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Topic: How do you respond when a requester condition offends you?

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Subject: How do you respond when a requester condition offends you?
Date Posted: 9/12/2008 7:09 AM ET
Member Since: 1/1/2006
Posts: 547
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I have a WL book that is on it's second requester.  This morning, I log in to find it requested, with a condition.  In a nut shell, the condtion says please don't send ratty books, if you are unsure if a book meets this condtion email me, and oh, by the way, if you decline my book, obviously your book shouldn't be posted in the first place.  I will be honest, because of this person's ability to turn a phrase, I was ready to decline their request well before I got to their email address.  There was a statement about how all their books were pristine and they expect the same in their mailbox.  By the time I got to the last section, I was ticked by this condition.  Normally, when I decline a condition because I think it's just plain crazy, I type "Does not meet condition", but I suddenly don't feel this is enough.  My gut says to type "Book meets condition, but wording of condition offended me".

Please, either talk me down or help me come up with a better way to decline this request.

Kerry

ETA: Just fixed a stupid grammer thing.



Last Edited on: 9/12/08 7:09 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 9/12/2008 7:16 AM ET
Member Since: 8/10/2005
Posts: 4,593
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I would decline that one as well...well, I'd need to see it verbatim, I guess. But if she actually said she expected pristine books in her mailbox (like she sends out) to me that would be enough to decline it right there. I'm always tempted to decline those ones that just re-state the PBS posting guidelines but I usually don't unless there's a bunch of extra wording and the tone is snotty. Then I have NO problem refusing.

ETA: If you have to put a comment in, I would state that while your book meets PBS posting guidelines, "it is not, as you desire, a "pristine" book."

Cheryl



Last Edited on: 9/12/08 7:18 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 9/12/2008 7:28 AM ET
Member Since: 12/16/2007
Posts: 148
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It doesn't appear that their RC is directed to any one in particular so I wouldn't really be offended by it or make the reply personal and would only address the reason why it does not meet their requirements. That is their RC and they are perfectly within their rights to make whatever requirements they choose.  With those RCs I don't think  they will see many requests being accepted.  I would decline and possibly reply with; While my book exceeds PBS requirements it has been touched by human hands and therefore cannot be considered "pristine."

Date Posted: 9/12/2008 7:30 AM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2007
Posts: 881
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Here's what I would do if I was in a charitable mood:

If it met the conditions, I would accept. Then I would PM the person to say that while I did accept the request I was tempted not to based on the scathing tone of the RC.

 

If I was not I would say:

Declined on account of scathing and insulting RC. Oh, by the way, you catch more flies with honey. Perhaps you can find some.

Rick B. (bup) - ,
Date Posted: 9/12/2008 7:35 AM ET
Member Since: 11/2/2007
Posts: 2,625
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I agree with Cheryl - if you're going to comment, something like "book meets pbs guidelines, but may not be considered 'pristine.'"

Date Posted: 9/12/2008 8:01 AM ET
Member Since: 1/1/2006
Posts: 547
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Thanks all.  I much prefer it when someone just has the PBS stuff for requester conditions.  Obviously, those people have had problems in the past and they are trying to sure the sender meets them.  But when people who have been burned before add their own commentary, they don't realize they can really offend people.  Not exactly sure how I'm going to decline this yet, but I'm going to take the emotions out and stick with the facts.

Kerry

Date Posted: 9/12/2008 8:14 AM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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I liked Pat's response myself:  While my book exceeds PBS requirements it has been touched by human hands and therefore cannot be considered "pristine."

To the point, and with just the slightest touch of implied sarcasm:P  That's the one I'd send.

Date Posted: 9/12/2008 8:20 AM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2007
Posts: 881
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Yes, it's a good response! Keep us posted....and I'll note for the record that I am not often in a less than charitable mood.

Date Posted: 9/12/2008 8:20 AM ET
Member Since: 10/20/2007
Posts: 1,680
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"Ratty" is so subjective.  What if the book sender has a pet rat?  LOL

Date Posted: 9/12/2008 8:22 AM ET
Member Since: 3/13/2006
Posts: 2,024
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I agree with your point about adding commentary, Kerry.  As satisfying as it is on an emotional level, it often backfires, both in RCs and in responses to RCs.  I would decline with a simple and straightforward, my book meets basic posting guidelines but is not pristine.



