FAQ — You Can’t Game the System
Here at Swoon Reads we are dedicated to creating a vibrant community of romance readers and writers — a place where informed readers have a real voice in the publishing process and new writing talent can be discovered and polished. A place where everyone has a fair chance to be read and heard.
But late, a few members have been trying to game the system by creating fake accounts to give themselves better ratings, and leaving fake comments and poor ratings on other manuscripts in an attempt to sabotage them.
We at Swoon Reads Headquarters find this behavior appalling–it hurts the Writers and community we are trying to nurture and is a direct attack on the type of openness and honesty we are working to build. It is also a direct violation of our terms and conditions.
Fortunately, Riley Akers, author of Paper Cuts, (one of the top rated and most affected manuscripts) noticed an influx of spam activity and reported it to the Swoon Reads staff–both by reporting the false comments and by contacting us directly through our Contact Us page. We are very grateful to her for bringing this issue to our attention and for her patience, professionalism, and understanding as we investigated. People like Riley, who are involved and engaged with the site–and willing to take action when necessary!–are the heart of Swoon Reads and once again we’d just like to save “Thank you.” We would also like to take this opportunity to apologize to her, and the whole community, for any harm or confusion caused by this incident, and to let you all know that we are working to put safeguards in place against this sort of thing happening again.
We are committed to making Swoon Reads the best possible experience for all our Readers and Writers, and are willing to take action as necessary to defend our community — and we would love your help in doing so. There are report flags on the site for every member, comment, and manuscript, and we promise that every email sent to us through our Contact Us page is read. Please let us know if anything seems wrong, out of place, or spam-like. As the New York Metropolitan Transit Authority reminds us over and over: “If you see something, say something.”
As of today, the former members who launched the spam attack have been banned from Swoon Reads and we are working now to identify and remove all the fraudulent ratings. While no one should ever feel bad about any honest rating or critique, we will not tolerate fake accounts, trolling, or deliberate attempts to sabotage other members. Instead, Swoon Reads should be a place where we can all work together with a sense of community to help each other to grow and shine.