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Topic: Bible study books usually come with highlighting

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Subject: Bible study books usually come with highlighting
Date Posted: 1/8/2013 12:34 PM ET
Member Since: 11/3/2011
Posts: 3
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I am getting a bit frustrated. I will order bible study books and most of the time I have gotten them with highlighting/underlining as well as notes in side margins.  I do not consider these 'textbooks' and so I am getting a bit frustrated with receiving damaged books.  I just got one again today.  I will now change my requests to clarify I don't want this type of stuff, but am wondering if this is a gray area re PBS guidelines.  Thank you.



Date Posted: 1/8/2013 12:39 PM ET
Member Since: 1/8/2009
Posts: 2,016
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No, this is not a gray area. 

Posting the books with margins and underlining/highlighting is allowed, but the poster is supposed to PM you in advance describing this, and get your approval before sending.  (This is the textbook exception.)

If you don't approve, the sender has to cancel the transaction. 

If you were not contacted in advance, then mark it Received with a Problem (RWAP - damaged by sender).

Date Posted: 1/8/2013 1:17 PM ET
Member Since: 5/25/2009
Posts: 602
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Any book can be considered a textbook, but they definitely have to get your permission before sending a book with writing/highlighting. It's not a gray area. RWAP it and don't feel bad. 

I wouldn't make an RC about it, some people reject all RCs. The rules already cover this. 

Date Posted: 1/8/2013 2:18 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,221
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Mark the books as Problem swaps and let the senders know that they MUST follow the Textbook exception and notify the receiver before sending AND GET PERMISSION to send it. If they send the books without getting permission and the requester objects, they need to return the credit.


What is the definition of a textbook?

Actually, the way the system and rules are designed, it does not matter what the "objective definition" of a textbook is.  The club members decide this - as long as the rules in the Book Condition Criteria for 'Swappability' at PBS are followed.  See the explanation and examples below.

If a member considers her book a textbook she may Post it with underlining/highlighting/writing on text pages, according to the "textbook exception" in the Book Condition Criteria for 'Swappability' at PBS; BUT since the textbook exception in theBook Condition Criteria for 'Swappability' at PBS require her to contact the requestor and obtain PM consent to the book's condition, she won't be in the position of sending a "stealth textbook" to someone who doesn't expect to receive one.

Examples/further explanation:

  • Member A posts an Economics 101 textbook - something that most people would clearly consider a textbook.   
  • Following the Book Condition Criteria for 'Swappability' at PBS textbook exception rules, she sends a Personal Message to the requestor when she gets a request, describing the book's condition.
  • Chances are good that she will get PM consent from the requestor to send the book with highlighting/etc. 
  • Member B posts a novel (fiction) that she used in a class - something that most people would NOT consider a textbook.
    • Following the Book Condition Criteria for 'Swappability' at PBS textbook exception rules, she sends a Personal Message to the requestor when she gets a request, describing the book's condition.
    • Chances are good that she will NOT get PM consent from the requestor to send the book with highlighting/etc.
    • If the requestor declines the book in its condition, Member B will have to cancel the request and repost her book.  It will go to the 'back of the line' for requests.  (If it is a Wish Listed book, it will be offered to the same wisher and the sender will again have to cancel.  She will have to wait for the wishing member to get a copy of this book from someone else before Member B can post her copy again.)

So, the farther the book is from a 'textbook' in common perception, the more likely it will be difficult to get consent to its condition.  Members in Member B's situation may encounter several declines, and will eventually realize that the book is not likely to be acceptable to the club in its condition.  Member B will stop trying to offer it as a "textbook"  and will consider it instead an unpostable/damaged book.

In this way, the club defines "textbook" on a case-by-case basis, and no one who is following the rules will be able to "surprise" another person with a highlighted/written-in/underlined book.

Date Posted: 1/8/2013 3:31 PM ET
Member Since: 7/7/2007
Posts: 4,815
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I politely disagree with the advice to not make an RC about it.  Yes, there are members who refuse all Requestor Conditions, but there are also many members, new and old, who are not familiar with the textbook rules.  I have a "no highlighting please" statement in my RCs, and I've found it helps.

As the others have said, definitely mark them Received with a Problem and request your credit be returned.

