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Topic: New to Paperback Swap - lost book question

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Subject: New to Paperback Swap - lost book question
Date Posted: 10/14/2009 10:10 AM ET
Member Since: 9/15/2009
Posts: 3
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I sent a book out last month that seems to be lost in the postal system.  I'm a little unsure as to what happens next.  The book was sent PBS - DC using postage printed from PBS.  It will be declared lost by PBS this Saturday.  I have PM'd the recipient who has not received the book.  So what happens when PBS declares the book lost?  Do I initiate a trace with the USPS, or does the recipient?  Do I need to wait until Saturday, or can I go ahead and do it today?  I have already received the instant credit for this, so I'm not concerned about that - just not sure about who initiates a USPS search, and when to do it.

Thanks

Deb

Date Posted: 10/14/2009 10:22 AM ET
Member Since: 4/25/2007
Posts: 11,555
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I think either party can initiate the search.  It's usually easier for the sender to do it though since they have both addresses on the package and can describe the package and contents.

Have you checked the DC number online to see what it says?  Definitely have that with you, the PO can hopefully track it down with that.

Date Posted: 10/14/2009 11:27 AM ET
Member Since: 9/15/2009
Posts: 3
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The DC number shows it entering a sort facility in Memphis - but nothing after that.  Can I go ahead an iniate a trace, or do I need to wait until Saturday?

Date Posted: 10/14/2009 1:36 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 9,956
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The receiver of the book will get their credit back when it goes lost, and may just order another copy of the book with it, unless they know for sure that it is coming.

So, you would be the right person to do a search on the book. You can do a trace when you want to, the USPS will not know or care about PBS deadlines.

Since it sounds like it hads been scanned on the way, its likely that it will actually get there, just maybe later than usual. Although, I suppose it could be lost forever, who knows!

Date Posted: 10/14/2009 4:44 PM ET
Member Since: 2/5/2007
Posts: 30,800
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According to the USPS the person who sent the book should be the one to intitate the search.

Date Posted: 10/14/2009 5:55 PM ET
Member Since: 1/4/2006
Posts: 1,464
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The Help Center explains it all.

Date Posted: 10/14/2009 7:57 PM ET
Member Since: 4/17/2008
Posts: 1,194
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"The DC number shows it entering a sort facility in Memphis - but nothing after that.  Can I go ahead an iniate a trace, or do I need to wait until Saturday?"

Unfortunately this seems to be a common occurrence with the Memphis post office. I've had several books from there go lost. 



Date Posted: 10/14/2009 9:21 PM ET
Member Since: 4/6/2007
Posts: 1,412
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Last Edited on: 6/5/11 1:21 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 10/14/2009 10:08 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,476
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And books go "lost" when sent media mail to places like HI, AK, PR, and APOs even though they aren't lost, just slow crossing the ocean.

Date Posted: 10/14/2009 11:20 PM ET
Member Since: 10/2/2007
Posts: 10,281
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I'm curious if it's worth the hassle to go through the process of having the USPS search for a lost book?   I had a book go lost a couple months ago and I just didn't bother initiating a search.   I'm assuming the requestor got their credit back and I was the only one truly out anything so it was my call.  When I thought about it I figured if it was reasonably easy to locate it would surely also show up naturally and be delivered to the person I sent it to.  I've never received word, though, so I'm thinking it's well and truly lost.

So....do most who've had a book go lost initiate a search?  And if so, are books typically found?  And if they're that easy to track down, why aren't they being delivered?  I realize no one here may know the answer to that last question.

Date Posted: 10/15/2009 1:58 AM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,476
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It is good to fill out the paperwork even if you do not need the book or credit.  That is because the PO keeps statistics on the number of items reported as lost.  It is good for PBS as a whole to keep the post office aware of media mail problems.  If we don't report it, it won't get better. 

Date Posted: 10/15/2009 2:44 PM ET
Member Since: 12/9/2007
Posts: 9,601
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"The DC number shows it entering a sort facility in Memphis - but nothing after that.  Can I go ahead an iniate a trace, or do I need to wait until Saturday?"

Unfortunately this seems to be a common occurrence with the Memphis post office. I've had several books from there go lost.

 

I agree with Emily.  It would be very interesting to be abletosee which of the distribution centers have the biggest "black holes".  I know "Federal Way" is one I always hate seeing a book coming to me go into.  It seems books gointo that place and into a "never ending" circle of waiting.  I don't know why this is something I would like to know - but I wish I could see the stats on the different distribution centers.  Maybe it's just a  "horror show" that I can't avoid looking at.

Ruth

Date Posted: 10/16/2009 6:20 AM ET
Member Since: 1/20/2009
Posts: 2,680
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Actually, Federal Way is a pretty good one. Being from Alaska (life-long), all our media mail goes through there. Yes, it takes longer, but they haven't actually lost anything of ours yet (in either direction), as far as I know. Over twenty+ years of mailing and receiving stuff, that's pretty good stats. So, I'm guessing that they're likely ranked as one of the better ones as far as number of lost packages goes.

I would take accuracy over speed any day.

Sianeka - ,
Date Posted: 10/16/2009 1:51 PM ET
Member Since: 2/8/2007
Posts: 6,630
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I have had looooonnnnnng waits with books going through the Brea, CA distribution center...