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Topic: Burned by BOB Swapper - Just need to vent and let the frustation out.

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Subject: Burned by BOB Swapper - Just need to vent and let the frustation out.
Date Posted: 4/8/2010 10:23 PM ET
Member Since: 10/25/2009
Posts: 11
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Hello All,

Just got burned by a BOB swapper, my first live and learn experience, Reported the problem to PBS and was told that the user's account has been suspended. I won't name the PBS member, but just wanted to know can I safely assume that I 'm never going to get any of the books I requested?

I can't even post any feedback as the user's account is listed as suspended/ closed.

Requested and sent out 3 books with the expectation of 3 books to come my way.

Swapper never replied to any PM's after accepting the offer. I did send a  PM after I had mailed my item and noticed that they had never changed status on their end after 2 weeks to show the address was printed.

I understand that with BOB swaps there is not a set timeline like the regular swaps and that people get busy, but is it too much to expect that within a week of accepting a offer you would at least print the address and or send the items out on the mail. I guess if they would have at least responded to any of the PM's  I would be more willing to understand needing time or that life happens. But when you don't get any replies and it's reached the 1 month mark I feel like I've been taken for a ride.

Date Posted: 4/9/2010 12:12 AM ET
Member Since: 8/15/2007
Posts: 3,044
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I'm sorry they did this to you. The irresponsible members ruin the fun of PBS sometimes.

I know that the forums are a small representation of the majority, but reading about this happening with BOB keeps me from joining. I would rather have PBS giving timelines and being behind the transactions rather than just having it be some sort of open ended swap where anything can happen it seems.

Date Posted: 4/9/2010 1:52 AM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,171
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*Hugs*

Date Posted: 4/9/2010 6:38 AM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I'm not doing BOB right now but that's exactly why I never did trades for more than 4-5 books at a time, 6 at the most. People would make me offers for 20 books and I never felt comfortable doing that even if I could have found 20 books I wanted on their shelf.  At least with small deals you're only out a few books and postage. 

Cathy A. (Cathy) - ,
Date Posted: 4/9/2010 12:51 PM ET
Member Since: 12/27/2005
Posts: 4,124
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I don't think you should assume you'll never get the books. If PBS suspended her account *because* you complained about her, which is what it sounds like happened, then it will depend on how much she wants to get her account back.

If she's generally a good member who fell behind, then she'll probably feel bad and want her account back and do what it takes to fix the problem.

If you've been trying to contact her for 6 months and she hasn't responded and she's also piled up a hundred other BoB swaps that she hasn't completed but nobody else reported her, then your chances are not as good.

Date Posted: 4/9/2010 7:59 PM ET
Member Since: 9/20/2009
Posts: 125
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I have to say I really enjoy the BOB. I have only been doing it for a couple of months, but have gotten and given some really good deals! Its a great way to turn your books over, especially if you have slow movers and don't have a lot of credits.  However, I do mail them out regularly just like I would a normal request.

Rica I would BOB trade with you anytime!! I'm sorry you had a bad experience. I just had my first box go missing, but she had DC so at least I know it was mailed!!

Amee I don't think there are anymore problems with BOB than with regular trades, so I would not let that stop you. I highly recommend it, plus the nominal fee helps support the sight.

Date Posted: 4/9/2010 9:14 PM ET
Member Since: 2/21/2009
Posts: 2,925
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I'm sorry you had that happen, it's disappointing.

I had a similar situation, but contacted PBS to see if the member was still with us when I didn't get a response to a couple inquiring PMs. In my case, I think something unexpected/unfortunate happened to the member, as PBS postage had been printed for my books - just didn't mail them or mark mine received. The member had credits when PBS suspended the account.

I've enjoyed BOBs, and certainly don't think trades there are any more problematic than others...my trader had good feedback, credits, had paid for BOB - as stated, I think something unfortunate happened - not that it was a scam.



Last Edited on: 4/9/10 9:28 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 4/9/2010 9:36 PM ET
Member Since: 8/15/2007
Posts: 3,044
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Amee I don't think there are anymore problems with BOB than with regular trades, so I would not let that stop you. I highly recommend it, plus the nominal fee helps support the sight.

