We’ve all had our share of spam over recent years and, for the most part, it doesn’t bother me much. Most of the spam emails I receive go directly into a separate folder and the contents quickly deleted. Emails that slip through the spam net are also dispatched with the click of a mouse.
With the rise in e-books and self-publishing, I’ve seen a marked increase in the number of spamming authors, not only in emails, but on social networking sites. Again, it’s usually not a big deal to me, as I truly understand an author’s desire to let people know about his or her book. Many times, a friend I do know will ask me to vote or comment on something. For me, this isn’t spam and I’m happy to help out when I can. Other times, a new friend I don’t really know will press the issue a bit. About three years ago, one young lady from the U.S. asked me to vote for her book in a competition, so I did. When she made the next round, she asked me to vote again and then again, and a fourth time--she made it to the semi-finals.
This week I received an email from a new “friend” I didn’t really know on a social networking site (not Facebook or Twitter) asking me to buy his book and review it so he could increase his amazon ranking. Really? I don’t even pay much attention to my own amazon rankings, let alone anyone else's.
Based on the way his message was worded, this author was sending his request to heaven knows how many others. This individual did not offer to reciprocate to his “friends”, and although his book was only ninety-nine cents, I’m still bothered by his tactic. That he wanted us to spend our money, and our time reading and reviewing his book, was too much to ask.
Advertising one’s book through blogs and social networking sites is fine, but sending out email requests to buy and review your book is not. I’m wondering what you all think of this strategy? Have you been asked by a virtual friend to purchase and review his book, and without any mention of reciprocation? I know of a number of authors who review one another’s books through mutual consent, but it can be a sticky situation. I’d appreciate any suggestions for handling this in the future. On this occasion, I simply hit the delete button, but was it enough?
THE OPPOSITE OF DARK, http://bit.ly/i983XE, Chapters/Indigo http://bit.ly/gtFSFw
FATAL ENCRYPTION, http://tinyurl.com/ddzsxl
TAXED TO DEATH, http://tinyurl.com/czsy5n