ionR: To GIF or not to GIF?

Posted May 29th, 2015 by in Blog, Features, ionR / 24 comments

To GIF or not to GIF?

The world today allows us some many great pleasures that weren’t there so long ago. Such as, Goodread. Most of the modern readers, authors, publishers, and more are all about Goodreads, and other sites similar to help find or promote books. And how do some of us find good books, or promote books, well by writing a review of course! And sometimes people will include a GIF.

Don’t know want a GIF is?
Don’t worry, it’s all very simple.
Here is the “definition” for GIF from Wikipedia:
The Graphics Interchange Format (better known by its acronym GIF ) is a bitmap imageformat that was introduced by CompuServe in 1987 and has since come into widespread usage on the World Wide Web due to its wide support and portability.

Right, did you get that?
Basically it is an image that moves, and sometimes may or may not have words on it to help express things. Lots and lots of people nowadays are using them in their book reviews.


The Good:

  • One thing a GIF adds to a review is humor. I’ve gone through so many reviews and found some very humorous GIFS that just made the review all the more interesting. It was fun to watch it, and be fascinated about how the person who wrote the review got a GIF that was so spot on and funny! I adore seeing those GIFS with the reviews.
  • Another thing that GIFS add to reviews is drama! The GIFS always seem to spice up the review in some dramatic way that makes reading the review more fun! It’s a great way to really have fun while reading a review, because sometimes reviews will tend to get a tad bit boring if you’re reading the same thing over and over and in the same way.
  • GIFS can also help make a review shorter. You can use a simple GIF to help you say a lot of words that would have normally taken a lot more time. It can be a fast and simple way to make your point in a review, express strong emotions, and bring some drama to your post.


The Bad:

  • A few things I’ve noticed while reading reviews that have GIFS in them are sometimes the point isn’t ever actually made. Sometimes the review will be nothing but GIFS, and it makes no sense at all to me.
  • Another thing is that the GIFS can be an annoyance or a distraction from the written words of the review, and makes it more frustrating to try to read. Some people aren’t visualize readers, so it is harder for them to get the concept of the review if they have to see an image flashing at them.
  • Also, sometimes a GIF can be offensive or obnoxious to some and it turns them off of reading the review to begin with. That makes it a lot harder to get people to read your reviews.
  • I personally have never actually used a GIF in a review. Mainly because I don’t know a whole lot about them, and I get frustrated looking for that “perfect” image to express what I’m saying/typing. I would rather just saying plain as day, then have to hunt something down that may not come close to what I want said. And I have no idea how you would make a GIF either. That’s probably something lots of people know how to do, but sadly I am not one of them.


Question Time:

  • As a reader, how do you feel about GIFS in a review? Do they annoy you? Or do you find them to be useful?
  • As a writer, how do you feel about GIFS in a review? Is it something simple to use? Or do find the task to be too frustrating and would rather just write your review?


Make sure you comment on this post with your opinions! We want to know how you feel about it!


That concludes the article for today! I wish you all the best!

Whitney (HJ’s Resident Bloggerista)







24 Responses to “ionR: To GIF or not to GIF?”

  1. dholcomb1

    I’ve never used them. There is one review blog who uses them almost in overkill. But, I do enjoy them. But, I like the way HJ does reviews, too.


  2. JoAn V.

    I have never used them as part of my reviews. Sometimes I have found them entertaining in reviews; but other times, they have been annoying and I really didn’t “get” them.

  3. Maria Rose

    Gifs are sometimes funny, but they often make my ipod connection hang up on goodreads, so I try to never look at reviews that I know will contain them when I’m not on my laptop at home. I don’t use them in my reviews.

  4. Amy Rickman

    I don’t use them but some are funny and some reviewers just overdo their GIF usage. I feel moderation is the key when using GIFS for reviews.

  5. Leanna

    I would say they could save a reader time, if the reviewer is not giving a book a good review you could put a gif at the beginning of the review, but then people wouldn’t read the whole review. I don’t like them in reviews.

  6. marcyshuler

    I’m a reader, but I’ve never used a gif in a review. Mainly because I don’t know how and I don’t have extra time to hunt them down. I figure I’d get sucked into gif-land and would lose hours being distracted. LOL

    I don’t mind if a review contains a few, but when they’re mostly gifs I think it takes away from the review for me. Short reviews generally tell me more about the book than the gif laden ones that spell out the whole story.

  7. Sara @HarlequinJunkie

    Whitney, welcome to the team 🙂
    I don’t mind if there are a couple of gifs in a review (1-2) but anything more than that is just distracting and a detractor for me. When reading reviews on GR, I tend to skip the ones with multiple graphics and gifs.

Please leave a comment

This site uses Akismet to reduce spam. Learn how your comment data is processed.