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Topic: Have you ever had your books opened for inspection?

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Subject: Have you ever had your books opened for inspection?
Date Posted: 3/10/2010 2:12 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2009
Posts: 4,000
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I went into my PO Box last night, eagerly awaiting numerous books and one of the bigger packages (3 books in PBS wrapped wrapping) was open with a big red stamp saying "Media Mail Subject to Inspection". Ok fine. EXCEPT, when inspecting they sliced right through the dust cover on one of the hardcover books. I went to the front desk this morning and they said that is one of the risks of using media mail. And that was it. Ok, enough ranting. I'm done.

Date Posted: 3/10/2010 2:21 PM ET
Member Since: 1/10/2010
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Yes I have had them open my mail before. They just want to make sure that it really is something that is considered okay to mail media mail. They used to tell you when you send something media mail that they might open it. But they have the right to open anything now. It doesnt happen that often that they open something but sometimes. Sorry to hear that happened to you.

Date Posted: 3/10/2010 2:24 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2009
Posts: 4,000
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Yeah it does stink but I think I'll live. It's worth it to use the much cheaper media mail!

Date Posted: 3/10/2010 2:27 PM ET
Member Since: 1/10/2010
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I agree with you. Thankfully it was only the duskcover and not the book.

Date Posted: 3/10/2010 7:14 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,441
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Apparently they (PO) has been opening and inspecting a large percentage of the books coming and going from Wisconsin.  They have a right to do it to all media mail.  But I rarely get a book with the notice.  

Date Posted: 3/11/2010 2:39 AM ET
Member Since: 4/27/2009
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It may be cheaper, but we're still paying something for their services. Yeah, they have the right but do they have to be so 'rough' about it and then rude when you ask? Good customer service should still be important. How would we get our books mailed to one another? Is there another postal service? I guess since we're not paying a high price that we're expected to accept it...

Think about it this way, lol. We have to drink water to survive. Some of us can only afford the stuff that comes out of sinks and we get 'cloudy' water full of stuff. We can't afford the processed water.

LOL!! I know it's a big difference, water to survive and books to entertain :) Just in a mood:)

Date Posted: 3/11/2010 10:02 AM ET
Member Since: 4/15/2008
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Even though it's media mail, can't you still file a claim if they damage your item during an inspection? 

Date Posted: 3/11/2010 11:13 AM ET
Member Since: 2/24/2009
Posts: 1,564
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I've never had a book come to me that had been inspected and don't know if any I sent out were.  If so, the receiver never mentioned it.

Date Posted: 3/11/2010 11:30 AM ET
Member Since: 4/27/2009
Posts: 401
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One time I had to speak to a supervisor about an empty envelope. He took my number and said he would look into it. He did call me back after a while and told me they couldn't find the book...



Last Edited on: 3/11/10 11:30 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/12/2010 6:33 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,441
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There is a form to fill out if the book is missing.  While we are unlikely to get the book, it is important to fill out the form to report the problem.  It goes into the USPS reports and audits. 

Date Posted: 4/5/2010 12:18 PM ET
Member Since: 4/24/2008
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That stinks!  I know that they have a right but I really do think they should use a little more care if they are going to go to the trouble of inpsecting books.  That would annoy me to no end.

 

Date Posted: 4/5/2010 3:33 PM ET
Member Since: 11/15/2008
Posts: 1,705
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I haven't had any opened that I have received.  I don't know about the ones that I sent.  I was just wondering about this this morning because I sent out 4 boxes of books.  I really wondered if boxes were more susceptible because you can't tell they are books, like you can when you wrap a single book in paper to send. 

I would personally would still complain, I find it hard to believe that they are not responsible for damage caused by opening for inspection.  There is a phone number and e-mail address on the USPS website for assistance & complaints.

Date Posted: 4/8/2010 8:02 AM ET
Member Since: 3/14/2009
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I'm in Wisconsin and asked about this after my 2nd book went missing. I received one envelope back empty and filed a claim but the book didn't show up. I tape like crazy and they slit the end and put one piece of tape on the end. It didn't hold. I asked about it and they said they randomly open 1-2 packages per 10 they receive. I needed to file a form to keep on file that states that I mail media rates and I follow the rules. PO told me to keep 2 open when I brought in a bunch of them.

