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Topic: Am I Interpreting PBS's Rules/Help Doc Correctly?

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Subject: Am I Interpreting PBS's Rules/Help Doc Correctly?
Date Posted: 8/14/2012 12:37 PM ET
Member Since: 3/10/2006
Posts: 2,819
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OK, so here's an interesting one. A PBS member sent me a hardcover book, and it arrived yesterday. She didn't use *any* kind of wrapper at all, she just taped the mailing label to the book, and had that label go around the page side of the book so it wouldn't open. WOW!

Miraculously, from Iowa to New York, there didn't seem to be any rain that ruined the book. After carefully taking the tape off the book, there was no damage there, either. What a gamble she took.

I don't want a credit back but feel like she should get a RWAP for the incredibly dumb way she didn't wrap the book. But the help doc "how to wrap a book" doesn't seem to lend itself to interpreting this as a RWAP.

PBS states that:

The basics: you are creating a sturdy package that will totally enclose the book(s) in your shipment, using shipping (not Scotch) tape, so that the contents will get to the destination safe and sound.

They repeat the rule of "book must be completely enclosed" a couple times in the doc.  But at the bottom of the page, PBS states:


If you receive a book that you think was inadequately wrapped

  • We ask that you give gentle feedback to the sender, to help him or her improve wrapping technique.
  • Doing this not only helps the sender, but also all the future members she or he swaps with, and is a service to the Club as a whole.
  • There are many options for wrapping a book. Everyone needs to experiment a little, to find the method that works best for him or her!

So, ultimately this doesn't seem to be deemed a RWAP, I just need to politely chew her out for her lame non-wrapping skills.  Correct?

Date Posted: 8/14/2012 12:43 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,220
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Correct. If the book was not damaged, then there would be no Problem. Send them the Help Center document stating that the wrapper MUST cover the book and MUST NOT be tapped directly to the book (the damned wrapper says right on it to not tape it to the bookangry)

Sianeka - ,
Date Posted: 8/14/2012 12:44 PM ET
Member Since: 2/8/2007
Posts: 6,630
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Yes, you are correct.


The book you received miraculously didn't get damaged due to her incredibly inadequate wrapping job, so it isn't Received With A Problem (RWAP) but instead received satisfactorily.  But a polite courtesy note to this member would definitely be a GREAT idea, to prevent her from receiving RWAPs in future and help future members that will be requesting books from her from getting potentially disappointing swaps.

Date Posted: 8/14/2012 1:13 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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I'd also be looking for a reason to RWAP.   But two Tour Guides have weighed in, so if the book arrived in postable condition there's no cause to RWAP.  Mark it received and definately pm the sender.

Last Edited on: 8/14/12 1:14 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 8/14/2012 1:20 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,485
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Please be sure to send the PM from the book order details.  This way PBS has access to it through the other member's transaction archive.  Having a history of problems helps PBS deal with it.

Date Posted: 8/14/2012 7:47 PM ET
Member Since: 3/10/2006
Posts: 2,819
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I sent a polite PM (via book order details).  Here was her lovely response:

Thanks for policing a site that is based on anti-consumerism and sharing. Since I have received many books sent in the wrapper, and none of them are ruined, my observations suggest it is statistically unlikely that a book will be rained on. (For that matter, none of my mail, which is always put in the impermeable metal mailbox by the mail carrier, is ever rained on.) If a book arrives ruined by rain because the receiver has a mailbox made out of paper or some other non-traditional and permeable material, it is me who loses a credit. I'll tend to my own problems myself, as you may yours, but thank you very much big brother, and you're welcome for the book that arrived in good shape.

Date Posted: 8/14/2012 7:56 PM ET
Member Since: 10/13/2007
Posts: 36,445
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WOW, someone has issues. I would send the reply to TPTB since they aren't very nice or wishing to follow rules.

There is a big difference between using the print out with address as a wrapper and just using it to keep the book closed. One is fully wrapped and the other is leaving the ends open.

Plastic (which would stop some water) is not required.

Date Posted: 8/14/2012 8:50 PM ET
Member Since: 11/30/2007
Posts: 5,013
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Sounds like the sender needs to use a bit of common sense plus it took her longer to write a paragraph than it did for her to wrap your book via PBS rules. Yes, send her response to the PBS team, sounds like an explanation of the rules from the powers to be, needs to be sent to the sender.

Last Edited on: 8/14/12 8:57 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 8/14/2012 9:15 PM ET
Member Since: 12/3/2005
Posts: 3,394
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Wow.  I seriously hope karma delivers her a nasty RWAP in the near future. 

Date Posted: 8/14/2012 9:16 PM ET
Member Since: 9/22/2010
Posts: 3,514
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Wow! That is hard to believe. I wonder if you can mail other things that way too? Like guns, drugs, people? smiley

Date Posted: 8/15/2012 7:31 AM ET
Member Since: 10/23/2005
Posts: 7,719
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That is incredible. She does make nice use of the word pereable, though. I dont think I have ever even used that word once in a sentence in my whole 53 years on this planet.

I think the book may have arrived unscathed because it was such a novelty to the PO workers, that they were gentler than usualy with it. If everyone started to do this the novetly would surely wear off and there would be damaged books all over the postal system.

And just a comment about this:

Thanks for policing a site that is based on anti-consumerism and sharing.

While she is correct it is a site based on sharing, it is not a site based on anti-consumerism. Surely, if no one bought new books there soon be no books to trade because everyone one would at some point in time have read everything there was to offer that interested them. Plus, where would PBS be if no one bought any printer paper or packing tape or postage? I dont see any protest about consumerism here, just a way to share our love of books.

Date Posted: 8/15/2012 8:33 AM ET
Member Since: 7/12/2010
Posts: 4,177
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Now its official!

All of you WOW wannabes owe me a drink! wink


Date Posted: 8/15/2012 12:55 PM ET
Member Since: 8/10/2005
Posts: 4,601
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Holy crap! At least she couched her sarcasm in a somewhat pleasant, literate manner. But still...what an arrogant cow! I would have done the same thing you did...in fact, I HAVE done the same thing, a few times. Most of the time it's newbies who just don't know yet how to wrap a book and they are appreciative of the heads up. I really would like to be around when karma slaps her in the face, that's for sure. LOL


Date Posted: 8/15/2012 3:00 PM ET
Member Since: 3/13/2009
Posts: 8,022
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I'd report it to TPTB.  She needs a note from the admins to tell her that her wrapping was not appropriate, apparently.

Date Posted: 8/15/2012 8:33 PM ET
Member Since: 2/26/2009
Posts: 37,512
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Whoa!!  ARE YOU KIDDING ME!!!   That takes a sh#tload of nerve.  Definitely notify tptb. Unbelievable!! 

Date Posted: 8/15/2012 9:59 PM ET
Member Since: 9/8/2009
Posts: 626
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WOW! (Rob, you crack me up every time ... Place your drink order!) To her credit, that was a very well written insult. LOL I guess libraries must be anti-consumerism too, evil entities that they are. Your sender seems to be doubly guilty of the practice... Participating in PBS and refusing to buy proper mailing supplies!