No Sex on Goodreads, Please…
I’m shocked, shocked, I tell you! There were groups on good old Goodreads where people were partaking in sexual roleplay scenarios . We’re not talking about isolated incidents, obviously, because Goodreads has gone so far as to ban it from the site. I mean, what the hell? Goodreads? Really?
Apparently this activity came to light at the end of January when Stop the Goodreads Bullies posted a guest post by one Carroll Bryant, a YA author already banned from Goodreads “for some pretty sordid behavior” of his own. In this post he alleges that adults and minors are indulging in sexual roleplay in the groups on Goodreads, complete with screenshots as backup. He followed it up with a blog post a few days later called “Goodreads: Or Good-Pedophilia?”, also including a raft of images of open groups. Putting aside the “rhetorical wailing and gnashing of teeth”, Bryant had a good point: Goodreads has a duty to protect minors on its website.
To give them credit, Goodreads did update their guidelines shortly after his post:
Romance is permitted in role-play games, but pornographic content and explicitly sexual content or scenarios are not permitted. We’ve made the decision that this is not appropriate for our site.
How’s it work, you ask? Well, as Dustin Kurtz commented in his post on Melville House, “…slowly, sentence by sentence, on a message board. It feels like 2002 in there.” I had to laugh just thinking about how long ago that was and how immediate it all seemed.
For some reason, I keep thinking about naughty-librarian fiction even contemplating this kind of roleplay on Goodreads — maybe that's part of why it's taking place on Goodreads... Is it just me?
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