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Topic: Using multiple swapping sites?

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Subject: Using multiple swapping sites?
Date Posted: 8/10/2009 10:18 PM ET
Member Since: 2/17/2009
Posts: 20
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Is it considered acceptable to post the same books for trade on more than one swapping site at once? It seems rather unlikely that a book might happen to be requested on both sites at the same time (and, naturally, I wouldn't dual-post books that were wishlisted on one site or the other), but I wanted to make sure this wasn't seen as inconsiderate to the communities for any reason.

Date Posted: 8/10/2009 10:22 PM ET
Member Since: 6/29/2007
Posts: 17,127
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I know of several people who post their books on more than one site.  I used to, but have found my PBS credits to be more valuable to me than points from other sites.

Edited to fix grammar and punctuation.



Last Edited on: 8/10/09 10:24 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 8/10/2009 10:22 PM ET
Member Since: 8/25/2007
Posts: 13,134
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Not a good idea,.  It may seem unlikely but it has happened before and members here have posted complaining about it. 

Date Posted: 8/10/2009 10:26 PM ET
Member Since: 2/26/2006
Posts: 34,942
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You might be surprised how often the same book is requested from both sites at the same time.  There have been numerous threads about this very subject in this forum.   Members have gotten very upset because they requested a book and were told it was first requested from another site.

Keep in mind, when you join PBS each member lists books he or she is willing to send out upon request.

Date Posted: 8/10/2009 10:45 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I do 2 sites and the only time I have double posted books is when it's a very heavily posted book on PBS.  I mainly use the other site for unpostables since I have a lot of those. But occassionally I will post a heavily posted book there.  Usually only if I see that it's WL there. But I wouldn't make a habit of it as then you have to decide what to do if it's requested from you. Definately do NOt post WL books on both sites at the same time.  Or books where there are a small # posted. 

Date Posted: 8/10/2009 11:07 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,187
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Lots of people do more than one site, its your books and you can do as you please with them. You should  be careful to check to see if they are wishlisted on any of the sites before you post a book to more than one and make sure to remove books from the other lists when they get sent out.

Date Posted: 8/10/2009 11:28 PM ET
Member Since: 5/10/2005
Posts: 2,354
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If it's on a WL hold here it should not be posted on the other site.

Otherwise, if you can pull books fast enough on the non-requested site then it should be fine.  I know I can't reliably pull the books fast enough, and I decided I didn't want to bother, so I settled on just the one swap site.

Date Posted: 8/10/2009 11:29 PM ET
Member Since: 8/1/2009
Posts: 301
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I also post at another site and, since none of my books are all that rare or highly wished for, don't think that it will be a huge problem with FIFO in place here and the kind of random free for all that happens over there (though I suppose that if someone just happened on by bookshelf here and requested something at the exact moment that someone on the other site did, too, it could happen...).  Since I currently have a bit of free time, I've also been able to be quick about removing books from my lists at both places so as to avoid the "Oh, sorry, swapped it elsewhere" response.  I suspect that once my schedule gets busy again, I won't be able to do that.  Also, the selection here is SO much better than at the other site, so I had initially planned that my more A-list books would go here, since the selection is larger and there is some degree of guidance for what is postable quality.  And the forums are way more fun here, too!

To be totally honest, though, even though I've only been on PBS for 10 days or so, I am thinking of cancelling my account at the other site.  I had a terrible run-in today with one of the members who sent me a stinky, soiled book and, when I asked for my credit back, sent me the nastiest e-mail I have possibly ever gotten (maybe I just don't get that many nasty e-mails).  Her reply, in addition to telling me that I am ridiculous and picky, that she was reporting me for abuse, AND not refunding my credit, was along the lines of "It's a USED book swap site, what do you expect?"  Well, I expect that I am getting books from people who respect and love them as much as I do and who would be embarassed (or at least hesitant) to send out a book in such poor condition.  I seem to find that more here at PBS than there.

Just my two cents!

Date Posted: 8/10/2009 11:41 PM ET
Member Since: 5/14/2009
Posts: 6,852
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I wouldn't do it because I just wouldn't be able to keep track nor do I have the time.  I enjoy PBS  and what time I do have left over from my day I like visiting the forums, writing reviews, reading blogs, searching for covers and updating data on PBS.  I don't want to complicate my life :)  I also found the other sites confusing and not as user friendly as PBS. 

