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Topic: Need Advice About a RWAP - resolved

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Subject: Need Advice About a RWAP - resolved
Date Posted: 3/8/2011 6:19 PM ET
Member Since: 11/28/2009
Posts: 1,792
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Yesterday I received a WLd book that had crayon scribbles on outside and inside of book, on at least 2 of the test pages, if not more.  I sent a message to the sender saying this, and requesting my credit back.

The response I got was:


I have broused through the book before posting it and found none of the marks you are speaking of. The book was in like new condition.
However I'm not unreasnoble and I will gladly return the credit if you return the book.

And for future I recommend that you consider the fact that this is USED book exchange web.

I will be waiting for your answer.

Any great advice on what I should do?

Last Edited on: 3/10/11 11:33 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/8/2011 6:27 PM ET
Member Since: 5/15/2008
Posts: 193
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That's not a reasonable request.  If they offer to pay the postage, then it would be.   You should not be put out for the postage due to their mistake.


From the help docs: http://www.paperbackswap.com/help/help_item.php?id=529


If a book you requested using credit(s) arrives with an "official" problem, you need to

  • send a Personal Message to the sender either during the process of marking the book received and/or using the PM button on the transaction in your Transaction Archive, as described in How do I contact another member?.

Your PM should be polite but clear.  It should clearly ask for a response, and if you want a credit refund, this information should also be included in the PM.

You should give the sender a week to respond.

We suggest this text: "Thanks for sending the book.  Unfortunately there is a problem [explain the problem here--if this was an unpostable book you can say that the problem "makes this unpostable by site guidelines, and I won't be able to swap the book again"].  I would like a credit refund, which can be accomplished by clicking Give Refund in your transaction archive on the Request Details page for this swap, and I will be happy to mail the book back to you if you will provide postage."

  • If the sender does not respond to your PM within 5 days, submit this information in follow-up from the transaction archiveThis will send an email to the sender, prompting him or her to log in and deal with this problem swap.  If the sender does not respond to that email within 2 days (a total of 1 week since your original PM), contact us.  Failure to respond in an active account is considered admission of fault.
  • If the problem is resolved by the sender, submit that information in follow-up from your transaction archive.
  • If the problem is NOT resolved by the sender (and negotiations are finished), submit that information in follow-up from your transaction archive. 

Read more about submitting follow-up about a problem swap in Follow-up on Problem swaps. It is best to wait a week before submitting "unresolved" follow-up.


Last Edited on: 3/8/11 6:28 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/8/2011 6:29 PM ET
Member Since: 5/15/2008
Posts: 193
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I would also direct them to the rules about what condition a book should be in.  Here's the link: http://www.paperbackswap.com/help/help_item.php?id=205

Date Posted: 3/8/2011 6:39 PM ET
Member Since: 11/28/2009
Posts: 1,792
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Thank you for the info, I did copy & paste the rules about what condition the book should be in.  Then I got the above response.  I thought maybe I was being overly picky.  But crayon scribbles would make the book unpostable, it's on at least 2 or more of the text pages of the story, and on the outside and the front and the inside page that is another text page telling about the praises of the book.

Ronda (RONDA) - ,
Date Posted: 3/8/2011 6:40 PM ET
Member Since: 3/3/2009
Posts: 415
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you can definately point them to the part about paying to send back, every rwap i have had the sender has said that part of it.

But the other part.....

yes I know this is a used book, but the posting guidelines clearly state no writing in the book.( pull the exact text from the posting guidelines).  As this book is not postable per PBS rules please return my credit as suggested in the help (pull that help text too).  please respond by xxx date to resolve this matter.

you can certainly try to make it nicer (I am not the nicest in my writing), but that would be the jist of it.

If after a couple tries they still say I am sure there was no writing in the book the only thing you can do is leave it unresolved.  

the unnecessary comment about used book does make me a little bit suspicious.

