet this is part of the same thing. The timing is about as bad as it could be, but they do put a whole batch of new books up the first week of most months, and I know the new Perseus books went in...

My own books almost NEVER show up in Gay Romance when they're first put into print - it's very irritating that that now-available sales bump never shows up. But since we know they're fooling around with the system I'm more inclined to believe it's a glitch in a program than a pogrom in the category.

Posted by: Becky/MargretSCA (rwday)
Posted at: April 11th, 2009 02:45 am (UTC)

My ranking is gone too. I have no idea what they're doing but it pisses me off. Those bestseller lists are used by a lot of people to help make purchasing decisions and they damn well ought to reflect reality.

BTW, Sarah Waters' rankings are gone but At Swim still had one last I looked. I don't know if that's because it's considered more literary than GLBT, but it seems weird.

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