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Topic: puzzled over RC...Update

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Subject: puzzled over RC...Update
Date Posted: 5/31/2010 3:18 PM ET
Member Since: 12/21/2007
Posts: 1,642
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I've got a puzzler for an RC. The smoke-free environment one is okay, understand that. Next part though, I'm confused. "Please do not tape over delivery barcode. This makes it easier for us both to track."

I'm totally confused by this. Do they mean DC? Or the delivery barcode at the bottom? If they mean the delivery barcode at the bottom, I don't see how it truly can be tracked because I don't get any tracking from that, unless they mean the little truck you can follow. Now I tend to tape over my barcodes because I have an inkjet printer and have seen the ink smear just from a drop of water on a document. I've never had a problem with my books being delivered--the tape is clear after all.

I'm just confused.  Do I accept, not accept? I kind of want these books to go out together just to save postage. They ordered 2 in a series. But I'm not willing to take a ding either.

Help please!

 

UPDATE: I Pm'd the requestor and she PM'd back stating that she had been advised that tape could make the scan hard for the USPS to read. However I had explained that I've never had difficulty with it and she said she's going to revise her RCs to reflect that.



Last Edited on: 5/31/10 9:13 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 5/31/2010 3:20 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I think they're talking about the DC barcode because that's the only way they'd be able to track the books progress.  I'd be wondering if they expect people who don't normally use DC to use it for them.  My guess is they probably got a few books that took the scenic route because the DC code got messed up. Either that or they are compulsive DC checkers and hate not seeing scans on a DC book.  Really any scans before delivery are bonus and not even required.

Date Posted: 5/31/2010 3:24 PM ET
Member Since: 8/18/2005
Posts: 7,977
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It's been questioned and addressed by the site. A lot of people may not have seen it.

 

http://www.paperbackswap.com/help/search.php?terms=tape+over

Is it okay to tape over the Delivery Confirmation bar code?

The USPS says that clear tape is fine over the DC barcode.

  • In our testing, the scanners were able to read the bar code through the tape.
    • This was true if the tape was not excessively wrinkled.
  • However, some members have reported that their Post office scanners were not able to read the bar code through the tape
    • it seems that not all scanners are of equal quality.
  • Why take a chance? With a little planning and forethought, it is possible to secure the end of the package without taping over the bar code.

So...try not to tape over the bar code, but if you have already done so and sent the book, just hope for the best!

Do be sure not to tape over the postage; USPS will not accept this.

  • Stamps applied to tape can also be prone to falling off a package.
Date Posted: 5/31/2010 3:42 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,471
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I also use an ink jet printer.   So I've taken to putting tape over the address, the numbers on the DC, and my return address (with the PBS code number).  This lets the DC bar code be scanned but keeps the bar code numbers for manual entry (in case of moisture).

PBS postage and DCs can also be re printed.  For when the tape does wrinkle over the bar code.

Date Posted: 5/31/2010 3:42 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,200
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Yes, they mean the Delivery Confirmation bar code. On the USPS website its called "track and confirm" even though delivery is the only required scan. It is up to you if you want to accept or decline. The only grey area I can see is if they are requiring DC.

If the book was mailed with DC, but with tape on it, I don't see how they would get their credit back since it really doesn't affect anything other than their obsessiveness on watching DC scans (though the tape will not affect any enroute scans regardless of what they think. The machines can scan through tape just fine and that's what does the enroute scans, its only some PO scanners that are old and have problems). I can't really see how that is an enforceable RC.

Date Posted: 5/31/2010 4:07 PM ET
Member Since: 1/29/2006
Posts: 54,837
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Yes, I do tape over for the same reason...the ink smears if it gets even a bit wet.  

An alternative might be to just NOT use PBS DC on this package...if you dno't use it, you can't tape over it, rendering that portion of the RC a non issue.  OTOH, a bulk order is when one most likes to use the DC, so that's a bit of a pain...

I'm not sure I agree about it being unenforceable.  I mean, I would HOPE so but if the RC is ignored and she complains to TPTB, what will they say?  While I agree it shouldn't be an issue, I wouldn't want to be the one to give it a test run, either.

