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Topic: Frustrated with RC

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Subject: Frustrated with RC
Date Posted: 8/12/2008 8:03 PM ET
Member Since: 2/15/2006
Posts: 284
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OK, I've sniffed my book and I'm sending it but it sure does feel uncomfortable to me. The RC? I can not accept books that smell of mildew. Wait, if it smells of mildew I shouldn't have posted it anyway and therefore there is no need for an RC that says that. I almost refused it because it smells. Everything has a smell. It doesn't smell like smoke or new book or mildew or musty because been stored in the basement. It just smells like a paperback. If the poster complains, I don't know what I'll do. Is it worth arguing with them or should I stand my ground. And of course, maybe they will be just fine with this almost new book.

susan/vt

Date Posted: 8/12/2008 8:07 PM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2007
Posts: 881
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Mildew has a very distinct smell. You would know. And while mildewy books are not postable there are many folks that don't think the rules apply to them.

Date Posted: 8/12/2008 8:17 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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You'll probably be all right since it's a newer book.  If it was an older book I would have declined. Although I tend to decline all the smell ones because it's just too subjective.  All books have a funky smell to them to me.

Date Posted: 8/12/2008 8:17 PM ET
Member Since: 7/11/2008
Posts: 649
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What she said.

Date Posted: 8/12/2008 8:36 PM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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I agree.  I wouldn't even buy new books if I had to sniff test them first:P  I don't think books in general smell what you'd call nice.  And "musty" which makes me think of thrift stores and UBS's can be mistaken for moldy by someone who doesn't know the difference.  I smell check mine for smoke odors, but I buy a lot of thrift store, UBS & library sale books, and all of them have some sort of used book smell to them. 

Date Posted: 8/12/2008 9:51 PM ET
Member Since: 7/31/2007
Posts: 2,690
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I won't send to RC's that require you to "sniff test" the book...that is too subjective.

Date Posted: 8/12/2008 9:55 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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Ok I thought I was the only one who thought books just generally don't smell nice. 

Date Posted: 8/13/2008 12:37 AM ET
Member Since: 2/15/2006
Posts: 284
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I just think it's kind of pointless to have a RC that is the same as that states you don't want an unpostable book. How does that have any teeth. All it does, IMHO, is make the sender feel that I may send something that I know is postable and then you are going to come back and say nope, doesn't meet my RC. If this goes south on me, I'll know not to do the same again.

I work in a public library, we accept donations. I get to smell books that have been stored in basements and have a truly "musty" or possibly "mildew" ordour everyday.

susan/vt

Date Posted: 8/13/2008 2:41 AM ET
Member Since: 12/19/2005
Posts: 5,091
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I just think it's kind of pointless to have a RC that is the same as that states you don't want an unpostable book. How does that have any teeth. All it does, IMHO, is make the sender feel that I may send something that I know is postable and then you are going to come back and say nope, doesn't meet my RC.

Unfortunately, far too many people really don't care about the posting rules and post books that have water damage, highlighting, torn pages, and so on; some of these people will read the requester condition and refuse if their book doesn't meet it.  It just helps to weed out at least a few of those unpostables.  Of course some of them also don't care about requester conditions, so it's still possible that you'll get an unpostable book but it gives you a second chance at stopping them.

I recently added a "Please do not send me books with highlighting or notes on text pages" condition because I've been getting a lot of those lately, and the senders never bother to ask me if it is okay.  I'm just hoping that it will make the poster double check their book to make sure that it doesn't have highlighting in it.  And if they refuse because it does, well that's one less unpostable for me to deal with.

I really think that most people who have conditions that amount to "no unpostables" are like me - they've just gotten one or two too many books that never should have been posted and got tired of dealing with it.



