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Topic: I've had it with the Wisconsin PO!

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Subject: I've had it with the Wisconsin PO!
Date Posted: 5/27/2010 9:44 PM ET
Member Since: 1/27/2008
Posts: 9
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I recently went back through my transaction archive and looked at how many books I sent out got lost.  I've sent out 18 books in the past 10 months; 6 have gone missing.  At least 6 of these were mailed from MN, the rest within WI. Now, please don't go accusing me of mispackaging my books and telling me that I am doing something wrong.  I've been a member since 2007 and I know how to wrap a book safely. 

I live in WI and have recently done a few experiments on my own.  If I mail a book from MN, IA or MI, it gets to it's destination without a problem.   If I mail a book from WI it almost never actually gets delivered.  I don't think I'm going to be sending out any more books unless I can mail them from MN.  Luckily, the border is only 90 minutes away and I go there fairly frequently. 

Ugh!  So frustrating!  Thanks for letting me vent.

Rebecca

Date Posted: 5/27/2010 11:28 PM ET
Member Since: 11/9/2009
Posts: 8
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I live in Wisconsin too and am leary of sending out books now. I'm new to the group and I have 4 MIA so far. They are still early as far as delivery dates but I'm afraid of them getting lost. I DID have some books reach their destination. So not sure how to judge this. I sent some from a PO and some from my work's mailbox. I guess I will have to see in the future which ones actually reach the destination.

My concern also is that they told me they open the packages. Do I just loosely tape them because they will look anyway or just package good and tight just in case they don't.

Hope I don't have continuing problems.

Christine

Date Posted: 5/27/2010 11:34 PM ET
Member Since: 2/25/2010
Posts: 388
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Is Wisconsin the only state that is doing this and if so, why?  Did I hear somewhere because of security reasons?  How does this figure in?  New York is right on the border but I haven't heard anything about them opening media mail.  What's going on?

Date Posted: 5/27/2010 11:41 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,402
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It is due to the regional post master in Wisconsin.  Apparently he found an eBay retailer shipping packages by media rate.  So every package gets inspected.  Clerks are being required to get a signed notice that it is media.  Even worse, they are not being careful about taping the packages back up.  Have heard of books retaped with Scotch tape.  Books are going missing at a high rate. 

This is happening to MEDIA RATE books in Wisconsin.  (Not first class.  Not any other state.)



Last Edited on: 5/27/10 11:43 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 5/27/2010 11:45 PM ET
Member Since: 2/25/2010
Posts: 388
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Uhmmmm.  Isn't it the post office rule to NOT use scotch tape?  Wow.  I feel bad for you folks.  One of the few times I'm glad I live in New York.

Date Posted: 5/28/2010 12:01 AM ET
Member Since: 8/15/2007
Posts: 3,044
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Does this include books shipped to WI?

If so I might have to borrow a printer and use DC so I know I'll get my credit even if it goes lost because of them. That's the first time I've ever thought, "I'd have to use DC."

Date Posted: 5/28/2010 12:21 AM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,402
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Folks have been reporting over half of the packages arriving have been opened.  Some even having the book covers cut from the opening.  But this does not include first class.  Worth the extra three cents for books under 8 oz. 

Old thread with reports of inspected mail in WI

(Do note that may of these inspections do NOT follow USPS required policy.  USPS is very clear on who can inspect and on how.  Policy not being followed in WI.)

This is ordered by the regional PO.  Complaints should go above him, to either the Post Master General, your Congressman, or your US Rep.



Last Edited on: 5/28/10 12:37 AM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 5/28/2010 12:23 AM ET
Member Since: 3/1/2007
Posts: 1,883
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I'm in WI too and yes they checked books shipped here from other states too. Every time I have a couple books come in at least one of them sometimes more has been opened for inspection.

Date Posted: 5/28/2010 4:15 AM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,171
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Those statistics for missing and damaged Media Mail packages are AWFUL  crying  Seriously folks, you should start complaining to the Postmaster General.  List your DC numbers so they can see how many are missing, and include specific instances of damaged books and inadequate re-packaging.  There's NO EXCUSE for this kind of numbers.

