[bksvol-discuss] Re: synopses and reviews

I was under the impression that the new Bookshare was automagically
getting book descriptions from somewhere and sticking them in the
synopsis.  With the new site, a surprising number of synopses seem to be
more like reviews.  It's markedly different from what I used to see in
synopses, at least I think so.
It went from "Regency romance" to "Amelia Zagreb has penned a fiery tale
of passion and suspense..."  Well, that's all the splashy reviewspeak I
can make up at one time.
Tracy


> Cindy, only Bookshare volunteers can write a synopsis for a book. Either
> the
> submitter or the proofreader writes it, and they may actually be correct.
> Unless you read the book yourself, I think it is high-handed to assume
> that
> you know what the book should be about just from reading School Library
> Journal or an Amazon description. By rewriting someone's synopsis based on
> Amazon, you are communicating that the person doesn't know what they're
> talking about, even though they worked on the book. Bookshare asks us to
> describe a book in our own words rather than using a source like Amazon.
> So
> a description may look more like a review to you, but it is within
> Bookshare's guidelines. For that reason, I would be offended if someone
> spent time rewriting my synopses and would vigorously object to the
> practice. There are enough books in the collection with no synopses at all
> that need to be updated. Rewriting another volunteer's synopsis because
> you
> don't like it is a waste of our limited resources when there are so many
> things left undone at this point. If you don't like a synopsis, just write
> a
> review and describe the book in your own words. Then let the reader
> decide.
>
> Monica Willyard
> "The best way to predict the future is to create it." -- Peter Drucker
>
> -----Original Message-----
> From: bksvol-discuss-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
> [mailto:bksvol-discuss-bounce@xxxxxxxxxxxxx] On Behalf Of Cindy Rosenthal
> Sent: Thursday, February 05, 2009 3:07 AM
> To: bksvol-discuss@xxxxxxxxxxxxx
> Subject: [bksvol-discuss] synopses and reviews
>
>
> I have a habit of looking up books on Amazon and/or B&N, especially books
> for children through young adult levels, and also other titles sometimes
> to
> see what genre they fall into, e.g., science fiction or fantasy. I read
> the
> reviews, and sometimes they are in agreement, both professional review
> journals and customer reviews, and sometimes they are not. I think perhaps
> that is why the bookshare policy is that reviewers' comments, whether from
> the book jacket, where of course they're going to be favorable--can you
> imagine a publisher including an unfavorable review on is book jacket or
> inside the book--or from another source are not to be included in the
> synopsis.
>
> From the synopses of bookshare books that I've read, while some are
> excellent, others are nothing more than reviews, and in the case of a
> children's book added to the collection recently, it was the opposite of
> School Library Journal's review.
>
> I've reached the conclusion that some people do not know what a synopsis
> it.
> Unfortunately, I think some of these people are not bookshare volunteers.
> For any of you who don't know, a synopsis is a plot summary. If any of you
> see synopses of books that need rewriting, I hope you'll take the time to
> do
> so and send the rewrite to Carrie or Allison to use as a replacement.
>
> I've read customers' reviews online that differ markedly from each other,
> which is why I read the reviews before I decide to buy a book. There is a
> place on a book's bookshare site for readers to write a review. The good
> thing about that is that you can write what you think having read the
> book.
> Others can read your review and after a while they'll know whether your
> tastes are the same or different from theirs. I know some of us do write
> reviews and I hope others of you will, too. It really doesn't take very
> long.
>
> Cindy
>
>
>
>
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