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Topic: Strange....PBS says book is lost but....

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Subject: Strange....PBS says book is lost but....
Date Posted: 10/24/2011 10:54 PM ET
Member Since: 4/21/2011
Posts: 23
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Strange that I got an email from PBS saying a book I mailed is lost.  I went over to transactions and according to those records the book was delivered to NV, the state it was addressed to. It shows the route through it state. However, it was never marked recieved.  I have PMed the requester ( I am pretty sure she is a teenager) but haven't heard back, yet.  Of course the details do not give the address where it was left, that I can tell. I am one of those people who mummify their books with packaging tape hoping to prevent something from happening.

I don't really have a question. This is the first time this has happened so I feel a little strange and disappointed.  I some how failed and one of my books didn't make it. I take such care in using plastic to protect the book from rain and then I probably use way too much tape. Odd to think of it just "out there" some where.


Date Posted: 10/24/2011 11:32 PM ET
Member Since: 11/21/2010
Posts: 457
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Last Edited on: 3/22/12 11:58 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 10/25/2011 12:00 AM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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What Marc said.  If you used PBS DC, pm the receiver (politely inquire if the book has arrived), and if the requester does not respond to your pm within 7 days refer the transaction to TPTB. 

Yes, sometimes USPS mis-delivers a package...but it's also possible that a PBS member has forgotten or is no longer active.

Date Posted: 10/25/2011 7:32 AM ET
Member Since: 8/10/2005
Posts: 4,602
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Books certainly can be misdelivered, have had it happen before to books I've sent, and books that were supposedly delivered to me--but weren't.

The other issue here is regarding your comment 'I am pretty sure she is a teenager.' If you have any proof that the person is under 18, be sure to let PBS know...she is basically an illegal member if that's the case, since membership is only open to those 18 and above.


Date Posted: 10/25/2011 7:33 AM ET
Member Since: 4/7/2008
Posts: 15,690
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You got an email that your book was lost because the requestor hasn't marked the book received by the 26th day (35th day if sender or requestor are outside the contiguous US) after you mark it mailed. It doesn't necessarily means the book is lost.

As others have mentioned, it may be that the person forgot to mark it mailed (lots of new members don't read the instructions properly and don't realize they have to do this) or they are out of town, in the hospital, etc. The appropriate thing is to PM them and ask if they have received the book (never assume they did even if the DC says so.) Books are sometimes misdelivered too.


Subject: Thanks
Date Posted: 10/25/2011 9:05 AM ET
Member Since: 4/21/2011
Posts: 23
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I probably shouldn't assume she is a teenager. The book requested was one of my teenager's books. Her profile indicates that she likes to read "teenager kinds of books".  I probably should not assume anything. Being the mom of a teenager (18 y/o), I know I am constantly reminding her to do things that she has put off and eventually forgotten. Things happen and people get busy and forget.

I have sent her a PM and maybe she will soon reply.

Yes, I did use PBS DC.

Thanks. I just needed to think out loud and I quess get reassurance that this happens to other members, too - unfortunately.


Date Posted: 10/25/2011 12:46 PM ET
Member Since: 7/28/2006
Posts: 4,984
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I probably shouldn't assume she is a teenager. The book requested was one of my teenager's books. Her profile indicates that she likes to read "teenager kinds of books". 

I probably have people who think that about me, since I request almost exculsively YA (young adult/teen) books.  But, I am definitely a legal PBS member.  wink Didn't even hear about PBS until well after I was 18 years of age, so no problems there.

Do you know if she's read the PM you sent?  You can check by clicking the "unread" button in the "From Me" tab of your messages.  It will put a check in the box next to those that haven't been opened yet.  Of course, that doesn't account if the message was read via email, but it might give you a general idea at least. 

Subject: Requester replied to my PM
Date Posted: 10/25/2011 9:52 PM ET
Member Since: 4/21/2011
Posts: 23
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Requester says that she has moved "accross the country" and didn't change her address with PBS.  Says she thinks the book will eventually catch up to her.

