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Topic: scotch tape on slight rip on cover

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Subject: scotch tape on slight rip on cover
Date Posted: 7/14/2014 1:23 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2010
Posts: 400
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Did a search but couldn't find an answer so am asking here.

I received a book with a very slight tear.  no big deal, less than half an inch.   Didn't even really see it until my finger caught it as I was holding it.  The next day, my finger slipped and it torn more, it is a half moon shape cut, probably 3/4 inch tear now.  No big deal, I used some scotch tape to repair it, not thinking of how the rules apply.

Does that make it un-postable (is that a word?)?  For me, I could care less, it is readable, no torn pages, no water stains or writing anywhere; in very good shape except the small tear on the cover and a small crease.  Measured from the center of the curve and it is less than an inch, so fits the guidelines.

Should I not repost it?  Checked and there are a couple of  members who have it on their wish list.  Should I post it and let them know about the tear and they can make the choice? 

For me, no big deal; it is a used book so I am not expecting pristine condition.  But, what I see as "no big deal" some may see it as a RWAP book. 

I hadn't planned on keeping the book, enjoyed it but was looking forward to sending it on its merry way and getting the next book of the series. 


 

Date Posted: 7/14/2014 1:42 PM ET
Member Since: 5/15/2005
Posts: 1,328
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Tears on the cover less than an inch are ok to post. Personally, I wouldn't let the requestor know about something that's postable.

Date Posted: 7/14/2014 1:43 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,384
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I personally think that the tape makes it not okay.  The rip may have fell within the book criteria.  But scotch tape does not age well. 

From the book criteria:

Cover:

  • Must both be present (front and back)
    • note that a paperback missing its front cover is  usually an illegal, unsold copy
    • "cover" does not = dust jacket.  Hardcovers do not need to include their dust jackets to be swapped here.
  • Cover not water damaged (there may be no water damage to any part of the book)
  • Cover not torn or chewed/gnawed
    • some used book stores cut out a small part of the cover; if the amount missing is less than 1 square inch, this is OKAY
    • a small rip (less than 1 inch) in the cover is OKAY
    • yes, that does say "chewed/gnawed" above.  That means no pet-chewed (or human-chewed) books.
  • A bookplate inside the cover or on the flyleaf is OKAY
Date Posted: 7/14/2014 1:43 PM ET
Member Since: 1/23/2010
Posts: 2,270
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I think this is going to boil down to a judgement call. How does one accurately measure a tear that is not straight? This sounds like one I dealt with recently. A mostly circular tear that measured approximately 3/4" across. A 3/4" tear is postable, but when I looked at it, it seemed to me that because of the curve significantly more than 3/4 of an inch of the surface was torn. I reasoned that if I felt that way others would too.

I'm interested to see the response to this question. Because if felt like a gray area to me I decided not to re-post. I'll eventually put it in a bazar post as an unpostable for credit with full disclosure.



Last Edited on: 7/14/14 1:44 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 7/14/2014 2:02 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 9,662
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Rips under an inch are OK to post.

Stickers on books are OK to post. Tape is a clear sticker. More or less. (Emily is right, that scotch tape won't age well, but on the other hand, postability is only about "Is the book OK today", not "Will the book be postable in 5 years". JMO)

I think it's fine.

My general rule for something that might fall into a gray area (not covered under the rules) is 1. is it gross in any possible way, 2. does it make the book hard or impossible to read to read, 3. does it make the book falling apart in any way. If the answer to these is all no, then I post the book. If you read them thru, you will notice that the existing rules at PBS pretty much answer these 3 basic rules ... so that's how I answer grey area questions.



Last Edited on: 7/14/14 2:06 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 7/14/2014 2:17 PM ET
Member Since: 8/26/2006
Posts: 9,321
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My vote is that tape can't make an unpostable book postable, but if the book was postable and tape is added so the damage doesn't get worse, that can be okay.  The tape should be neat.  The problem with scotch tape is that it yellows and becomes brittle, and eventually can leave permanent marks on the book, but there are types of tape that work well.

Date Posted: 7/14/2014 2:19 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,384
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I will also look to see how many copies of a book are posted.  A book with 100s posted and I'll be much stricter with myself.  (Add the book to your Reminder List to see how many are posted.)

An out of print or WL book?  I'm much more willing to post with a slight rip.

Date Posted: 7/14/2014 5:28 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,185
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Tape doesn't make an unpostable book postable, it also doesn't make a postable book unpostable.  There is nothing in the rules that says a book can't have tape on it. If someone doesn't want scotch tape on the book they can remove it themselves (if they damage the book beyond postability while doing it, that is their own fault).

