Bookish Pet Peeves: Giveaway Goblins


I'm currently running this giveaway, guys. It's in honor of ARCycling's one year blogoversary. Jennifer and I are giving away a gift card, a BEA ARC, and a mystery box of books between the two of us. It's rare that I run giveaways because shipping sucks and I always want to give out a prize that'll be worth it to those entering, but I love running them. Knowing that whatever the prizes are will end up in great homes is such a nice feeling. It really, really is. And it's a great feeling to see someone beyond excited that they win. Trust me, guys. In those response e-mails we can tell who is faking enthusiasm and who is really enthusiastic.


One of the main reasons that I avoid giveaways on top of the aforementioned reasons is because of the dreaded GIVEAWAY GOBLINS!


These guys constantly send me running for the hills. I dislike what they stand for greatly. And what is a giveaway goblin, you may ask? Well, it's simple. It's a person who gobbles up all the giveaways.
  • They enter every giveaway they see, whether they want the book or not
  • They tend to win a lot since they constantly come back for the double entries (most normal people do this too, I've re-done entries for giveaways I really wanted)
  • Their Twitter feeds are nothing but hundreds of giveaway entries a day
  • They hoard their prizes or sell them or profit off of them somehow or trade them
If I see any of these things...specifically the Twitter feeds or the attempt to profit off of recent wins somehow, you go on my YOU WILL NEVER GET A DAMN THING FROM ME list.


Seeing that list grow recently is what is prompting this post. If you are a giveaway goblin would I still talk to you and befriend you? Sure! But it's not like I can! Your Twitter is only used for giveaways!

Granted, I think everyone has gone through a stage where they were slightly giveaway crazy, but I always limited myself to books I wanted. I turned down several wins because I entered for a specific book and somehow obtained it before I was notified that I won and I didn't need a copy. Sometimes I took it not realizing I had another copy of that book en route to me somehow and I'd give it to a friend or occasionally trade it off. But I never entered giveaways for the purpose of gaining more books that I could profit off of. I see some people who shall remain nameless who have, like, 5 copies of the same book and I go to trade with them and they have three of those copies for trade because it's clear they don't need them. Just stop. That makes me so mad. Those books could have gone to someone who better appreciated them and really wanted them.


Instead of running giveaways, I tend to just gift my books to friends who I know really want them. Occasionally, I'll put a book I have up for trade if I think I could get something off my wishlist for it. Who would pass up a chance for wishlist books, y'know? But I won't give them to people who won't appreciate them. I want them to be appreciated, hence the trading because that person clearly wants it or the gifting it to a friend. I don't want them to be another book in another pile that will probably forever go unread or will be sold for whatever purposes.

You can sit here and claim you need the money for this or that. Here's an idea...sell your own books instead of giveaway books. Let the books be appreciated! Don't hoard them and be a giveaway fiend and be silently hated by everyone.

I'm really sick of seeing my list grow, guys. Every time a name on the list pops up in my giveaway I just go on to the next one to someone who deserves it! I just can't handle giving a book to a place where I know it's under appreciated. How do I know that? I check entries! I take a quick look at your blog and your Twitter and everything is obvious from there.


Conclusion: don't be a giveaway goblin. You're like the bikers of the book blogosphere. Everyone wants to secretly run you off the road, but it's not worth going to jail.



43 comments:

  1. Omg, those gifs LOL! I love the term Giveaway Goblin too. I'd never really named them before, but they are trolls! We try to filter them at Nawanda Files. It's so disingenuous when people only enter giveaways to sell the book (not actually read it). I'd be okay with someone who only does giveaways and ends up reading and rating the books on Goodreads or you can tell they aren't in the market for re-selling. But non-bookish people winning for monetary gain is sad. Great post, Lili!

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    1. Ugh, I love the GIFs <3 Jack Sparrow's is one of my favorites and the part of The Hulk and Loki made me die the first time I saw it. I know right! But most people don't even do anything on Goodreads. It just angers me.

      Blah. Thank you, Becca <3 You and Krista must have a huge list too ;)

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  2. Yay for bringing this up! It irks me no end when people do horrible things like that - I want to give my books away to people that will read and enjoy them, not sell them for their own gain. Go away Goblins!

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    1. YES! FUCK OFF, GOBLINS! <3

      But that's the entire point. If I'm giving away a book it's because I loved it, so why would I want it to go somewhere where I think it would be under-appreciated?!

