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Topic: Inactive accounts

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Subject: Inactive accounts
Date Posted: 7/7/2010 1:59 AM ET
Member Since: 5/13/2010
Posts: 564
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I was wondering. I know after so many unanswered requests the account goes on hold. How many requests is that? Wouldn't it just be easier if say someone doesn't log in for say 3 months their account would automatically go on hold. I think it would make it much easier and more pleasant for those of us active members. I've had a book time out already by 3 different people, it's now on it's 4th person. I think it would also make it much easier for people who are waiting for a book on their WL. When there are say 400+ people waiting for said book, how many of those are inactive? It would make it much more productive IMPO.

 

I also understand "life" happenes. But it could be the same process as they have to go through now, just a few steps and their account is active again. Those who do use PBS on a regular I'm sure would put their account on hold if they knew they were going to be away for any length of time.

Date Posted: 7/7/2010 4:01 AM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,399
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PBS has stated that they do not want to list what the specific limits are for inactive (or for problem) accounts.  The theory is if people know what the cut off lines are, then folks will play with staying just one side of trouble. 

I personally think that not logging in should not be as big of a deal as not responding to a request.  We do receive a email for a request, allowing folks to not log in until they have an order.  After all, we have a large number of members who are never active in the forums.

Date Posted: 7/7/2010 8:57 AM ET
Member Since: 3/2/2010
Posts: 80
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I'm wondering how long it takes for inactive requests to get deleted.  In searching for some older books to determine whether they're worth posting, I've run across several WL books with the same titles and the no-ISBN reference, when actually there are multiple copies of the book available.  Do those no-ISBN requests sit there indefinitely?  (One of them was Dan Brown's "Angels and Demons" - there are dozens of copies of that in the system.  Just for the heck of it, I PMd the requestor to ask if they still wanted the book and got no response.)

Date Posted: 7/7/2010 9:00 AM ET
Member Since: 6/21/2007
Posts: 2,015
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Last Edited on: 2/3/15 5:34 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 7/7/2010 9:01 AM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I think it depends on how close together they are and what other red flags there are. If someone has a couple of times outs but have logged in recently then they probably don't close them and figure they maybe are just having computer problems or forgot to go on vacations.  Then again for someone else 1 time out might do it if they see the person hasn't logged on in several months. 

I like the log on requirement idea.  I don't think it's too much to ask that people be required to log in once a month even if they don't trade much.  It only takes 2 minutes to log on just to verify that you want the account kept open. And anyone too busy to do that wouldn't have time to mail out a book if they had a request anyway. 

But I might be feeling a little disgruntled right now since I have a book about to time out on the 4th wisher. 



Last Edited on: 7/7/10 9:01 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Subject: Logging in
Date Posted: 7/7/2010 9:57 AM ET
Member Since: 11/18/2005
Posts: 5,421
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If you learn nothing else here, you will learn patienceindecision I guess it doesn't bother me so much..."hey I got a book offered to me" I think the most I jave gone though is 3 people. I don't think it is too much to have a person log in once a month if you want to keep you account in good standing.  I am logged in at least once a day....unless i am out of town.  There are lots of sites I go to but some I registered and didn't go back  to for what ever reason. Then if I do go back, I have a heck of a time getting in.....no sure why????????

Date Posted: 7/7/2010 10:46 AM ET
Member Since: 2/13/2007
Posts: 2,264
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I have been wondering too, what it takes to be declared inactive...I have ordered the same book from the same member three different times (they have the only copy in the system) and each time they have failed to mail it. It is so frustrating! A few weeks ago I listed 6 wishlisted books with multiple wishers and all 6 of them rolled through all of the wishers without a response (or they had a RC that I was not comfortable with) and they have been sitting on my shelf ever since -- glad I did not read them specifically for credits!

I too am a proponent of the "sign in at least once every 90 days or your account becomes inactive" -- I realize that not everyone is as active, both sending and receiving, as I am, but an email saying "You haven't signed in in 90 days, please do so to keep your account active" is not very onerous task for anyone and it would definitely weed out the people who signed up, got their free books and then went away.

