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Topic: Member refused to send because I have conditions! Say what?

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Subject: Member refused to send because I have conditions! Say what?
Date Posted: 5/24/2009 12:22 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 80
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One of the frustrations on PBS is that members can refuse to send a book and post  a reason, but there is no effective way to respond to their message about why they are not sending the book.

One good example of this is that just recently, I had a member refuse to send a book and they stated the following as to why:

I'm sorry but I will not send a book to someone with conditions wether met or not. I think that maybe you should lower your standards when it's free. As long as the books have a front and back cover and all the pages you should be happy.

Now, the way I see it, this is a violation of the spirit of PBS. Since PBS obviously knows that people will not accept just any book, no matter what condition, otherwise they would have allowed member conditions, I believe that members should go along with the conditions listed and send the book if they are met. What kind of book lover has no standards at all for what they add to their collections?

Not to mention, books on PBS are NOT free -- I have to give up a book which I bought AND pay for the postage to send it out for each credit used (or buy the credit outright) when I order a book. Yes, the books cost less here than just about anywhere else -- but they are not free, as postage/shipping costs are still costs.

In any case, I love PBS and just wish more folks would get into the proper spirit of the thing.

Date Posted: 5/24/2009 12:31 PM ET
Member Since: 7/15/2008
Posts: 798
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I agree that the person could have been more polite about it, and PBS standards are definitely higher than "front and back cover and all of the pages." However, some people refuse to send to people with conditions at all.

I decline transactions that are subjective in any way ("like new" "good condition" "no smells"). I always accept when it is something along the lines of "dust jacket" or "smoke free home."  When there is a laundry list of requirements, sorry, not sending my book. If it was a FIFO order, I'll be next, or if it is a wish list book, someone else will snap it up.  Life is too short to read more than a sentence or two about someone's "preferences." I'd rather be reading....

ETA: If you think your RC's might be vague or confusing, you could try posting them here (if you haven't already) and I'm sure everyone would be happy to help you make them a bit clearer and concise.



Last Edited on: 5/24/09 12:33 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 5/24/2009 12:35 PM ET
Member Since: 3/8/2007
Posts: 2,532
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OMG, what a jerk.  Honestly, if someone chooses not to send a book to someone who has conditions, fine.  Thats their choice.  But do they really need to put their message in there?    Keep you book lady/man LOL.

I agree it is a violation of the spirit of pbs.  

Date Posted: 5/24/2009 12:53 PM ET
Member Since: 11/15/2008
Posts: 3,308
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I know that it's frustrating, but honestly I would rather not get one from someone who thinks that I should be happy as long as a book has covers and pages, so you may have saved yourself some aggravation by having those conditions. 

Date Posted: 5/24/2009 1:05 PM ET
Member Since: 1/28/2007
Posts: 765
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ALL books at PBS must meet Book Condition Guidelines.

If you have RCs in addition to the guidelines then you should be prepared to encounter some refusals.  Though, hopefully they will be more tactful than the one you received.  I got rid of my RCs because I came to the conclusion that it's like telling the sender you reserve the right to keep the book and get your credit back if you feel the book doesn't meet your conditions.

With that in mind if your conditions are even slightly vague or subjective you will get refusals.

Date Posted: 5/24/2009 1:21 PM ET
Member Since: 2/11/2007
Posts: 808
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I might be tempted to refuse an RC that re-states existing guidelines: no water damage, underlining, etc,. I can read English and follow rules, so those strike me as slightly insulting. "No bookcrossing or ex-library, etc." I could understand.

Date Posted: 5/24/2009 1:22 PM ET
Member Since: 3/27/2009
Posts: 25,000
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I recently reduced my long RC down to two conditions :

  1. I want the book to match it's display picture
  2. I don't want nicotine damaged books.

Anything else is just repeating the PBS guidelines. Besides, those that need to abide by the RC conditions just send what they feel like sending anyway, so it's pretty pointless.

