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Topic: book w/ advertising sent via first class mail

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Subject: book w/ advertising sent via first class mail
Date Posted: 2/15/2011 12:20 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2007
Posts: 445
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i read the FAQ (thanks!) but still have a question.  i received a book, given out apparently by Chix Fil E (i think i spelled that right).   is this postable?  i really wanted the story for our spring curricuculum, but im not happy that this book has an advertisement in the back for this restaurant (aside from advertising, its not a place my children visit).  would like some feedback before proceeding.  the book was received yesterday.

Date Posted: 2/15/2011 12:23 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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Well they sent it correctly if they sent it first class.  It's only media mail that isn't supposed to contain advertising.   I think the book is postable but a Tour Guide would probably know more. 

Date Posted: 2/15/2011 12:51 PM ET
Member Since: 10/14/2010
Posts: 577
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I don't understand was the advertising a part of the book or was it something the sender added.  I ask because a few of the books I have posted have advertising in them (course given the age of the book it's arcana now not advertising), but these are all part of the book as included by the publisher.

Date Posted: 2/15/2011 12:56 PM ET
Member Since: 3/7/2009
Posts: 10,842
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Chick-fil-a often gives out books with their kids meals.  If it is something like what is on this book, it's postable.

Date Posted: 2/15/2011 1:16 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,384
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Many books have advertising for other books.  The "more from the publisher" ads.  These are specifically allowed by the media mail regs.  (The longer regs spell out the details, mentioning the invoice.)

From USPS:

Contents are limited to books, manuscripts, sound recordings, and certain other educational materials. Informally called “Book Rate”, Media Mail cannot contain advertising, except eligible books may contain incidental announcements of books.

Date Posted: 2/15/2011 2:54 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2007
Posts: 445
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Jenna, yes that is basically what it is.   it has chick fil a on the front and then more on the inside of the back cover.   i guess i just need to pay more attention to the fronts of the books i order for the kids.

thanks everyone.

Date Posted: 2/15/2011 4:09 PM ET
Member Since: 10/14/2010
Posts: 577
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I have a related question.

One of the romance novels I have has an advertisement for Lucky strikes in about the center of the book (I keep waiting for it to be requested with a non-smoking RC just for amusement).  Would it behoove me to clip this (barring suggestions otherwise through PM's from the requestor) if I send it media mail, or will I get in trouble for making it unpostable?  The advertisement is from the 70's (not sure Lucky Strikes even exist anymore).

Date Posted: 2/15/2011 5:45 PM ET
Member Since: 8/18/2008
Posts: 7,759
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I would think anything that's actually attached to the inside of the book would have been put there by the publisher on purpose.  While it is advertising, so are the little cards in a lot of romance novels that encourage you to order more books or join a book club.  I think the advertising that is meant to be prohibited from media mail is not the advertising in the book itself, but any loose or included advertising along with the shipment.  For example, if there was an ad for an upcoming movie tucked into the book (removeable, loose) then that would make it not media mail.

Date Posted: 2/15/2011 6:34 PM ET
Member Since: 12/26/2010
Posts: 68
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i guess i just need to pay more attention to the fronts of the books i order for the kids.

Alex,

The cover picture posted on PBS may not show that kind of brand logo. I posted/sent a child's book that had a Goldfish cracker logo on the cover. When I was posting I double checked all the other info (ISBN, binding, and cover picture). Everything was identical except the PBS picture did not have the logo. So even if you pay more attention you may still get a book with a logo in it. If you don't want to receive those books an RC might be  the way to go.

Diane :)

Date Posted: 2/15/2011 7:36 PM ET
Member Since: 7/7/2007
Posts: 4,815
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trucker-monkey, I'd seek additional guidance from the PBS Team and/or the Post Office before sending.  The Help Center states:

"What can be posted for swapping here?

Not allowed:

  • Anything that is not a book (this includes calendars, coloring books, blank journals)
  • Anything that contains advertising [emphasis mine]"

The Post Office's Media Mail regulations say the following is eligible:

"Books ... containing no advertising matter other than incidental announcements of books."

Ads for tobacco are, obviously, not announcements of books, so you might run into some issues there.

Date Posted: 2/15/2011 7:43 PM ET
Member Since: 10/14/2010
Posts: 577
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Thanks Elizabeth B: I can ask one of our local postmasters to look into it for me, that would probably be easiest.  Hadn't even considered it until this thread was posted (mostly found it amusing given the culture change that has occurred since the book was published).  I may just clip the advertisement out anyways, I'm pretty sure I can do this without damaging the text any.