I also put tape on a tear that is small in order to keep it from getting worse. I try to use something that ages well, but if I can't find anything else, I use scotch tape because it may not age well, but it ages better than an unprotected tear.

Date Posted: 7/14/2014 5:34 PM ET
Member Since: 1/30/2009
Posts: 5,696
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Tape doesn't make an unpostable book postable, it also doesn't make a postable book unpostable.  There is nothing in the rules that says a book can't have tape on it. If someone doesn't want scotch tape on the book they can remove it themselves (if they damage the book beyond postability while doing it, that is their own fault).

Yup. ^^^
 
And if someone REALLY doesn't want tape on their books, they can have a RC stating as such.
Date Posted: 7/14/2014 6:49 PM ET
Member Since: 4/28/2009
Posts: 9,493
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hmmm, a few years ago  the tape question got discussed here and it  was a big NO- NO.

Stickers and tape are apples and oranges........ stickers aren't put on books to fix a rip while the tape is.

Date Posted: 7/14/2014 7:51 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,185
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hmmm, a few years ago  the tape question got discussed here and it  was a big NO- NO.

Please provide a link because as a TGL I'd like to have a source of the site saying tape cannot be on a book. The only thing I've ever seen is that it couldn't make an unpostable tear (over 1") postable again. I have heard members say they don't like it, but I can't recall anyone ever providing a response from the site having said that no tape can be on a postable book. As someone else said, the site's concern is always (a) is it gross and (b) is it falling apart now. Tape that might not age well and could fall off, no, I'd want to see proof that the site said it was a no-no because that doesn't line up with what they strive for in the rules.

Date Posted: 7/14/2014 9:06 PM ET
Member Since: 1/30/2010
Posts: 8,359
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Tape doesn't make an unpostable book postable, it also doesn't make a postable book unpostable.  There is nothing in the rules that says a book can't have tape on it. If someone doesn't want scotch tape on the book they can remove it themselves (if they damage the book beyond postability while doing it, that is their own fault).

I concur.

Date Posted: 7/14/2014 10:30 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,384
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Heck, I'm quite happy with archive quality tape.  Folks who do book repair will use that on the inside of the cover, making it almost invisible.  But scotch tape does not age well.  It comes off in humidity.  It gets brittle and leaves the book gummy. 

I would not RWAP.  But I'd complain. 

Date Posted: 7/14/2014 10:40 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,167
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My thoughts on tape not returning a book to postable condition, nor in itself making a book unpostable have already been covered.

Jeanne, I also think this is the discussion you remember? Because I don't recall anything different in discussion forums in the last several years.

Date Posted: 7/15/2014 3:14 AM ET
Member Since: 8/20/2007
Posts: 1,020
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Although tape on a small tear does not make a book unpostable, scotch and similar tapes are poor choices for book repair. The problems with these tapes include: yellowing, browning and brittleness; discoloration of the cover; gummy residue; powdery residue; and possible increased damage to a cover when trying to remove it. If choosing to use such tapes, however, it is better to apply the tape on the inside of a cover than on the outside.

I use only archival quality tape when repairing books, and apply it only on the inside of a cover. Archival tape is more expensive and is usually only available in art supply stores or online, and inexpensive books may not warrant the extra trouble and expense. Also, some tears can be repaired with carefully applied archival quality glue and reinforced with tape on the inside of the cover. Tears vary from book to book and repair depends upon the type of tear and where it occurs on the cover. There is no one solution that fits all.

As a book collector when I purchase or receive a book that has been "repaired" with poor quality tape, I assess whether the tape can be removed without causing further damage; if so, I remove it and re-do the repair with archival-quality materials if the book is to be added to my collection. If it isn't, then I generally don't fuss with it too much.



Last Edited on: 7/16/14 3:09 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 7/15/2014 12:59 PM ET
Member Since: 1/30/2009
Posts: 5,696
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I would not RWAP.  But I'd complain. 

 
I would be so irritated if I was the sender and you complained to me. If it's postable, honestly, it's really not the sender's problem. Obviously, if you chose to complain elsewhere, have at it!
Date Posted: 7/15/2014 2:33 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,384
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Yep.  My complaint would be in that little box and become part of your archived record with PBS.   Scotch tape really limits a book's ability to be kept and age well.  

My bitching would probably be very polite, such as how disappointed I was in the condition.  But it would be there.   Yes, I want PBS to have a record of Scotch tape usage.  It does not work on packing.  It does not work on repairs. 

Date Posted: 7/15/2014 4:34 PM ET
Member Since: 8/26/2006
Posts: 9,321
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hmmm, a few years ago  the tape question got discussed here and it  was a big NO- NO.

I looked up old discussions on this and didn't find the one you are referring to.  Can you give us a link?

