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Topic: ***UPDATE*** - Requesting WL books - RANT

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Subject: ***UPDATE*** - Requesting WL books - RANT
Date Posted: 3/8/2011 3:32 PM ET
Member Since: 10/30/2008
Posts: 1,996
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UPDATE IS IN THE LAST REPLY!!

 

Two rants in one post:

Rant 1:

On March 2, I received an email that one of my WL books was available.  I immediately requested the book.  My PBS account said that the sender had until March 7 to mark the book as mailed.  The sender didn't bother to accept or print the label until March 7.  Now, my account says that the sender will mail by March 11, which means that it will be another week or two before I get the book. 

I know that the sender probably had extenuating circumstances that kept him/her from sending the book quicker, but it still irks me that a person can post a WL book and ignore the request for a week.  I honestly thought the book was going to time out.

 

Rant 2:

Another WL book became available to me last week, and I have gone through three senders already.  All three senders have said that they cannot mail the book because of my RCs.  The first and third senders were very specific, but the second sender gave the vague "book does not meet requestor's conditions".  I'm beginning to wonder if I am ever going to get this book because it doesn't have a lot of wishers.  I don't want to turn off my RCs, but I do want someone to accept my request.

 

Thanks for allowing me to rant.



Last Edited on: 4/8/11 1:32 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/8/2011 3:39 PM ET
Member Since: 7/28/2006
Posts: 4,978
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I know that the sender probably had extenuating circumstances that kept him/her from sending the book quicker, but it still irks me that a person can post a WL book and ignore the request for a week. 

This is actually standard practice for all PBS transactions.  The sending member has a maximum of 5 days to accept the request and then once accepted, another 5 days maximum to send it out.  It's true that most transactions happen a lot faster than that, but sometimes they do take the full amount of time.  I myself have had to wait all 10 days once to send a book because of a paycheck that was stolen from my mail and therefore delayed.  So unfortunately, it happens. 

If there's one thing that PBS has taught me, it's that patience is golden.  Which is a good lesson for me, since I am a very impatient person.  :) 

Regarding your other rant, what do your RCs say?  Are they subjective in any way, or are they clearly worded?  Many people turn down RCs that aren't clear or they feel are subjective, so that may be what's happening.  Or it could be a string of coincidential bad luck too. 

Edited to fix typos



Last Edited on: 3/8/11 3:40 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/8/2011 4:05 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I don't see what you have to rant about. The 1st one is perfectly within the PBS timeframes.  As for the other book: people have the right to turn down RCs just as you have the right to have them.  A lot of people will turn down all RCS on a WL book becasue they don't want to deal with them and know another wisher will probably have no RCS at all.

ETA: for the 1st book: this book may have cycled through a few members before you and in the meantime the person who posts the book has gotten busy with life and now needs a long time to mail.  Which happens a lot. 



Last Edited on: 3/8/11 4:07 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/8/2011 4:07 PM ET
Member Since: 1/15/2007
Posts: 1,410
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I know that the sender probably had extenuating circumstances that kept him/her from sending the book quicker, but it still irks me that a person can post a WL book and ignore the request for a week.  I honestly thought the book was going to time out

The book may have rolled over from the wisher before you.  I've posted wishlist books that have gone through more than one 48 hour hold. 

If you weren't the initial wisher when the book was posted, it's possible that the sender had to delay accepting until the dates coincided with a day they could make it to the PO or they had time to print and wrap.

Date Posted: 3/8/2011 4:32 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,185
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PBS is an exercise in patience. Many members use the entire time a deadline gives them. That you've made it here this long and not run into it enough that it seems unusual to you is amazing.

For your second one, unless your RCs are really strict or subjective, someone will eventually accept it. Some people just won't deal with RCs, but many of us are glad to honor them.

Date Posted: 3/8/2011 4:41 PM ET
Member Since: 5/15/2008
Posts: 193
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I don't see what you have to rant about. The 1st one is perfectly within the PBS timeframes.
 

That doesn't mean that someone couldn't rant about how the guidelines allow so much freakin' time.  Personally, I think anyone who waits 5 days to decide if they'll mail a book or not should probably not be using the site to begin with, if money's that tight.  If $2.38 is a transaction that will break your household budget, turn off the computer and get your books from the library instead. 

Date Posted: 3/8/2011 4:53 PM ET
Member Since: 3/4/2007
Posts: 4,546
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Michael, or maybe that person can only get to the post office once a week and needs the full five days in order to meet the requirements for sending.  Since we don't know the sender's circumstances, maybe we should stop judging their motives. This person is operating within the parameters of the site, so there's no problem here.  I know there are people here who don't care for the allowed time period, but those are the rules and unless those rules change, and I doubt that they will, it's really not right to complain about those who follow the rules.

