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Topic: Book Member Question

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Subject: Book Member Question
Date Posted: 7/4/2008 10:57 PM ET
Member Since: 5/7/2006
Posts: 5,295
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Edit to add: There are local groups that meet up on here. Just a warning here guys. Sorry it hit a nerve.

Last Edited on: 7/24/08 10:53 PM ET - Total times edited: 6
Date Posted: 7/4/2008 11:07 PM ET
Member Since: 4/25/2008
Posts: 428
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I found this on the help files.


PaperBackSwap.com is open to:

  • Persons* over the age of 18 who are
  • Residents of the US (including US territories and possessions--anywhere that is served by the US Postal Service), and
  • Not incarcerated.

*Institutional memberships are not permitted.

Date Posted: 7/4/2008 11:10 PM ET
Member Since: 5/7/2006
Posts: 5,295
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Thanks for that. I hope people are careful about who they visit on here and check them out on www.familywatchdog.us before visiting with a child or something. There are much more good people on here than bad but it never hurts to be safe.

Date Posted: 7/4/2008 11:19 PM ET
Member Since: 5/29/2007
Posts: 4,882
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Shannon, I'm assuming you received your email from another member here not from the PTB of the site?    I wouldn't think that PBS would have that kind of information available to them based on info requested when joining.   IMO,  PBS is a type of social club and I would think that they would not be able to deny membership to anyone based on a criminal record.  You might want to forward your concerns to PBS management, they could give you a definite answer and not just my personal opinion.



Date Posted: 7/4/2008 11:25 PM ET
Member Since: 5/7/2006
Posts: 5,295
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Tamara-I got this from an email from a PBSer. I'm not trying to deny anybody membership, just got a little alarmed, that's all.

Date Posted: 7/4/2008 11:36 PM ET
Member Since: 1/1/2006
Posts: 547
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Honestly, I see no reason why anyone (not currently in jail) should be denied membership here.  However, anyone attending PBS related events with their families, should be aware of who they are meeting with.  Just like any other situation where you go to meet someone you have been talking with over the internet.


Date Posted: 7/5/2008 12:10 AM ET
Member Since: 5/29/2007
Posts: 4,882
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Shannon, of course I can understand why you would be concerned upon reading that email.   I just was trying to verify whether or not it was an "official" communication representing PBS. 

I personally think we need to keep in mind that this website is for adults over the age of 18 only and this person would not have any direct contact with children here. 

I definitely agree with Kerry that folks should always be careful when having any "live" interaction with somebody they have met anywhere over the Internet.    The Internet is a wonderful place but unfortunately it can make it so easy for people to misrepresent themselves.




Last Edited on: 7/5/08 12:11 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 7/5/2008 11:17 AM ET
Member Since: 8/18/2005
Posts: 7,977
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Last Edited on: 10/19/09 9:59 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 7/5/2008 11:24 AM ET
Member Since: 10/29/2005
Posts: 3,823
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 I think it's important to remember that this female could have been convicted of something like having sex with a 16 year old boy when she was 18. She may not be a baby raper. Since we don't know all of the details, and even that website doesn't give all of the details, it may be best to keep this to yourself and not tell all of your friends her exact name. It's only natural to want to warn your friend's, but you can still do that without giving away this woman's identity. It would be terrible if this person's name was blackened due to a case of mistake identity or even by someone who knows her, has a grudge against her, and has decided to spread ugly gossip about her. We really just don't know, and the odds of any of us meeting this person in real life are slim.

I'm only saying this because I know an 18 year old who would appear to be a child molester if you looked him up on that website, but he was arrested for having sex with his 16 year old girlfriend. He was only arrested after he broke up with the girl and made her parents angry. Previous to the break-up, the parents had no problem with their daughter dating an 18 year old. A scenario such as this could very well be the reason this woman appears on the website.

Of course, you very well may have already thought of all this and I'm preaching to the choir right now. ;-)

Date Posted: 7/5/2008 1:23 PM ET
Member Since: 9/17/2005
Posts: 418
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I agree with Valli here. I've got a relative in the records for almost the exact same thing. His girlfriend's parents decided to press charges against her will. Doesn't mean he's going to abuse his children or friends or even me.

And as far as membership goes here, I don't think it's any of PBS's business what we do/do not do/decide to watch/purchase/sell/spend our time/whatever. If you find someone/something that offends you - walk away, ignore them, choose not to participate.

That's the great thing about the net, you can walk away at any time.

Date Posted: 7/5/2008 3:16 PM ET
Member Since: 10/23/2005
Posts: 7,719
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Thanks Kerry, Cindy, Valli and Taleah. I knew there was something I wanted to say here, but really did not know how to word it.

Date Posted: 7/5/2008 6:39 PM ET
Member Since: 3/25/2007
Posts: 369
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Wow.  At first, I was a bit appalled that Shannon thought it mattered - I'm sending out a book, not asking someone to meet me at a motel on a lonely stretch of road...  and, oh, hey, bring the kids, okay?  No offense, Shannon, it just struck me as a strange concern.  Were you planning to meet the person?