Date Posted: 7/7/2010 1:06 PM ET
Member Since: 5/13/2010
Posts: 564
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Yes we get emails saying that we have a request granted or wished, but it obviously doesn't work. Sending a email stating that their account with go on hold if they don't respond with in so many days would work just as well. Say they put the 90 log in into affect, send them an email on say day 80 saying they have 10 days to respond and if they don't their account will go on hold. I'm sure there are 100's if not 1,000's who signed up and posted 10 books just to get the 2 free credits and will never come back. Anything "free" gets attention, therefor a lot of inactive accounts.

 

I'm about to help my SIL get her account up and running. She's signed up but is lost as to what to do from there. I will stay on top of her to make sure she's active and if not I will suggest she either puts everything on hold or deletes her account. I know a lot of books she is going to put on are on WL's. She's a very busy person working a full time job and going to school full time. So it wouldn't be fair for her to put a whole list of WL books on then never sign on again. But she's an avid reader so hopefully she sticks to it. If not I can always take over her account for her and make sure she's sending books.

Date Posted: 7/7/2010 1:36 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,399
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Oh.  Be careful about that idea.  "Taking" over another's account is frowned upon.  I'm pretty sure that is one of the things PBS is monitoring.

I do post and order for several family members, but it is through my own account.  The feature of sending a book to a second address is how we are handling it.  Yes, I do lose a chunk of Wish list space doing it this way.  But my family either has limited computer access or limited time between both work and school.

Date Posted: 7/7/2010 2:42 PM ET
Member Since: 5/13/2010
Posts: 564
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I wouldn't be "taking" over her account per say. Basically just monitoring it and when she gets a request or such I would let her know so she could mail the book or accept the request. She really wants to get into PBS so I'm hoping it's not like when she wanted hamsters and then 2 weeks later gave them to me. laugh

Date Posted: 7/7/2010 3:22 PM ET
Member Since: 2/15/2006
Posts: 284
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I am very active on PBS but I also belong to swapadvd and there I am fairly inactive. I didn't even post the min # of dvds to get the free credits. I posted a few, transferred some credits from here and made up a wishlist and put them all on auto. I rely on emails from the site. I totally forget to go there unless i get an email. And let me tell you, they are few and far between. I just make sure I have enough credits for the things I want. I would hate to be penalized because I forget to go there. I am a member in good standing. I have never failed to hold up my end of the bargin which is to send dvds in a timely fashion and to mark as received those that come in the mail.

susan/vt

Date Posted: 7/7/2010 3:57 PM ET
Member Since: 5/13/2010
Posts: 564
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Susan, IF they were to put something in place like this it wouldn't interfere with someone like you. It could easily send an email and from there all you would have to do is log in, no harm done.

 

My point is YES it sends emails but it's not working. It is working for those of us who are active members, but those who aren't are just ignoring the emails and letting their account sit and wait. While others could be getting their WL book while the owner of said WL book is waiting for a response from someone who is no long active. It would also take care of people who want a book that said inactive member has on their bookshelf. They wouldn't have to wait the 5 days with no response and hope they can find another copy and it's not being sent to the same inactive person over and over again. It really wouldn't have much affect on people who are active as you would see the email and gladly log in unlike people are who inactive.  

 

I just think things would move a lot smoother if some of the inactive members went away. I know what i'm thinking is just that thinking. But maybe if the idea is thrown out there PBS's people might think of something a little different and maybe change a few things. Might be high hopes but it doesn't hurt to throw ideas in the wind sometimes.

Date Posted: 7/7/2010 4:18 PM ET
Member Since: 4/7/2008
Posts: 15,690
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Esther - If you feel strongly about it, you can always send in some feedback. The Team doesn't necessarily read the posts in the forums but if they get feedback, they'll keep it mind or just let you know why that can't be done.