Date Posted: 3/8/2011 6:41 PM ET
Member Since: 7/28/2006
Posts: 4,984
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You may want to consider taking pictures of the crayon marks and uploading them to a photo hosting website (like photobucket or similiar) and send the links to the member.  If shown pictures of the damage they might be more willing to return your credit. 

But as mentioned above, do not return the book without getting compensation for postage first, either via an extra credit or some other arrangement such as PayPal.

Date Posted: 3/8/2011 7:31 PM ET
Member Since: 2/26/2006
Posts: 35,125
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It makes me wonder if the book you received was from that sender.  Did the book roll over and this book might have been from an earlier sender who didn't mark it mailed?  Crayon marks are pretty hard to miss.

Date Posted: 3/8/2011 7:55 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 10,125
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Crayon on the cover is postable. Crayon on the inside, on a non-text page is postable.

The only thing that you have described that makes it unpostable is crayon on the text pages, which is actually also postable if the other member had PM'd you first about the writing and gotten your acceptance of the book first.

I would offer pictures, so the other member can see the marks.

And, yes, you do not need to send it back to get your original credit back. The other member should give you a second credit if they wish to have the book back.

Last Edited on: 3/8/11 7:57 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/8/2011 8:21 PM ET
Member Since: 11/28/2009
Posts: 1,792
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Thank you for all your help!  I've got trouble with this one, received a very rude reply to my PM!  

Date Posted: 3/8/2011 8:56 PM ET
Member Since: 8/26/2006
Posts: 9,350
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Maybe wait a day or two (to allow some cooling off) and then say something like, "Since writing on text pages makes a book unpostable on this website (unless you PM the requestor first and get permission), I'm following the steps in the help center and am asking for my credit back.  I'll also be happy to mail the book back to you if you provide postage.  Or if you would like to see a photo of the pages, I can arrange that. 

But I understand that sometimes two members will have a disagreement and will not be able to come to a resolution.  As the sender, you have control as to whether or not to refund my credit.  As requestor, I have the option of submitting follow-up -- either that the problem was resolved by the sender, or that it wasn't.  I hate to provide feedback that the problem wasn't resolved.  I'm sure you sent the book in good faith, and an unresolved problem swap is a double black mark on your record.  But if I don't hear back from you by (date), I'll mark it "unresolved by sender" and we can both move on.


Date Posted: 3/8/2011 9:06 PM ET
Member Since: 11/28/2009
Posts: 1,792
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Patty, I like your response!

This is just part of the PM I received:

The PBS does not interfere in disputes of this kind as it has no way of verifying the claims of either side. I offer a reasnoble solution. You return the book and I return your credit. You will be better for it as you will get to read the book as well at no credit cost to you.

I feel like I am being bullied.

Date Posted: 3/8/2011 9:32 PM ET
Member Since: 4/5/2008
Posts: 1,869
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Well, it might seem to them no credit lost, but you ARE out postage costs and that makes the reading not free so their logic doesn't hold up.  I think you have done what you are supposed to so I'd wait and mark it unresolved and walk away.  This doesn't sound like someone I'd want to continue conversations with because it sounds like they are just getting a bit snarkier each time.  I'm sorry you've had such a bad swap, but hopefully that's it for awhile!

Date Posted: 3/8/2011 10:51 PM ET
Member Since: 1/21/2009
Posts: 11,898
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I keep a list of problem swappers for my own personal use.  Some of you may not think it right but I hate having to deal with those who are unreasonable.  I also archive their PMs.

I would send PBS copies of the PMs and of the pictures of the book.  They may not do anything but I at least you let them know.  She sounds a bit off.

Date Posted: 3/8/2011 11:05 PM ET
Member Since: 11/28/2009
Posts: 1,792
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Everyone has giving me some great advice.  I have had soooo many great swaps, it is a shame that this one is so bad, and is bullying me.  I am working on trying to get a photo share site to be able to show PBS that there is most definely green & red crayon scribbles.  I  will not send the book back, she wants me to send the book back, then she will give me my credit back.  I want the credit first.  Don't want to send the book back unless she sends a credit for postage, I also don't want her to send this WLd book to someone else.  I believe this is a bad swapper & I would bet she has a history of doing this to others, and I will just let PBS know in case there is a pattern of this.