I said that I would report it missing with the USPO but she didn't give me her address.  Said she would "attempt" to give me a credit since it was "kind of her fault" for not changing her address with PBS.

At least I know what happened to the book. Should I still try to report it missing?  I hate that it is a mark against me for a lost book.


Subject: To Alisa
Date Posted: 10/25/2011 10:01 PM ET
Member Since: 4/21/2011
Posts: 23
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I realized that I shouldn't have written that as soon as I clicked the submit button.  I read Twilight and went and saw the Twilight movies with my daughter. And I am far from being a teenager.  One of these days, I am going to learn to "think" before I "click".

I learn something new every time I ask a question. I did not know that I could check to see if an e mail has been read or not.  Thanks for sharing that info.

Thanks to all who responded to my post.


Last Edited on: 10/25/11 10:05 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 10/25/2011 11:27 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,485
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Only first class mail will be forwarded.  Media mail is not. 

It is totally her fault for not putting her account on hold, then updating it. 

Lost books do NOT count against you.  If anything, they count against the post office.  PBS is set up that the computer flags when items reach a certain secret percentage, but an actual person always reviews your account.

Date Posted: 10/26/2011 9:18 AM ET
Member Since: 7/22/2009
Posts: 2,617
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No reason for her to "attempt" to give you the credit since you already received it by using PBS DC -- but as Emily indicated, it was the requestor's responsibility to make sure PBS had an accurate up-to-date address. No point in reporting it missing -- looks like it was delivered -- if you sent it media mail, it will not be forwarded but may be returned to you. If it's returned to you, you'll likely have to pay for it. You did your part -- no black mark on your account.

Date Posted: 10/26/2011 5:24 PM ET
Member Since: 7/28/2006
Posts: 4,984
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Yup, you've done your part. In fact, you may get the package back.


From the Help Center (applicable parts bolded)

The most common causes for packages to be returned to sender:

  • The package was over 13 ounces and bore only stamps for postage, and you did not mail it by handing it to a USPS employee.
    • This is a USPS regulation if postage stamps are used for postage and the package is over 13 oz in weight.
    • The regulation does not apply to packages sent with printed postage
    • You can remail the package from the PO in this case, without adding new postage to the package.
  • Incorrect Address. Caused by 
    • transcription errors if you hand-wrote the address
    • the requestor mistyping his/her address in his/her account
    • USPS error
  • Insufficient Postage Caused by 
    • Insufficient postage on the package
      • did you check and adjust the weight on the wrapper settings page before printing? this will ensure that the correct postage and postal rate will print out
    • Failure to write MediaMail on the package if the PBS Wrapper was not used.
      • USPS will charge First Class rate if MediaMail is not specified. 
      • The PBS Wrapper will print out with FIRST CLASS for packages weighing 7ounces or less; packages over that weight will print wrappers marked MEDIA MAIL
    • Writing First Class on the package if the PBS Wrapper was not used.
    • Reusing Priority Mail materials (this is not permitted by USPS unless you are paying priority rate!) but applying Media Mail or First Class postage.
    • USPS error.
  • Moved, no forwarding address Caused by
    • The requestor moving before the book arrived (Media Mail is not routinely forwarded, unlike First Class mail!)
    • USPS error.
  • Address illegible Caused by
    • the wrapper tearing and the TO address being lost or obliterated
    • printer ink running because of exposure to the elements
      • to prevent this problem, you can apply a layer of clear shipping tape over the printed address portion of the wrapper.  Remember not to tape over stamps!
    • Poor handwriting (if you hand-wrote the wrapper)
      • to prevent this problem, carefully copy the address information clearly onto the wrapper - or print the wrapper from a printer.

If the book was returned to you through an error on the requestor's part, you can ask him or her for an extra credit (or money for the postage) to re-send the book


On a side note... I wasn't offended by the teenager comment at all. I fully admit my reading tastes never grew up.  :)  And I've certainly done that click before thinking thing myself before. 

Date Posted: 10/26/2011 10:08 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,225
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She should mark the book received even if she doesn't get it. It is her fault for not changing her address and PBS should not be paying the credit under credit assurance for that book.