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Topic: How would have you handled this situation?

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Subject: How would have you handled this situation?
Date Posted: 5/21/2012 6:21 PM ET
Member Since: 11/25/2007
Posts: 138
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Note: this happened to me some time ago and I tried to resolve it with what seemed reasonable, but now I wonder how other members would have handled this.

I'm always looking for new books, so senders that will agree to deals (2/1, 3/2, 3/1 sort of trades) get extra brownie points from me. I will look for books in Box o Books to see if anyone's open to these, and I also browse for members with huge lists of posted books, usually over five hundred or so. I found a book on my reminder list on someone's shelf, and I noted they had over a thousand books, so I asked if they were open to deals. The member said they were, and I asked about a three for one, which they accepted. The member also told me that if I wanted any more books I just had to ask. I asked if that meant they were willing to send, say, six or seven books to me for that one credit. The member said, yes, that was the case. I ordered six books in total, and all of them came quickly. I was so pleased with this experience the next time I had a credit I browsed their whole shelf and found something like fourteen books I had on my reminder list. I ordered one of those books and asked for the other ones, specificially mentioning that if they were uncomfortable with sending that many for only one credit I'd order other books from their shelf for credit, or I'd send them some credits after I got the book. Member said it was okay.

A week later I got thirteen books from this person. If you've guessed that the one missing book was the one I had ordered for credit, you're right. I contacted the member and said that I had not gotten the book I had originally asked for, and wondered if they could either send that book or refund my credit. The member said that I should be satisfied with the books I got for my credit even if the original wasn't there. I felt guilty and apologized. I marked the book as received in good condition and bought another credit to send to the person. The original book never showed up. I thought at the time I did what was reasonable, but now I wonder what other members might have done in that situation as either the receiver or sender.

Date Posted: 5/21/2012 6:26 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 10,247
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Deals don't fall under the rules of PBS, so in my mind, you have to go with what's fair.

So, personally if I got 13 books for one credit, I would not have asked for a refund of the one credit. I mean, you just picked the one book randomly, right? 

I think you did the right thing by sending a second credit, in my opinion. Good for you!

Date Posted: 5/21/2012 6:31 PM ET
Member Since: 11/25/2007
Posts: 138
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I didn't really pick the one book randomly - it was a book I'd been looking for for a while and that was the one I really wanted. But at the same time I didn't want to antagonize the sender, especially one who I'd dealt with so positively before.

Date Posted: 5/21/2012 7:19 PM ET
Member Since: 12/31/2009
Posts: 3,995
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She did send you a boxload of books, so I'd chalk it up to a simple mistake. She probably just overlooked one book, and it happened to be the one you ordered. You still got a very good deal. So mentioning that a book was missing is about as far as I would have taken it. Thirteen books for a single credit is a fantastic deal any way you slice it.

Date Posted: 5/21/2012 7:28 PM ET
Member Since: 11/11/2011
Posts: 593
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I have given generous deals before like 14/2, because it almost covered the shipping.  The 13/1 was really generous and it probably cost more than $3.00 just to ship them.  So I wouldn't have asked for the credit back if the sender forgot to send it.  Since you gave her another credit, you could have said something like, hey you forgot to send this book, I'm going to buddy you another credit to send it and when I get it, I'll mark this shipment received. 

Of course it's easy to think of that now after the fact.  I once got a deal on a set and they accidently sent one book that was by a totally different author (the cover art looked very similar).  I felt so bad about e-mailing them about it and offered to even send the "wrong" book back.  They were really nice though and sent me the correct one and said to keep the "wrong" one that they sent. 

It's always rough knowing how to respond to these types of situations.  On one hand, they have been very nice, but they did make a mistake  . . . .  hopefully after sending the additional credit, the book you wanted does show up.



Date Posted: 5/21/2012 7:58 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I think you got 13 books for 2 credits and that's an awesome deal. I'd be surprised if the value of 2 credits covered the postage. I wouldn't complain as it would probably just turn that person off to ever doing any sort of deal again.  13 books for 1 or 2 credits is not a good deal in anyway for the sender.  If you had asked me for a deal like that I would have though it insanely rude. 

Date Posted: 5/21/2012 8:59 PM ET
Member Since: 10/13/2010
Posts: 4,337
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I highly doubt that one (or even 2) credit(s) covered the cost unless the books were small/very thin, so you really got a great deal.  Complaining that the book you actually ordered was missing was kind of unfair, however I do see that if you were really wanting a certain book that you'd be upset since the one missing was the one book you wanted the most. It's possible that it was just a mistake on the sender's part that he/she didn't send the one book you were wanting, but you still got an excellent deal.  There are some awesome people here on PBS, but I doubt that the average member on here would send 13 books to someone for just one credit, even if they are a pretty good person.

Date Posted: 5/22/2012 4:56 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,226
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Technically you had a right to the book you requested. Honestly, you asked for deals above and beyond what most members would have given and asking for the credit to be return when you got 13 good postable books you asked for (as I understand you approached her with your list and offered only one credit) IMO was greedy. The member did not even recoupe postage costs with those 2 or 3 credits she got, yet you wanted one of them back while you had something like 19 books you could repost and get credits for to request the book you didn't get and still only pay 3 or 4 credits for 20 books.

I do hope you are willing to give the same deals you ask for.


Last Edited on: 5/22/12 4:57 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 5/22/2012 5:05 PM ET
Member Since: 11/25/2007
Posts: 138
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To clarify, I asked the swapper for two for one or three for one the first time. They told me that if I wanted more books I just had to ask, and I was really surprised they were willing to send so many.

I keep most of the books I get here, but I also hit up all the thrift stores in the city so I can find wished-for books (I have the top 100 memorized) and send them to others.

Date Posted: 5/22/2012 6:37 PM ET
Member Since: 3/23/2007
Posts: 2,910
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I probably wouldn't have even mentioned the missing book if they'd agreed to a 14 for 1 deal. I'm always open to offers, but I'd never agree to 14 for 1.