Date Posted: 8/10/2009 11:59 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,423
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PBS does have slightly higher standards.  Have heard of folks posting their nicer books here and the slightly unpostables elsewhere.  Or checking how many books are in our system with the reminder list option before posting them on the other sites.  But you really have to be careful and remove the books from your bookshelf when they are sent out through the other sites.  I know I'm not able to manage my shelf that carefully. 

Date Posted: 8/11/2009 8:26 AM ET
Member Since: 8/10/2005
Posts: 4,599
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As others have said, these are your books and you can certainly do what you like with them. I personally have never seen the need to be a member anywhere but PBS. I do hope though that if you list books both places (or more) that you will be diligent about keeping your bookshelf and wishlists up to date and remove those that have been ordered (or in the case of the wishlist, granted) from other places.

Cheryl

Date Posted: 8/11/2009 8:44 AM ET
Member Since: 9/3/2007
Posts: 521
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I use two other sites, but I find PBS to be the most user friendly, and the best maintained. I always check PBS first to see if my book is wishlisted, and if not, put it up on the other sites.

Date Posted: 8/11/2009 8:59 AM ET
Member Since: 2/17/2009
Posts: 20
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Thanks for all your advice. I'll play it safe and post each book on only one site or the other. I prefer PBS too, but I've noticed there are some books that no one wants here but are WLed over there.

Ronda (RONDA) - ,
Date Posted: 8/11/2009 10:27 AM ET
Member Since: 3/3/2009
Posts: 415
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I have not had a problem with posting on multiple sites.  But i don't have a lot of books posted, so it is easy to keep up with.  I do first post them on PBS, then if they don't move I post them on a couple other sites.

But, I have not been able to find books I want in return on the other sites yet.  PBS seems to have the most selection and churn.  The others are also not FIFO, so getting the wish list stuff is more difficult.

Sianeka - ,
Date Posted: 8/11/2009 1:47 PM ET
Member Since: 2/8/2007
Posts: 6,630
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I also post to two sites.  But I post here first, and never post the WL books or books I think will go quickly here to the other site.  I'm on both sites daily so maintenance isn't usually a problem and usually I have different books posted to each site, although I do have some "double posted". 

However, be aware that sometimes circumstances change and a book will suddenly get "hot" and be wanted on both sites at the same time.  I had this problem once with a book on the Olympics that sat on both shelves for many months... then summer Olympics aired on TV, and I didn't remember about that poor lonely book that all of the sudden was a very requested property.  Had to give to to first requestor on one site and turn down the requestor from the other site...   same thing with a Harry Potter book when the movie came out.

So, no matter how carefully you watch both sites, it could happen.  But if you upkeep both sites, it is very rare.



Last Edited on: 8/11/09 1:48 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 8/11/2009 7:45 PM ET
Member Since: 6/5/2007
Posts: 2,507
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I do 2 sites and the only time I have double posted books is when it's a very heavily posted book on PBS.  I mainly use the other site for unpostables since I have a lot of those

This is actually me as well - but I don't have a high volume of books at either site, so I'm able to monitor it quite well, I've only had one situation where a book was requested from both at the same time.

Date Posted: 8/11/2009 8:57 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I never have more than 10 books posted on the other site and rarely more than 30 here so I find it easy to keep up with it especially since I'm here everyday.  I wouldn't try maintaining 2 sites with a high volume posted on both.

Date Posted: 8/14/2009 9:41 PM ET
Member Since: 4/6/2008
Posts: 1,036
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Would it be wrong to ask what these other sites are?  I have been thinking about looking at some of them for books I am having a hard time finding here.  And, are you saying that these other sites, will take slightly unpostable books in their swaps?  No guidelines for posting?

Date Posted: 8/16/2009 7:20 PM ET
Member Since: 7/4/2009
Posts: 25
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In addition to PBS, I'm also a member of Bookmooch (bookmooch.com/).  I've gotten good books through both, although some people on both sites don't like the setup of the other. I think I prefer what I like to think of as the "freer" setup of Bookmooch, although some would see it as unfair and chaotic. Bookmooch does have posting guidelines, but it also allows you to write condition notes about your book if said book is in the grey area of postability. For example, I had a copy of Louise Erdritch's Love Medicine that would've been upostable by PBS standards. It had a waterstain on the back corner, it was worn, and it had a few notes and underlinings from a student who had the book before I did. I listed all these things in the condition notes, but the book was mooched anyway. The moocher gave me positive feedback and got a book she might not have gotten otherwise; I got a point and mooched something else. PBS has some advantages though, the most important for me being a wider selection of books. PBS does have way better forums although many BMers use LibraryThing forums instead (www.librarything.com/groups/bookmooching ) (and TPTB at BM promise they're working on making better forums on site).  

