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Topic: Minor rant about offering WL books---remember they need to be postable

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Subject: Minor rant about offering WL books---remember they need to be postable
Date Posted: 7/15/2008 8:54 AM ET
Member Since: 8/25/2007
Posts: 13,134
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I love that we are willing to offer WL books to each other here and I have gotten quite a few books from a number of people.  However, I have also received a couple books that should not have been posted/offered for credit.  One had a clearly cleaved spine and the other had obvious water damage to about 1/2 of the book.  Both were still readable of course, but that's not the point.  Because I stupidly did not flip through either book closely when I got them, I didn't notice the problems till well after I marked them as being received, so I ended up losing out on being able to re-offer those for invididual credit.   I also did not PM either sender, which I probably should have done, but since I did not get around to reading the books till several months after I got them, I felt it was too late and since I didn't check when I got them, it was my fault that I basically lost two credits.  I also want to mention that I got both of these book a number of months ago, and neither were from the "regulars" who post here frequently. 

I guess I just want to reiterate for those who apparently don't know/remember that even WL books have to meet posting standards, regardless of whether there is 1 wisher or 1,000, and also remind everyone to thoroughly check books received before marking them, as it's not always apparent by just a glance that they have damage. 

Just my PSA for the day.  Thanks.  :-)

 

Date Posted: 7/15/2008 9:42 AM ET
Member Since: 8/11/2005
Posts: 467
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I totally feel your frustrations. This has happened to me before too. I pretty much only order WL'd books (unless someone's deal looks pretty darn good) so having one come to me damaged is so frustrating after having to wait for it for so long. I too am one of those people who open the package and say "Yea..the book came!" only to sit it aside for months before actually picking it up to read. So your scenario is likely to be mine too.

Date Posted: 7/15/2008 9:54 AM ET
Member Since: 2/28/2008
Posts: 2,553
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I've been getting enough cleaved spines lately that I finally had to add a requestor condition that I do not want them. That was after I picked up a Katherine Sutcliffe book I had ordered that had the spine cleaved in two places and about a third of the front cover had been snipped off by scissors. I think that the sender throught since she included the book as part of a deal it was okay to send, but even if you are doing a 3/1 deal or something all those books need to be postable, it shouldn't have been on her PBS bookshelf in the first place. 

Date Posted: 7/15/2008 9:58 AM ET
Member Since: 8/12/2006
Posts: 1,012
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I think it is really important to let people know when they send a book that is not in postable condition.  I have a feeling not everyone has the same view on what is and is not postable, even following the PBS rules. I personally would like to be told if something I sent out is not in postable condition. 

I have received quite a few books that look great from the outside and when reading have food or stains and are sometimes even torn on the inside pages.  These are things that nobody would notice unless they read the book.  To me, this is worse than receiving a book that is slightly wrinkled from water.  I personally do not care too much because I don't keep many books.  Even on the books I do want to keep, I know I am taking a chance on getting a book that is not pristine by ordering it from a used book swap site.  We just take our chances, but should be able to receive a book that at least meets the PBS conditions. 

I will be honest and say I am not entirely sure what a cleaved book looks like.  If I have received one or sent one out, I probably don't even know.

 

 

 

 

Date Posted: 7/15/2008 10:01 AM ET
Member Since: 8/25/2007
Posts: 13,134
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Kim, you're avi-less!   What's up with that??

Date Posted: 7/15/2008 10:03 AM ET
Member Since: 8/12/2006
Posts: 1,012
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avi-less?? 

