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Topic: Denied Request because there's a RC

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Subject: Denied Request because there's a RC
Date Posted: 9/1/2011 11:02 PM ET
Member Since: 11/19/2005
Posts: 124
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Ever had a wishlist request denied just because there is a RC? 

My RC is: For paperback books - no ex-library / For hardcover books - must have dust jacket & not be ex-library .


The member from whom this book was ordered had this to say...

This book is actually brand new, but, I don't trade with people who have requestor's conditions.





Date Posted: 9/1/2011 11:14 PM ET
Member Since: 2/6/2009
Posts: 1,411
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Some people do. You'll find that a lot of the threads in this part of the forum are about senders who were burned by an RC. Some members think those with RCs are picky for asking for conditions above the posting guidelines and worry that a requestor could claim the sender deliberately ignored their RC. Those members have taken up a policy to not accept any request with an RC, even if the RC is irrelevent, to protect themselves.

Just as it is your right to have an RC, so it is the right for the sender to deny your RC, whatever their reasoning may be.

Date Posted: 9/1/2011 11:54 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 10,037
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Yep, I don't get it.

book conditions are book conditions. Some book conditions are made up by PBS arbitrarily and stuck in the site guidelines. Some book conditions are made up by each book requestor.  There can be subjective decisions when you are trying to decide whether or not a book meets either set of conditions.

I am not sure why some people seem to feel that book conditions arbitrarily made up by PBS are so much different than book conditions arbitrarily made up by book requestors ... but there you go, some people seem to feel its different.


Hope you get your book posted again soon.

I hardly ever see threads about people who got burned by a RC. Most threads having to do with a RWAP situation do not mention RCs at all. And of those that do mention RCs, its mostly book requestors complaining that senders are not following them ... not book senders complaining about being burned by them. Yeah, there have been some ... but not so many that I perceive it as a huge issue that lots of members deal with.

Last Edited on: 9/1/11 11:55 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 9/2/2011 10:02 AM ET
Member Since: 11/15/2008
Posts: 3,308
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I don't get it either, and it seems unnecessarily spiteful to say it's "actually brand new."  It's kind of a childish "so there!"   If you are going to decline all RCs just do it and move on. I will sometimes describe condition when its pertinent to why I declined the RC, especially when the RC is vague and the book was borderline.  I think, in those cases, it helps requestors fine tune their RCs so they can get more books.  In this case, it's silly, but just like I have a right to an RC, senders have the right to decline it. 

Lori - ,
Date Posted: 9/2/2011 1:19 PM ET
Member Since: 7/1/2009
Posts: 79
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I agree with Karen S.  It's certainly the sender's right to deny based on an RC, but the response message was just plain spiteful.  She might as well have said, 'Nyah-nyah-nyah, you can't have this book."  How childish.

Date Posted: 9/2/2011 5:17 PM ET
Member Since: 8/10/2005
Posts: 4,601
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As someone who declines quite a few of the requests I get with RCs (but not all, not arbitrarily) I think the person declining walks a fine line in trying to explain why they declined. Some people get upset when it's explained to them and others would rather not know. I agree that that response was a bit childish, but it works the other way too--I've seen some really childish rants disguised as RCs.

Sometimes I just put a . in the box asking why I declined because I just don't want to explain or use any of my finite energy supply to get into it.  I figure this is more polite than saying, "I'm declining because I'd rather not deal with silly people who have an RC that simply restates the PBS posting guidelines" (even though all my books are well within the PBS posting guidelines) or "I'm declining because your RC is poorly worded, long, confusing and asks me to make subjective judgments about the book's condition that you may not agree with" or "I'm declining because the tone of your RC makes me think you're difficult to deal with and not easy to please." Or whatever.




Date Posted: 9/2/2011 5:59 PM ET
Member Since: 10/13/2007
Posts: 36,445
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Cheryl- if they are confusing or subjective, I usually state that. I had one which was "wants books in lightly used condition" . I did state I declined because the word 'light used' is subjective.   

I usually READ the RC and decide rather then say no to all of them. Thats all anyone can ask.

Date Posted: 9/2/2011 6:12 PM ET
Member Since: 7/5/2007
Posts: 2,264
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I'm really curious to know what condition requirements "PBS made up arbitrarily". They generally seem to fit the upper end of "good".
Date Posted: 9/2/2011 6:28 PM ET
Member Since: 11/14/2005
Posts: 1,442
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Agree with Michelle.  I never think of the word "arbitrary" regarding the PBS baseline book conditions.

Date Posted: 9/2/2011 7:28 PM ET
Member Since: 7/12/2009
Posts: 177
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Well, I agree that some are arbitrary.  Like a book can have a rip less than 1 inch, or a clipped corner less than 1 square inch (I'm doing these from memory, so the numbers may not be accurate).  Things like that are arbitrary.