Date Posted: 1/8/2013 5:07 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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Not a gray area.  If used for a Bible Study class, the books can be posted FIFO but ONLY under the Textbook Conditions posted by Melanie.  You should not be receiving highlighted books unless the sender has notified you, explained the exact condition, and received permission from you to send the book. 

Feel free to RWAP and request a credit return.

Although, it is nice if you have an RC of some type b/c it's then easy for a textbook mailer to decline your RC and offer the book to a wisher behind you.

Date Posted: 1/8/2013 7:23 PM ET
Member Since: 2/23/2008
Posts: 170
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I would consider a Bible study book to be a textbook and fall under the textbook conditions. But as the others pointed out, the sender did not PM you in advance and that violates PBS rules. You are entitled to RWAP the book and ask for your credit back. Even though some senders do refuse all RC's, most PBS members don't. It would be easier for you and future senders to put in an RC for underlining, highlighting, and writing. The sender would know immediately if the book was acceptable to you or not.

Last Edited on: 1/8/13 7:24 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 1/9/2013 4:22 AM ET
Member Since: 1/21/2009
Posts: 11,898
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Mark it RWAP and let them know the textbook rule requires them to first PM you and ask if it is acceptable and you must have a chance to reply yes or no. I hate when they assume it will be okay and just send it.
Date Posted: 1/9/2013 10:24 AM ET
Member Since: 5/25/2010
Posts: 262
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The "textbook exception" rule is the most misunderstood rule on PBS that I've encountered. Even when the topic of writing comes up on discussions on the forum (where people generally understand the rules), someone often pipes in with something like, "It's a textbook, so it's okay."

I order lots of textbooks, and get lots of underlining. I always RWAP now when I haven't given permission, though I generally don't ask for my credit back. I figure that I'm helping to educate the membership, in my small way.

I don't mind underlining in most cases, but sometimes the book is completely unusable (say, because all the answers are written in). That's the only time that I ask for my credit back.

Perhaps the misunderstanding arises because when you look at the "good condition" requirements, the window that pops up mentions a textbook exception but doesn't mention that there are additional requirements, and most people don't follow through with that, just remembering that textbooks are exceptions? I don't know.

Perhaps TPTB could modify that text to say something like, "For special requirements on sending books that contain writing, see section X in the help documents."

Date Posted: 1/9/2013 12:35 PM ET
Member Since: 4/28/2009
Posts: 10,081
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sorry, but a Bible study IS a CLASS so I would expect highlighting AND margin notes just as in a college textbook. I teach 2 adult religion classes a week using Bible study curriculia and I encourage the students to make margin notes!

Date Posted: 1/9/2013 2:32 PM ET
Member Since: 7/7/2007
Posts: 4,815
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<<sorry, but a Bible study IS a CLASS so I would expect highlighting AND margin notes>>

That is, respectfully, irrelevant here.  The key issue is the sender needed permission to send the book with highlighting/underlining, per PBS policy, and didn't get it.  RWAP, period.

Date Posted: 1/9/2013 4:59 PM ET
Member Since: 6/15/2009
Posts: 151
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I also disagree about not making an RC. A lot of people overlook the no highlighting rule. I made a "no highlighting" RC, and I haven't had a problem since.

Yes, some people reject all RCs, but I haven't run into many, and I don't mind not trading with them.

Date Posted: 1/10/2013 5:38 PM ET
Member Since: 11/3/2011
Posts: 3
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Thank you for all the responses. I have been in contact with the sender and also referred her to this link so she could understand this topic more as well.  

Personally, I do not consider bible study books to be "textbooks".  Maybe a bit off topic, but if I put that much study into the book where I underlined, wrote dates, highlighted and wrote notes in the margins, etc. I would NOT want to be passing it on to another person!  I would want to keep it for myself for future reference since obviously it made an impact in my life!

I do appreciate all the input.  I have clarified I desire no writing, highlighting or writing in the books I receive.  Thank you again.







Date Posted: 1/11/2013 6:38 AM ET
Member Since: 1/22/2008
Posts: 694
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From what I understand, it doesn't matter what you or I consider a textbook. Any book can use the textbook exception, but they always have to get permission to send it first.

I too would not be comfortable sending out my deep personal thoughts I've written down.