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Topic: What would you do in this situation?

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Subject: What would you do in this situation?
Date Posted: 5/10/2008 12:18 AM ET
Member Since: 3/28/2008
Posts: 6
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On April 5, I made a request for a book and it was accepted.  On April 7, it was marked mailed.

I never did get it, so on May 3, it was marked as 'lost in the mail.'

Throughout this time, there was no dialogue between the sender and I, so I basically assumed that she had done everything normally - accepted the request, printed the wrapper and mailed it out.

I've received a PM from her, however, that says she had marked the book mailed, but was then unable to mail it out.  She still has the book, and wants to know if I still want it.

Now, I'm not exactly sure what to do.  I do feel that she should have let me know she wasn't able to mail it out, instead of letting the whole month go by with no word of the real status of things.

Her profile and bookshelf are private so can't gain any kind of clue about what kind of member or person she is - whether she has easy access to the internet or a post office, or if she's disabled or perhaps has a monthly spending allowance for sending out books and had already reached the limit, or if she's new to the site and didn't understand how things work, etc.

I'm not sure I'd want to do a transaction with her because she never let me know the book hadn't been mailed in the first place, but then again, I don't know if there are any factors involved as stated above.

I don't know, how would you guys handle it?

(If  I did decide I wanted it from her, would the best way to do it be for her to mail it and then for me to mark the book as received, in my transaction archive? What would happen from there?  Also, would it be appropriate if I wanted to include what happened in the "Any other comments you wish PBS to have on record" section of that feedback page?  And lastly, is the sender able to view those comments?  Not that I would be scathing or anything - I'm just curious!)


Date Posted: 5/10/2008 12:49 AM ET
Member Since: 8/30/2005
Posts: 827
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If I still wanted it, I'd tell her to go ahead and send.  You can mark it received from your Transaction Archive if you ever get it.  If you don't, no further loss to you.   Maybe she had something serious going on that caused the delay, and if you end up with the book you wanted, it's all good.

When you mark the book received, the stuff you write in the top box is sent to the sender in a PM.  The stuff you write in the bottom box goes to the site admins somehow--the sender doesn't see that message.

You'd have to give her your address again to mail it, probably, bcs she won't have access to that from the site. 

This happened to me once and I just gave the go-ahead and my address in a PM and the book arrived in about a week, I marked it received, and all was well.  In my case the sender had gotten notification that he was being deployed to Iraq and was running around doing stuff to prepare for that and forgot to mail.  He remembered before he left, and I think his wife ended up mailing it out to me. 

Date Posted: 5/10/2008 12:50 AM ET
Member Since: 1/22/2007
Posts: 1,101
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Was it a wish list book? Is that why it didn't go on to the next person in the FIFO list? If it is a wishlist book and you still want it I would go ahead and have her send it to me. Then when I got it I would mark it received in my transaction list. be truthful in putting in the date she mailed it and the powers that be will see that she didn't follow the rules and will let her know the rules.  I think it would be ok to mark what happpened in the any other comments section and I don't think the other member gets to see that.  Who knows maybe something happened and she wasn't able to get to the computer or post office until recently- if you really want the book, (and if you didn't you wouldn't have ordered it in the first place right?) have her send it.


Date Posted: 5/10/2008 1:31 AM ET
Member Since: 7/14/2007
Posts: 8,942
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I think the system automaticaly reorders a book for you if it goes lost in the system.  You may have another copy on the way.

Date Posted: 5/10/2008 1:53 AM ET
Member Since: 7/18/2007
Posts: 233
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I ordered 2 books from someone once.  They marked them mailed, and after about 2 weeks I asked for an updated status.  She said that she mailed them out the day before due to an unforseen delay.  Ok, no problem, I told her.  Two more weeks went by with no sign of the books.  Asked again, the owner said that the books had been returned to her because of a bad address, and could I please confirm my address so she could resend them. 

I went ahead and ordered them from someone else, and had them in hand within 3 days.  I chose not to deal with the original person anymore, because I had been waiitng for a month for these books and she kept giving me the runaround.

I think it's pretty subjective... do you think she is telling the truth? Are you willing to wait?  What if she doesn't send them (again)?

you might forward the messages to PBS so that they can see what's going on and possibly have that book kept off your lost record since she admits to still having it.  if it's not rare, I would probably order it from someone else.

Date Posted: 5/10/2008 8:50 PM ET
Member Since: 7/7/2007
Posts: 4,815
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Personally, I'd be very hesitant to order from someone who marked the book mailed, then said nothing for a month until it went lost.  Yes, things happen where items can't get mailed, but she managed to get to her computer and mark it mailed -- was she in a coma in Siberia for the rest of the month?  Even if she had some of the circumstances you mention -- limited computer access, limited funds, family emergency -- it is hard to believe she didn't have the means to contact you briefly until she got an email from PBS saying the book went lost.  If it were me, and the situation were really unusual, I'd have shared something in my apology ("I'm so sorry, my cat contracted avian flu from chasing sparrows and the CDC quarantined us both in a dog cage in Atlanta").  Not just "oops".

If you did decide to go through with it, you shouldn't have to do anything other than reply to her PM.  She should already have printed your address and wrapped the book, since she was about to mail it, right?  You can make transaction-related comments in that field when marking a book received and I would -- the other party can't see them, but PBS will have it on her record if she has other issues and they have to look over her account.



L. G. (L)
Date Posted: 5/11/2008 3:32 AM ET
Member Since: 9/5/2005
Posts: 12,412
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I wouldn't reorder from anyone that irresponsible.


Date Posted: 5/11/2008 7:11 AM ET
Member Since: 11/14/2005
Posts: 1,442
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As L said above, I wouldn't reorder a book from her either.  But, if it didn't go into FIFO because it was the only book in the system, I would probably tell her to send it along.  When/IF it arrives, as others have said you can just go to your transaction archive and mark it received.  Definitely put the date it was mailed and add a comment for the PBS team.



Date Posted: 5/11/2008 11:05 AM ET
Member Since: 4/25/2007
Posts: 11,730
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If your lost book is a WL book, then the book goes back on your WL and  you get to be #1 again.

If there are other copies of your lost book in the system, then the book goes on your reminder list and it isn't automatically reordered for you.

Personally, I wouldn't want to reorder from someone that took a month to tell me they hadn't mailed after all.  I wouldn't want the book from this member.

Date Posted: 5/11/2008 2:48 PM ET
Member Since: 8/23/2007
Posts: 26,510
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Like Sarah said: It won't automatically reorder the book for you incase the other one arrives.  I believe the help-docs even suggest to wait 2 wks before reordering the book.  If there's other copies in the system-I'd just tell her to keep the book and order another one. You got your credit back when the book goes lost.  If it's a book that's WL or not in the system and your desperate to have it-then tell her to send it out and mark it received when it gets here.