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Topic: Wait time for a member to accept my order.

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Subject: Wait time for a member to accept my order.
Date Posted: 2/6/2010 11:58 PM ET
Member Since: 9/28/2005
Posts: 2
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I don't understand why I only have 48 hrs to accept a wishlist book but a memeber I order a book from has 5 days to respond... If they can't accept the order in 48 hrs the book should be passed on to the next person in line to have the book... Or...  those that haven't been on pbs for several months and are unlikely to come back need to be weeded out. I have had more and more of those people in the last few months... It is irritating. How do we go about getting the wait time changed? Maybe we need to vote on it. The 3 day wait and 7 day ship suggestion I read tonight sounds workable to me.

Thanks for letting me spout off...  Judy

Date Posted: 2/7/2010 12:02 AM ET
Member Since: 5/18/2007
Posts: 13,193
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I don't see any need to change it. But I suggest you send a note to TPTB and let them know what you think. There are hundreds of thousands of PBS members, I'm not sure voting would make much sense. 



Last Edited on: 2/7/10 1:33 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 2/7/2010 2:14 AM ET
Member Since: 7/28/2006
Posts: 4,981
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Or...  those that haven't been on pbs for several months and are unlikely to come back need to be weeded out.

That's a nice idea, but I think it's a little hard to gauge.  Because of the way the FIFO system works, if a member posts nothing but very popular books (think 50+ copies in the system already) on their bookshelf it can be months (or even years) before a request comes up for a particular book.  With no credits to spend (because no book requests) a member who would respond quickly to a request if they had one may have not logged in for a few months.  Issues such as family deaths, illness, power outages caused by storms, etc. can also contribute to a member being away from their computer for a prolonged period of time without advance notice. 

I'm sorry you've been having trouble lately.  Sounds like you've had a string of bad luck.  Unfortunately there are always members who will take their two startup credits and bail, so you've got both sides of the equation here. 

I would encourage you to send in feedback to the Team.  Voting may not be an option, but if enough people feel this way and send in about it, it's possible it might change someday.

Date Posted: 2/7/2010 8:25 AM ET
Member Since: 6/26/2006
Posts: 598
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Consider this - I have a book requested from me.  I could accept it right now and promise to mail it this week but I would probably miss the date because my 28 inches of snow (with 6 inches more expected Tuesday) won't let me get to the post office.....or I can wait a couple of days to accept and then take the maximum time to mail and the package will go out as promised.....  The time factor allows life to happen as we can not control everything! 

BTW - the book cycled through FOUR requestors before it was accepted so I have been waiting over a week since posting a WL'd book to even have a request.  Patience is needed on PBS sometimes.

Date Posted: 2/7/2010 8:47 AM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2010
Posts: 400
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I can understand the need to vent, sometime you feel so frustrated that you just want to yell and get that stress out.

I am new here and was lucky enough that the first 10 posted were gone in 2 days, posted 6 more and gone the next day.  Three days later posted 10 more and they were gone in two day. 

I know that is a rarity.  I was surprised, but glad! 

Now, I have posted 14 more and only two have gone in four days.  That is life, I may be "stuck" with them for several days, weeks, who knows.  I think one of them has had three requestors time out.   

I won't bore you with cliches, but offer my sympathy and understanding that sometimes you need to vent, gripe and realize that you can't change it but wish you could.

Janette 



Last Edited on: 2/7/10 8:48 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 2/7/2010 9:26 AM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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I think PBS would lose a lot of members if they shortened the time to accept book requests.  (I think this is the only trading site that has any time limits at all).

People have lives.  They let requests sit for many reasons: sick kids, to get closer to payday, limited transportation, limited computer access, reliance on friends and family to mail books for them, bad weather, busy work weeks et...,  Limited the time to accept and mail books out would eliminate a lot of PBSers. 