Date Posted: 7/15/2008 10:11 AM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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Where you have to be careful with offering WL books is when you find them in thrift stores or the UBS, or someplace like that, and you get all excited & grab it because you know it's WL, but it really may not be worth grabbing:P  I have two copies of The Last Hellion sitting in the repairs box I keep on my kitchen table, and both of them have badly cleaved spines.  I got them at various places to post here, because I knew that some of you would be wishing for them, but when I got ready to offer them, I realized that they were not postable:P  I actually have - and have had - quite a few other hard to find books in there too; I'm slow with getting through them & repairing & passing them on to wherever, but there is some turnover going on there:P  I have this plastic tote I keep on my table now with about 18 or so books in it that need repairs - cleaved spines mostly, but a few have warped pages that I want to experiment with smoothing out, or rough looking covers that I want to clean up & laminate, remove stickers from, etc.  Not all of them are WL - some are just nice, even new looking books that would be perfect, if not for a fixable flaw that makes it either unacceptable to me personally to send them on, or they're unpostable by PBS guidelines as well.  I don't do the unpostable giveaway thing though, and I know this probably sounds stupid, but I can't bring myself to pass them along with their little infirmities without doing what I can to fix them (like they're on little crutches or something:P).  Sometimes, and it's not so very often, I just run across things that are beyond my ability to fix, and I have to write them off.  Those I end up donating to the thrift store, and I do that because if someone is going to get a flawed book through me, I'd like for them to be able to see & handle it before they buy it.

Date Posted: 7/15/2008 10:41 AM ET
Member Since: 2/13/2008
Posts: 65
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Okay, I have to ask. How do you repair cleaved spines on paperbacks? I have been taking care of my own keeper books for a while-- mostly just laminating and bookcovering, with a little bit of page cleaning. I just started the Tech Services stuff at the library last week, so I don't know some of this yet. Can such a book be posted here after repairs? I have some waiting to go to the UBS that need that kind of TLC.

I would have to agree that I would like to know if I have sent something that didn't make the grade. I do know even with the guidelines it is still hard to know if something is acceptable to everyone else.  Is it wrong to retire a book from my keeper room that I have laminated/bookcovered and send it out on PBS? If a book is still fairly tight, without any broken/cleaved spine, but has the wear marks on the spine, is that still okay? I would personally still be delighted with such a book!  Water damage I understand, but what about one or two pages that have been thumb-marked? My rule of thumb for postable books is if I would buy it at 1/2 cover price at a UBS, or if I would make the book a keeper as opposed to unpostables being a reading only copy or I'd buy only from a 50 cent table.

I don't expect the books I get to look like they just came from the bookstore, or at least the remainder bin. A used, read, loved, well taken care of book is just fine with me. Though I do have to admit that some of the books I have gotten look BETTER than some I've bought new from Major Bookstores!

Date Posted: 7/15/2008 10:48 AM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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I'm going out for my daily Starbuck's fix, but I'll post that info on repairing cleaved spines as soon as I get back:P

Date Posted: 7/15/2008 11:46 AM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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Ok, I've got it.  This is a thread I put up a while back on repair tips for unpostable books.  There are directions in there on how to repair cleaved spines, and links to a pdf manual from Brodart - they make book repair supplies for libraries, etc:  www.paperbackswap.com/forum/topic.php

Yell if you run into any trouble or need some suggestions.  For general book cleaning - on covers & dustjackets, I like Goo Gone spray gel myself, and there's a great cleaning paste I found recently called Absorene that's nothing short of amazing when it comes to cleaning stains & general crud off of pages.  I think it was originally made to be used as a wallpaper cleaner, but they have a paste specifically for books & documents as well.  They also make a variety of cleaning cloths & sponges - my favorites are their micropore cloths & dry cleaning sponges.  You can order direct from them here at their website: www.absorene.com/  but there are also plenty of other book repair & cleaning product suppliers online.

 

Date Posted: 7/15/2008 12:04 PM ET
Member Since: 2/28/2008
Posts: 2,553
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Thanks Kim, this will be very useful for me.

Date Posted: 7/15/2008 12:18 PM ET
Member Since: 5/3/2006
Posts: 6,436
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That always happens to me - I find a seemingly perfect book in the UBS and then later I notice one splotch of water damage.

Date Posted: 7/15/2008 12:21 PM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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You're welcome, Sarah.  Oh!  If anyone wants to order the Absorene cleaning putty, don't get it direct from Absorene or you'll pay a small fortune for the shipping.  I posted that link and then looked at the shipping charge and about keeled over:P  I got mine from Brodart because I use some of their other products like the repair adhesive (which I swear by), and the shipping is pretty cheap.  I think less than $5 for a tub of the Absorene book & document cleaner.