Becky, I hope you are able to get your book.  There are people on the site who reject any and all RCs, but I believe most are willing to accept them as long as they are clear and not subjective; I know the only ones I've ever had to turn down were from folks who have cat allergies.  Maybe you need someone else to take a look at your RCs to give a second opinion as to why they might be getting turned down.

Date Posted: 3/8/2011 4:57 PM ET
Member Since: 7/28/2006
Posts: 4,978
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Michael,

The problem with that argument is that it's not always money that members need the extra time for.  Many members have problems with weather (especially during winter months), for example, that cause them to need to use that delay.  Just because they wait 5 days to accept doesn't mean they can't decide whether or not to send the book.  Since the system allows 5 days from when you accept the request, when you accept depends on when you have to mail the book by.  If you accept a book right away you only have 5 days maximum to send. 

Some members can only make it to the Post Office once a week, and if the request happens to fall right after they've made a trip to the PO, then they wouldn't be able to mail in that timeframe.  So they wait a few days before accepting so that they can mail the book in their weekly trip, and still mail it on time.  I had to delay accepting once because I went out of state unexpectedly for a grandparent's funeral.  I needed the extra time so that I could get back into town, wrap the book, and take it  to the post office. 

And those are just a couple examples.  Over the almost 5 years since I'vebeen a PBS member I've seen countless reasons why a member would need extra time to mark a book mailed.  It's hard to judge other member's actions since you never know what's going on in their life. 

ETA: Personally, I would rather have them wait 5 days before accepting my request and mark the book mailed on time than having them accept right away and not mail it out on time since that creates so many other headaches. 

 

 



Last Edited on: 3/8/11 4:58 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/8/2011 4:59 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,185
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Personally, I think anyone who waits 5 days to decide if they'll mail a book or not should probably not be using the site to begin with, if money's that tight.  If $2.38 is a transaction that will break your household budget, turn off the computer and get your books from the library instead.

Why would you assume it is a money issue? Maybe they go to the library, post the books, then come back 5 days later to take care of business? Maybe they post books on Monday to ensure they will all be accepted and ready to mail on their postal run on Sunday or the next Monday? If a sender were to ever assume a book is going to be accepted immediately and plan that way, they would run into a lot of problems. There is currently someone in Questions who posted a WL book on 2/17 and it still hasn't been accepted.

Many members don't watch their accounts and accept and mail the books the second they get the request. It would be insane to try unless you didn't really mail much. I've often posted WL books in batches and very few times have they ever all been requested right away. I certainly am not going to accept, wrap, and mail a book every day in a week when I can wait until the end and accept them all and send them all at the same time. Personally I think its just common sense to use the timelines to group mailings.



Last Edited on: 3/8/11 5:00 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/8/2011 5:03 PM ET
Member Since: 8/10/2005
Posts: 4,597
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I am guessing that the sender of the first book is someone like me who can only go to the post office one day per week due work schedule or something--or perhaps their finances dictate that they only send every so often. Or maybe they live in a rural area and the post office is 15 miles away and they don't want to be running up and down the road three or four times a week especially with gas prices what they are now. There can be all sorts of things going on in people's lives that we have no idea about...and she WAS within the PBS guidelines, so I don't think there's any reason for complaint there.

And as Mary said, just as you have the right to have an RC, people who post books have a right to decline them. I decline RCs all the time, especially if they are long, wordy, ask me to make a subjective judgment or if they're unclear. A lot of folks have gotten burned by people with RCs so some folks are not willing to send ANY book with an RC attached. That's their perogative. You can rant all you want, but I can't say I really sympathize.

@Melanie--and that is the other thing...I have posted half a dozen wishlisted books at the same time, and had some accepted immediately and others go through two or three people before someone accepts--meanwhile, it's five or six days later. I can send those with no problem whenever the order comes in because I use the printable postage, but not everyone does or can.

Cheryl



Last Edited on: 3/8/11 5:06 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/8/2011 5:05 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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We also have members who are housebound due to illness and only have computer access at the library.  So should they not be able to use PBS becuase they rely on helpers to mail books for them or can only get to the library every few days?  (yes there's printable postage for the housebound but that gets very expensive very quickly-meaning less books that person can send). 

Then you get a WL book that rolls through 7 people (that's my max I'm sure others have higher numbers) and in the meantime, your car has broken down, your kid has gotten sick, your printer dies, work gets busy, a storm hits and you lose power for 4 days (that happened to me). 