Date Posted: 7/7/2010 5:38 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,186
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The problem accounts are the only ones people take note of and come here to complain about. I am quite certain that are many, many accounts where the members only log in when they have activity. I've posted well over 300 wish list books in my time here and would say no more than a handleful timed out on the first person.

If the log-in requirement were in place on the sister sites I would have been closed down numerous times, but I always respond to WL offers and mark everything I receive in a timely fashion. If I were badgered to log in for no reason, I probably would just close my accounts.

IMO there is no need for someone to log on to the site unless they have activity. There are 10X as many members that do not participate in the forums as there are that do. Some people don't want to do anything here but swap books and placing added requirements may just make them not join.

 

I wouldn't be "taking" over her account per say. Basically just monitoring it and when she gets a request or such I would let her know so she could mail the book or accept the request. She really wants to get into PBS so I'm hoping it's not like when she wanted hamsters and then 2 weeks later gave them to me. laugh Btw: This could get her account shut down. A member accessing two accounts is an indicator that one person has two accounts and they will often shut one down. PBS is very strict about 1 account per person and once that flag is tripped, they don't often reverse their decision. If she cannot maintain her account on her own, then she would need to close her account. You cannot be accessing and managing two PBS accounts. One of the reasons many of us do not have our spouses set up their own accounts and do their own trading is because we'd have to help maintain the account to keep it in good standing and that isn't allowed by the PBS Terms of Use. 



Last Edited on: 7/7/10 5:48 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
zeke68 -
Date Posted: 7/7/2010 6:34 PM ET
Member Since: 10/30/2008
Posts: 2,810
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I belong to another site that automatically pauses a user's account and no longer show their items as available if they fail to respond to an email about a swap. If they want to keep the account open, they have to log back in and click a link to reactivate. Yeah, it's a bummer for the first person who doesn't get the item, but it helps the rest of the members.
zeke68 -
Date Posted: 7/7/2010 6:34 PM ET
Member Since: 10/30/2008
Posts: 2,810
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Sorry, computer hiccup.

Last Edited on: 7/7/10 6:36 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 7/7/2010 7:12 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I still don't see how logging in once a month would be that much of a hard ship to people.  If they had a request they would have to log on to deal with that.  So they can't find the time to just log in and then immediately log out so it registers that they still want the account. I do swapadvd and don't usually go on if I dont' have any activity. I don't do much trading there. But if they sent out like an automated reminder of something like "it has been 30 days since you logged into your account.  Please log in within x days if you want to keep your account active"-I would take the 2minutes to log in to keep active.  I think it would be a big help here.  Almost every book I post to FIFO WL gets timed out at least once.  Which is why I started going to the WL threads more. Heck it's why they were started in the first place.  I just put a book on another site because my account is on hold and it timed out on 4 people. Which meant each time it timed out I had to unhold to get it to go to WL again.  After the 4th time I posted it on bookmooch because I have other books to mail and I want it gone.  I'm moving soon and want to purge as many books as I can.  It was snapped up there within an hour.  I would rather have a PBS credit for it but I got tired of waiting and have no other WL books ready to post here right now. 

Date Posted: 7/7/2010 8:01 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,186
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Patricia - what you explain is exactly what happens at PBS.  Accounts are put on hold and the member must log back on for it to be active again. They don't get into details on exactly how many it takes, but  I believe it is only one or two missed transactions. The LH I have dealt with where this happened seemed to have only one or two transactions missed. Contrary to what it may seem like to some, it isn't like a member can have a huge wish list that they are ignoring; accounts are held for missed transactions fairly quickly. The problem is that this site has A LOT more members than any other and with quick signup and no member fee, there's a lot more opportunity for problems.

I still don't see how logging in once a month would be that much of a hard ship to people.  I don't consider it a hardship, but I would consider it an unnecessary annoyance; kind of like a full body cast for a stubbed toe. Instead of being annoyed by something unnecessary, many would just close their accounts. It also wouldn't remove the timing out of transactions because many of those are going to come from active members who have just went on vacation, had an emergency, or were waiting for credits that didn't come in.