Date Posted: 5/24/2009 1:27 PM ET
Member Since: 1/30/2009
Posts: 5,696
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Laura - I would likely turn yours down. I get most of my books used and know very little of their history and am not capable of telling the difference between ordinary yellowing with age, and nicotine damage.  Perhaps you could be more specific or explanitory.  JMO.

Date Posted: 5/24/2009 1:30 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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What are your conditions?I turn down any that are too demanding, vague or just long.  Members have a right to turn down any and all RCS just as other members have a right to have them.  Perhaps this person was burned by someone with RCS before on a perfectly postable book and now they just refuse them all. 

The RCS I accept are  a dust jacket requirement when I'm sending a hardcover and it has one and "not currently in a smoking home".  Oh and "no cats".  But even those depend on how they are worded. 

I turned one down recently because someone ordered an audiobook from me and wanted a box  (not even required with audiobooks) that was in mint condition.  The box was in excellent condition but I wasn't going to deal with that picky of a person. 

I do agree that the comments beyond "I don't accept any requests with RCS" was unnecessary.



Last Edited on: 5/24/09 1:30 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 5/24/2009 1:34 PM ET
Member Since: 1/28/2007
Posts: 765
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Laura: >>I don't want nicotine damaged books.<<

I would knowwhether or not I damaged a book with nicotine.  But I have no way of knowing if the previous owner damaged the book with nicotine. Sorry Laura, but I would refuse your RCs.

Dan (for Marilyn)

Date Posted: 5/24/2009 1:39 PM ET
Member Since: 3/27/2009
Posts: 25,000
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But I have no way of knowing if the previous owner damaged the book with nicotine

Nicotine stench has a tendency to slap a reader in the face and give repeated olfactory assaults with each attempt to read the damaged book.

But if that's too hard  to detect (poor sense of smell) or it's asking too much, I'll understand. No hard feelings.

Date Posted: 5/24/2009 1:46 PM ET
Member Since: 1/30/2009
Posts: 5,696
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Nicotine stench has a tendency to slap a reader in the face and give repeated olfactory assaults with each attempt to read the damaged book.

You may want to consider rewording, as I read "nicotine damaged" to mean "nicotine stained" (ETA - nicotine is actually odorless).  Something like "not currently in a smoking home" may be more successful for you, as many people - particularly people who are unsure of their books' histories - turn down smell requests, as they are subjective.  If you don't like that idea, a simple "no books smelling of cigarette smoke" would likely be a better bet.  Again, JMO.



Last Edited on: 5/24/09 1:50 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Subject: Again, no hard feelings. Decline away
Date Posted: 5/24/2009 1:47 PM ET
Member Since: 3/27/2009
Posts: 25,000
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Laura - I would likely turn yours down. I get most of my books used and know very little of their history and am not capable of telling the difference between ordinary yellowing with age, and nicotine damage.

It's okay. Really. Go ahead and turn it down if you can't tell the difference. I need people who collect books from God-knows-where to be able to detect nicotine stench.I don't want to have to toss another book in the trash.

I assumed nicotine stink was an easy one to sniff out, but apparently not. I mean no offense and I am not  being sarcastic, but I learned that a lot of people have poor sniffers.

I am not saying this in an uppity and snarky way at all, so please, please, don't take it that way, people.

 

Date Posted: 5/24/2009 1:49 PM ET
Member Since: 1/28/2007
Posts: 765
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I look at it like this:  http://www.paperbackswap.com/forum/topic.php?t=165571&l=25&ls=0#p3346001

So if the RC is not very clear, then why should I take a chance?

Dan (for Marilyn)

Date Posted: 5/24/2009 1:54 PM ET
Member Since: 1/30/2009
Posts: 5,696
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Laura - not to get all pedantic, but as I added above, nicotine is actually odorless.  It's the smoke that causes the smell, nicotine causes staining.  This is where the confusion on my part sprung from.