Last Edited on: 8/13/08 2:46 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 8/13/2008 7:50 AM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2007
Posts: 881
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I have an RC that deals with smell. I thought it might be helpful to offer a solution in it and it seems to be working. I have only had 1 person cancel. Several have PMed me as they don't use dryer sheets and I've told them not to worry:

I am really easy when it comes to books on most fronts. I could care less if it has a bend or crease in the cover, I don't care about dust jackets, I don't mind ex-library books....HOWEVER, I am an ex-smoker and we are the worst so if you have a smoky book I would appreciate if you would wrap it with a dryer sheet to absorb the smell in transit.

I do not care enough to ask you not to send it (I'm greedy like that) but if you could accomodate my one whim I would be appreciative.

Feel free to PM me with any concerns, I like mail. 

Cheers!

Tonksy

Date Posted: 8/13/2008 10:16 AM ET
Member Since: 1/8/2007
Posts: 8,139
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And while mildewy books are not postable there are many folks that don't think the rules apply to them.

A requestor condition won't help with this. It'll only annoy the people who actually DO follow the rules. There is one RC out there that says something like:

If you have to decline this RC, your book is not postable

Well, I'm sorry, but when I get one of those I'm turning it down. I don't have to be baby-sat and I find the way some of the RC's are worded are pretty darned tacky. And I agree with what Susan said here:

All it does, IMHO, is make the sender feel that I may send something that I know is postable and then you are going to come back and say nope, doesn't meet my RC.

It just feels like the requestor is just looking for an "out".  

Date Posted: 8/13/2008 11:32 AM ET
Member Since: 6/21/2007
Posts: 2,015
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Last Edited on: 2/2/15 6:58 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 8/13/2008 11:45 AM ET
Member Since: 12/19/2005
Posts: 5,091
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While I agree with you, Jane, that the wording on that RC was inappropriate, so is your generalization that the only reason to add an RC that stipulates "postable condition only" is just looking for an "out" to report a book RWAP.  I added mine because I'm tired of having to do that, and I'm hopeful that at least a few people will decline to send me books that I won't be able to repost.

But paint me black if it makes you happy.  :)

Date Posted: 8/13/2008 12:21 PM ET
Member Since: 10/6/2005
Posts: 10,696
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All it does, IMHO, is make the sender feel that I may send something that I know is postable and then you are going to come back and say nope, doesn't meet my RC.

It just feels like the requestor is just looking for an "out". 

I don't know, I don't think the majority of the people at this site would do something like that. I've sent out close to 1000 books now and I've only had a couple of them get marked RWAP. And of those few, there was only one where I was fairly certain that either the receiver was outright lying or else refusing to admit that the damage was caused by the post office - it was a like new book when I sent it out and she claimed significant water damage. The others I was willing to admit that maybe there was damage I might have missed.

Date Posted: 8/13/2008 1:24 PM ET
Member Since: 1/8/2007
Posts: 8,139
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But my point is that a person who is ignoring the rules will also ignore the RC's. And those who follow the rules will get a slap in the face with RC's that just restipulate the rules.

Take L's pictures of the stained books she received recently, even with RC's restating the rules. The RC's just won't stop the rule-breakers. Only reporting the bad books will, by bringing habitual offenders to the attention of TPTB.

Another thing, I wonder how many people who receive a bad book mark them RWAP - Does not meet conditions, instead of RWAP - Damaged by Sender like they're supposed to when the book doesn't meet basic PBS standards. The Does not meet conditions is supposed to mean that the book does not meet additional requirements outlined by the RC, and many times these issues can be disagreed on between the sender and receiver. Better to use the system as it stands than to gum up the works with rules RC's.

I'm not trying to paint anyone black, but RC's that don't add anything to the guidelines really make me uncomfortable. It just gives me a bad, accusatory feeling before I've even clicked the "I can ship" button. It's like walking up to the clerk at a store and saying, "I'm sure you don't know the store policies, but I do and will call in a manager without hesitation." Gee, I'm sure that clerk will be delighted to provide assistance now... 

Date Posted: 8/13/2008 1:28 PM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2007
Posts: 881
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Jane - Just curious but does my RC make you feel that way? I was trying to avoid that.