Lori - ,
Date Posted: 9/2/2011 9:08 PM ET
Member Since: 7/1/2009
Posts: 79
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When I decline an RC because it's too subjective, I simply send the member a response saying so politely.  I don't hold up a brand-new book in their face, dance around like a Kindergartener and go "Neener neener neener neener you-can't-have-this neener neener neener!!!!!"  And that's pretty much what the response to the OP was... my 8 year old daughter is more mature than that.

Date Posted: 9/2/2011 10:00 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I don't see where anyone says that the PBS conditions are arbitrary.  I see where Spuddie says that she declines RCs regularly but that she doesn't do it arbitrarily.  Which to me means she doesn't decline any and all RCSautomatically just ones she probably feels are vague, picky, rude etc..,  I am the same way.  I also won't always read any RCS longer than a paragraph.  (I do accept the APO/DPO/FPO ones which are long). I am more inclined to read and accept longer RCs now that you can see them after you accept a book request.


Date Posted: 9/2/2011 11:59 PM ET
Member Since: 6/29/2011
Posts: 122
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Sara P said that some guidelines PBS made up arbitrarily.
Date Posted: 9/3/2011 12:19 AM ET
Member Since: 7/5/2007
Posts: 2,264
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Yes, my comment was in response to Sara's statements. I wouldn't call the 1 inch thing arbitrary. It may look like a random number, but it is likely an average of what In The Beginning considered acceptable wear to the cover. Rhe cut thing is b/c some used book stores clip the corner. Personally I consider willingly damaging a voook like that an atrocity... ;)
Date Posted: 9/3/2011 4:29 AM ET
Member Since: 1/21/2009
Posts: 11,863
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*SIGH*   Yes, I have had the exact experience.  This member stated that they were not happy with my request for dustjackets on hardbacks.  Then she goes on to say the book she has is brand new and has a nice dustjacket.  She has done this at least twice to me that I can recall.  We have very similar reading tastes and every time it gets to her, I am denied.  These are books I have been seeking for over 2 years.  Which is a shame as I have a number of books she is requesting that I have not posted.  I PMed her and asked her about this, mentioning that I had about 3 or 4 books she was waiting for, but I think she just feels RCs should not be added on a used book swap site.  ????????  Okay.  I vent a little at home and then move on; it does not pay to get upset.

Date Posted: 9/3/2011 6:31 AM ET
Member Since: 9/23/2010
Posts: 284
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People like this are tainting the experience and fun of PBS.

So, thanks to this person, and the dozen other people who have AUTOMATICALLY refused my RC.

You see, I am serving our country overseas. And thus, I use an APO. And PBS *requires* an RC for APO/DPO addresses. It's not even MY RC. 

And I have lost out on over a dozen books that are hard to find, and I have been waiting for for months, because some people AUTOMATICALLY say NO to any RC. With or without reading it.

Because you see, if they READ IT, they would see the sentence I added: "I have an alternate address if the APO is a problem." Then they wouldn't have to do ANYTHING. But no...they just reject me and move on. Thanks for supporting us.



Last Edited on: 9/3/11 6:32 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 9/3/2011 8:36 AM ET
Member Since: 7/12/2009
Posts: 177
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Excuse me for being a word nut, but I just can't help myself!


1. subject to individual will or judgment without restriction; contingent solely upon one's discretion: an arbitrary decision.
2. decided by a judge or arbiter rather than by a law or statute.
3. having unlimited power; uncontrolled or unrestricted by law; despotic; tyrannical: an arbitrary government.
4. capricious; unreasonable; unsupported: an arbitrary demand for payment.
5. Mathematics . undetermined; not assigned a specific value: an arbitrary constant.
I took Sara's use of arbirary as the first meaning, it seems as if other commenters are using the 3rd or 4th meaning.  I agreed with Sara that some of the rules are arbitrary, and cited the 1 inch rule, because arbitrary to me means that the rule makers have used their own discretion in determining the particulars of the rule.  Why make it 1 inch instead of 1/2 inch or 1 1/2 inch?  That's arbitrary.  There's nothing sacred or mysterious about 1 inch--it just seemed to be a reasonable number to the rule makers.
However, if you're using the 4th meaning of the term, where arbitrary means unreasonable, you would take Sara's comment as saying that some of the PBS rules are unreasonable.  I didn't interpret her comment as meaning this.
BTW, as a mathematician, I use the 5th meaning all the time.
Date Posted: 9/3/2011 9:08 AM ET
Member Since: 5/25/2010
Posts: 262
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Good going, Marsha! I think you summarized the disagreement above very well. I agree that the PBS rules can be considered "arbitrary" in some ways (since they could have decided things differently and still been reasonable), and I also agree that the PBS rules are thoroughly reasonable.