Date Posted: 5/24/2009 2:00 PM ET
Member Since: 3/27/2009
Posts: 25,000
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cav,

It's okay, don't worry about the wording I used on this particular forum. That's not the actual wording I use in my RC.

The actual question I ask in my RC:

"Is the book coming from a smoking environment?

If yes, kindly decline this request."

 

Thanks to our discussion about the abilities of noses, it's probably pointless to have even this sentence in there. Seems like we get what we get and if we don't like it, we're SOL.

Date Posted: 5/24/2009 2:02 PM ET
Member Since: 3/27/2009
Posts: 25,000
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nicotine is actually odorless

Well, I learned something just now. Thank you.

Do you think the average PBSer would pick up on this fact or do you think they'd understand the spirit of the RC anyway?

Again, not trying to be a smark alec.

Date Posted: 5/24/2009 2:07 PM ET
Member Since: 1/30/2009
Posts: 5,696
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Ah, the wording in your actual RC is crystal clear.  Sorry about all that, RCs are all in the wording and I thought the above was how yours was actually listed.

Do you think the average PBSer would pick up on this fact or do you think they'd understand the spirit of the RC anyway?

Not that it matters, but I think it's confusing as "damage" connotates something physical to me, not a smell.

Date Posted: 5/24/2009 2:07 PM ET
Member Since: 3/27/2009
Posts: 25,000
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So if the RC is not very clear, then why should I take a chance?

So don't take the chance. Decline away.

 

Date Posted: 5/24/2009 2:29 PM ET
Member Since: 1/28/2007
Posts: 765
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Laura: >>The actual question I ask in my RC:  "Is the book coming from a smoking environment?  If yes, kindly decline this request."<<

Now there's a horse of a different color.  I have no problem with your actual RC.

Dan (for Marilyn)

Date Posted: 5/24/2009 2:35 PM ET
Member Since: 3/27/2009
Posts: 25,000
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Now there's a horse of a different color.  I have no problem with your actual RC.

It's amazing how wording can change everything. Here's my whole RC, copied and pasted:

Hello Fellow PBS Member,

  • Does the requested book's cover match the picture on your PBS bookshelf display? 
  • Is the book coming from a smoking environment?  

If yes to either question, kindly cancel this request.

Thank you for checking,

Laura

I tried to keep it  short, polite, cheerful, crystal clear. It's probably corney, but oh well. I've seen some very rude RCs so I'd rather be corney than rude.

Date Posted: 5/24/2009 2:45 PM ET
Member Since: 1/28/2007
Posts: 765
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To be technically correct wouldn't it be No to the first question or Yes to the second question then kindly cancel this request?

Date Posted: 5/24/2009 3:28 PM ET
Member Since: 3/8/2007
Posts: 2,532
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But the thing about it is, per the message from the sender in the original post, she says

I'm sorry but I will not send a book to someone with conditions wether met or not. I think that maybe you should lower your standards when it's free. As long as the books have a front and back cover and all the pages you should be happy.

Which I interpret is she isnt going to send to any body with ANY conditions, wether they are clear or unclear, long or short, she just aint gonna do it. And  shes   snooty patootie about it.  And that stinks.  I mean really.  If it has a cover and pages you should be happy? 

Tim, sounds like your lucky she didn't send you the book lol!

 

Date Posted: 5/24/2009 4:06 PM ET
Member Since: 3/27/2009
Posts: 25,000
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Yikes Marilyn, You're right!

Going back to adjust the settings. Thanks.

 

Date Posted: 5/24/2009 4:24 PM ET
Member Since: 1/28/2007
Posts: 765
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Laura; I'm wondering why you have that Book Cover RC?  This PBS help section

If the book cover image on a listing in the database is wrong...

says that "Cover images do NOT have to match the book being listed, because sometimes publishers reprint using the same ISBN but a different cover art".  So if there is the same ISBN book with different (new or old) cover art you may not be able to get it?

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