Last Edited on: 9/12/08 8:23 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 9/12/2008 8:57 AM ET
Member Since: 8/14/2008
Posts: 3,574
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I don't know that I am generally offended - although first asking for pristine (which wouldn't offend me but would get me to decline out of fear that the reciever would not be happy with my book), and then going on to say if it didn't meet the requirements it shouldn't be posted - that would offend me, i guess. PBS has guidelines, stating that YOUR requirements are the REAL guidelines that any decent person would follow - which is how i read this - would offend me.

   I post books if they meet PBS requirements, I interpret the last requirement (general readable good condition ) to mean 'would I buy this book used?' I don't expect new books.

Date Posted: 9/12/2008 9:15 AM ET
Member Since: 5/10/2007
Posts: 5,526
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I would decline because it just sounds like they wouldn't be satisfied, I would probably include some sort of sarcastic remark in the comments like others have mentioned above.  no sense in having a headache over that person and satisfying them!

Date Posted: 9/12/2008 9:23 AM ET
Member Since: 8/12/2005
Posts: 401
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Well...seems to me that ANYONE could read it as if it was pertaining to them, since they are the one with the requested book..I know I would probably take offense to "if you are unsure if a book meets this condtion email me, and oh, by the way, if you decline my book, obviously your book shouldn't be posted in the first place."  The last part is almost like "I double dog dare you"...I wouldn't be able to decline fast enough..and I know I would have to throw in at least a tad bit of sarcasm as well...not that it makes it right:)

Date Posted: 9/12/2008 10:02 AM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,183
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I generally do not like snotty responses to RCs. If someone wants to write an RC that will lessen their chances of getting books, their loss and I move on. But some people do get so offensive in their RCs and those need a little nudging that their RCs should be toned down a bit if they want books. I have only had one that I felt was overboard and I let her know that the offensive tone did not motivate me to go through the extra steps she sought. I try to let them know they offend, without stooping to their level of rudeness.

Date Posted: 9/12/2008 10:07 AM ET
Member Since: 7/1/2008
Posts: 2,835
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What I am tempted to do is send amazon's url. What I actually  do is decline and state that while my book meets PBS guideines, I fear it will not meet subject "pristine" standards. I have doone that with a brand new book thatI received as a gift.

Date Posted: 9/12/2008 10:37 AM ET
Member Since: 5/5/2008
Posts: 515
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I don't have a problem when people ask for books in very good condition; what bothers me is when people imply that all books posted to PBS need to be in that condition. (I'm not talking about RCs that ask for things that are actually in the posting guidelines, like no water damage, but people who think that every book posted should be pristine.) It sounds like this was one of those. But I'd probably just decline and not say anything.

Date Posted: 9/12/2008 10:42 AM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I would decline saying something like the others said ( I like the human hands comment)-"My book meets PBS guidelines but I found the RCS rude and too subjective" or something like that.  I wouldn't send to that person.  It sounds to me like one small flaw in the book would cause a complaint even if the book was still postable.  It's hard to find books new in the store that are pristine. 

Date Posted: 9/12/2008 11:05 AM ET
Member Since: 6/30/2006
Posts: 2,303
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I'm with this: "book meets pbs guidelines, but may not be considered 'pristine.'"

short, factual, hard to take offense at.



Last Edited on: 1/23/09 9:23 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 9/12/2008 11:49 AM ET
Member Since: 1/10/2008
Posts: 345
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"May not meet requester conditions."

Date Posted: 9/12/2008 11:54 AM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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To me, anyone who puts this condition in their RCs: "if you decline my book, obviously your book shouldn't be posted in the first place." is just begging to be offended:P  I can understand and totally identify with an RC to the effect of asking to please only send books that meet all of the PBS posting requirements or please don't send books that don't meet them - maybe even add a link to them.  If that's all the requestor is asking for - which if she's telling you that the only reason for declining her request is that your book doesn't meet the PBS requirements, then that's what she's saying, she just isn't saying it very nicely or very diplomatically  - there's no reason to word it the way she did.  I don't think we need to take a course in diplomacy to write a simple RC.  They aren't the easiest things to word, but for most of us, isn't that usually because we don't want to offend someone?  It almost seems to me that this person had something else entirely in mind:P  I don't think that it's necessary to put yourself on the same level with someone who seems to not care about who they offend with their RCs.  And it's also very true that it's silly to take an RC personally when it's pretty near impossible for one to have been worded with you (I mean that generally) in mind.  That said, I still think the "human hands" comment was just sarcastic enough to make a subtle point, without crossing the line into offensive territory.  Even the most obtuse person would have to figure out that using the word "pristine" might be a little excessive and consider rewording all of it.  Or not...  With some people you never know:P

Date Posted: 9/12/2008 1:41 PM ET
Member Since: 1/8/2007
Posts: 8,139
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I don't know that I am generally offended - although first asking for pristine (which wouldn't offend me but would get me to decline out of fear that the reciever would not be happy with my book), and then going on to say if it didn't meet the requirements it shouldn't be posted - that would offend me, i guess. PBS has guidelines, stating that YOUR requirements are the REAL guidelines that any decent person would follow - which is how i read this - would offend me.