I also agree with the person above that I do not think that many of the posts here are about people who have been burned by RCs. There are lots of complaints about transactions, but, working only from memory, I would say most of them are about (a) senders who ignore the postability guidelines, (b) senders who ignore RCs, (c) senders who mail late, (d) requestors who have annoying or confusing RCs, and (e) senders who turn down requests because they don't like or don't understand RCs.

I'm sure there are threads started by people who have been (inappropriately) burned by an RC, but I can't remember when I saw the last one that was started by the wronged party. I remember quite a number of RC discussions in which someone eventually brought up their negative RC experiences, but if you include those threads in the count, then you begin to count old experiences over and over, since one (or ten) people on the forums repeatedly referring to their experiences could make one (or ten) experiences look like a very common thing, even if it isn't. After that, people could begin to report, "I don't accept RCs because these problems are really common," and the perception could spread. I wonder how common this problem really is?

Certainly, I myself have mailed to many people with RCs and never yet had a problem. I especially don't mind the requests that are merely restating the rules - that means that the person on the other end knows the rules, probably likes them, and will probably stay within them, unlike some other people I have dealt with.

I've had problems with other things, but not with people with RCs being unreasonable.

Date Posted: 9/3/2011 9:41 AM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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Ah I see it now.

Date Posted: 9/4/2011 1:47 PM ET
Member Since: 1/15/2011
Posts: 16
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I understand why some don't trade with members who have RC's.  I have in my short time with PBS learned that I can't make members happy who have RC's. One returned as she said the book was too worn, book appeared fine to me. Then the icing on the cake was when I sent a book that was autographed by the writer (just her signature in ink), I didn't mention this beforehand as I didn't think it would be an issue and the requestor pitched a fit about this and wanted their credit back. I really don't have the time to devote extra time to this process, I merely want to send a good conditon book to the requestor, get the credit and be done with it. So now, I too only send to people without RC's. Also, some people say they only want a book that has been in a non smoking house, but if we obtain it through PBS, how can I really know? Once again, I think it's better to turn down the request rather than disappoint the requestor and or spend alot of time in the transaction.

I do think there wasn't alot of tact used in the transaction and the sender should have been more professional in his/her answer. It's a shame that the member wasn't acting like an adult.

Date Posted: 9/6/2011 12:41 PM ET
Member Since: 8/31/2008
Posts: 81
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I decline all RC's, and will continue to do so.   My response is simply, I am not sure it meets their RC. but have to admit, I do not even read the RC.   I prefer that people be happy with the books they get from me, and if some think I have to make decisions on how well the book meets their restrictions, they are mistaken.  All books I ship meet the PBS requirements, and I receive a few each year from others that do not.

Date Posted: 9/6/2011 1:50 PM ET
Member Since: 6/15/2009
Posts: 151
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I understand why some people don't bother with RCs. But sometimes it can get a little annoying. Like if you have an RC requesting that a hardcover has a dust jacket and the person PMs you back saying their book has a dust jacket but they don't accept RCs. ldsjflasfj?!?!?!

Seriously, if your book meets the requester conditions, then why can't you accept them? If what you say is true, you are in no danger sending the book. I'm the one in danger by turning my RC off.

I just don't understand that all. It's one thing if the RC is vague like asking that the book is "like new" and you're not sure. But something as clear cut as requiring a dust jacket just makes no sense to me.

Date Posted: 9/6/2011 2:16 PM ET
Member Since: 5/16/2011
Posts: 64
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then there are those of us who have an automatic RC put in by PBS! it's long too!

zeke68 -
Date Posted: 9/6/2011 2:18 PM ET
Member Since: 10/30/2008
Posts: 2,810
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I will read all that are less than a paragraph.  Any that ask me for "like new" condition, I will not accept.  Your like new and my like new may be two different things.  Any that ask me for non-smelling books, I will not accept because as newstart said, I don't know where all of these books have been.  Maybe I don't smell it, but you will.  I'm not risking my credit on something so subjective.  Any that repeat the posting guidelines, I will not accept because each and every one of my books meets posting guidelines, which cannot be said for about a quarter of the books I have received.  I will not be snotty about my reason, like the one received by the OP.

Robin, if I ever receive an RC with APO information, you can be assured I will accept it and will probably throw in an extra book or two.  When my books don't move on this site, I package them up and send them to Operation Paperback for the troops.

Date Posted: 9/6/2011 4:15 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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The APO/FPO RCs are the only long ones that I accept. 

Everyone has a right to turn down any and all RCS even if it's a simple Dust Jacket one and the book meets it.  If they don't want to accept then they don't have to and shouldn't feel quilty (unless they make a rude comment). 

I do think too many people turn down the military ones.  It's just a warning that the book might take longer than normal.