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Topic: How would you handle this?

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Subject: How would you handle this?
Date Posted: 11/23/2010 10:57 PM ET
Member Since: 6/16/2010
Posts: 433
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I was given a ton of books this weekend by a friend, the result is 43 books to be sent out.  I have most of them packaged up and ready to go to the post office, when I received this:


Can you please let me know how you know the book is not a book club edition before you mail it. I have recieved books that people sent to me that were book club editions so I just want to make sure. Thanks.


I know I check RC's and this one was not a book club (there were a few book club editions in the boxes of books).  

I sent back this...I'm sending out 48 books at the moment, yours has already been wrapped and is in the stacks. I can no longer look at it to find the isbn for you. As I paid for tracking, I can't cancel it at this point without loosing money.

 and got this..."Well, you accepted the order so I assume it meets my requestor conditions."

I said, "It meets the RC, but you asked for proof and the only proof I can offer is the ISBN if I could get to it."


He returned "Thats fine, but the isbn won't tell you if it is from a book club. The most common way is there is no bar code on the back and there is no price on the inside cover.

Sometimes it will actually say book club edition on the copyright page or at the bottom of the inside cover. Book club editions tend to be smaller than the original.

Hope this helps for future reference. Also I was looking at your science fiction books and they are all hardcover.

I would guess that they are book club editions. You will get other rc's that specify no bc's. So now you know. No excuses."


I canceled the order and ate the cost of DC, this just sounds like a headache waiting to happen.  what would you do?


Date Posted: 11/23/2010 11:07 PM ET
Member Since: 1/8/2009
Posts: 2,016
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I guess it depends on what the RC said?

Date Posted: 11/23/2010 11:10 PM ET
Member Since: 10/13/2010
Posts: 4,316
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Wow, sounds kind of demanding!  I haven't really been on PBS long enough to get any RCs I guess (knock on wood!), but if it had happened to ME, I think I would have cancelled it too.  Better to be safe than sorry.

And as for the "book club editions," I wouldn't even know how to find out if a book fits that description to begin with.

Date Posted: 11/23/2010 11:27 PM ET
Member Since: 12/31/2009
Posts: 3,995
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I think that PMing people and "checking up on condition" after they have accepted an RC is ignorant. Maybe you could let him know that it's frowned upon so "now he knows. No excuses."

There's absolutely no reason for an attitude like that. You accepted his RC and printed the label. If there's a problem with the book, he can lecture you about it after it's delivered. Jeez.

Date Posted: 11/23/2010 11:45 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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I agree with Lisa.

A lifelong reader, I've never belonged to a book club...and have very little idea how to spot book club editions unless they are clearly marked as such. Many PBS members expect this to be common knowledge, and it simply is not.  

In such cases the requester must have RC's in place, and explain exactly what they wish to exclude (and would be wise to include contact information JIC a potential sender has questions).

Last Edited on: 11/23/10 11:46 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 11/23/2010 11:54 PM ET
Member Since: 1/15/2007
Posts: 1,410
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I would have sent the book since you paid for the DC and postage and were sure that it met the RC.

My response would have been, "I checked the book before I packaged it and it met your RC.  If you wish senders to be more explicit, that should be in your RC."


You shouldn't have to eat the postage because the receiver is being a pain.

Date Posted: 11/24/2010 1:48 AM ET
Member Since: 6/26/2006
Posts: 2,585
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Just FYI, as someone who reads sci-fi/fantasy, and wants hardcover editions, sometimes the book club edition is the ONLY way to get a hardcover. And, yes, most of the time, they will have a separate ISBN, so if they requested that ISBN, phooey on them for requesting the wrong copy.

Not that it negates their RC, but just something to keep in mind.

Date Posted: 11/24/2010 8:15 AM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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Not to play Devil's Advocate or take the requestor's side but:  The PM might have come out of frustration of having the no book club RC and still getting BCE's.  

Date Posted: 11/24/2010 9:02 AM ET
Member Since: 2/13/2007
Posts: 2,276
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The onus should not be on the sender but on the requester to know what they are requesting -- we are on the internet folks! There are numerous places to check to verify that the book you are requesting is the one you indeed want to receive. My biggest headaches here on this site have been from people who requested a book, received it and then said...wait, that's not the book I wanted. As a sender, I am not a mind reader...I only send what is requested of me. Yes, if I got a RC that said no book club editions and mine was, yes, I would turn it down, but what I want to know is why the requestor is not doing the research to know that the book they are requesting is a book club edition?

Date Posted: 11/24/2010 9:09 AM ET
Member Since: 8/27/2007
Posts: 3,326
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I'm with you - I'd have cancelled, too.  Depending on how it was wrapped, I *may* have unwrapped it to double checked, but probably not with 43 books on the table. With that many credits and that much postage involved as a group,  I'd call it a small loss and just cancel it to save the headache of dealing with Mr. Picky.  And like someone else said, when it comes to Sci Fi, unless it's a really big name author, most of the time they aren't even published in HC except through book clubs.

Date Posted: 11/24/2010 9:47 AM ET
Member Since: 7/12/2010
Posts: 4,177
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It unfortunate you had to eat the postage, but I think you made the right call and saved  yourself a headache.


