Discussion Forums - Questions about PaperBackSwap Questions about PaperBackSwap

Topic: Marked mailed vs actual mailing date

Club rule - Please, if you cannot be courteous and respectful, do not post in this forum.
  Unlock Forum posting with Annual Membership.
Subject: Marked mailed vs actual mailing date
Date Posted: 5/21/2008 8:11 AM ET
Member Since: 6/1/2005
Posts: 11
Back To Top

I know this has been covered here before, but I can't find it. 

How long after a member marks a book mailed does he have to actually mail the book?   

I requested a book in mid May.  The request was accepted, label printed and book marked as mailed within 5 minutes.  It was mailed with delivery confirmation.  The DC tracking shows the book was scanned about 100 miles from the sender's address  6 days after it was marked as mailed. 

The book could have very easily sat in a back room of a Post Office for 6 days. So I'm not  accusing the sender of anything because it is very possible that it wasn't his fault. 

I don't mark a book mailed until I have actually mailled it, but this experience did make wonder if it was ok to mark a book mailed several days before it was actually mailed.



Date Posted: 5/21/2008 8:15 AM ET
Member Since: 1/7/2008
Posts: 413
Back To Top

Here are the official PBS guidelines in terms of marking "mailed".

A book must be mailed within 48 hours of marking it mailed

  • It is okay to mark your book mailed before you have mailed it if:

    • The deadline date falls on a postal holiday
    • Your computer/Internet access is unreliable
    • You plan to mail the book on your way out of town
  • It is not okay to mark your book mailed and delay Mailing it for longer than 48 hours
    • We understand that sometimes circumstances interfere with prompt mailing!  But this should not be a habit.
    • If your mailing is delayed, you must inform the requestor as soon as possible, so that she doesn't think the book is lost in the mail if it was merely mailed late.
    • To contact the requestor from a book transaction: click or on the transaction, to send a Personal Message.

Personally,  I have rarely marked a book mailed unless I was on my way out the door to the mailbox.  Once, I got sick and had to mark the books mailed and then PM'd everybody.  I mailed them the next business day.  I think, you really have to use common courtesey.   

Date Posted: 5/21/2008 9:48 AM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,226
Back To Top

People really aren't supposed to mark them mailed until they are mailed unless one of the reasons listed about are met, then they have up to 48 hours to get it in the mail. Realistically speaking PBS lets them mail it up until it goes lost and the receiver is still required to give them the credit. If they mail it after it goes lost, they are supposed to PM to see if the receiver got another copy from the system before mailing. 

Date Posted: 5/21/2008 10:50 AM ET
Member Since: 10/24/2007
Posts: 63
Back To Top

By the way, it's not unusual to have long delays before the book is scanned.  I'm always curious about what happens to my books after I mail them, and I check the status of my mailed books just about every day.  Many of them sit around for days - sometimes for a week or more - before they get scanned.  (And then there are the books that disappear for a couple of weeks before they get scanned, or never get scanned at all...)  It's very random.

Date Posted: 5/21/2008 12:43 PM ET
Member Since: 6/1/2005
Posts: 11
Back To Top

Thanks, everyone. 

The delay between mailing and the first scan is typical for me but the book is usually close to it's destinaiton when it is first scanned.   I've never had a book scanned so close to home that much after the date mailed. 

Date Posted: 5/22/2008 9:03 AM ET
Member Since: 7/18/2005
Posts: 48
Back To Top

I live in western Indiana and all my DC books get scanned at the distribution center near St. Louis, Missouri.  It may be scanned the next day or two - three days later.  I haven't been using the DC for very long, but so far all the books have been scanned at that point.

Date Posted: 5/22/2008 3:55 PM ET
Member Since: 8/31/2005
Posts: 3,730
Back To Top

I live in CT. If I print DC from my home and put the package in the blue box, it doesn't get scanned until it gets to NJ. Doesn't matter when I mailed it, it always happens that way.

Date Posted: 5/22/2008 5:28 PM ET
Member Since: 8/19/2007
Posts: 4,428
Back To Top

I live in Kansas and mailed a book yesterday, the clerk scanned the DC on it at the time she was printing out the postage, and I got notification this morning that PBS got the information and I got the credit.  I think that's pretty quick and really have to commend USPS.  Pat

Date Posted: 5/23/2008 10:58 PM ET
Member Since: 12/9/2007
Posts: 9,601
Back To Top

I use a little "outpost" post office close to my home.  It's really tiny, but never has a line!  LOL!  So I asked the clerk if she scans the DC there and she said no - so when I checked on a couple of mine - they still said they were scanned in my county which means that they are scanned at the big county PO across the county.  The clerk also told me that sometime this summer there was going to be a "meeting" where they would learn new stuff regarding buying the postage and DC online and how they were to handle it then.  I'm not sure what this means - and neither did she.

Date Posted: 5/24/2008 12:05 AM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
Back To Top

I live on an island.  The only time my books get scanned in my town is if I bring them to the PO.  I only do that if I've screwed up the postage or didn't get them to the Blue Box for a couple days after I printed the DC/Postage.  When I just stick them in the blue box they don't get scanned for a few days.  All the mail, even inter-island mail gets sent to the mainland (an hour away) to be sorted. Media Mail is low priority and can sit for days after it's left at the PO.  I monitered 2 packages I mailed w/DC one time. Put them both in the blue box at the same time. Both were going to the same area of the US.  One left right away and arrived in a few days.  One took a week to leave the postal sorting center and took 3 weeks to arrive.  Both went media mail. 

Date Posted: 5/24/2008 2:44 AM ET
Member Since: 3/8/2007
Posts: 2,550
Back To Top

I have had books not get scanned for 11 days before!

Date Posted: 5/24/2008 9:30 AM ET
Member Since: 6/1/2005
Posts: 11
Back To Top

Again, I wasn't concerned about the timing of the scan.  I've had books not scanned until the day they were delivered.  I've never had a book marked mailed and then scanned for the first time 100 miles away AND 6 days after the date the book was marked mailed. 

Date Posted: 5/24/2008 9:35 AM ET
Member Since: 12/19/2007
Posts: 2,408
Back To Top
I always head to the post office/mailbox, mail the book and then sit down at my computer to mark the book mailed AFTER I mail it. The one time I marked the book mailed as I was leaving the house, I completely forgot to take the book with me. I felt so guilty that I PMd the requestor to confess (I'm not even Catholic but we're talking about a BOOK, after all!). She was very understanding (probably thought I was nuts) and the book went out the next day.
Date Posted: 5/26/2008 11:44 AM ET
Member Since: 10/17/2007
Posts: 1,078
Back To Top

I'm still waiting for a book I requested that had DC.  I'm not sure if it was sent FC or Media mail. But it has never been scanned (no info beyond the "electronic shipping info received") and that was almost a month ago. And it's a wishlisted item, too! :(


Date Posted: 5/26/2008 9:27 PM ET
Member Since: 2/11/2008
Posts: 9,113
Back To Top

I just got a book Saturday (the 24th.)  It was marked mailed on 3 May.  On 17 May I got the routine email asking if it had been received.  The post mark (not the scan but the actual put-it-on-at-the-post-office post mark) was 19 May.  She waited sixteen days since she marked it mailed to take it to the post office. 

That definitely seemed excessive.

Date Posted: 5/26/2008 10:43 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2007
Posts: 1,051
Back To Top

Today is a holiday and I marked my books mailed today because.... tomorrow I won't be able to come to PBS to mark each book "mailed."  I will  usually  mark the night before I mail in the morning if I can't access the computer.