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Topic: 2 Questions: Wavy pages and Missing covers.

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Subject: 2 Questions: Wavy pages and Missing covers.
Date Posted: 3/8/2008 9:17 AM ET
Member Since: 10/16/2007
Posts: 1,180
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I have 2 questions in regards to posting books.

1)  Why are wavy pages so offensive if there are no stains, smeared words or unreadable pages?  I have books that I bought new, used, swapped or at yard sales that are readable but I never really thought other people would not want to read them because the pages are wavy.  I am referring to paperbacks understanding that many people display hardbacks.  I do understand some people keep their books but wonder if they wanted a copy of a book to look great then why they would not invest and buy it new?  I would think this site would be for people to swap books who have a passion to read them and pass them on. 

2)  I also have 1 book that is missing a cover.  I go it from Amazon marketplace and am aware that a missing cover is a no-no.  I am aware I can't post it here but wonder if it is OK to pass on as a damaged book/freebie or if I should respect the author/publisher's rights and throw it out.  I don't think the book lover in me can physically put the book in the trash. 

Thanks in advance.  Dana


Date Posted: 3/8/2008 9:23 AM ET
Member Since: 10/6/2005
Posts: 10,741
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#1 - A lot of people assume that wavy pages automatically mean the book was exposed to water. However this isn't actually true. If there is no other sign of water damage, the wavy pages may very well have been caused by something as simple as poor quality paper. Some books now have wavy pages before they ever leave the bookstore shelves. But people are concerned about possible water damage because it can lead to mold/mildew, which can come in on just one book and infect your entire library.

#2 - any damaged book can be listed in the forums as a freebie, cover or not, as long as you describe the damage. However I do think you will find that most people are unlikely to request a book that is missing the cover, not because of the legalities involved, but just because they don't like the way it looks/feels. But there are people who just want to read the book, and don't care what condition it is in, so you can always post it in the bazaar and hope that someone will want it.

Date Posted: 3/8/2008 12:23 PM ET
Member Since: 3/6/2008
Posts: 341
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Not sure how to answer your question but I also have a couple of books where the first couple of chapters are wavy from the way they were stored.. i have not posted them in fear that I would use my money to send the books out and then not get a Credit for it! I guess we just need to make our own choices on what we post and hope everything goes okay!

Date Posted: 3/8/2008 2:32 PM ET
Member Since: 10/16/2007
Posts: 1,180
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Thanks Bren for the feedback, especially on the mold contagion possibility.  And Trish I agree with you that we need to make a choice on what is acceptable and hope the receiver is of the same mind. 

I put my unpostable in my signature, which I just learned to do :=)

U of L just lost by 3 so I am going to go play in the 14 inches of snow that the sky dumped in my yard in the last 24 hrs. Have a great day!

Date Posted: 3/8/2008 2:55 PM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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Hey Dana.  I'm from Louisville, near Churchill Downs:)  Go Cards!

On the wavy pages - I've seen these actually on the store shelves and have gotten a couple of them myself.  The best thing to do, IMO, is to feel the wavy pages and see if they feel at all stiff or any are stuck together.  If they do, that's actual warping.  If they feel normal & supple, it very well could be the paper or simple exposure to humidity.  My mom had a greenhouse room and if she left any books or magazines out there when the weather was warm, they'd get warped pretty much overnight.

Last Edited on: 3/8/08 2:56 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/8/2008 3:58 PM ET
Member Since: 2/12/2008
Posts: 4,470
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Here's another thread where we've been talking about wavy pages, venting, sharing wavy page incidents & looking for solutions to be able to post them here. :-)  www.paperbackswap.com/forum/topic.php 

One of problems is that YOU may have bought the book brand new with wavy pages & know it's not water damage, but the receiver doesn't. Since the rules here is "No wavy pages" the the receiver is out a credit if they can't pass the book on because the next person complains.

Date Posted: 3/8/2008 4:38 PM ET
Member Since: 8/22/2007
Posts: 548
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Any book I'm not sure of I put on my freebies list and explain what I feel the damage is to the book. As for books I'd like to read - as long as they are readable and not a health risk I'll take them.

Date Posted: 3/8/2008 4:54 PM ET
Member Since: 10/16/2007
Posts: 1,180
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Last Edited on: 1/17/09 10:40 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/8/2008 11:41 PM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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Jan, where is there a "no wavy pages" rule?  I don't see it under the Book Condition Guidelines.

Date Posted: 3/9/2008 12:13 AM ET
Member Since: 2/12/2008
Posts: 4,470
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That's odd. I could have sworn in the Book Conditions that there was a description of what constitutes "water damage". I read it when I joined a few weeks ago. And I thought it said water damage included "any wavy pages". Where did so many of us get the idea then that wavy pages always means water damage?


Edited for typos.

Last Edited on: 3/9/08 12:37 AM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 3/9/2008 4:57 AM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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Well, water  damaged books always have wavy pages, as far as I know.  It's just that wavy pages aren't always water damaged.  Wavy pages come from other things as well.  Which is somewhat trickier to define than water damage.

For overall conditions, we have:

Overall Condition:

  • No damage at all from water or other liquid
  • Not soiled
  • No stains (exception for cookbooks--see below)
  • No mold
  • no highlighting, underlining or writing on text pages (exception for textbooks --see below)

But for page conditions:


  • No torn or chewed/gnawed pages
    • yes, that does say "chewed/gnawed".  That means no pet-chewed (or human-chewed) books.
  • No loose or missing text pages
  • No writing or highlighting or underlining on text pages
    • a signature or note on the flyleaf or inside front or back cover is OKAY
    • an author's signature on the title page is OKAY
    • writing or highlighting on the text pages is NOT OKAY
      • Exception: if it is a textbook or workbook, these are expected to have highlighting/underlining/writing
        • if you post a textbook/workbook, the condition must be described to the requestor in a Personal Message
        • AND the described condition MUST BE AGREED TO before the book is sent
        • This is the one of the ONLY two cases in which a PM exchange about a book is required before the book can be sent(the other is for cookbooks--see below).
  • No staining


    What none of it says however, is that wavy pages constitute water damage, or that wavy pages are not allowed.  It doesn't mention wavy pages at all.   That might be on purpose, just to keep people from making the assumption that wavy pages always mean water damage.  It looks like they do assume that anyway though.  I'm sure a lot of people who have read these conditions still think "no wavy pages". :P