Latricia, you took the words right out of my mouth.

I once got one that was short, but said pretty much the same thing (If you have to say NO, then you shouldn't be posting this book) and ALSO had additional requirements about near-new condition for the book being requested. (OK, if it's not pristine, I CAN AND WILL post this book... Nearly-New or Like-New is not the PBS guideline criteria.)

But thinking that I'm sometimes likely to take things too personally, I asked DH to read it. His response, "Sounds like some kind of nut!" I declined with a statement along the lines of:

While my book does exceed PBS guidelines, it most definitely has been used and does not meet your additional criteria. I hope that someone else will be able to fill your request soon.

Date Posted: 9/12/2008 3:30 PM ET
Member Since: 1/9/2006
Posts: 6,638
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NO.  What's the point?  That person has a right to have conditions and we have the right and the means to simply refuse the trade to PBS.

Date Posted: 9/12/2008 3:48 PM ET
Member Since: 8/12/2006
Posts: 387
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I would decline that request even if the book was brand new and never read, and I'm not someone who minds RCs in general. That RC was just plain old snotty as well as factually wrong, though, and I won't reward that kind of attitude.

Date Posted: 9/12/2008 4:00 PM ET
Member Since: 1/29/2006
Posts: 54,837
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Kerry, I haven't read every reply yet, so you  may have decided on a course of action.  I see a couple I like. ;-)  When I decline because I just don't like the RCs, I simply say "Conditions".  Not "does not meet Conditions" but simply " Conditions"  and let them infer whatever they wish.  If it's "no pets" then I say something more along the lines of "Sorry to decline, but we have pets'.  You get the idea.

Date Posted: 9/12/2008 4:13 PM ET
Member Since: 1/25/2007
Posts: 6,567
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I admit I'd be pretty shocked to see an RC like that.

A few things would go through my mind at once:

1. LADY, THIS IS A USED BOOK SITE, GET REAL!  lol

2. Being the English buff I am (even though my spelling stinks) I'd go over to Websters.com and look up the word pristine since I'm sure of the exact meaning. lol All I know it it means nice.

Websters says pristine -

1: belonging to the earliest period or state -  original

2. not spoiled, corrupted, or polluted (as by civilization) : pure <a pristine forest> b: fresh and clean as or as if new <used books in pristine condition>

PURE - lol - Seriously how many books do you know that are PURE! lol

I loved what someone else saying something like their book being in good condition but it has been touched by human hands! lol

Seroulsy though I'd bite the bullet and decline it more of FEAR that they'd get my book and see some flaw that it unseen to most human eyes and I'd lose a BOOK & A CREDIT!

I'd write them this and let them know too why I declined the book.

Plus I mean seriously if all of your books are in PRISTINE condition well GOOD FOR YOU! I think it is wonderful you take care of your books and honestly I admire people who can do that. Sadly my home isn't perfect as I'd like it to be and books get a little bend, shelf wear and normal wear and tear from being read and LOVED.

Ofcourse I wouldn't email the person this, but also like someone else said it would be proper maybe to let them know their RC may turn others off. The rude remark about declining and them saying "YOUR BOOK SHOULDN'T BE POSTED" is uncalled for.

I understand that people like to get nice books, we all do, but also remember this is a used booksite and the books will most likely not be PRISTINE.

Just had a funny thought (a peek into the evil mind BEHIND my screen name lol) - I pictured a home like a grandmothers with plastic on the sofa, loud plastic covering the carpets to protect it from dirt and stains. A HUGE bookshelf with books all lined up perfectly in a row. The woman goes to read one, but before she touches it she puts on some rubber gloves and like a doctor she carefully opens it up to read it. She goes to a nice chair that makes me a CRUNCH sound when she sits as she lowers herself onto the protect chair. All the while she is proud of herself for keeping her books and home in such PRISTINE condition. lol

FORGIVE ME! lol



Last Edited on: 9/12/08 4:16 PM ET - Total times edited: 3
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