If you need a book so quicklly that you can't wait the PBS time frames then you need to use Amazon or the library.  At least PBS has some time frames. I've cancelled several books I requested on bookmooch recently because they sat there for weeks and weeks without being sent. 

Date Posted: 3/8/2011 5:34 PM ET
Member Since: 4/7/2008
Posts: 15,690
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Sometimes I post WL books while I'm reading them to avoid a long wait if the requests rolls over to more than one person. But when they are accepted promptly, then I usually wait a few days to accept until I finish reading the book and make sure that the book is in postable condition (yes, I check books when I post them but sometimes I've found stains in page 299 of books I thought were postable.)

And I always pick the last day of the 'mail later' choices. Most of the time I mail them within a day or two of accepting the request but I'm a busy person and you never know. I like knowing I have the choice of mail later if life gets in the way of PBS. :)

Date Posted: 3/8/2011 5:44 PM ET
Member Since: 5/15/2008
Posts: 193
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DG, what you describe probably offends many users of the site as an abuse of the imetables. And I say this as someone who has never needed a book in a hurry, but I prefer they get sent to me right away since the longer you let people delay the transactin, the more likely is is to forget about it or find more excuses (I didn't mail this week due to the weather, and then I had no money so I had to wait a few more days, and then the kids were off from school.... and so on). I would expect that the number of LEGITIMATE uses of the delay button are very, very low. Oh, and in the 5 days it took that person to decide not to mail a book, another copy could have been posted tto another member... small consolation when I go back to the top of the WL hoping another copy shows up.
Date Posted: 3/8/2011 5:52 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,185
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I would expect that the number of LEGITIMATE uses of the delay button are very, very low.  I would be very confident in saying you are wrong in this expectation.

Date Posted: 3/8/2011 6:02 PM ET
Member Since: 7/10/2007
Posts: 170
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I am one of those "bad people" who lets requests sit for 5 days after I post a WL book, and then waits another 5 to mail. I also have a full time job, 3 kids and a heck of alot of snow this winter. I also usually post a few books at a time, and I like to wait until they all are accepted to print any label. I am well within my rights and the timetable the site has to wait those 10 days. If someone needs a book so badly those 10 days make such a difference, they should just go to a bookstore.

Date Posted: 3/8/2011 6:08 PM ET
Member Since: 7/28/2006
Posts: 4,978
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Oh, and in the 5 days it took that person to decide not to mail a book, another copy could have been posted tto another member... small consolation when I go back to the top of the WL hoping another copy shows up.

Actually I've found that with WL books where copies are being posted that quickly (i.e copy posted to you and then another copy posted to someone else in the 5 days before your request is cancelled) it is a heavily posted WL book and you won't have "hope another copy shows up" for very long. 

 

Stop ignoring member

Date Posted: 3/8/2011 6:13 PM ET
Member Since: 5/15/2008
Posts: 193
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Alisa - sometimes, yes. I've noticed the rule of 3 happen a lot (books on my WL with over 100 wishers might have 3 posted this week, and then I don't see another one posted for a month.)
Date Posted: 3/8/2011 6:31 PM ET
Member Since: 2/13/2007
Posts: 2,251
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Rant #2: I have read through the thread and I don't see where you have mentioned exactly what your RC is.

Look at it critically -- words like "smells like" and "I'd prefer" commonly appear in RCS I decline. If you don't want a book from a smoking environment for example, say clearly "no books from a current smoking environment" instead of "I don't want books that smell like smoke". Most of us are passing on books that we have gotten from other members and don't know what it has been exposed to, etc. I WANT to send my books to people but when I get RCs that say "no smells" it is so vague that I can not accept. I do not want to send a book, spend the postage money and then get a RWAP because they say the book doesn't meet their conditions and I am out my credit. I have to know exactly what those conditions are and I will send the book if it meets it, but so many RCs I receive are so vague that I dare not take a chance. Remember, while you have the choice to set up Requestor Conditions, we, the other members, have the choice to turn those RCs down, especially when they are long, rambling, vague, unclear and subjective.

Date Posted: 3/8/2011 6:57 PM ET
Member Since: 7/5/2007
Posts: 2,126
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I really don't understand the attitude of "if you have to wait 5 days b/c of finances, you shouldn't be using the site" when those 5 days are within the parameters of the site.  Or really for discounting any reason someone may have for using the max time that is allowable by the site.

Is it part of the instant gratification culture that we see so often now?  The inability of people to exercise the virtue of patience?  [Do I need the counter the "if you have to wait until payday...you shouldn't be using the site" with "If you can't exercise patience for both the time before shipping and the transit, you shouldn't be using the site"?]