Date Posted: 8/13/2008 1:29 PM ET
Member Since: 9/13/2007
Posts: 2,520
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You have a good point Jane, especially about marking them incorrectly if there is a problem, but I think you are taking these RC's way too personally.

Date Posted: 8/13/2008 1:54 PM ET
Member Since: 7/1/2008
Posts: 2,835
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I ended up having long RCs that essentially re-stated the posting rules and lost a lot of books. S I removed them all.

Date Posted: 8/13/2008 1:56 PM ET
Member Since: 1/8/2007
Posts: 8,139
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Tracy, you're asking for something above the standard PBS guidelines, which is the whole point of RC's. My problem would probably be that I rarely have dryer sheets anymore because I use dryer balls instead, LOL! Actually, I don't have any books that came from a smoking environment (or at least noticeably so, and I'm moderately allergic), so your RC wouldn't cause a problem.

Just curious... What do you mean by

I am an ex-smoker and we are the worst ...

Oh, and I'm not really taking them personally... they can just ruffle my feathers sometimes depending upon how they're worded, and it can kind of take the fun out of trading when it starts off with a sour feeling.

Date Posted: 8/13/2008 2:03 PM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2007
Posts: 881
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I suppose that is a generalization. Imean we are more sensitive to the smell of cigarettes and tend to have a negative reaction. I was trying to protray a sense of...i dunno..self mocking? I understand that it's my issue to deal with, I know I'm basically asking for a favor in my RC.

Perhaps I should change it to say that instead.

Date Posted: 8/13/2008 2:08 PM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2007
Posts: 881
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How's this?

I am really easy when it comes to books on most fronts. I could care less if it has a bend or crease in the cover, I don't care about dust jackets, I don't mind ex-library books....HOWEVER, I am an ex-smoker (and I understand that we can be the worst when it comes to smoky smells) so if you have a smoky book I would like to ask the favor of wrapping the book with a dryer sheet to absorb the smell in transit. If you do not have dryer sheets then please disregard. I know that when it comes right down to it this is my issue to deal with.

Feel free to PM me with any concerns, I like mail. 

Cheers!

Tonksy

Date Posted: 8/13/2008 2:26 PM ET
Member Since: 1/8/2007
Posts: 8,139
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I suppose that is a generalization. Imean we are more sensitive to the smell of cigarettes and tend to have a negative reaction.

A-ha! It almost read to me something along the lines of... "If I just smell cigarette smoke on a book, I'm going to want to hop in the car and rush down to the local 7-11 and buy me a pack..." Must've been the low blood sugar just before lunch! :)

Personally, I wouldn't even mention the ex-smoker bit. I'd just ask the sender that if they think the book has a smoke smell to please pack it with a dryer sheet if possible. But in the end, I'd probably sack the RC and just dryer-sheet them myself rather than risk the turn-downs because of RC's. But there's nothing in your RC that rubbed me the wrong way. I just kind of got confused...

Date Posted: 8/13/2008 2:33 PM ET
Member Since: 8/30/2005
Posts: 827
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You shouldn't say "feel free to PM me..." because there is no way for the sender to do that without accepting.  RCs should not include that, acc to the Help Center.

ETA maybe the sender will figure out that s/he can look you up by nickname in the Member Directory...but maybe not.



Last Edited on: 8/13/08 2:33 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 8/13/2008 2:45 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,185
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Yeah Tracy, I would recommend adding your PBS nickname to the RC so that they can look you up and PM you before accepting or declining. You are more likely to get people to contact you if they don't have to accept the order first. There is no identifying information at the RC stage to tell them who you are.  Many people don't want to go through the bother of reposting if you say, no so they just decline. Give them the option to leave the book posted and in limbo while you talk and they might be more willing.

Date Posted: 8/13/2008 3:11 PM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2007
Posts: 881
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My PBS nickname is in my RC. At the end after cheers.

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