I happen to have put my account on hold because of the weather. But if I didn't and got a book request today-I would let it sit for a few days before I accepted it since I might not get mail service for a few days or be able to get my car out because of the blizzard. 

Date Posted: 2/7/2010 9:31 AM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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As for WL books being only 48hrs to accept: PBS gives you the option to set books to autorequest so you don't have to log on to accept them.  They also assume that you will keep credits on hand to cover WL offers but also give you the option to buy credits from other members or PBS.   There is no need to allow time for getting to the post office, getting wrapping materials incase you ran out, getting to payday to have postage money etc..., 

Date Posted: 2/7/2010 12:25 PM ET
Member Since: 2/13/2007
Posts: 2,271
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I feel Judy's pain! It is really frustrating when you order a book from someone and it just sits there and you go and look at their profile and see that the last time they visited the site was in May...you know you are not getting the book from them and you can't do anything about it! And in the meantime, the other available copies are requested by other members and suddenly the book you requested 5 days ago is sitting on your wishlist.

I would love to see the sort of thing like, if you haven't signed on to the site in, say 45 or 60 days, your account is put on hold and you get an email from PBS telling you that has happened and all you have to do is sign on to your account and your account is taken off of hold -- not an onerous task to ask of an inactive member, and if they really ARE inactive and unresponsive, then we are not requesting books from them and patiently waiting for a response that isn't going to come.

Date Posted: 2/7/2010 12:41 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,177
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Good comments above, and I'll add one I didn't see there yet.  PBS has a surprising number of members that travel for work.  They mail & mark received when they are home (usually weekends), and therefore often need a couple extra days.   These are regular and active members that need slightly more flexible timelines.

ETA - timed out transactions are sooooo frustrating, totally understand your need to vent.



Last Edited on: 2/7/10 12:42 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 2/7/2010 12:44 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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Sally I've suggested that before as well. Someone who still wants their PBS account but just isn't a high volume trader and forum user wouldn't have to put much effort to just log onto the site for 2 minutes.  Those who don't care about it anymore would be weeded out of the system.

Date Posted: 2/7/2010 12:54 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,194
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I didn't see anyone mention that inactive members DO get weeded out. If they don't respond, their account is put in Hold.

Sending in your Feedback lets the site know what members are thinking and they've made a lot of changes here in my time because of member Feedback. I do doubt they'd ever put site policies to a vote, but this one would probably get voted down if it did get voted on.

I hope they don't do something on accounts that haven't logged in for a period of time, but haven't missed any transactions. I know I am inactive on the sister sites unless I have to go there to respond to an offer. I may not get one for months so I don't log in there, but I still log-in and respond when I do get activity.

Date Posted: 2/7/2010 1:30 PM ET
Member Since: 11/5/2009
Posts: 1,083
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I totally agree with you.  I had an incident where I was looking for the next book in a series, a book not available in my library.  Getting that book was a lesson in frustration.  It went through three 5 day waiting periods before someone finally accepted the order.

Also, I'm not sure how bad weather is a reason not to send books.  Unless your mail carrier has ceased to deliver mail because of the weather, all you need to do is print electronic postage, wrap the book and leave it for your mail carrier to pick up the next time they deliver mail.  I pretty much never go to the post office. The only time I do is when I have a package that is too big to fit in my mailbox.

Date Posted: 2/7/2010 1:40 PM ET
Member Since: 5/18/2007
Posts: 13,193
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I didn't see anyone mention that inactive members DO get weeded out. If they don't respond, their account is put in Hold.

My daughter will attest to this. She's a busy college student with a job, not active in the forums but active on PBS. She's been sending and receiving as long as I have BUT she would go 5 days without checking PBS because she doesn't have time. Some semesters she has more time to read than others.

She now makes time to check because PBS put her account on hold (or threatened to ... it's been a year so I don't remember which) because she didn't respond to a couple of books requested from her and missed a couple WL books. So they do pay attention.

