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Topic: Having trouble wording my requestor conditions...

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Subject: Having trouble wording my requestor conditions...
Date Posted: 12/10/2007 9:26 PM ET
Member Since: 3/15/2007
Posts: 63
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ARG!  I just had a WL book come up that I've been waiting for forever...on autorequest...and the sender wouldn't send it because, and I quote:  "I think there is a bit of a smell but I can't really tell." 

Here are my conditions:

Sorry to have to bother you with conditions, but I've gotten some real junkers lately.

1) Please no books with strong musty/moldy odors.

2) If you're following PBS guidelines, this one should be easy - no water damage, please.

3) Again, I think this is mentioned on PBS guidelines - no excessive writing. A couple of pages with a little underlining doesn't bother me, but if there is any more than that, please decline this request.

4) I am unwilling to receive books that have cracked spines (creased is okay, but not cracked, where the pages have separated from each other at the inside edge). Just a pet peeve of mine.

 

Now, if the person can't really tell if there's an odor, why wouldn't they send the book? I've seen threads on here before where people were ranting about requestor conditions. I'm not trying to be too picky. Most of my conditions, as you see, are already PBS guidelines. And I don't have an extra sensitive nose. I know almost all books have a faint whiff of that "bookish smell" but I'm supposing the average person knows the difference between that and a really gross musty smell.

I understand no one wants to be accused of sending a book that is not up to someone's conditions, then having to return the credit, but is there a way to word these "subjective" kinds of things so that  people still feel comfortable sending you a book in reasonable condition?  I may just give up on having any requestor conditions if no one will send me anything.

Do some poeple turn down requests with conditions just to be spiteful? [with an evil laugh: Ha ha! That will teach you, ungrateful scoundrel, never to be picky again about the books you should be happy to receive. You shall never have mine!   another evil laugh - haha !]

*sigh*

Trying to find a happy medium...

Tina H.

 

Date Posted: 12/10/2007 9:33 PM ET
Member Since: 1/14/2007
Posts: 16,535
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Tina;  your conditions do not sound unreasonable! 

Unfortunately, it was a WL'd book that was declined, but I wouldn't worry about the members who will not send out books to someone who has posted any conditions.  It sure does sound like a spiteful thing and I for one do not want their books!   Look at it this way....at least you'll go back to number one on the WL!

 

Date Posted: 12/10/2007 9:35 PM ET
Member Since: 4/25/2007
Posts: 11,361
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From what I've read on the forums, yes, some people just automatically turn down anyone with conditions.  It sucks but it happens.

The sender has no idea why you have the no smell condition, you could be really allergic to some smells or something.  Plus, it's really subjective.  It may not smell to you, sender may detect a small odor, I may think it really stinks.  Sounds like the sender was erring on the side of caution.

Date Posted: 12/10/2007 9:35 PM ET
Member Since: 5/29/2007
Posts: 13,347
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I had a gal. last week, tell me that while her book met my conditions, she was declining anyway.  That's mean!

That being said, you could streamline your requests.  2,3 and 4 are all PBS rules and you shouldn't need to request them.  Tho if you wanted to say something short and sweet like, "please remember to follow all other PBS rules regarding posting." or something similar. 

So you could say, and this is just a suggestion,  "Please no books with strong musty/moldy odors.  And please remember PBS rules regarding posting books; no liquid damage, no cracked spines and no writing in the text.  Thank you!"

I have found that the shorter, to the point RC tend to get a better response.  But it's just a thought................

Date Posted: 12/10/2007 9:51 PM ET
Member Since: 3/15/2007
Posts: 63
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I think I may just cancel my conditions and take my chances with the "stinkies".  LOL    Should I make a "No Stinkie" blinkie?

Tina

Date Posted: 12/10/2007 10:03 PM ET
Member Since: 10/30/2005
Posts: 3,562
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"I think there is a bit of a smell but I can't really tell."

I really feel bad for you. I just had to tell someone that very same thing. In pretty much the exact same wording. Can't check to see if it was you or not, since RC cancels don't show up in archives.  I figure that if I can detect an odor to the book (this one had been stored in a storage unit for a couple of years) then it would be better to NOT send it as "strong odor" is just too subjective. The odor was a strong book smell. But it was definitely noticeable. If it was you, I apologize, but it was not at any time accompanied by evil laughter.



Last Edited on: 12/10/07 10:05 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 12/10/2007 10:05 PM ET
Member Since: 11/13/2005
Posts: 510
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Now, if the person can't really tell if there's an odor, why wouldn't they send the book?

Because the book might actually have a strong odor?  A person who doesn't have a good sense of smell is likely (and quite properly) to err on the side of caution. 

Date Posted: 12/10/2007 10:14 PM ET
Member Since: 3/15/2007
Posts: 63
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Oh, and I also wanted to say thank you for the suggestions about making conditions short and to the point. If I decide to keep my conditions, I'll shorten the part about the ones that are already PBS guidelines. And, I'm sorry to hear of someone so snotty they wouldn't even send you books just because they didn't like it that you had conditions - what a nasty attitude!  I always feel happy to be able to supply someone with a book in the condition they especially want. 