I can't see how or why what crimes I may or may not have committed in my life affects anyone's desire to read my books.  Not that I'm the person in question.  Not that I've committed any particularly noteworthy crimes, either.

Mostly I'm kind of disgusted by the person who sent Shannon that email, unless Shannon was planning on meeting the person.  If that was the case, maybe I could understand it.  But if it was just a gossip-y kind of thing... that's a really rotten thing to do, IMO.

Date Posted: 7/5/2008 9:02 PM ET
Member Since: 9/11/2005
Posts: 905
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I personally think that the person who should be sanctioned is the one who sent the email about the "sex offender," rather than that person.  This is reallly unfounded/unexplained libel, without something substantiating it, and meaningless unless the exact situation is explained in detail.  I used to be medical director at the local Planned Parenthood, and our right-wing conservative atourney general loves to prosecute people who are in the age situations as above.    Some of these situations are totally different than what they appear to be!! 

Date Posted: 7/6/2008 2:15 AM ET
Member Since: 6/19/2008
Posts: 1,976
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Oh, for Pete's sake we're trading books, not babysitting each others kids!

Date Posted: 7/6/2008 9:25 PM ET
Member Since: 5/7/2006
Posts: 5,295
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Winston, I actually verified the validity of it via the website. Yes, this was the person alright so no slander at least. I know a few people on here who have had problems with this person but they were not related to her legal offense.

Date Posted: 7/7/2008 8:14 AM ET
Member Since: 10/29/2005
Posts: 3,823
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Shannon, I'm truly not trying to pick a fight with you, but this whole situation really bugs me. I think if the person who emailed you had really been worried about the member's of this site, they would have emailed the only people who can do something about this...the owner's of the site. I don't see the point in emailing you at all. Other than adding the watchdog to your sig line, what can YOU do about this?  Emailing you just reeks of gossip! I'd be willing to bet the person who emailed you was more excited about having a juicy story than worried about protecting the children of the PBS membership.  And, if you have emailed anyone else about this, you are just participating in the spread of gossip. I'm sure you haven't done that though, right? ;-)

Also, on the website none of the conviction details that I looked at gave the age of the child involved in the case, so you really don't have a good idea of what happened. It only gives the name of the charge, and that can vary depending upon the laws of each particular state. The ONLY appropriate thing to do in this situation would have been to email R&co and let them do what they thought was best for the member's of their website.

The son of my friend was harrassed and threatened out of his last apartment because of some "do-gooder" just like the person that emailed you.

Date Posted: 7/7/2008 10:03 AM ET
Member Since: 4/20/2006
Posts: 5,751
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I imagine that there are a lot of people on this website with criminal backgrounds.  We are here to swap books though, and you give out personal info at your own risk.  Even when you mail a book to someone, you have the option of using the PBS return address instead of your own if you want a little extra privacy.  It's unfortunate but true....every picture you put up here of yourself or your child can be taken, your address and e-mail can be used for other things, etc.  You really cannot be too careful.

Date Posted: 7/7/2008 3:47 PM ET
Member Since: 4/22/2007
Posts: 2,461
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Well, I'm sure Shannon achieved exactly what she wanted to with this post.  I'm suprised she didn't put it in the CMT honestly.  Just look at how many views this topic got, close to 800 as I post this response.  I can only imagine how many people PM'd her directly to get the name of the PBS'r with the criminal record so they could get all the juicy information. 




Date Posted: 7/7/2008 4:08 PM ET
Member Since: 1/25/2007
Posts: 6,567
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I agree with, Anne L. I was wondering what in the world is this topic about?? I'm honestly still confused.

First off I'm all for people being told who is a sexual offender. I was sexually abused myself first as a child from 9-12 by a family friend. Then again as a teen by some jerk I met online back in 1992 or so. I was just 17 & he was 26. I wasa date raped for months by this guy and I fear to think of what else could have happened. I was lucky compared to what happens to other girls.

I'm confused by:

I hope people are careful about who they visit on here and check them out on www.familywatchdog.us before visiting with a child or something.

I mean are you or people you know meeting and visiting people you meet on here? This is a paperback swap site not a meet and greet site. I've made a few good friends here on PBS but honestly meeting them have never crossed my mind. Honestly I don't think I have heard of people doing that on here EVER. So I'm really confused about your message about that.

Then your message about:

I got this from an email from a PBSer.

Like others say how can you be sure this is REAL? Was it in your Paperback Swap message box or through regular Email. I admit I'd be really troubled by that, but honestly I mean we NEVER EVER know who we are talking to online.