Date Posted: 7/15/2014 9:13 PM ET
Member Since: 11/14/2010
Posts: 220
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If the tear is not large enough to make the book not postable, how is putting tape on it worse than have library stickers and stamps on the cover?

Date Posted: 7/16/2014 2:52 AM ET
Member Since: 1/30/2010
Posts: 8,359
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I'm with you, Caviglia.  As a sender, if it's postable, it's postable.  You have no way of knowing if the sender or a previous owner put the scotch tape on the book.  If you don't want scotch tape, put it in an RC.

Date Posted: 7/16/2014 3:01 AM ET
Member Since: 8/20/2007
Posts: 1,020
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"If the tear is not large enough to make the book not postable, how is putting tape on it worse than have library stickers and stamps on the cover?"

Library stamps may be unsightly but do not cause additional damage to the book. Likewise, library stickers while also being unsightly do not in general cause additional damage to a book and don't significantly yellow or cause other long-term problems. This is not the case for "scotch" tapes. While some library stickers may be very difficult or impossible to remove without damaging a book cover, others may be removed cleanly and safely with due care and diligence. It really depends upon the the specific materials used by the library and on the particular surface characteristics of the book cover or jacket. Also, tapes used by libraries to reinforce book spines, edges and corners are generally better quality than scotch tapes and don't appreciably discolor or cause further damage after a few years. Reinforcement tapes used by libraries can also be difficult or impossible to remove cleanly without causing further damage so it may be best to just leave them.  The primary intent of public libraries when using stamps and stickers is to mark and identify books in its collection, and when using tapes is to protect books while in circulation. Tapes used by libraries are not generally used for repair, but rather for protection of books before damage occurs.

On the other hand, scotch and similar tapes used for repairing books introduce a material that rapidly deteriorates and damages whatever surfaces they are applied to or come into contact with over time, often within only a few years. For mass market paperbacks this is not much of a concern because the book materials themselves are not high quality and will deteriorate on their own without further acceleration. However, choice of tape does make a big difference for good quality trade paperbacks and hardcovers that are intended to be around for many years or become part of a permanent collection, and in these cases only archival quality tapes should be used. Scotch tapes are definite no-nos for collections or books intended to be preserved in good condition. With that said, however, scotch tapes on book covers are allowed on the site and do not make the books unpostable.

All this probably doesn't matter much unless the book is intended to be preserved for whatever reason or to become part of a long-term collection. For mass market and "throw-away" books, introducing scotch tape doesn't make all that much difference, but it is considerate to at least apply the tape neatly.

 



Last Edited on: 7/17/14 3:22 AM ET - Total times edited: 5
Date Posted: 7/16/2014 12:27 PM ET
Member Since: 6/2/2014
Posts: 7,534
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I agree with Sassy (who agrees with Caviglia)...I receive books from here now, sometimes from friends, sometimes used etc and if it meets conditions and I post it, why should someone want to  make sure there's a mark against me? Now it's one thing if it isn't postable and someone used tape to try and make it postable but if stamps, stickers, very small tears etc are meetable conditions, then posting with a small amount of tape on it is fine. It meets conditions. I think if tape bothers someone so much that they want to make sure there's a mark against another sender, then that person absolutely needs to have RC with "I will not accept a book with tape on it."

Date Posted: 7/16/2014 1:38 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,167
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Regarding scotch tape...although not the best choice for book repair, I view it as an attempt to keep the book from tearing further and becoming unpostable. 

Date Posted: 7/16/2014 2:16 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,185
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Yep.  My complaint would be in that little box and become part of your archived record with PBS.

It would also be in in your archive, as telling senders that they shouldn't send things that ARE allowed by the PBS rules.

Were I to get a requester telling me a postable book should have been posted, I'd likely answer them with a description of how to use Requester Conditions and depending how they worded it, possibly notify the site that there is a requester out there making up their own rules and telling senders that postable books aren't postable and to maybe check their history of requests for credit returns to see if they have been making people return credits on postable books.

Subject: unpostable
Date Posted: 7/17/2014 4:45 PM ET
Member Since: 5/12/2010
Posts: 2
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I just received a book that was in pretty poor shape. The entire binding was ripped and then retaped (kind of poorly). Yes it was a kids book but I was in turn giving it to my granddaughter. It was a ex-library book that was stamped DISCARD so the library was throwing it out.
I chose NOT to refuse the book but I did send the sender a note telling them it was in pretty unacceptable condition but that I chose to keep it and not request a credit refund.
Its the first time it happened to me.
I am not picky. I understand these are used books. I have chosen NOT to send books to people with extreme requests (book must be in like-new condition or gift-quality). This is a used book exchange after all. But I was surprised that someone would send a book like this.
 

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