Also wanted to say I'm not trying to vilify the person who turned down my request - like I said, I know most are not being spiteful, and they want to be darn sure their book meets the requestor conditions so they don't get in TWUBBLE.  And maybe the poor dear is really congested today and honestly can't tell if the book smells like it's been in the basement for 20 years under piles of grandma's old underpants! Sorry. There I go again...

I'm leaving now before the sender pops in here and knocks my block off and starts a barroom brawl...

[moseying...]

 

Date Posted: 12/10/2007 10:41 PM ET
Member Since: 3/15/2007
Posts: 63
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Okay, I'm not actually here...apparently I just moseyed out. But you do have a good point, Bret.

And I apologize if I was discourteous or rude to any senders. I understand their problem. Mainly I'm frustrated at the subjectivity of this particular condition, and just wish I had a way to avoid really stinky books on PBS and get lots of nice non-stinky ones. But like I said, I'll just cancel my conditions for now, and hope for the best.  Dartha it may have been you, (The Magic Mountain, by Thomas Mann?) and I'm so glad to hear you're not an evil conspirator!  You're right - smell is just too subjective to insist upon, so like I said, I'll just roll the dice and take my chances. I hope my gripe wasn't too out of hand or offensive. Again, I apologize if it was.

 

unrelated, unimoportant thought...why do my posts have so much empty space at the bottom?     Is it in direct proportion to the emptiness in my head? (thought I'd just save someone the trouble of making that remark)



Last Edited on: 12/10/07 10:57 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 12/11/2007 6:56 AM ET
Member Since: 3/13/2006
Posts: 2,024
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I agree with Bret.  I do not have a good sense of smell, and so if someone has a "no strong smell" condition and I have any doubt at all I will err on the side of caution and decline.  Fortunately, DH has an excellent sense of smell.  When he's around and I can use him for the "sniff test."

I think your plan re conditions is a good one Tina.  Since it's not a health/allergy issue, leave them off for a while and see what you get.  I do not have any conditions, and in 250+ swaps I don't think I've ever received a single book that has a really strong musty odor.  A few smoky books, yes, but even then not too many.  Hopefully it will work out for you!

Date Posted: 12/11/2007 7:34 AM ET
Member Since: 5/16/2006
Posts: 260
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I don't just automatically decline requests with conditions, but I do decline requests with any kind of smell conditions as I am blessed/cursed with an extremely strong sense of smell and I smell things when others swear there's no smell.

To me, every single book has a smell so rather than chance it, I decline the request, especially because most of my books are either purchased used or were given to me to pass along.

Date Posted: 12/11/2007 8:07 AM ET
Member Since: 3/6/2006
Posts: 3,070
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I agree, smell is so completely subjective.  The person sending may not have a sensitive sniffer while the person receiving may be uber sensitive.  I wouldn't want to risk a credit, myself.

Date Posted: 12/11/2007 8:49 AM ET
Member Since: 6/13/2007
Posts: 905
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I used to have the musty smell condition but I removed it.    I agree that it is a difficult condition to have as smells are so different to  people that I think it scares some off.   figure I'll jsut take my chances that the amount of strong musty smelling books I get is so low that it is worth the gamble.

Date Posted: 12/11/2007 9:00 AM ET
Member Since: 6/13/2007
Posts: 905
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oh, and I wanted to address one of your other conditions.  you have on a couple that you want them to follow the pbs guidelines but then in one condition you put.......

"3) Again, I think this is mentioned on PBS guidelines - no excessive writing. A couple of pages with a little underlining doesn't bother me, but if there is any more than that, please decline this request.  "

the pbs guidelines are that there is to be no writing or highlghting on any of the text pages (unless it's a text book). I think that since you  stress so much on you other conditions that you want people to follow the guidelines that  this is a bit contradictory (I don't know if that's the right word to use or even if it's spelled right but I hope you get my point).

Date Posted: 12/11/2007 12:26 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I might have turned you down too especially if it were an older  WL book:  I have a terrible sense of smell.  All books have that papery musty smell to me.  If it said doesn't smell like smoke I would have accepted because I have a non-smoking house and if you said it smelled like smoke when you got it-I would have no guilt because it didn't come from my house. 

You don't seem to have a signature and I think that's what the "big empty space" at the end of your threads is for. 

Date Posted: 12/11/2007 12:54 PM ET
Member Since: 3/15/2007
Posts: 63
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Hi Jeanette -  about the no writing condition - I didn't know until last night that it's already covered under PBS guidelines. I must have read it at one time and didn't remember that only textbooks can be posted with writing in them (and then only can be sent if you ok it first.) Anyhow, last night I just canceled my conditions anyway. 

Oh, another thing I didn't understand until recently is what exactly they meant by "cleaved spines". They clarified that if you can see the inside of the spine while you're reading, it's cleaved, and unacceptable to post. I had thought I needed a requestor condition for that one, too.  I'm thankful for the PBS standards so we can all have books in decent shape. And out of the many books I've gotten, I guess there haven't been that many bad ones. Just a run of them lately.

