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Topic: A question about an unhappy receiver

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Subject: A question about an unhappy receiver
Date Posted: 11/16/2011 1:54 PM ET
Member Since: 6/27/2006
Posts: 10
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I just received a PM from a member that I sent a book to.  She thanked me for sending her the book but said it is the only book she has ever received that wasn't in perfect condition (it was an older out of print paperback that was in good condition but had a worn cover with a bend in the corner).

I'm wondering about what the protocol would be in a situation like this - should I give her a credit back?  But then I'm out a book and $2.50 for the money I spent on sending it to her.  The book is perfectly readable there was no water damage and the cover wasn't even remotely falling off it was just bent in one corner and was a bit frayed. So it was within the posting limits.  I just feel bad that she received a book and she was unhappy with it's condition. I've had books that have more worn than normal and I would send a pm to the member requesting it and warn them and make sure they still wanted me to send it, but this book I didn't feel needed that type of treatment because it's condition wasn't that bad.  I'm really not sure how to respond to this lady.

I also one time had a complaint that the mailman bent the book (it was a children's staple bound book) when he put it in her mail box.  She was upset that I didn't use any type of reinforcement like cardboard to protect the book and that I didn't mark "Do not bend" on the envelope.  Wouldn't the weight of the added cardboard have added to the cost of shipping?  I offered to give her a credit back but she wouldn't take it.  I guess some people just want to have something to complain about when their books aren't in perfect condition when they arrive. 

Date Posted: 11/16/2011 1:59 PM ET
Member Since: 3/13/2009
Posts: 8,022
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If it was postable when you mailed it, you don't owe the person anything.  I wouldn't respond at all, personally.  If the person wanted a book in pristine condition, they should use their RC to say so.

Date Posted: 11/16/2011 2:34 PM ET
Member Since: 2/26/2009
Posts: 35,925
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The book you sent met posting guidelines, so I wouldn't return the credit... especially because it was an OLDER out of print book-  she should be happy she was able to get it.   (personally, I think she had a lot of nerve pm'g you to begin with)

As far as the bent book- the added piece of cardboard probably wouldn't have raised the shipping cost, and if it did, it would be very little.  I always take care to wrap appropriately so that the package will arrive in good condition, so with a thin book that could bend,  I would definitely have added the cardboard.  As a matter of fact, I mailed one the other day and didn't have any stiff cardboard (only had the kind that cereal boxes are made of, which is too thin), so I wrapped it in bubble wrap.  The thickness of doing so made it difficult to bend. 

 

Date Posted: 11/16/2011 2:52 PM ET
Member Since: 9/8/2009
Posts: 615
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Holy moly, did she actually complain because it wasn't in "perfect condition?"  IMHO, that takes a LOT of nerve.  I'm with Jennifer.... No credit refund necessary.  Personally, I'd probably send her a PM and suggest that she might want to add an RC for "like new condition" so that she's not disappointed in future transactions.

As for the bent book, take the advice for what you will.  It makes sense to add a little cardboard if that's practical to do, but some people simply love to give advice as to how people could do things "better."  As long as you wrapped it according to PBS guidelines, you did nothing wrong. 

Date Posted: 11/16/2011 2:59 PM ET
Member Since: 7/7/2007
Posts: 4,815
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<<I wouldn't respond at all, personally.>>

You do need to respond to her PM -- otherwise, if she reports you to PBS for being non-responsive, they will take your lack of response as an admission of guilt.

As others said, if the book met the posting requirements and RCs (if there were any), you are fine.  You can write back and politely decline to refund her credit, citing the appropriate parts of the Help Center as needed.  You might gently suggest that she use RCs if she is unwilling to accept books with bent corners, since they're otherwise postable.  You could ask if she could provide a photo of the damage, to help you better understand her concerns.  She could upload a photo to a photo sharing site, like Photobucket, and send you the link.

 

Date Posted: 11/16/2011 3:04 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 9,790
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Did she mark the book RWAP, or did she just PM you hoping you'd feel bad and want to give her a credit?

If she didn't mark the book RWAP, then start there and make sure she marks the book received somehow before you adress anythign else. People are not allowed to "hold the credit hostage" to get your agreement to refund it before they even give it to you in the first place.

Then, if she did not request for her credit back in her PM, you don't need to address the credit question at all. Reply with a nice short message. "So sorry you are unhappy with the condition of the book. It is postable according to the rules at PBS. Hope you enjoy reading it!"

People who want their credit back need to request it back in their message. That's in the rules, too.

