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Topic: How to handle wrong book received

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Subject: How to handle wrong book received
Date Posted: 7/25/2009 1:01 AM ET
Member Since: 3/22/2007
Posts: 442
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I received  the wrong book today, completely different book and author from the one I requested.  I let the sender know and she wrote me back to say that she tried to credit my account but could not do so until I marked the book received.

Before I write her back, I just want to doublecheck:

I was not going to mark the originally requested book as received because,  well, I didn't receive it.  I was going to let it time out.  Once it does, I'll get my credit back.  I just thought I should let the sender know in case she mixed up two orders.

Is there a problem with handing it this way?  I know that there is a "received wrong book" button but I have always taken that to mean that the book didn't match the isbn or it was a hardback instead of a paperback. 

What's the best way to handle this?

Date Posted: 7/25/2009 1:16 AM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2009
Posts: 6,852
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I would mark it received with a problem.   Enter that you were sent the wrong book.  Once she sends you a credit then you can mark it resolved.  If she asks for you to send the book back then she needs to buddy you credit for return postage.  This link also provides some add'l info



Date Posted: 7/25/2009 1:25 AM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 10,125
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You are correct. You should NOT mark it "RWAP - Wrong Book". That is for a book that is "almost" the one you ordered, but not quite. If you get the completely wrong book you contact the sender and do this:


You will get the credit back when the book goes lost.

If she doesn't have the correct book to send to you, she could also contact PBS and request them to cancel the transaction, and refund your credit that way.

Date Posted: 7/25/2009 10:30 AM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I wouldn't mark it received-how can you when you didnt' get the book.  Wrong book is for when you order a hardcover and receive a paperback or the book you got was the wrong ISBN but basically the book you ordered.

She can buddy you  a credit now and you can mark it received to release the credit PBS has in escrow. Or you can let it go lost and PBS will give that credit back to you.  If she gets the right book to you at some point you can go into your transaction archive and mark it received.  She can also give you an extra credit to send the book you got back to her or to the person who was supposed to get it.

Date Posted: 7/25/2009 4:21 PM ET
Member Since: 11/14/2006
Posts: 2,552
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Last Edited on: 11/18/15 10:17 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 7/25/2009 5:29 PM ET
Member Since: 7/31/2007
Posts: 2,695
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If she buddies you a credit and then you mark it received to release the credit there is NO (additional) credit...it comes out a wash with you still having the "wrong book" which you can then post to your bookshelf.

Date Posted: 7/25/2009 7:47 PM ET
Member Since: 4/25/2007
Posts: 11,670
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I wouldn't mark it received either unless the other person buddied me a credit.  If you mark it received first, even wrong book, there's no guarantee the sender will refund that credit.  If you do nothing and the sender does nothing, then eventually the book'll go lost and you get your credit back.

If the sender wants the book back that they sent you, then they need to either buddy you an additional credit to cover postage or send you the postage money to send it back.

Date Posted: 7/25/2009 10:49 PM ET
Member Since: 3/22/2007
Posts: 442
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Well, even with all the advice, I just couldn't decide what to do so I pm'd a tour guide and was told I should mark it RWAP and click the wrong book button.  So I did and I expect that the sender will credit my account in the next couple of days.

It looks like it will all work out ok - after I knew the book was being sent, I read a review of it here on PBS that told me a little more than I wanted to know about the ending and now I'm not that interested in reading the book.

Thanks everyone for your help.



Date Posted: 7/26/2009 1:10 AM ET
Member Since: 1/1/2009
Posts: 1,924
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I hope you get your credit soon! Could you post any info the tour guide gave about this by chance?

Date Posted: 7/26/2009 11:41 AM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 10,125
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The tour guide advice was incorrect. You are not supposed to mark the completely wrong book as RWAP - Wrong Book. Although, I suppose they could make it a little clearer in the Help Docs.

Date Posted: 7/26/2009 1:01 PM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2009
Posts: 6,852
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I hope you get your credit back soon. 

Date Posted: 7/27/2009 3:27 AM ET
Member Since: 8/26/2006
Posts: 9,350
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I'm the tour guide. :-) I had a little more info from Karen to work with, which probably explains some of the conflicting advice.  (After she posted here, the sender offered to return her credit from the transactions archive, once the book was marked received, rather than offering to send her the right book, and she was fine with that.)  Here's my logic:

If you get a wrong book, and still have hope of receiving the right one (say, the sender switched the wrappers), then you should not mark the book received right away.  What you expect will happen is that the sender will give each sender a credit to cover postage, the senders will mail the wrong books to each other, and then, when you receive the right book, you mark it received.  The help doc that Sara referenced would apply: I received a book I didn't request!  This help doc does not say to let the request go lost to get your credit back.  It says that if the request does go lost, because of the extra time involved in forwarding the book, you can then mark the book received from your transactions archive.  Here's the quote:

If this book was sent to you in place of a book you requested, then when you get the book you requested,  you can mark it received:

  • Do this from your My Account main page as usual if the correct book arrives before it is declared "lost".
  • Do this from your Transaction Archive if the correct book arrives after it has been declared "lost" (see I received a book that was 'lost in the mail' for more instructions). 
  • Be sure to remove the book from your Wish List after you have received it (it will have gone onto your Wish List if it was declared "lost").