Date Posted: 2/7/2010 1:46 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,194
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Kate just an FYI, leaving a book in the mailbox is not an option for every one. Many mail carriers will not take packages at all. It is optional for them to take them and some just don't have the carrying capacity to do so.

Also with bad weather, it is not always a wise option to stick a book in a mailbox when it is storming; knowing that your carrier will not be picking it up for days. Its much safer for the book to just stay indoors un-mailed until the USPS is moving again and the mailbox isn't being buried in snow and smacked by snowplows or being lashed with torrents of rain.

Date Posted: 2/7/2010 2:00 PM ET
Member Since: 5/18/2007
Posts: 13,193
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And I don't have a "mailbox" to even leave a package in. I have a slot on the side of my house that drops into my garage. 

I have two mail deliveries a day usually. First time in the morning when he delivers packages and then again when the actual mail comes. I would have to leave packages on my front porch to catch either one and even though I have an overhang on my porch and it's a long walk from the street to my porch, I'm not going to just leave it there. 

Plus, I do believe back East is at a standstill in many places .... probably no mail delivery cuz the plows can't keep up with the snow. (I am SO glad I moved back to California! lol)

Date Posted: 2/7/2010 2:29 PM ET
Member Since: 1/17/2009
Posts: 9,854
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In my neighborhood we have those central mail boxes. There is a letter sized slot to put outgoing letters in. That's it. I do not have a mailman come to my house at all, and there are no boxes in my neighborhood to put outgoing mail into. I have to go down the street to get my mail every day.

I would need to drive about 5 or 6 miles to even find a blue box to put mail into. The PO is about 10 miles away.

This is why bad weather can affect getting mail out.

Personally, for me, its not the weather that makes me delay mailing books out (cause I'm in southern CA and we only get rain) ... but the inconvenience of mailing books out makes me plan carefully to make a single trip per week to the PO.

Date Posted: 2/7/2010 2:48 PM ET
Member Since: 12/21/2007
Posts: 1,642
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<<Unless your mail carrier has ceased to deliver mail because of the weather, all you need to do is print electronic postage, wrap the book and leave it for your mail carrier to pick up the next time they deliver mail.  I pretty much never go to the post office. The only time I do is when I have a package that is too big to fit in my mailbox.>>

The only place I have to mail books in my town is the post office. Yes, even with electronic postage. My mail person doesn't pick up packages. Not everyone has a mailbox. I have a letter slot in my door and my mail person doesn't even pick up letters I have to mail.

Date Posted: 2/7/2010 3:33 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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Also not all members have printers to print postage.  Many hand address their packages.   So if it's a larger book it can't just have some stamps put on it either. There are also a lot of disabled members who just can't slap some postage on and get to their mail box. THey have to rely on family, friends, home health aids etc.., 

A lot of members rely on library computers and can't get there everyday.  Should they be punished and not be able to participate in PBS because they can only get to the computer a couple of times a week. It's a book not life saving medicine.



Last Edited on: 2/7/10 3:33 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 2/7/2010 3:34 PM ET
Member Since: 11/5/2009
Posts: 1,083
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Wow, I had no idea so many people don't have a mailbox.  That's a bummer.  I don't know what I would do without my mailbox.  It is across and down the street, rather than right in front of my home, but at least it's close.

My sympathies to all of you who don't have a mailbox handy or who have mail carriers who won't pick up packages. 

I'm not sure if I would do business on this site if I had to go to the post office every time I wanted to send a package.  Our small local post office ALWAYS has a line and I really don't like waiting in line.

Date Posted: 2/7/2010 4:13 PM ET
Member Since: 7/21/2006
Posts: 24
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Me, having grown up in cities my entire life have never had a "mailbox." I grew up calling the blue boxes "mailboxes," since that's how you mail a letter. I only have to go downstairs and there's about four of them right there. Actually until very recently I never even realized that people could mail letters/packages by placing it in your mailbox.