Hope everyone is having a good holiday season so far. Take time for your loved ones, and give yourself time to read!  :-)

Tina

Sianeka - ,
Date Posted: 12/11/2007 1:09 PM ET
Member Since: 2/8/2007
Posts: 6,630
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It's an unfortunate fact that there are people here that are within their rights to refuse anyone with conditions.  I think that is just SAD, and it makes me mad that they will refuse a person a lovely item like a book just because they don't want to read conditions and/or consider the other person's requests.  But PBS site rules allow it, just as they allow me to post conditions in the first place. 

So, no complaints about it.  Except I think those people are mean, lazy and inconsiderate.  But rule-abiding.  *grin*

To try to make my conditions less angst-inducing to potential book posters, I've added a note that says I'm not really a very picky person and to please not to stress too much about my conditions.  I don't know if that helps but I have the conditions I have because they really are what I want, and can't stress out about those people that are going to refuse me just because I do have some conditions.

Date Posted: 12/11/2007 1:13 PM ET
Member Since: 7/24/2007
Posts: 65
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They dont sound unreasonable and should be easy to follow. I dont know why they were saying that on a smell, only they were being very cautious 'just in case'

Date Posted: 12/11/2007 2:40 PM ET
Member Since: 6/13/2007
Posts: 905
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tina,

if you want to have conditions about the books you receive then you should have them.  you sure are within your rights and I don't think that most  people will turn you down because of them . I'm sorry you've gotten a few bad trades lately.   I know I seem to get  a couple bad ones in a row , then nothing but great ones.   I have conditions about books from a non-smoking household and have gotten a couple declines that have nothing to do with it,  or that they didn't even bother reading the condition.    but I  think for the most  part people here do take the time to read them (and follow them correctly). 

good luck with all your trades  :-)

Date Posted: 12/11/2007 2:50 PM ET
Member Since: 10/30/2005
Posts: 3,562
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From the Help Center: How to Use Requestor Conditions

Your conditions should be easily interpretable and should NOT require (or ask for!) further clarification in Personal Messages

  • If a sender is confused, she or he may decline

Remember, the sender will see exactly what you type! Choose your wording carefully: most senders err on the side of caution. A vague notation like "Nice books only" is not easily interpretable, and will probably result in a lot of your requests being declined.

How Requestor Conditions Work:

FOR THE REQUESTOR:

Keep in mind when choosing to place conditions on the books that you will accept that if you are unclear you might get a significant percentage of your requests declined.

And if I am not mistaken, it is posted elsewhere as well. Just because we decline certain RC, does not mean we are evil! ETA: If I had RC's in place, and another member declined my request, I believe I would tell them thank you for not sending me a book that I clearly did not want.



Last Edited on: 12/11/07 2:51 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 12/11/2007 3:23 PM ET
Member Since: 3/15/2007
Posts: 63
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Dartha, I know you're not evil!  Um, except the Grinch picture made me wonder. But seriously, no I don't think you're bad for refusing a request  :-)

Oh, dear, I seem to have stirred people up more than I intended (not necessarily you). I hope you know I was completely joking when I mentioned the "evil laughter". Yes I was frustrated at the time, and it showed up in my writing, but I have been made to see other points of view, and agree with most of them. That's what discussion is for.

Also, I'll bet most of us will admit  that as a group of fanatical book lovers, our "fervor"/greed/lust over books sometimes gets out of hand and we have to stop and think, "hey I guess it's only a book, anyway." LOL

Tina H.

Date Posted: 12/11/2007 3:35 PM ET
Member Since: 11/12/2007
Posts: 946
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I will never order from you.

 

Just kidding.

Date Posted: 12/11/2007 3:41 PM ET
Member Since: 10/25/2005
Posts: 125
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I'm sorry you got turned down.  That has to be frustrating. 

FWIW, I won't automatically turn down a book because of requestor conditions.  Most of the time people are pretty nice when I email them about it if my book doesn't meet their needs.  (I have a sheepdog/beardie mix and some people have allergies.  'Nuff said.) However, there are a few things that will get an automatic, "Sorry, but just can't do it!" from me.

 

1.) "Book must be in new or nearly new condition."

2.)  "You MUST send me an IM before mailing this book!"

3.) "No smells!" 

4.) Anything that is vague to the point that I'd have to get a lawyer to see if it's okay to send the book.

5.) Lists of conditions that are so long and detailed that a lawyer would go to sleep before they finished reading them.

6..) Angry screeds that assume I am sending books that have been drooled on by Britney Spears on her way to get some cheetos and gas station coffee.

 

Thing is, I will err on the side of caution.  It's not to be mean, it's just that I don't want someone to be disappointed when they open up a package from me. 

 

 

 



Last Edited on: 12/11/07 6:42 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 12/11/2007 4:59 PM ET
Member Since: 11/12/2007
Posts: 946
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6..) Angry screeds that assume I am sending books that have been drooled on by Britney Spears on her way to get some cheetos and gas station coffee.

LOL - that's funny, but I know exactly what you mean.

Date Posted: 12/11/2007 7:03 PM ET
Member Since: 6/13/2007
Posts: 905
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ummm,  Britney Spears can read??

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