In Karen's situation, she no longer expected to receive the right book.  The sender wanted to credit her from the transactions archive, but could not do that until she marked it received.

There are no help docs that say that if you receive a wrong book to let it go "lost" and get your credit back that way.

There are help docs that say that the only times you don't mark a book received are if you get an empty envelope, or you get 2 copies of the same book because 1) a sender forgot to mark the book mailed and the request was passed to a 2nd sender, and you weren't able to cancel the 2nd request in time or 2) a sender marked a book mailed, but didn't actually mail it (you need proof of this, like a postmark) until a week before it went lost; you genuinely thought it was lost, and ordered a 2nd copy.  So the only times we can not mark a book received is if no book arrived (empty envelope), or we receive 2 books because the first sender made a mistake.

I received an empty wrapper--no book inside!: quote:

If you have not marked the book received yet, do not do so.  You will continue to get the usual auto-emails from PBS asking if the book has arrived; open and read them, and follow any instructions within. 

If the book hasn't arrived by the 26th day after it was marked mailed, then PBS will declare it lost in the Mail and you will get your credit back.  If the book does arrive after that, you should mark it received from your Transaction Archive.  

I received 2 copies of the same book! quote:

When you receive 2 copies for a book after submitting only one request, you are not obligated to give a credit for the extra (canceled) copy.  You are obligated to mark the properly sent copy received. (me here: This applies to cases where the sender mailed the book and canceled the order, or mailed the book and forgot to mark it mailed, so the system canceled the order.  So it applies to situation where the first order was canceled, and you get 2 books.)

My requested book arrived with a late postmark! quote:
If the book was declared lost in the mail and you requested a second copy because you thought the first one was really lost:
  • If the postmark was from the week before the book was declared lost, and you got no notification from the sender that the book would be/was mailed late: you do not have to mark this book received (this is the ONE case in which you don't have to mark a received book received: if a very late mailer without notice caused you to reorder the book and end up with two copies).  
  • OR: You can mark it received to note the late postmark, and ask for your credit back in your Personal Message to the sender.
  • Note: the late mailing must be confirmed- either the sender has told you this or the postmark on the package confirms it.  Sometimes Media Mail takes a long time, so a late-arriving book cannot be presumed to have been mailed late. (This last paragraph is from the I received 2 copies of the same book help doc.)

PBS definition of wrong book:

A "wrong book" at PBS means a book that does not match its listing in the PBS Database in one or more of the FOUR necessary aspects:  ISBN, Title, Author and Booktype.


Karen's book did not match in at least three of these aspects -- maybe the binding was correct :-P  Normally in this situation, she would expect to work things out with the sender, and eventually mark the right book received when she got it, as described in that first help doc "I received a book I didn't request."  (She was correct in saying "I just thought I should let the sender know in case she mixed up two orders."  But once she heard from the sender that she was not going to receive the right book later, and since there is no option at PBS for refusing to mark a book received on an active transaction -- including damaged, or wrong books -- she was right to mark it received with a problem, wrong book (wrong in 3 or 4 of the necessary aspects), then ask for her credit back.

From the Terms of Use:

Item Receipt
Members shall promptly report to Site when items have been received in order to facilitate credit for shipping members. Failure to promptly report item receipt may result in credit forfeiture and/or account suspension, in the sole discretion of Site.


Date Posted: 7/27/2009 4:15 AM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 10,125
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Patty, I get your logic, but I don't think that people should have to go read multiple help docs to figure out what to do in a situation. You are correct when you say :

There are no help docs that say that if you receive a wrong book to let it go "lost" and get your credit back that way.

However, it is very clear that in the beginning of the situation, the help doc that I referenced is the correct one. And, that one doesn't say anything about going back to mark the book "RWAP - Wrong Book" either.

I'm interested because I had this situation happen to me before. The sender mailed me 2 books from a 2 book order, only one of which was correct (other book was one I didn't order). So, I marked one book received and PM'd her about the other book. She said she would mail it to me. Never received it, and eventually it went lost and I got my credit back.

So, you are saying that I should have gone back (when?) and actually marked the 2nd missing book "RWAP - Wrong Book" since I actually did receive a book, just not the right book? And, what is the timeline for that ... sometime when I give up on receiving the correct book?

Date Posted: 7/27/2009 5:55 AM ET
Member Since: 8/26/2006
Posts: 9,350
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Your situation was different, Sara.  The sender said she was sending you the right book, so immediately you were in the "wait for the right book to arrive" scenario.  You didn't just decide not to mark a book received.  You had a PM from the sender saying she would mail the right book, and that's the one that never arrived and went lost.  The help doc you referenced was correct for your situation.

Karen had a PM from the sender saying she wanted to return her credit, but couldn't because the book wasn't marked received.   Wrong book has been stretched to include wrong binding, wrong ISBN, but it's also wrong title, and if the right book is not going to be mailed, then it should just be marked Received with Problem -- wrong book.  When the sender returns the credit, she'll mark the problem transaction "resolved by sender" in her transactions archive.




Date Posted: 7/27/2009 2:28 PM ET
Member Since: 3/22/2007
Posts: 442
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Hey everyone.

Just wanted to let you know that I received my credit back within a few hours after marking the book RWAP.

The sender had mixed up two book orders but once I let her know, she was quick to credit my account. 

Thanks again for your help.