Date Posted: 3/8/2011 11:07 PM ET
Member Since: 1/1/2009
Posts: 1,924
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At this point I think your credit is lost and just by how they are acting I am 99% sure they sent you an unpostable book. PBS does catch people like this, only a matter of time!

Date Posted: 3/8/2011 11:11 PM ET
Member Since: 1/2/2011
Posts: 212
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Linda, I'm sorry you're having to deal with this. This sender doesn't sound like the type of person who will give your credit back - and I agree, they are trying to bully you. Their offering is not reasonable, because you should not have to pay the postage to return their unpostable book.

I like Patty's example of a PM. I would politely give them a deadline for the return of your credit, then mark it unresolved on that date if they haven't returned it. Don't let them drag you into a big argument about it, it's just not worth it and probably won't change the outcome either way.

Hope this is your one bad swap and it'll be smooth trading from now on!

Date Posted: 3/9/2011 12:03 AM ET
Member Since: 9/13/2007
Posts: 2,520
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Yep, I would also give them a deadline and then mark the transaction unresolved. They are willfully ignoring the rules at this point and I wouldn't let them bully you into returning the book by holding your credit hostage. 

Date Posted: 3/9/2011 12:12 AM ET
Member Since: 7/5/2007
Posts: 2,296
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The person who posted the book is right in one aspect - PBS won't get involved in the dispute.  From what you've posted of her PMs, she's also not admitted to sending a known unpostable, which is something that PBS would be interested in, if she had admitted that she knew the crayon scribbles were there. 

Unfortunately for her, PBS will get involved if she does this to enough people.  Give her a deadline, then mark it not resolved if she does not either return your credit or return it and send you a credit to cover postage.  You're under no obligation to return it unless she sends you the extra credit for mailing it back.

Her attitude will catch up with her eventually.  But a PP is right  -  arguing with her or even posting pictures as proof will get you nowhere with this person. 

Last Edited on: 3/9/11 12:12 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/9/2011 2:46 AM ET
Member Since: 7/7/2007
Posts: 4,815
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Linda, you may need to cite this section of the rules to him:

"Remember that the requestor is not required to send the book back at his or her expense.   There is more information about this below.  The sender of a problem book does risk losing credit, book and postage; this is the incentive NOT to send problem books." 


"If your book did not meet PBS criteria , you should refund the credit."

Both from this document.

If you are able, I would post digital photos of the damage on Photobucket or elsewhere, as others have recommended, and include a link to the photo(s) in your next response to him.  In that response, along with the damage links, state the rules sections for him about how PBS policies do not require you to return the book at your own expense, etc.  Politely inform him that you would hate to have to mark this transaction as "unresolved", as that would put a double black mark on his account. 

In doing so, the links to the damage photos will be included in the discussion trail attached to this particular transaction, in case PBS ever wants/needs to go back and look at it.

If he sends a rude response, report that to the PBS Team, as it is not permitted.

I'm sorry you're having a negative experience -- I hope things improve.

Date Posted: 3/9/2011 10:47 AM ET
Member Since: 11/28/2009
Posts: 1,792
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Thank you to all of you with all your great ideas, support and one of you out there was sooo generous to send a credit!  I am working on getting on a photo sharing site to document the scribbles.  Just to let you all know, I have no crayons around my home, my "baby" is 21 years old, and there are no grandchildren or visiting little ones around here, so just for the record, it didn't happen at my house.

I have quoted all the great links you all have given me, I was pretty upset about the PMs I was receiving, and when I tried to search for them I couldndn't find them.  So again, Thank you for helping me with the PBS documents!

I have repeated the PBS criteria for posting, and have given her a timeline, and will just send the info off as unresolved, and move on.  For the biggest reason, I don't want her to do this to anyone else.

Thank you again for all your support with this.  Love PBS!