"But with a busy job and three small children, I only have so much time." I felt better—then I remembered I read fewer books than Chandler in a given year and have no offspring to tend to.Chandler's point wasn't to bookshame, though. "When a person joins," he continued, "they start to read more books." The site, then, serves as both a motivator and a recommendation engine for its 75 million users.It's not that I don't read them—I've got two to three going at any given time—it's that I feel like I don't read them I hardly remember joining Goodreads, but according to my account it happened in April 2010.Back then, before every social network felt like a data breach waiting to happen, it seemed easier to join any hot new online community—and then, once it went out of vogue, to never think of it again.I like talking about books, and thanks to Goodreads I had a constant reminder of all the great books I hadn't read and all the conversations I couldn't yet join. (A point of clarity: I was also that sucker who tried to participate in Infinite Summer, the challenge to complete David Foster Wallace's behemoth .That summer ended in nothing but infinite regret.)This hasn't really stopped in the seven years since.I thought that's what would happen with Goodreads.
In 2018, 2.9 million people on the service set personal goals for themselves, and to hear Chandler tell it, each December participants celebrate hitting their goals.I might've felt left out, but at least I wasn't alone. After writing to the company to lament that so many people seemed to have consumed the entire bestseller list in the time it took me to read one book, CEO/cofounder Otis Chandler offered sympathy, confessing that he only gets through about 20 books per year."I wish I had time to read more," he wrote via email.I'd shelved it during a move and forgotten that I only ever got one chapter in before being distracted by some novel. She also serves as the publication's deputy bureau chief in New York.Prior to joining WIRED she was a reporter for the Associated Press.