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Topic: It Feels a Little Bit Like Being Dumped...

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Subject: It Feels a Little Bit Like Being Dumped...
Date Posted: 7/18/2008 10:53 PM ET
Member Since: 2/16/2008
Posts: 26
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Just wondering:

I've had a number of my book requests cancelled by the poster (some before they've been accepted, some after).   I've even got a book on my wish list that's been posted twice now --always an exciting moment-- only to be cancelled both times.  When a poster cancels, is there an opportunity for them to explain?  And if so, does the explanation get sent to the requestor?  In the larger scheme of things, it doesn't really matter, it's just that I log in, and the book request has just disappeared.  No tab, no PM.  It takes me a minute, and then I check the transaction archive.  There it is... the big red X.  Like coming home after work to find all your baby's clothes and shoes are cleaned out of the closet and he's gone, gone.  And all you keep thinking to yourself is, "Why?"

And then, just like you bore your friends for the next month talking about, "Why?  Why didn't he at least leave me a note?"  here I am asking you...

Date Posted: 7/18/2008 11:02 PM ET
Member Since: 1/13/2008
Posts: 1,728
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i feel your pain. i took a member up on a 3 for 1 deal. so i ordered 3 different books, only to look at the 2 days ago to find out she never responded and they are coming from 3 different people with no deal.

Date Posted: 7/19/2008 3:03 AM ET
Member Since: 6/4/2007
Posts: 2,941
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I'm not sure it's always the case, but I believe there are explanations.  I had a WL book offered to me and then canceled as well.  I've got a regular request that was accepted and printed that is going to reach the deadline and be canceled by the end of my typing this post, and that's the second request with a Mail By date that will have been canceled on me in the last two weeks.  It's geting discouraging to say the least.  At any rate, back to the point, I had an offer that was canceled and found an explanation in the Club Communications on my main account page, titled Cannot Mail.  The poster said "Hi, I am sorry. I just posted these to get started on the site before leaving for vacation. I did not realize people would request stuff within a day of me posting it. I will not be back until early August and cannot mail it till then."  So on top of being trounced by the reversal of my wish list fortunes, it wasn't even a very good reason.  I try to shrug...the Swap giveth and the Swap taketh away.  All in all, though, the Swap experience has been well over 99% awesomeness   Sometimes it's better to not bother with why, just let it roll of your back, and look forward to the next book that makes it's way to your mailbox.

Date Posted: 7/19/2008 7:42 AM ET
Member Since: 2/28/2007
Posts: 2,164
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Cas - Wow, sounds like you've had a run of bad luck!  I can tell you that you are having an atypical experience (although maybe there is something in the PBS water, as I now have two books that I've tried to order, sitting on my account page, "waiting for member" for like 4 days now).  The potential sender does have a chance to explain IF they actually hit the "cannot send this book" button when they get the request.  However, if the request just "times out," meaning that the sender never responded one way or another, of course, they likely won't explain.  You can certainly PM them and demand (oops, I mean politely ask) for an explanation.  But my guess is that if they aren't responding to the request, they also won't respond to your PMs. 

It doesn't sound like you are doing this, but on the off chance you are...don't ever cancel a request on your end (unelss you change your mind about wanting the book, of course).  The sender has a certain number of days to respond to the request and when they don't, it rolls over to the next person in line with the book, if there is one.  Many people make the mistake of thinking they should cancel and re-order, but all that does is hand your request right back to the person you just cancelled with.

Hope that helps.

Date Posted: 7/19/2008 8:41 AM ET
Member Since: 10/6/2005
Posts: 10,777
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It's possible that a lot of people are on vacation right now and forgetting to put their accounts on hold...

Date Posted: 7/19/2008 12:35 PM ET
Member Since: 2/16/2008
Posts: 26
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Thanks everyone for the commiseration and helpful advice.  I should say, I've had far more good experiences than bad...and I wouldn't even call cancelled requests "bad experiences," ...maybe just "mild bummers."   I'm surprised, though, by how often it happens.  I did have to cancel once because I discovered (as I was packaging the book) that my daughter had carved out the center to make a hiding place for her treasures.  And I did PM the requestor to explain.  But I assumed most cancellations would be the result of similarly unusual circumstances, and therefore, not a common occurence. 

I do think it's good advice to just roll with it, James.  That's my plan now.


Date Posted: 7/19/2008 1:00 PM ET
Member Since: 10/26/2007
Posts: 1,487
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I -- hate to admit it -- am someone who has cancelled a few transactions before. Usually it happens when I'm pretty low on credits, and a WL book comes up... I'd rather use that sole credit on a WL book than one that the system might have a lot of copies of. I will usually go back and order the book later on though.

I always cringe though when I have to do this -- I hate to think what the person on the other end of things is thinking about me!


Date Posted: 7/19/2008 1:22 PM ET
Member Since: 8/26/2006
Posts: 9,365
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...my daughter had carved out the center to make a hiding place for her treasures

LOL Cas!  I can just picture your face!  I just had to cancel one this week because I found a bit of liquid damage at the back, as I was starting to wrap it.  :-(

Date Posted: 7/19/2008 10:09 PM ET
Member Since: 2/16/2008
Posts: 26
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Luckily Patty, I found the damage early in the morning, and, since she's fourteen, I had a good three hours to get over it before she woke up.  At least she was being creative! 

About cancelling your own request Jen: I don't think there's anything wrong with that!  There are probably lots of perfectly understandable reasons for cancelling as a requestor or a poster:  I can't mail the book because my friend needs it for a class;  it was my who girlfriend wanted the book, but she just broke up with me;  I was high on crack when I posted that book and I could never actually part with it; a friend just told me she hated the book and so I changed my mind; my grandpa's goat got into the house last night and ate my entire shelf of PBS books...

I just appreciate it when the other person feels I'm worthy of a little note.  It's not necessary, but it makes the world feel a little warmer.

Date Posted: 7/19/2008 10:15 PM ET
Member Since: 8/19/2007
Posts: 4,452
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I accidently canceled a WL book last week, went to print the wrapper and hit the wrong button by mistake.  Immediately PMd the WLer and explained and then posted it back into the system.  It took a few extra days but she got her book. 

Wonder how often that happens? 

I do feel your pain though when you finally are at the top of a list for a book you really want or it's the only one posted, and boom, it's gone.Pat

Date Posted: 7/19/2008 11:39 PM ET
Member Since: 4/11/2008
Posts: 79
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LOL Cas!  I once carved out a book when I was 14, however it was my book so no big deal there.  I didn't finish carving it out though, and eventually read what was left of it, and discovered that the book was pretty awful and probably was almost deserving of being hollowed out.  The title was some girls name and it was gotten at a library sale at a box of books for x dollars deal.

Date Posted: 7/20/2008 12:23 PM ET
Member Since: 2/25/2007
Posts: 13,991
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 I had to cancel one, and I felt badly, but it was not a mystery. I simply could not find the book. So when I went to cancel, the little box says something like "can't find the book? cancel here."  I thought it was self-explanatory. 

Date Posted: 7/21/2008 10:24 PM ET
Member Since: 2/16/2008
Posts: 26
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Okay!  So I just looked at Club Communications (as mentioned earlier by James) which I'd never done before.  I had assumed these were all just general announcements, so I'd ignored the link.  Much to my surprise, there's some important stuff in there!  I was expecting messages about cancelled books to show up in my PM's, but there they were in Club Communications the whole time.  The world's friendly after all.  As long as you know where to look!