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  3. I only use my twitter for tweeting about giveaways....but I don't enter every giveaway I see. Just of the books I would actually read

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    1. It's easy for that to get a little out of hand. And it does not reflect on you POSITIVELY at all to have a twitter JUST for giveaways. That's not the point of twitter, so it clearly shows you made it for bonus entries in giveaways. One obvious observation leads to another...and well... yeah

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  4. I enter a ton of giveaways, but only for books that I want and gift cards (to buy those books) because well, I don't have a job and if I can't win them, I can't read them. I would NEVER win them to sell, that's just wrong. Most of the time I end up using them for my own giveaways after I've read them to pass them on to someone else who can't afford to buy them but wants to read them. So please know that even if someone (like me) does tweet a ton of giveaways, it's not because we are out to hog everything or use them for profit.

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    1. If you enter a ton of giveaway, you get a ton of books. Odds are, you can't read a ton of those books because there are just TONS OF BOOKS. I think self-control is necessary when entering giveaways and I think some people don't understand that, they tend to not think they're doing anything wrong and the hoarding kicks in. I get it, I'm in college, I can't afford books either. But even then I rarely enter giveaways at all unless it's a book I REALLY want. A few instead of a ton.

      And I didn't say everyone who tweets a ton about giveaways is bad. But I stand by my belief that people who create a twitter JUST to tweet about giveaways or to tweet about them 95% of the time need to get their priorities straight since they're only for giveaway entries. It reflects badly on them.

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    2. I agree on self control, that's why I don't enter to win books that I know I don't want or will want to read. Most of my "giveaway" tweets are those daily tweets for those books that I am trying desperately to win. And odds are, I don't (still gotta try though!) I've also come across the issue in my own giveaways that some people have several emails and Twitter accounts that they use to enter twice (or more) with. It's incredibly frustrating, so I know what you are saying. I haven't seen anyone selling their wins from my blog yet, so I guess that is something I will have to look for from now on.

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  5. This post is so true, giveaway goblins have invaded my blog and enter my giveaways along w/ 100s of other ones a day. I am getting so tired of them, thank you for this superb post!
    -Scott Reads It

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    1. You are so welcome! <3

      It's just...infuriating and frustrating after a while. And they don't think they're doing anything wrong. *cough cough* looks around this blog post *cough cough*

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  6. I never noticed that people sold books that they won, how annoying. Granted, I haven't been paying all that much attention anymore, but that sucks. I'm curious who those people are hahaha because I totally do not have sleuthing skills. It does amaze me, lolol, the people who come out of the woodwork to leave a comment because the giveaway requires it.

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    1. I know, right?! At first I didn't notice it either, it's incredibly frustrating! It's not sleuthing skills. I just view the entries of everyone who entered that's picked as a winner. And if they have a for sale section on their blog, double books for trade, or a twitter only for giveaways I'm like NOT ON TONIGHT!!!!! and throw them on my wonderful little list (:

      Ugh yes...there are many people in the woodwork.

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  7. I'm glad you've given this common problem a name! I have been filtering my giveaways for a while now and I very rarely have any anymore. For the most part the giveaways I do have a from the author, or publisher and I hope they are doing the same sort of screening. It gets obnoxious when you see the same persons name winning all the giveaways.

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    1. Yup! I rarely have them too because of this problem. Watching my list grow with this giveaway makes me shake my head and remind myself why it's been months since my last one. I think I'll prefer to run publisher giveaways from now on as well. Not that I have those types of connections to pubs just yet :/ haha

      But yes! Ugh I noticed the trend with ONE PARTICULAR PERSON at first and then I noticed like dozens more so soon after. STAWP!

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  8. Gee now I feel bad for posting giveaways on my Twitter account, even though I try to be social at times. Gonna go cry now meanie :P

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    1. Bahaha <3 Danielle, you're too funny!

      You use your twitter to talk. Hell, even I occasionally tweet about a giveaway I want. It's no problem at all!

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  9. Yeah blast those giveaway goblins!! I really doubt they ever read the books just as you said - but it never even occurred to me that they would be SELLING those freaking books they won! How terrible!

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    1. I know right! I freaked out the first time I saw someone selling them!

      And yeah, it all began with people hoarding so many books that they can't read them. tsk tsk

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  10. Wow, I know sometimes I tweet a lot of giveaways, but I only enter ones I want the prize. And I rarely win. I would say out of the hundreds I've entered over the past years, I've won maybe 5. Again, all books I wanted. I think I even turned one down when the prize I got wasn't what I'd registered for. I understand your frustration I guess. But now I'm worried about tweeting entries for contests getting me blocked. I never sell things I get, the most would be passing it on through ya book exchange for another book I'd like to read.

