I heard about Kboards several, several years back. I would periodically pop in every now and again whenever I came across a thread while doing research. After everything which happened with a lot of the book scammers and schemers, I quickly realized a few things which has made me avoid the place for any real interaction with other authors like the plague.
Before I get into those reasons, I would like to first acknowledge that Kboards is a HUGE message board. I understand it takes a lot to moderate it and those mods probably don’t get paid. But here’s the thing – many of us are running several high-traffic FB groups all by ourselves and we don’t get paid either. Second, there is a LOT of really good information on there. Specifically, honest information and experiences with said scammers and schemers. However, there are still quite a few reasons to use it as an informational source, and not as an actual author to interact with other authors.
So with that said, here’s why I do not hang out on Kboards as an author (and why you shouldn’t either).
1: The godmodding. This grates all over my nerves more than anything. I cannot stand for someone who literally has no ties to the community or the board itself to treat it like their own personal playground. This is why I left the XN forum and no longer go on there, even to check my DMs.
2: The thread locking. And this happens on several levels. First, basically, any thread the mods think has gotten “off topic” is quickly locked and the “offending” messages either edited or completely deleted. I can’t stand this. It’s not only a form of censorship, but it is highly unethical practice in my opinion. Everyone on there is an adult. If someone is going to get butthurt over something they need to stay off there completely (mods included). It also leads to a lot of the scammers and schemers getting away with scamming and scheming for years before any of the nefarious acts come to light. Bad players should never be shielded by the likes of message boards and moderators.
Second, they will lock a thread or close it down completely if they don’t like the “tone” of how others are talking about something. For example, they have quickly shut down the threads which brought to light the scamming of a certain marketing guru, the scamming of Karla Marie, and the intense talks regarding the massive number of book stuffers currently clogging up KU. Again, bad players should not be shielded. This is how so many of them have gotten away with their scams for as long as they have.
Hold. The Fuck. UP.
You have to ask yourself why any message board that is supposedly built around helping authors would blatantly shut down threads which openly try to out scammers and warn other authors. Well, let’s look at #3, shall we:
3. Kboards has knowingly had some of the members of the “community” openly encourage other writers to join some of these scammers’ groups and buy their services. Before the shit hit the proverbial fan with a very high profile marketing guru, there were numerous posts and threads about her services filled with “satisfied” members who were happily telling other authors to buy into her BS. Yet THOSE threads weren’t locked. But yet the thread about the on-going lawsuit she’s currently involved in IS still locked as of the time of this post.
This board has seen more than it’s fair share of scammy authors. Chance Carter, recently shunned book stuffer and mastermind behind a shit-ton of author rings who were all coordinating their efforts to scam the KU program out of MILLIONS of dollars, was welcomed with open arms. And when someone linked to a blog post which spilled the beans on a ton of high profile indie and trad published authors who had been caught buying up hundreds of fake 5*star reviews, everyone was so quick to jump to their defense. I found their actions laughable considering one of the names on that list, the now infamous Hugh Howey, openly admitted on his own website and in interviews that he not only bought fake reviews, but that he systematically bought his way onto the NYT Bestsellers list. Call me crazy, but I tend to want to stay away from places that want to take up for known scammers.
Take away from this what you will. I, for one, may lurk, but I have no intentions of ever joining that community. I’ve seen someone make 3 whole posts and then get their butts banned for no reason other than they wanted to remain anonymous.