If she does ask for her credit back, and she marked the book RWAP, then send her a different nice message. "So sorry you are unahppy about the condition of the book. I feel it is postable according to the rules at PBS, and nothing in your description has mad eme think that it is not still postable. I am declining to return your credit for this reason. Hope you enjoy the book anyway."

Don't feel bad at all. There is really no need to. She has a book she can read, and it is also postable.

Your obligation to the other members of PBS is to send out postable books. Other member's obligations are to be happy with postable books, or to make an RC that expresses what they will be happy with, if it is not postable books.

Personally, I wouldn't feel bad about the lady who complained to you about what her mailman did to her mail. She contacted you about it because she could. The proper person for her to address her concerns to is to her mailman. She can place a sign above her mailbox that says "Please do not fold mail". It is not your job to package all books that you mail (because it woudl be ALL books, right) such that a careless mailman can't possible destroy it.



Last Edited on: 11/16/11 3:11 PM ET - Total times edited: 3
Date Posted: 11/16/2011 3:28 PM ET
Member Since: 4/23/2007
Posts: 9,497
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Sara put it perfectly. Follow her advice.

Date Posted: 11/16/2011 4:26 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,187
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In responding to her, I would guide her to the Help Center where it will tell her what is postable and what she needs to do if she wants books that are in better than that condition. She may not know what postable is and is thinking that what she has received is the expected. Instead of getting mad at her, I'd use it as an opportunity to educate her.

The book is perfectly readable <-- This phrase does usually make me cringe because it is often defending a book that isn't in very good shape. I do hope the sum-total of your book was still in "good condition and not excessivly worn" because some books can be technically postable, but still be undesireable due to a lot of "postable" defects on the book adding up. Most people use the guideline of "would I be happy to receive this book for a credit?" or "would I go into a used book store and pay $2.50-$3 for this book?" to decide if they will post a book or not.

Date Posted: 11/16/2011 5:10 PM ET
Member Since: 3/13/2009
Posts: 8,022
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She didn't mention it being marked "RWAP", so I just assumed the perosn sent a PM.  Oops.  Yeah, if they marked it "RWAP", then do respond.  Otherwise, there's no need.



Last Edited on: 11/16/11 5:11 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 11/16/2011 5:51 PM ET
Member Since: 6/27/2006
Posts: 10
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Yes, she did use the "perfect condition" term. I couldn't help but to think that she probably hadn't gotten very many books through this book club.  Maybe she's a new member.

I'm not sure what RWAP means.  Is it something about  making a formal complaint?  She didn't do that.  She was just letting me know in a pm that she really didn't like the condition it was in.  She didn't ask for a credit back but I questioned that maybe I should have given her a credit back just because she wasn't happy with it and I wanted to "play nice".  But then I thought, why should I?  There were no special clauses in her initial request of what she would not accept. And I paid money to send ther the book so she would win twice and I would lose, the book, the money I used to send it and the credit.  So I decided not to offer to give her a credit back but I will tell her that I'm sorry she wasn't happy about the condition of the book and perhaps she should set up an RC for the quality of books that she is willing to accept.

She's not holding my credit hostage because I used quick credit.  I guess I just wanted to make things right because she wasn't happy.  Thanks for your insights everyone.



Last Edited on: 11/16/11 5:54 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 11/16/2011 7:21 PM ET
Member Since: 4/25/2007
Posts: 11,496
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RWAP is Received With A Problem.  She would have marked that when she marked the book as received.

If the book met the posting guidelines when you sent it, then you don't owe her the credit back.  Like others said, she needs to have Requestor Conditions if she wants books in better condition than the posting guidelines.

Date Posted: 11/17/2011 4:29 AM ET
Member Since: 1/1/2009
Posts: 1,924
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 I just wanted to mention a few things that set off alarms. 

 1. That she said she was used to perfect books. 

 2. That you said the book was "readable" but worn. Most people who send unpostable use that as an excuse. 

 3. That you mention sending worse books out, after contacting members. If those books are unpostable they do not belong posted at all, unless in a special forum for such books. 

I am guessing thought this is just a matter of communication and being here a while. I hope you hang out with us more here, it can be very helpful. I trust you sent a postable book with just a picky receiver. The system is set up to find the people who do post unpostables and I think you said this was your first issue. Wonderful! Even the best of members sometimes have issues, a RWAP slips through the cracks so to speak. Try not to take this personally. 

Date Posted: 11/17/2011 8:31 AM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I don't think some people realize that sometimes they will be the last person to pay a credit for a book. Every book eventually hits the end of it's life as a postable book.  It leaves one person in postable condition but after the mail trip and another read, will not be postable. 

