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Topic: Does this happen often?

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Subject: Does this happen often?
Date Posted: 9/18/2009 11:08 AM ET
Member Since: 11/30/2007
Posts: 4,969
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Yesterday, I took a book only wrapped in the PBS wrapper to the PO because I was out and about running errands.  PBS marked it as First Class and the postage as being $1.73. When I took it up to the clerk, the price became $1.90. I was so glad that I brought it to the PO instead of having it being returned to me or postage due to the requestor. Last week I had to go to the PO to pick up one book that had a postage due of 34 cents that was sent to me by another member. What's going on?

Date Posted: 9/18/2009 11:12 AM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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PBS relies on other data basis' for their book information. You have to check the weight when using printed postage.  Just this morning it told me that a mass market paperback was over 8lbs. 

ETA: Whenever I see a wrong weight like that I weigh the book myself on my little kitchen scale. Then I submite a book edit to correct the weight.  Like the one this morning. The Edit book data button is under the More Options button the book listing. This is very helpful to PBS as the whole site is run by volunteers and they just can't keep up with every listing.



Last Edited on: 9/18/09 11:16 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 9/18/2009 11:27 AM ET
Member Since: 8/19/2007
Posts: 4,256
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I always take my books to the PO to be mailed and about half of them are the wrong weight.  Can't change it in the data base because I mail quite a few books and don't know which ones have to have the wieght changed.  Quite often, it's cheaper than what PBS had as the postage.  Pat

Date Posted: 9/18/2009 11:27 AM ET
Member Since: 2/12/2006
Posts: 4,341
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Thanks for the great explanation, Mary.  It's exactly right - we often get wrong info from the database (like the ones that had everything set on '20' - the stats showed the books as 20"x20"x20" and weighing 20lbs!)  Also, if the publisher re-issues the title under the same ISBN, it may be printed on different paper or in a different font and that changes the size and weight of the book. 

Date Posted: 9/18/2009 2:49 PM ET
Member Since: 11/30/2007
Posts: 4,969
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Thanks everyone for your help and advice. I think I will continue to go to the PO to send my books. That is until I invest in a scale!

Date Posted: 9/20/2009 11:17 PM ET
Member Since: 8/31/2008
Posts: 2,608
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I usually mail from the Post Office so they can check the weight.  The last book I mailed cost only  $1.39 to mail 1st class!  I forget what the PBS suggested postage was ~$2, I think.  I got a bargain, and there was even no line at the PO that day.  Of the books I mail, the PBS suggested postage is correct ~50% of the time.  When it is incorrect, about half the time it is over and half the time it is under the PO weight/postage, but usally by not too much.   I'll have to keep track of the weight issues better so I can submit a book edit.  I never knew how to do it before. 

Sianeka - ,
Date Posted: 9/21/2009 3:33 PM ET
Member Since: 2/8/2007
Posts: 6,630
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I use PBS Preprinted Postage all the time, and I've had a few weight inaccuracies with the listed weights, but not as many as other members have posted here.  Maybe it's the genres I tend to mail out, but most of my PBS book weights have been accurate.

That said, I'm on the data editing team and I have seen some grossly inaccurate weights that are tied to the books from our data source, including several of the "20-lb" books listed as an example above.

Best bet is as everyone suggested, and purchase a scale to weigh out your books before you send them out.



Last Edited on: 9/21/09 3:33 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 9/23/2009 12:01 AM ET
Member Since: 5/27/2009
Posts: 326
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Last Edited on: 7/23/10 8:19 AM ET - Total times edited: 4
Date Posted: 9/23/2009 12:28 AM ET
Member Since: 11/30/2007
Posts: 4,969
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Today I went to the PO expecting to pay $3.16 for my package as predicted by PBS. I ended up paying only $2.77. I think that is a big difference. I definitely will continue to go to the PO.
Date Posted: 9/23/2009 12:37 AM ET
Member Since: 8/26/2006
Posts: 9,333
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PBS DC is the same as PayPal DC -- the rate is set by the Post Office.  PayPal DC works fine, but of course if the book goes lost, you don't get your credit here, since you haven't purchased the DC from the PBS site.


I have a little postage scale.  I find the weights are usually right for the books I send, but not always.  But I can adjust the weight on the label page, so my postage here is always right.  I wrap my book first, weigh it, and then enter the "wrapped book" weight on the wrapper before I print it.  If it's off, I'll do a data edit, but I make sure I enter the book's actual weight there, minus the wrapping materials.

Date Posted: 9/23/2009 3:54 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2009
Posts: 4,581
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I have a question .  When we mark a book recieved and it asks us how much the postage was does PBS us this to decied on anything?  I know i've gotten books in a deal that were two books sent as one so i just filled in the postage.  I never assumed that they use this information.  Does anyone know if they do?  Becuause if they do is it better no to enter postage on the books you get as deals?

Date Posted: 9/23/2009 3:59 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2009
Posts: 4,581
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Also Connie you can check the weight when you print the mailing slip, and if you dont want to by a scale.  I like to go to amazon and other stores on line and check the weight.  If there is a difference on other sights from PBS I change the amount to the one I saw the most.  I usually check three different sites.  I've only had one book off so far from pbs but I still like to make sure.  I go to the postoffice still to mail it but I like to know how much its going to cost me to mail, most of the time I have 4 or 5 books going out or maybe some DVDs too.  So I want to know my grand total in advance, it doesn't take me that long to check the totals.   I'm looking for a cheap scale though cause that sounds easier lol, but intill then.   

Geri (geejay) -
Date Posted: 9/27/2009 7:39 AM ET
Member Since: 9/2/2008
Posts: 9,094
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Just a small note.  I'm on the editing team and the weight on Amazon isn't always right.  So Elizabeth has the right idea in checking three sources for the weight of the book.  But, best if you can invest in a scale. 

Also, as a member of the editing team we would appreciate it if you'd change an innacurate weight or any other thing you might notice that's not right with a book you have in your hands!  Got a book that has a double author like Gilbert Morris, Gilbert Morris  - just go to the edit page and remove one.

Thanks!

Forgot - PBS gets the weight from other sources not the page where you enter the amount of postage.



Last Edited on: 9/27/09 7:40 AM ET - Total times edited: 1