This article on STGRB is very telling in showing exactly how the bully mentality on Goodreads has worked. This "reviewer" claims to love authors in comments on another website, yet spent the day yesterday randomly "carpet bombing" 100 books on Goodreads with 1-star reviews. How can one claim to respect authors, then go round deliberately leaving low ratings on books they've never read? I'm glad the problem is being addressed, but authors, be wary. Keep your interactions minimal on these sites or you'll be sucked into ridiculous drama.
READ IT HERE: http://www.stopthegrbullies.com/2013/09/29/carpet-bomber-2-barbara-andrew-loves-me/
Authors, don't be surprised if random 1-star ratings appear on your books, especially on Goodreads. If they do, flag it or report it, but do NOT, by any means, interact with the "reviewer".
If you notice malicious activity on any of your book ratings, record the information or take screenshots. And here are a couple of links you can use to file your complaints:
Amazon (also, you can email Jeff Bezos, CEO: email@example.com & Nader Kabbani, VP of KDP: firstname.lastname@example.org)
The only way we can ensure a positive change in this situation is to be proactive. This IS our business, no matter if it's our main source of income or not, and we need to do all we can to maintain our integrity. This also applies to the fake glowing reviews. Ask everyone who reviews your books to leave an HONEST review. This means they may not like everything about it, and they may not leave you a 5-star review, and that's OK. It's honest, and that's what you need to strive for.
DO NOT, and I repeat DO NOT respond negatively to a critical review! Drown your sorrows in chocolate or cry into your pillow or indulge in some retail therapy, but do NOT engage with critics. Especially the harsh ones. Unless you know this person, there's a chance it's a dreaded "troll" who is just waiting for you to complain so they can launch their counterattack and spread venom about you to everyone who will listen.
Readers (the REAL ones) will respect you all the more if you are open and respectful in all you do. And that's my public service message for today.