... And airhead goober that I am, I forgot to put in a link for Brodart's repair & cleaning supplies catalogue:P  Here: www.shopbrodart.com/site_pages/yourhomelibrary/book_repair.htm



Last Edited on: 7/15/08 12:29 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 7/15/2008 1:45 PM ET
Member Since: 5/2/2008
Posts: 75
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Dawn I understand what your saying but I have been burned both ways but more often by waiting on them to be posted to my wish list. The worst thing is you don't know until you start reading the book and the pages start falling out because if you just do a quick flip through you don't catch it and you've already said it was good.

Date Posted: 7/15/2008 3:15 PM ET
Member Since: 1/11/2007
Posts: 1,646
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I hear you.  It seems that WL books are often in the worst shape of all. 

 

I remember I waited and waited for Judith Ivory's Sleeping Beauty and when it finally arrived it was falling apart so bad that it took me a week of repairs and special glue (that I bought at my own expense) to make it at least "readable" though not postable.  I was so mad!  I did finally get my credit back, but had to argue with the person who said she got it from a pbs buddy who "didn't have a problem with it."  Arghh!

Date Posted: 7/15/2008 4:43 PM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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I love those idiots.  They make me feel like Dirty Harry:P  Report the living snot out of them I say.  I'll never argue with someone over a lousy credit.  If I miss a cleaved spine or something that makes a book unpostable - and I have so many books that I bought used and haven't read myself, sooner or later I'm going to miss something - just let me know and I'll refund the credit immediately.  And use the book to paper the canary cage - I don't care:P  I can't get over the people who expect you to send it back, and pay for return postage in order to get a credit you've already laid out your postage money for once.  It's bad enough to have to go back and order something all over again without all of the drama.  Who doesn't just want to get what they ordered - a book that doesn't have to be perfect, but is still acceptable according to the PBS posting rules - the first time they request it?



Last Edited on: 7/15/08 4:45 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 7/15/2008 7:34 PM ET
Member Since: 4/25/2007
Posts: 11,460
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I don't care if it's months later, I'd still want to know if I sent out an unpostable book.  I do try and look them over carefully but I do post stuff without reading it so I could miss damage making a book unpostable.

I have repaired minor damage to a book and posted it for credit.  Only after making sure it's entirely in postable condition and there is no sign of it having been repaired in the first place.  Some, you can only repair good enough to read but not good enough to post for credit.

Date Posted: 7/16/2008 3:26 PM ET
Member Since: 4/7/2008
Posts: 15,690
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Sorry, gals but English is not my first language and now and then I find an expression that I've never heard before. What is a cleaved spine?

I always make sure that my books are in PBS postable condition but a lot of people got different ideas what is 'postable.' For instance, a small rip in the cover doesn't make a book unpostable (as long as is less than an inch) and a signature in title page is OK but I know some people object to that - just yesterday, somebody ordered a WL book from me and she had a LOT of conditions (no writing in title page, no stickers, no yellow pages, no smoke odor, no pet hair etc. etc.) She was lucky that I actually had a new copy because somebody gave me a book for which I had the audiobook. If that hadn't been the case, I wouldn't have felt comfortable fulfilling the request (I would have felt that I would miss something.) Although I thought that was a bit too much, I felt it was great that that person made sure everybody understood her conditions - she probably doesn't get to many books but that's the price she pays.



Last Edited on: 7/16/08 3:27 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 7/16/2008 4:23 PM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2007
Posts: 4,058
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It's basically a cracked binding with exposure of the back side of the cover in between the pages.  It happens in long splits, where the binding is completely broken or "cleaved" into sections or in half, and the cover is exposed top to bottom, or it happens in little intermittent slashes or "pinholes", which are small separations in the binding, and between the pages.  I had some pics bookmarked, but can't seem to locate them now.  Sometimes it's just in one or two places, sometimes it happens all through the book, and where the binding is actually broken top to bottom, pages will invariably be falling out.

Date Posted: 7/16/2008 5:28 PM ET
Member Since: 2/21/2008
Posts: 4,433
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Kim thanks for posting that because I didn't what cleaved spine was but I actually did gets books like that before but after reading the book, I usually throw the book out. I hate getting books like that too.