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    1. It's not getting you blocked if you tweet, I block people if all they do is tweet. They just enter so many giveaways fiendishly that their twitter is not a twitter, it's for gobbling up books.

      I love the twinnies who run the exchange, some of my best bloggy friends, but I have this question: why enter the giveaway at all if you don't want the book? If you're just going to trade it on the exchange because you didn't want it, why did you just NOT enter the giveaway and let it go to someone who wanted to read it? I've won giveaways, read the book, then traded it because I didn't like it, but I don't enter giveaways just to get a book to trade. It's profiting in a weird way.

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    2. I said that I might pass it on AFTER I read it. I did want to read it. But then I think if it is one I would read over again or if I would rather trade it for something I haven't read. And I love to keep my books, so there are few I put up for trade.

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    3. I am the exact same way. I don't put books up for trade unless I read them or TRIED to read them. Some you just can't make it through, you know? I don't understand everyone's insistence of not holding ARCs. I love my finished ARCs and I keep them on my shelves because if I didn't try to trade it off, it meant something to me.

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    4. Oh yes, I LOVE my ARCs, those are often the last I will get rid of. I feel like I'm special for having those. I know, that's stupid, but they're so cool to me!! I do have to say though, I enter tons of giveaways, but only for books I want, and I don't win tons of prizes. I think it wasn't even until this past spring that I ever won anything from a giveaway. Then I had a string of like 3 more, but I haven't won anything since then. But I keep trying. Again, I limit myself to only books I want. I won't even enter the box giveaways unless the majority of the books in the box are ones I want. And I don't enter the surprise or mystery box giveaways, because I don't need a ton more books that may not even be ones I want.

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    5. Yup, I gotcha.

      Idk why you're defending yourself, I had no clue who you were until your first comment. I'm not attacking you or anyone haha this post is about the people who win hundreds of books every few months. They know who they are.

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  11. I admit I used to enter a lot of giveaways once upon a time, but I never entered them unless I really wanted the book. I can't even comprehended the idea of entering just to profit off of them. That makes me so angry. If I get a book for free from anyone and end up not liking it, then I just give it away to someone else. People are ick sometimes.

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    1. Right!

      Some people sell them, some people just give them away on their own blog, some people don't read them and trade them. It's profiting somehow. If you're not gonna read it, don't enter! That simple!

      You don't need 1000 books on your shelves! o.o

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    2. Well some people do...but only if I love them lol

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  12. i enter a lot of giveaways, but it's only for books that i want. if i'm not going to read it or it doesn't interest me, i will not enter. i am not out to profit off of books. i have actually won a lot of books this summer because i do enter a lot of contests, but it's for books that i want that haven't come out yet (like for books that people get from BEA because I cannot attend). I actually hate the twitter option because i don't want to clog up my feed with giveaways. and i usually keep my books even after i read them because they're ARCs mostly and i cannot sell them or give them away, unless it's to loan to another bloggy friend. ~daphne

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    1. I give the option to do giveaways because it gets the word out! But it's like...what's the point of twitter just for giveaways? It's so absurd! It says something, you know?

      And I keep my ARCs too! <3 I can't afford to buy finished copies of every book that I love, so ARCs are wonderful! I hate to think that some people actually, like, throw them away and stuff. *shudders*

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  13. I have yet to do any giveaways on my blog, but I've been seeing a lot of other bloggers talk about these issues with giveaways. I don't understand these giveaway goblins-they put so much time into ruining things that you kind people put in way more time to set up for those who truly enjoy them. I would like to equivalent some of them to party poopers? because they ruin things for those who are truly interested...

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    1. They are party poopers! They make us suspicious of our followers motives! And I know I'm not the only person with this problem. It's unfortunate that it even is a problem. :(

      Some people can be selfish. Unfortunately, all it takes is one bad apple to ruin it for everyone. In this case, it's a huge group of bad apples.

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  14. This makes me sad. I don't think that people should sell what they win, but I also don't think you should take away the randomness of drawing by choosing who you think deserves to win. You might as well not offer it as a giveaway, and simply say, "leave a comment and I'll pick the person that I like the most."
    Yes, I use my twitter only for giveaways, because I just don't understand the appeal of twitter, and I refuse to do any of the facebook options, because that is for family and friends. I only enter for books I want to read (or gifts I want to give my family). I feel like I enter a lot of giveaways recently, but that's because
    I know my chances to win are so small with all the other people also entering giveaways.
    Its sad that you feel okay skewing your random results. Like I said, if you want to chose a person yourself, then don't run it as a random giveaway. That is cheating.