Date Posted: 5/31/2010 4:25 PM ET
Member Since: 12/9/2007
Posts: 9,601
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I don't think there should be a RWAP on someone who uses tape over the DC if the book gets to them within the time limit and is postable.  They got their book.  What else should they get the postable book and their credit back, too??  That wouldn't be fair.  And if the book didn't show up, then no one can blame taping over the RC because how would we know?  I guess the best thing to do with this RC would be to put a piece of plastic covering the whole label and then tape it down all around it so no moisture could land right on the label.  But that seems extreme.  If the package gets wet enough, the ink is going to run no matter what you do.  Fortunately, that hardly ever happens.  It does happen, but not often. 

I look at the Details on books I have out and those that are coming to me when there's DC, but frequently, there's only the delivery at unit scan.  I've never been able to pinpoint tape as a reason that it wasn't scanned before that.

Ruth

Date Posted: 5/31/2010 5:03 PM ET
Member Since: 12/21/2007
Posts: 1,642
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I think in this case, I'm going to accept and send a PM to them explaining my predicament.

Date Posted: 5/31/2010 5:08 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,200
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I'm not sure I agree about it being unenforceable.  I mean, I would HOPE so but if the RC is ignored and she complains to TPTB, what will they say?  While I agree it shouldn't be an issue, I wouldn't want to be the one to give it a test run, either.

They usually won't even get involved and in the past they have said that not following an RC (like asking for plastic wrap) that does not affect the delivery or the condition of the book would not result in a problem swap.

Date Posted: 5/31/2010 5:46 PM ET
Member Since: 10/22/2009
Posts: 1,452
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That's a strange one!  In actuality, I think NOT taping over the DC barcode can make more problems with the item not being scanned properly.  I've had one book that never was scanned on it's way to me, even tough it had DC.  When I got it, the label was smeared--it's actually amazing the package got to me at all!  Had the sender taped over the mailing label and DC barcode I'm sure it would have been scanned at least once or twice.

I've always taped over my DC barcodes--and they've always been scanned at least two or three times along the way.

Date Posted: 5/31/2010 5:54 PM ET
Member Since: 1/29/2006
Posts: 54,837
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They usually won't even get involved

They do get involved, though, and you can't ever really be sure when they will and when they won't.  My point is simply that I wouldn't make any assumptions that "it'll be fine", because you can't really be sure until it's been tried. 

I've always taped over my DC barcodes--and they've always been scanned at least two or three times along the way.

This has been my experience, too, Laura.  It sounds like this person, with the RC, maybe has encountered one of the POs with the older equipment that doesn't scan well. 

Date Posted: 5/31/2010 6:39 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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The RC doesn't specifically say that you have to use DC. So if you don't then I wouldn't worry about it.  If they do mean the barcode under the address adn you tape over that-or you use DC and tape over it-I wouldn't worry about an RWP.  I think that's one where PBS would see was kind of a non-sense one.  I seriously doubt that they'd jump in and take a credit from you for a postable book because you taped over one of the bar codes.

Date Posted: 6/1/2010 1:15 PM ET
Member Since: 1/7/2005
Posts: 608
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I always tape over the DC barcode and I have everything scanned at the post office, so I know that it scans OK. I would decline this Requestor because I decline all RC's that require changing how I mail things.

Date Posted: 6/1/2010 2:10 PM ET
Member Since: 10/13/2007
Posts: 36,445
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Some places do still have the older equipment.. We at work use envolopes that have those clear plastic address windows and just before christmas 80% of them got lost, guess what was in them. Our paychecks! ARGH! Seems the machine has issues reading thru the plastic windows with all the extra work load that christmas puts onthe USPS. 
Our PO advises us not to tape over due to them knowing the sorting machine for our area walked with the dinosaurs. LOL 
Never had an issue with getting mail and have had some taped over.  Just makes it take longer in some cases.

Date Posted: 6/1/2010 3:53 PM ET
Member Since: 8/10/2005
Posts: 4,601
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I would have no qualms over turning that one down. I tape over all my labels with the thick Scotch brand packaging tape and always have. I've sent hundreds of books with the DC barcode taped over had virtually no problems with books not being scanned somewhere along the journey.

I respect the person's right to ask that tape not be used over barcodes on the books being sent to them, and I would honor that right by declining the order. Like Elaine, I have a way of mailing things that works well for me with a minimum of fuss and that gets the books where they need to go without problems 99.9% of the time. I'm not going to fiddle with my method.

Cheryl

Date Posted: 6/1/2010 3:57 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,200
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Yay, glad you were able to talk it out so she learned something and gets her books  and you get to get 2 credits and save on postage! Win-win. Communication goes a long way sometimes.