I don't mean that they have more problems. I mean that it doesn't seem like PBS stands behind the transactions. Like, if it was a one credit, one book transaction and the sender didn't send the book, then once it goes lost you get the credit back. With BOB she's out the books and can't get them back, and I doubt (because I've never read here in the forums that it happens, but correct me if I'm wrong) PBS gives the person who loses out any credits to make up for someone not following through with a trade. I'd just rather have the system backing up my transactions through the site.

Date Posted: 4/10/2010 2:54 AM ET
Member Since: 3/27/2010
Posts: 74
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/sadface

 

I hope your books turn up!

Date Posted: 4/10/2010 3:09 PM ET
Member Since: 1/29/2006
Posts: 54,837
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I'm sorry for your frustration, Rica!  I certainly understand.  I was burned a couple of times myself and it's just plain wrong.  Like Mary said, unless I know the other member, I prefer to keep swaps small for this very reason (I don't actualy have a BoB account at the moment, but I have had and do plan to renew soon) .  

While it is generally true that there are no set times for BoB, PBS does weigh in on how long it should take to mark mailed once an agreement has been reached.  From the Help Center:  (my bold)

If you have agreed to a Box-O-Books swap and the other Boxer's books don't arrive (or if the swap is not marked mailed by a week after it was accepted), you should contact the other Boxer using the Personal Message button on the swap, to ask if the Box was mailed (or when it might be mailed).
****

I do agree that I wouldn't give up all hope just yet, though!

Date Posted: 4/10/2010 8:08 PM ET
Member Since: 11/14/2005
Posts: 6,421
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Amee said  "I mean that it doesn't seem like PBS stands behind the transactions."

There's where you are wrong, Amee. PBS most specifically does stand behind BoB trades. If the trader wants to remain a member, they must make the BoB right, or lose their account. PBS will make them fork over credits if they have them, or be suspended until either the books arrive, or they pony up the money to buy the credits to cover the box trade.

I've unfortunately had a total of about 4 box trades where the member preferred to lose their account than fix their BoB trades (maybe they had too many, I don't know) but at any rate, they are no longer members to hurt anyone else. I can no longer count how many trades I've done (I know it's over 250, that was sometime early last year) but it's probably approaching 300 now. And to say that I've only had 4 bad trades, even if they were for multiple books, isn't doing too badly. I am fortunate that all the large trades I did went thru without a hitch, and that the ones I lost out on were all small (2-5 books).

Date Posted: 4/10/2010 8:31 PM ET
Member Since: 8/15/2007
Posts: 3,044
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PBS will make them fork over credits if they have them, or be suspended until either the books arrive, or they pony up the money to buy the credits to cover the box trade.

And these credits go to the other BOB person?

I have yet to see anyone say they get credits for a BOB trade gone bad.

And I know the problems are most likely fewer than the successful transactions, but even knowing that, it still makes me apprehensive about BOB.

Date Posted: 4/10/2010 10:18 PM ET
Member Since: 6/20/2007
Posts: 4,979
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I only had 1 BOB trade go bad, out of hundreds of BOB swaps.  In my case, like the OP's, the person never mailed and I never recieved, and they stopped answering PMs.  PBS told me that had she had any credits, they would have given them to me to cover the 5 bnooks I was out, but she didn't have any.  Her account wa suspended.  To this day, I wonder what happened to her.  She had had 100% positive feedback, and I really can't see where all of a sudden she would throw away her membership for 5 romance novels.  She had mentioned having dental surgery, and I still wonder if somethign went really wrong, and she got really sick or worse.

Date Posted: 4/11/2010 11:00 AM ET
Member Since: 1/29/2006
Posts: 54,837
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And these credits go to the other BOB person?

I have yet to see anyone say they get credits for a BOB trade gone bad.

Yes. I'll admit I haven't heard of it happening recently, but I haven't been in BoB for a while and I don't wander out of Games as often as I once did.  However, there have been times when, if the credits were available, PBS has transferred an appropriate number to the member who never got books. 

Date Posted: 4/11/2010 6:53 PM ET
Member Since: 11/14/2005
Posts: 6,421
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Well, I guess I'll have to be the first to enlighten you all. I have received credits for a bad BoB. I'm sorry no one else has ever stated it so that you know it is true, but as Sheryl above stated, they can't make them give credits if they don't have any, but they will suspend their account, and they will not be allowed to trade again until they make it right.