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    1. To come to my blog and accuse me of cheating is absolutely nuts. It's not cheating. I'm allowed to pick any winner I want. I am offering up the prize, so I can choose what I want to do. Whoever runs a giveaway is in charge of that giveaway, so they pick their own rules. Those are my rules. If you don't like them, then you don't have to abide by them.

      I would NEVER rig a giveaway, but I want someone who deserves to win to win. So, yes, if someone who makes it onto my list is picked, I skip them. I keep the randomized results going and pick new ones until someone who is not on the list is picked. I check them out and then I e-mail them. I don't rig anything nor do I cheat. It's randomized, I just choose who I don't want to win. It's not as if I can exclude people from my giveaways. And I don't regret this. Everyone who is on my list gets a crap load of books. Like...hundreds a month. Not winning my giveaway is not the end of the world. And if it is, I feel bad.

      If this makes you feel sad, then don't enter my giveaways. This is the way I do things on MY blog, with MY giveaways, with MY prizes.

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    2. Saying that someone is guaranteed to lose is as much rigging something as saying they are guaranteed to win, and you may want to be careful here. Because, unless you clearly state in every giveaway that you will delete entries for everyone who has met your criteria for "Will not happen" then re-drawing a new winner if you don't like the one who is originally drawn is actually illegal.

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    3. Just so you don't think I'm just being difficult, this blog post explains what you must do to run a legal giveaway on your blog, or anyone who thinks or knows they have been excluded could chose to take legal action.
      http://www.dummies.com/how-to/content/ensure-your-giveaways-and-contests-are-legal.html

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    4. There is a line about it in my policy actually, so your threats are unwarranted and completely unwelcome. Goodbye.

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  15. I've never actually run a giveaway on my blog yet but I can definitely sympathize! To see a book that you gave away being sold by someone who doesn't even care about it, would definitely piss me off.
    There was this one blog I followed for a while and they would do the book hauls at the end of each week and I got so annoyed by it! The blogger had gotten sooo many books from different giveaways and then didn't even want half of them and immediately asked to trade with people..... I was annoyed for the sake of the bloggers who had put time money and effort into the giveaways!
    Also twitter feeds full of giveaways.... I immediately I follow them because it gets to be way to much!!!
    Amazing post!! It's sad that people don't respect the giveaways and I love your name for them!!! Plus your GIFs are amazing!!! Nice job!! :-)

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    1. I've only seen the selling happen once in regards to me, but many times in regards to others. More often I see them just giving them away on their own blog immediately after because they have duplicates or they trade them immediately to get a book they actually want. If you're going to trade the book immediately than you clearly don't have to enter the giveaway.

      I mean...I do book hauls at the end of each week. Most people do haha but most of my books are trades, books gifted, books bought, books for review...Rarely do I get a contest win because I don't enter them obsessively. One girl who attacked me and openly disagrees with this post got over 100 books won in her last 10 STS posts. That is absolutely absurd.

      And yes, annoyance and frustration is what we feel at that! It's a pity so many bloggers can get ripped off if they don't check their winners and let rafflecopter do all the work. We provide the prizes, we can have discretion to disqualify people who we don't deem fit, just as we disqualify cheaters.

      Haha thank you! <3 Giveaway goblins is a cute term, no?

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  16. I actually have it written in my policy that I can delete entries how I see fit. If you're a giveaway goblin and don't actually interact with the community, or your Twitter feed is full of giveaway postings and nothing else, it's pretty likely that I won't choose you to win a giveaway. I'd rather someone who will actually read the book I'm giving away won the book.

    The crazy things about these goblins is that they enter so fast! I remember having a giveaway go up and not even two minutes later I had two people sign up for it -- both listed their Twitter handle and all they had were giveaway tweets. It's frustrating.

    Great post!

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    1. Yes! You understand! I have it in my giveaway policy that I can delete entries how I see fit as well! It's super frustrating. It makes you feel crappy. And they get all defense when you put a name to it but it's just like...don't earn the name if you don't like it.

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  17. To an extent, I agree with you about "giveaway goblins" because I also hate to see a book go to someone who won't appreciate it. At the same time, I don't think people should be penalized for not having a twitter account. Also, as long as some people follow them, they're advertising your giveaway so you're still getting something out of it. Personally, I think I'll make my changes by changing entry options rather than arbitrarily deleting entries, but it certainly is tempting :)

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    1. Oh hahah I don't penalize for not having twitter at all and I put the twitter option in there so that the giveaway can be publicized, but there's such a sinking feeling one gets when they check entries and go to a twitter and yours is one of thousands of tweets about giveaways because that's all the twitter is used for.

      It sucks and makes you feel sucky as a giveaway runner and slightly used, too.

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