 

Date Posted: 11/18/2011 6:36 AM ET
Member Since: 6/10/2007
Posts: 1
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I have sent a book to a member. that was in perfect condition and now states that it was creased and used.  I had bought the book for my daughter but she refused to use it so I set it aside to see if she would change her mind, she never did.  If you have a way to track issues with other members, please keep this.



Last Edited on: 11/18/11 1:49 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 11/18/2011 8:26 AM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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Jennifer it's a major no-no to put a member's name in a post that you are having a problem with.  People have had their accounts suspend for that. Granted that's a really common first name and initial. But still, you need to delete it.  If the book was postable and he didn't have an RC asking for more-than don't refund his credit, answer his PM politely and move on with your life.  If he's bothering you than report him to PBS usign the contact us link not the message boards. 

Date Posted: 11/18/2011 5:48 PM ET
Member Since: 12/23/2005
Posts: 3,006
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I remember once a member wrote a review of a book and said it was autographed by the author.  Well, maybe her personal copy was, but the one I ordered wasn't.  After reading it, I sent it out.  I had one unhappy recipient because the book wasn't autographed.   What could I do about it?  I didn't say the book was autographed.

I just didn't respond.  I didn't want to slip and call the woman a name..... lol

Date Posted: 11/18/2011 8:06 PM ET
Member Since: 8/18/2010
Posts: 1,540
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Is something about the dating of the forum posts whacky?

Unless I've been in a coma or something, I have not posted anything in this topic in November.  

I've also been a member a LONG TIME and would NOT have been asking what an RWAP is.  :)

 

This looks like a post made a long time ago, like many months ago.   I haven't had a book complaint except that one since I joined PBS.  Most of my books are like new.   

Can somebody see if this is dated wrong........and why it says posted 11/16?????

 

There is NO WAY I would be asking what an RWAP is 2 days ago.  :)

Date Posted: 11/18/2011 8:07 PM ET
Member Since: 8/18/2010
Posts: 1,540
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Oh dear.  It also says I've been a member since 2006.  

 

I'm freaking out.  I haven't.  I only joined last year.

 

Look at the opening topic, please,

Date Posted: 11/18/2011 8:12 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 9,790
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Laura B.

Stop freaking out.

You are not the only Laura B.

If you change your settings to show your nickname in addition to your first name and last initial, you will see that you are you and the other Laura B. is someone else.

And there is probably more than 2 of you. PBS can keep your accounts perfectly separate because they do not reference accounts by a person's name ... you are probably either your email address (internally in the PBS server) or you are a unique ID number which is not shown on the website (most likely).

smiley



Last Edited on: 11/18/11 8:16 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 11/18/2011 8:16 PM ET
Member Since: 8/18/2010
Posts: 1,540
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OMG.  How absolutely self-centered of me.  cheeky  Can you believe it never occured to me?  

That I'm not the only Laura B. in the universe? 

Gong to change my settings NOW. 

 

Thanks sara, I feel like an idiot, kinda tells you the kind of day I've had!!!!!!!!!wink

Date Posted: 11/18/2011 8:22 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 9,790
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Oh I get it .... I was a little peeved when another Sara P. (who uses a very similar nickname to mine) started posting more in the forums.

Well, not peeved exactly, cause she has just as much right to be Sara P. as I do, but I do like to think I am unique! smiley

Date Posted: 11/18/2011 8:32 PM ET
Member Since: 8/18/2010
Posts: 1,540
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Is there a way to change our Nickname?  I really wanted to be *Racehorse*, and didn't know I wanted to be Racehorse until after I joined.   LOL

Date Posted: 11/18/2011 8:55 PM ET
Member Since: 4/25/2007
Posts: 11,496
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To change your nickname, you need to contact the PBS team.  They're the only ones that can do that for you.

Date Posted: 11/19/2011 8:04 AM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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They let me change mine. I used to have my ex husbands call sign with a Mrs in front of it.  When he walked out on us, PBS changed it for me.  It can't be one already in use though. If someone is using racehorse then you'd have to change it someway.  I  was shocked that no one had used Msright before. (I used to Mrslefty-ex was Lefty as his naval air call sign).

Date Posted: 11/20/2011 10:14 AM ET
Member Since: 12/10/2009
Posts: 2,482
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Thanks for the hearty laugh over names, nicknames and wanting to be a "Racehorse" ROFL&CGU!!!!!

I went looking and I found 1 other Fara-- I thought I was the only one too!



Last Edited on: 11/20/11 10:26 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
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