Date Posted: 4/8/2010 10:20 AM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2008
Posts: 2,129
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I have never had that happen, yet , and that does bite!

Subject: Packages Opened
Date Posted: 4/17/2010 1:15 PM ET
Member Since: 5/26/2008
Posts: 102
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I live in Texas, receive all my books at work, and over the past few months I have received multiple book packages that have been torn open.  Since none of our official business mail had this problem, I was almost at the point of accusing our receptionist, and am so glad to have read these postings.  Mine are usually torn down one side, which sounds like exactly what some of you have mentioned, the Post Office verifying that the package qualifies as media mail.  So far no book has been damaged, but it is very aggravating.  I'll have to watch and see if I ever get a torn one that was mailed First Class, since sometimes it is cheaper to mail them that way, depending on the weight.

Question - I am guess that the tearing-open happens at the last Post Office to receive the book, since the books would no doubt be heavily damaged if sent throught the mail after being torn open.  Does anyone know whether this is the case?

Thanks for the information.

Ellen

Date Posted: 4/17/2010 1:37 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,441
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No.  It does not mean the last one.  Policies vary within regional areas.  Sometimes it is at the sending location.  Or the sorting location.  Or any time it goes through Wisconsin.  Often a xeroxed note and a plastic bag are added.  But just as often the whole thing is sealed with Scotch tape.  Useless if the package is exposed to any moisture such as fog or rain.

Going to a business might make a search more likely.

Date Posted: 4/19/2010 7:23 PM ET
Member Since: 10/21/2007
Posts: 405
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I live in PA and I've had them open my books.  I've also had quite a few books go missing.  More then I think is normal.  I've actually received empty envelopes on numerous occassions.  I'm assuming it's Philadelphia post office for you. 

Date Posted: 5/5/2010 1:38 AM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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Not had any incoming subjected to inspection. 

IIRC, USPS is required to insert an official notification when they open a package for inspection (such as Media Mail).  We hear mixed reviews as to whether books are adequately re-wrapped after inspection....or not.  You'd think they would know that scotch tape is entirely inadequate for Media Mail.

Wisconsin postmaster has an odd fetish with Media Mail.



Last Edited on: 5/5/10 1:39 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 5/8/2010 11:01 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2009
Posts: 4,000
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I started this thread because I had one of my books opened (and the cover sliced) as part of the inspection. Well, it happend again! This time no damage to the book since the girl sending it has a degree in scotch taping! She taped the book so well, I think she used the entire roll of tape. Thankfully, the package was sliced open but it never went through the tape on the plasic ziploc baggy that was around the book (yes, she had it packaged in brown paper bag, taped AND sealed in a ziploc bag).

Date Posted: 5/9/2010 3:04 AM ET
Member Since: 7/16/2006
Posts: 1,481
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This seems to be a good place to talk about media mail, so I'll add this:

I've had 3 books get lost in the mail this year, all 3 in January February actually, but mailed at 3 different times.  That's the first time since 2007 I've had that happen, either coming or going!  All 3 were taken to the same post office to be mailed out, I wasn't using PBS's DC or postage then.  Makes me wonder if they all went missing at my local post office or if it was just random.  I know I should feel lucky that it hasn't happened since 2007 and maybe by the percentages it was just my time to lose some mail, but still, it was strange that 3 in one month were all lost.

I too have received completely empty envelopes and books that barely had the packaging hanging on.  But, as a whole, obviously, I know our postal system and media mail in general work way more often than not.  Like I said, I just noticed because all 3 were in January February and it had been so long since it had happened to me.



Last Edited on: 5/9/10 3:32 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Cass G. (Jrzy) - ,
Date Posted: 5/9/2010 3:41 PM ET
Member Since: 5/2/2007
Posts: 92
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I, too, have received empty envelopes, but I think those were originally very poorly packaged. I have taken to putting a note with the name and address of the receiver and the Delivery Confirmation # inside the plastic covering the books. That way if the package comes open, they still know where to send it. I did received a book once in October that was postmarked May 21, obviously lost and then found.

Date Posted: 5/9/2010 4:03 PM ET
Member Since: 7/16/2006
Posts: 1,481
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I love lost and found like that, Cass, it's like getting a suprise birthday present or something.  Of course, it's one you paid for yourself, but still, you didn't know it was coming.