Sometimes it's just not possible for someone to get a book accepted, packaged, and make it to the PO as fast as you would like it to be.  However the timeframe is within PBS guidelines.  I know for that extra special WL book it can be hard to sit still waiting eagerly for it, but you're using a site with a possible 10 day turnaround then a media mail wait.  Your discounted price is paid with time.  If you cannot wait, there are other, faster, however more expensive ways to obtain the book you cannot wait for.

I know that when a book I want is released and I feel too impatient to wait through the WL line and for it to be posted, I'll buy it, using the purchase method that best reflects how quickly I want it.  A trip to B&N on release day, bought from Amazon, bought from half.com, special trip to library branch that has it, wait for book to be sent to my branch, wait through Library waitlist, etc.

ETA (since I needed to post before I lost it...):  I use sticky notes and the note function here on PBS to mark a book I am currently reading as unpostable if I find something while reading it.  Nothing gets posted by me before I am done, as sometimes Things Happen™.  It may just turn out to be a busy week, or I set it down and forget where I left it (*cough* Golden Tower), or I get distracted by something new and shiny.  Sometimes I finish a book the same night, sometimes it takes me two weeks.  Sometimes it's just hard to tell.

Typically I'll read a bunch and then wait and post them all at the same time.   I'll wait a day and then start accepting them with a 5 day selection (unless that lands on Sunday/Holiday, then I'll wait another day).  Anything accepted up until that first mail date, wether I choose 2 day or 5 day on them will go out on that first mail date.  After that....  I may wait up to 5 days. 

But then, I really shouldn't have to justify how I use my 10 days, should I, as those 10 days are permitted by the site.



Last Edited on: 3/8/11 7:08 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 3/8/2011 7:06 PM ET
Member Since: 8/30/2008
Posts: 2,207
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Tweaking the shipping date is normal for me as I can only mail on Saturdays. If a request comes in after noon on a Saturday I can't mail for 7 days. I, for one, appreciate the date range PBS gives us. I've never had a problem with someone taking a couple of days to accept a request/print wrapper, nor do I have issues with anyone taking the full time to mail to me. I work full-time, my post office is no longer open after work - I could mail every day back then. 

I personally don't need a book badly enough to squawk if a member takes their full time.

Gail

Date Posted: 3/8/2011 11:19 PM ET
Member Since: 1/1/2009
Posts: 1,924
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Photobucket



Last Edited on: 3/8/11 11:22 PM ET - Total times edited: 4
Date Posted: 3/9/2011 12:57 AM ET
Member Since: 10/14/2010
Posts: 577
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Hmmm...

And here I am with stuff that's been on my own personal wish list longer than the internet has been popular and wishing that the post office offered a delivered in 8-12 week option for a cheaper price than media mail.  I do accept my requests as soon as I see them, but then I've been out of town for around 5 days before as well.

Date Posted: 3/9/2011 6:00 AM ET
Member Since: 8/30/2008
Posts: 2,207
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yes, Kim. As it's been stated on the forums many times, PBS teaches us patience.

To help pass the time waiting for a requested book, I usually read something. Helps a lot.

Gail

Date Posted: 3/9/2011 6:34 AM ET
Member Since: 8/10/2005
Posts: 4,597
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Part of the problem is that we are becoming a society that expects everything instantly--what we want, when we want it, and bugger anything or anyone who gets in the way of our demands or isn't capable of meeting our every instantaneous need. The other problem is that we live in a me, me, me society--people don't understand that the universe doesn't really revolve around them.

I blame cell phones. God forbid we have to wait to get home to make a call. But that's another rant. LOL

Cheryl

Date Posted: 3/9/2011 7:03 AM ET
Member Since: 9/8/2009
Posts: 613
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I always pick the latest mailing date, too, just as a cushion in case the book will have to be schlepped to the post office, but I usually mail within 24 hours.  When I first joined PBS, it was frustrating if it took books a long time to get here because I was reading them as they showed up.  Now I have so many TBRs on my bookshelf that it wouldn't matter if it took a month for them to arrive, I could keep reading.  In fact, before I start a new book, I check my PBS bookshelf and try to choose a WL'd book so I can get it back out into the system.

As for RCs, as one who was burned by an unfair RWAP, I turn down any RC that even HINTS of subjectivity (i.e., odors, condition).  I just won't risk the frustration of dealing with it.  Life's too short. 

I look at this site, and the members here who are willing to share their books, as a gift.  When I think about the horrific price of new books,  the waste involved in not "recycling" them and how lucky we are to be able to swap here, it makes waiting for that long-anticipated PBS book a lot easier. 

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