Date Posted: 8/16/2009 7:36 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I've done Bookmooch for 2 years and I've never seen any posting guidelines.  I only trade my unpostables or heavily posted books there.

Most of the books I get there would not be postable on PBS.  But since I'm sending out mostly unpostables I don't mind so much. I hardly ever get a WL book over there.  Their forums are horrible and the site is frequently down for several hours at a time. But it's good if you have a lot of heavily posted or unpostable books.  And I have gotten a lot of perfectly readable books from BM.  But PBS always gets first dibs on my postable books and frequently my unpostables as well since I do the Damaged Books Virtual Box in the games forum.

Date Posted: 8/16/2009 8:22 PM ET
Member Since: 8/1/2009
Posts: 301
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I'm also a BookMooch member.  Like others have said, I list my unpostables there so I can leave a condition note, and I also list titles that aren't very popular here.  I really like being able to post my old textbooks there.  I've mooched a good number of books from there, but none have been "must haves" for me. 

Disadvantages, like others have mentioned, are that the forums there are basically inaccessible, it's kind of chaotic/the interface is not as friendly, there is the option to "reserve" books for other members so a lot of popular titles never come up for trade (I've never gotten anything off of my WL there), and the selection is pretty small -- especially in terms of "newer/hotter" books.  The upside is that there's a lot of random stuff available that you might not be able to find anywhere else.  I listed a copy of an older neurology textbook there that was snapped up in minutes.  I also find that communication between members is pretty dismal -- often times, e-mails go unanswered; people with inactive accounts still have their books show up when you search for them.  Also, there is no incentive to mail books quickly, as senders receive a point the moment they agree to send a requested book.  I've been waiting for someone to mail a book from there for over 2 weeks, and they have already requested another book with "my" point.

I alluded to this before, but the thing that brought me over to PBS from BM was the higher condition standards here.  The posting guidelines at BM are vague -- basically, any condition is OK as long as you mention them in a condition note.

BM is like the library I went to when I lived in a small town.  PBS is like the library I go to now that I live in a really nice Chicago suburb.



Last Edited on: 8/16/09 9:44 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Ronda (RONDA) - ,
Date Posted: 8/17/2009 9:36 AM ET
Member Since: 3/3/2009
Posts: 415
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Here is a link to a list of bookswapping websites.  Librarything is a cataloging website (not a swapping site).

http://www.librarything.com/wiki/index.php/Comparison_of_Book_Swapping_Websites

I have used BookMooch and have been able to send out several books that were not requested on PBS, but I have yet to find books I want to order.  I do like that BM included international users. You indicate in your set-up if you are willing to send internationally and they give you 3 points instead of 1 for international shipments.

I have also tried FrugalReader.  I have sent out a few that were not request on PBS on FR, but have also not found books to order.

The FIFO at PBS works better for me for getting the wishlist books.  The approch on BM is everyone gets an email and the first person to respond gets the book.  On FrugalReader the person who offers the most points gets the book.  Neither of these approachs is working for my wishlist.  FR seems to have some interesting features, but they are more complex that PBS and I just can't get into them.

Date Posted: 8/17/2009 9:49 AM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,187
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Just an FYI everyone, links to competitors' sites should not be posted in the PBS forums. I know that it just a discussion, but we should still honor that request of the site. If someone wants to find the other sites, they will Google it or can PM someone for the link.

Date Posted: 8/18/2009 2:30 AM ET
Member Since: 10/30/2006
Posts: 8,426
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Last Edited on: 9/30/09 4:01 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 8/18/2009 11:03 AM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I hardly post anything over there anymore and only keep a couple of credits handy.  Everytime I get an email for a WL book beign posted it's already taken by the time I click on the link.  I've only gotten maybe 2 WL books there in the past year. The only time I post a book over there is if I get really low on pts because I've ordered some and if I can't get rid of it on PBS.  But I usually try PBS, The Damaged Books Virtual Box and Operationpaperback.org-that's the email to ship books to deployed soldiers.

But I have gotten a lot of my RL books that only had a couple of copies posted onto PBS.  I don't order anything on BM that is heavily posted here. I'd prefer to find those books in a deal or BOB trade on PBS and I don't really want to add 1 more to the system if there are hundreds already.