The online world is very different. I love Brad Paisley's song "Online" where he talks about how he works at Pizza Hut & lived with his parents. But when he gets online he's really cool, a model & lost a lot of weight. lol

This is a Paperback Swap site, not a meet new people and go visit them site. I met my husband online back in '93 when it was a VERY rare thing. (Yes, I met another guy online after all the stuff I mentioned above happened. I was 18, my family was moving in a few months & I never dreamed of meeting the guy. Little did I know I'd fall in love, we'd get married after just 3mts of meeting in person & my family would move with out me. lol). So yes you can meet some WONDERFUL people online. I've swapped with a few people who live just 2hrs away from me, but never talked about meeting.

Now if you did want to meet someone in person that you did meet on here it would be a great idea to do it in a public place. That is plain old common sense. Some women in a pregnancy user group I was in met up in TN with our babies one year. We met at some tourist spot, took photos, hugged and laughed. We spent a few hours together. It was nice, a public place and we still had the common sense to treat each other like strangers. lol

Paperback Swap is a wonderful place, but yet like the real world and anywhere else on line you'll meet some dishonest people. Should you do an online search of each person you are mailing a book to? lol I wouldn't, but if that helps you feel better then do it. If you feel unsafe swapping books don't do it.

But, I'd also becareful about mesages you get from other members about another member. Sadly even some adults feel the need to lie and spread rumors about others. Also like some people stated about some "sexual offenders" hadn't done horrible things like child rape, raped adults and stuff like that. Some are people who did something unwise like have sex with someone under age (under 16 . . . I don't care if that is the law you shouldn't do that) or sadly some people are accused of it and never did anything wrong.

Sorry this is so long. The message about " I hope people are careful about who they visit on here" really struck me odd. I would think anyone with their God given common senese would meet up with someone they met online. It's like picking a stranger at the grocery store and going home with them. You just don't do that.

If you must meet up with someone stick to common sense and meet in a PUBLIC PLACE.

lol sorry people forgetting their common sense is a HUGE pet peeve with me lately. Iol I know my kids are sick of hearing about. ; )

Date Posted: 7/7/2008 4:15 PM ET
Member Since: 5/10/2005
Posts: 2,372
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Yeah. "Sex crime" can be a senior in high school who had sex with a junior significant other in some states if their birthdays fall just right.

Anyone who sends their kids off to meet with someone from the internet needs their head examined.  I don't see AT ALL why the criminal record of someone should be relevant for membership in a book swapping site.   Especially when the site disallows minors to start with.

Singling them out in this case is just rude.  If I were to PM for anything it would be the name of the member who thinks spreading irrelevant personal information about other members is a good idea.  That's who I'd put on my Do Not Trade or Order From list--I prefer not giving even my address to people like that.

Date Posted: 7/7/2008 4:55 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,226
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I mean are you or people you know meeting and visiting people you meet on here? This is a paperback swap site not a meet and greet site. I've made a few good friends here on PBS but honestly meeting them have never crossed my mind. Honestly I don't think I have heard of people doing that on here EVER. So I'm really confused about your message about that.

Yes, Ashley, there are people on here that have gotten close enough to meet and develop person friendships with others on PBS. There are also local PBS Swap groups that will get together and have face to face swaps. I have seen pics posted in the past and seen many posts by people who have gotten to meet other members in person. I have also seen people say they when they got a transaction from someone within a short distance so they agreed to deliver the book in person. Some people do use sites like PBS to meet people with the same interests and if they find someone near by, start up a friendship. I have seen it happen on most online forums I have participated in.

Date Posted: 7/7/2008 5:08 PM ET
Member Since: 8/1/2007
Posts: 5,034
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Being convicted of ANY crime has no obvious impact on the books a person sends.  There is no page bourne communicable disease that spreads sex crime tendencies that I am aware of.

If this were a dating site or something like that, it would be a viable concern and certainly fall in the area of "need to know", but I can't see how it can impact a book trading site.

Date Posted: 7/7/2008 5:24 PM ET
Member Since: 4/22/2007
Posts: 2,461
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Its an impact if you don't "like" that particular person.  I'm assuming Shannon doesn't particularly care for this person so felt the need to spread the "good word". 

OT: Lita, your little person in your icon looks like he would fit in here today (ND) with his rain gear... its only now letting up.  :)

Date Posted: 7/7/2008 5:31 PM ET
Member Since: 1/13/2007
Posts: 475
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Last Edited on: 10/30/08 9:23 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 7/7/2008 8:25 PM ET
Member Since: 2/28/2007
Posts: 2,164
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Guess what?  You can't know whether someone is a sex offender in ANY context, not just on PBS...unless you look them up on the registry.  But guess what else?  There are offenders who have not been caught and are therefore not on the registry.  As others have suggested, it is smart to exercise precautions when meeting ANY stranger in person and to limit the personal information you share online.  In other words, don't hand your children over to them.  However, I am pretty sure it's okay to share your copy of War and Peace or Lonesome Dove with them.  It gives them something else to do besides obsess over your children.  (Note the sarcasm there.)

Last Edited on: 7/7/08 8:27 PM ET - Total times edited: 1