So, PBS does back up BoB trades, I don't know what else you would want them to do? Go to their house and demand the money for the credits? I think they do all that is within their power to force the member to make it right. And if those books are worth their membership here, then in my opinion, they must have been pretty valuable books to them to give up their PBS membership. And at least they are not cheating any other members.

Date Posted: 4/11/2010 7:26 PM ET
Member Since: 6/16/2007
Posts: 391
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Sorry, this happen.  On my very first BOB trade, I got carried away with excitement, and requested too many from a member.  I also knew she had some bad feedback.  I did it anyway and got burned.  Sent her books and pm'ed her several times about mine.  Then lo and behold her account was suspended.  Someone else had turned her in.  Have done several trades since and had no problems. 

Date Posted: 4/11/2010 8:28 PM ET
Member Since: 2/21/2009
Posts: 2,925
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I received credits for my BoB gone bad as well. PBS stated there were enough credits in the member's account to cover the outstanding BoB. As I said, I'm quite sure something bad happened to the member as opposed to it being some kind of scam. Good feedback, credits, paying for BoB, printing PBS postage sure didn't lead me to believe the member willingly had their account suspended for nonperformance. All of my other trades have been great.

Subject: Update on Burned by BOB swapper
Date Posted: 4/20/2010 9:44 PM ET
Member Since: 10/25/2009
Posts: 11
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Guess what just showed up in todays mail? My books from the BOB.

Now I have a question for all of you.

 

Do you feel I should leave negative feedback or neutral, since the books did actually arrive?

I'm conflicted as I feel like the only they finished the process was because I informed PBS.

I just don't want to ignore the incident either, or have this happen to another swapper.

But since, the books did come I also feel like maybe a negative rating might be too much.

I know that once, I leave those comments they are stuck on the swappers account.

Somehow I feel that if they had just answered my pm's and if I had not had to inform on them to PBS this could have been resolved whatever their reason for taking this long.

I need your advice?

 

 

Date Posted: 4/20/2010 10:12 PM ET
Member Since: 2/21/2009
Posts: 2,925
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If the books were pbs compliant, I'd probably leave a neutral, something like "nice books, very slow to ship, no resp to PMs" - that gives other members a heads up and a choice as to whether they want to risk participating with the person.

And one trade gone awry doesn't always a bad member make - sometimes life does intervene, and PBS can suspend an account if books aren't marked received or PMs answered and someone complains - even if the person has put their account on vacation knowing they couldn't deal with it at the moment, are out of state, in the hospital, whatever. 

Date Posted: 4/21/2010 12:45 AM ET
Member Since: 2/1/2009
Posts: 60
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I agree with Jody; I would leave a neutral and leave a comment similar to hers.  I've been disappointed on occassion with my BoB trades, but haven't ever had nothing arrive.  Sometimes it can take a while though.  My opinion is that I treat a BoB just as I would a swap - I ship as soon as I can (usually the next day or two), but definitely within the guidelines that  PBS has set for shipping regular swaps.  The same goes for the packaging and the condition of the books.  Overall, I'm happy with the BoB trades I've done, I don't do a ton, but I still recommend it for someone who has a large bookshelf or a voracious reading appetite!  Good luck!

Subject: Feedback on Members
Date Posted: 4/23/2010 5:40 PM ET
Member Since: 11/19/2008
Posts: 5
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Where do you read this feedback on members?  Is it only in relation to BOB?  I have never had a problem on the site and no one has sent me any complaints about the books I have sent, but where do you find out what kind of rating you have?

Date Posted: 4/23/2010 7:09 PM ET
Member Since: 11/14/2005
Posts: 6,421
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Yes, Gloria, feedback is only a BoB feature. That is because it is a paid service, and is often based on more than one at a time book trades, so feedback is allowed there, and only there. Credit trades have no recourse for feedback at all. It's been discussed many times, but PBS has been pretty adament that they have no intentions of ever implementing a feedback system for credit trades

Date Posted: 4/23/2010 7:10 PM ET
Member Since: 8/25/2009
Posts: 695
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Under the member's name, there is a yellow box  or button with a red check mark that says "boxer".  If you click on the yellow box, it will take you to a page where it shows the member's feedback rating.