Those of us affected by the D.C. area blizard has no postal operations whatsoever yesterday and today. So despite my being able to go outside and drop something in a blue box it won't be going anywhere until Monday at the earliest.

Date Posted: 2/7/2010 4:26 PM ET
Member Since: 1/30/2009
Posts: 5,696
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Me, having grown up in cities my entire life have never had a "mailbox." I grew up calling the blue boxes "mailboxes," since that's how you mail a letter. I only have to go downstairs and there's about four of them right there. Actually until very recently I never even realized that people could mail letters/packages by placing it in your mailbox.

Ditto.  That's why I use DC - so I can just stick them in the blue box.  Otherwise it would be a total nightmare.

Date Posted: 2/7/2010 4:52 PM ET
Member Since: 8/18/2005
Posts: 7,977
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Wow, I had no idea so many people don't have a mailbox.  That's a bummer.  I don't know what I would do without my mailbox.  It is across and down the street, rather than right in front of my home, but at least it's close.

Don't get used to it. The USPS is phasing out a lot of them. We've had almost all our blue boxes in our residential areas removed, and you can't send anything larger than a medium sized envelope out in our nested boxes. They're even removing them from mall areas. We had one outside our Stapes and it disapeared one day never to return.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2009/07/24/AR2009072403857.html

Across the country, stalwart blue "collection boxes" like the one on Flack Street in Wheaton are disappearing. In the past 20 years, 200,000 mailboxes have vanished from city streets, rural routes and suburban neighborhoods -- more than the 175,000 that remain. In the Washington area alone, half the blue boxes that were on the streets nine years ago have been pulled up and taken to warehouses to molt in storage or be sold for scrap, leaving 4,071 mailboxes remaining in the District, Northern Virginia and the Maryland suburbs.

 

Date Posted: 2/7/2010 5:12 PM ET
Member Since: 5/18/2007
Posts: 13,193
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Up until I moved back here 4 years ago  I had (personal) mailboxes outside my home but I still never left anything in it so I don't miss it now that I don't have a mailbox (just a slot). In fact I like it better because mail is delivered inside my home (OK, the garage)  and out of the elements. And I only have to go into my garage to collect my mail ... or to my porch to collect my packages. Much safer and much more convenient for me. 

And, since I work, I go right by my post office every day to drop packages in the blue package bin if needed , or I can leave it at our mail counter at work and they'll take it for me. 

Cindy, I think she's talking personal mailboxes that the mail carrier puts your mail in. Not the ones everyone drops letters into. 



Last Edited on: 2/7/10 5:14 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 2/7/2010 5:40 PM ET
Member Since: 7/21/2006
Posts: 24
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Don't get used to it. The USPS is phasing out a lot of them. We've had almost all our blue boxes in our residential areas removed, and you can't send anything larger than a medium sized envelope out in our nested boxes. They're even removing them from mall areas. We had one outside our Stapes and it disapeared one day never to return.

 

I'm guessing that you meant to post that in response to my comment. Yes, I'm aware that USPS is phasing out a considerable number of blue boxes, but how do you expect me not to get too used to something I've had my entire life. I think for the most part they're phasing them out of suburban areas, not large urban areas such as NYC. These large urban areas may have less of them, but they're not something that is going to be phased out entirley anytime in the near future since in those areas everybody uses them to send out their mail.

Subject: Thanks
Date Posted: 2/7/2010 6:32 PM ET
Member Since: 9/28/2005
Posts: 2
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There was a lot of information that I hadn't considered in all of your replies (I had no idea that not  everyone had a mailbox). I appreciate the info... I still think more should be done to weed out those people that don't respond to the emails... if it were me, not being able to get it in the mail right away, I would send a short pm saying when I expected to deal with the order... I can't remember if that is possible before accepting the order or not, but it should be... =) FYI: I don't have trouble with WL books... It is the ones that are readily available to order that I am having  trouble getting a response.

Thanks again for all the great input!

Judy

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