Date Posted: 11/24/2010 9:55 AM ET
Member Since: 7/23/2006
Posts: 15,930
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but what I want to know is why the requestor is not doing the research to know that the book they are requesting is a book club edition?

Because the ISBN is often used for both versions.  There's no way for the requestor to be able to determine if the sender has a book club edition or not.  That's why it's put in Requestor Conditions.

Book Club Editions are a cheaper version of the "regular" hardback.  The paper is a lower quality and the book is generally smaller.  There is no price on the inside of the dust jacket (on the inside front where the book description is).  Sometimes the BCE does have a barcode on the back, so you can't always go by that.

Date Posted: 11/24/2010 10:26 AM ET
Member Since: 12/10/2009
Posts: 2,540
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You were right and the requestor has issues .  I would have done the same thing.

Date Posted: 11/24/2010 10:46 AM ET
Member Since: 11/5/2009
Posts: 1,083
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Just out of curiousity, how did you print the postage?  Because if you printed it through PayPal postage, you can cancel the postage and get your money back.

Date Posted: 11/24/2010 11:14 AM ET
Member Since: 6/16/2010
Posts: 433
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Thanks, I feel better about having canceled it, especially since this morning I got:

Good, then you will have no problem refunding my credit when I recieve you bookclub edition.


I was able to happily reply, I have no intention of sending anything to you, I have already canceled the order.


I paid for DC through PBS.  I don't mind the loss.  I have too many to deal with at the moment to put up with headaches on top of it all.

Date Posted: 11/24/2010 12:02 PM ET
Member Since: 12/3/2005
Posts: 3,384
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I would absolutely have done the same thing.  Not worth the headache or numerous PMs.  As a RAOK I just sent you a credit to offset the loss you took from this person, feel free to order something light hearted or silly as you may need it after that encounter :)

Date Posted: 11/24/2010 12:04 PM ET
Member Since: 6/16/2010
Posts: 433
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OH wow!  Thank you!  You didn't need to do that (what's a RAOK?).  

what silly book would you suggest?  I loved Walking In Circles Before Lying Down as my current favorite silly book but I've already read it.  

Date Posted: 11/24/2010 12:15 PM ET
Member Since: 12/3/2005
Posts: 3,384
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RAOK (random act of kindness), it allows me to feel better about being cranky most other times. 

I honestly don't read much that is silly as I go in for more of the paranormal romances which tend to be more serious, although if you're interested in any of those, the Broken Heart Vampires series by Michele Bardsley is kinda light and hokey at times mixed in with the steamy stuff.

Date Posted: 11/24/2010 12:42 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 10,040
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I think you did the right thing by cancelling the order. He certainly does not come off as pleasant in his messages, and I would not want to deal with him either.

I do have some sympathy for him, though, because although many people think they might know what a book club edition is, it turns out that they are incorrect.

He is right about Book Club Editions, however rude he was in his message. You cannot tell by the ISBN whether or not it is a Book Club Edition. And, he is also correct in that many times, the ONLY hardcover edition of sci-fi/fantasy books is the Book Club Edition.

Anybody who is interested in this topic can look here for more info: http://www.bookthink.com/0005/05bce.htm

Last Edited on: 11/24/10 12:43 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 11/27/2010 4:00 PM ET
Member Since: 11/11/2007
Posts: 96
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I have two takeaways from this thread:

(1) If someone doesn't want a book club edition, it's wise to be very explicit in the RCs about what the sender should look for to be sure it isn't a book club edition.  I think that can be useful in RCs about library books and book crossing books and similar issues.

(2) I'm adopting Melissa B's philosophy of more RAOKs so I can forgive myself for my cranky moments. : )

Date Posted: 11/27/2010 6:17 PM ET
Member Since: 7/5/2007
Posts: 2,271
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You know, when I got frustrated over receiving BCEs of certain books (one of which actually didn't have an ISBN), I added information on how to identify a Sci-Fi/Fantasy BCE.  [Typically HB about the size of a trade PB, no price on the DJ, and has a 6 digit number on the back of the DJ.  There's some other things, too, but the size is the big one and why for certain books I didn't want the BCE]

But it really never ocurred to me to PM someone after they accepted and printed out the mailer for my book to badger them about proof that the book wasn't a BCE.

Date Posted: 11/27/2010 7:55 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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That's because you are a good egg snail Michelle  wink

Date Posted: 11/28/2010 4:30 AM ET
Member Since: 1/23/2009
Posts: 3,041
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I have an RC that I turn on for occasions where I do not want to receive a BCE. After getting disappointed twice with BCEs, one for a book that I didn't even know would even have a BCE and the other for a book I was intending to keep, I decided it was wise to create one. I give my nickname in the RC if the person is unsure of whether or not they have a BCE. Twice I've had people PM me before accepting or declining to learn what the difference is, and I PM'd both back rather quickly. I care more when it's a hardcover than I do if it's a school book order club.

I don't expect every member to know what the difference is, which is why I provide my nickname in the RC. If they are interested in sending the book, then they will PM. If they don't care, they have the option to just deny it and then I can move on to the next person.

There's no need for anyone to be rude about a BCE, and yes, the requestor should be the one to research whether or not a book has different printings.