Date Posted: 5/28/2010 7:17 AM ET
Member Since: 4/7/2008
Posts: 15,690
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I'd definitely complain to the Postmaster General. You are paying for the service and you are entitled for your package to get their safely.

Good that you reminded me...now I'll use DC to any package I sent to WI.

Date Posted: 5/28/2010 9:40 AM ET
Member Since: 1/27/2008
Posts: 9
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I have had no problems with books that I have received.  Not one has had a note that it has been opened, nor damaged, nor lost in the mail.  I will have to look more closely at my records and see if the ones that were sent first class were the ones that actually were received. 

I'll have to get my DC numbers all in order and complain to my congressman.  My husband says his books are getting lost in the mail too, so between us we have a sizeable number of DC proof of the magnitude of the problem. 

I just love that everybody else gets punished for someone else's dishonesty.  :(

Date Posted: 5/28/2010 10:49 AM ET
Member Since: 10/23/2005
Posts: 7,719
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It might be time to get the PBS Postal Liason involved in this. And the Post Master General.

These stats and problems are just outrageous. Who does this person think they are the Media Mail Gestapo?

To catch people abusing the system is one thing. To abuse all the customers who are following the rules is quite another.

In case they dont know it, customers are the only way the USPS generates money. All the PBSers who send and receive books in WI helps their bottom line. I rarely used the Postal Service until I was a member here.

It is time they were reminded of the revenue PBS generates in the US from mailing books. Per the Pulse of PBS: Books Mailed Today: 2,213. Even if they were all mailed at the lowest MM rate, $2.38, without any additional fees that is $5266.94 already today!

 

ETA: I just sent a link to this thread to the PBS Team for a head's up.



Last Edited on: 5/28/10 10:51 AM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 5/28/2010 10:55 AM ET
Member Since: 12/9/2007
Posts: 9,601
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HMMM!  Wonder if PBS would have a talk with the USPS people about this?  It seems very underhanded and definitely illegal.  I just looked and there are 1154 members with public profiles.  That's a lot of people that might be having a lot of lost books and damaged books.  All the WI members need to be checking out their records of lost and damaged from inspection books and complaining to the Inspector General.

Ruth

Date Posted: 5/28/2010 10:56 AM ET
Member Since: 12/9/2007
Posts: 9,601
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Cheryl - great minds think alike and apparently at the same time!  ;D

Ruth

Date Posted: 5/28/2010 12:47 PM ET
Member Since: 10/13/2007
Posts: 36,445
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Makes me wonder, if you put a book in a clear baggy with the PBS mailing label on the front, if that would be opened.. They could see it was a book and maybe less damage? 

Date Posted: 5/28/2010 12:56 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,171
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". . . and complain to my congressman. . ."     A great idea Rebecca.

". . . might be time to get the PBS Postal Liason involved. . ."  Another thought to consider Cheryl.   Wisconson Media Mail Gestapo - ROFL . . . and unfortunately becoming all too true.

And still another interesting idea Xen!  Mail in clear plastic...hmmm...I have some nice heavy clear plastic from when we ordered a specialty car part for DS...definately sturdy enough to withstand Media Maul aka the Sampsonite gorilla.



Last Edited on: 5/28/10 12:56 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 5/28/2010 12:59 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,402
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The postal inspectors will either stamp the book or put in a xeroxed message.  From the reports, these inspections aren't being done by the inspectors and aren't putting in notice.  Which makes me think it is going against policy. 

Australia ships book rate in clear plastic.

Date Posted: 5/28/2010 1:06 PM ET
Member Since: 12/28/2006
Posts: 14,171
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True Emily, we've heard reports of counter inspections...which are rather iffy, in regards to official policy.  IIRC those can't actually be required, but most postal customers don't know that and therefore submit to the intimidation.



Last Edited on: 5/28/10 1:06 PM ET - Total times edited: 1
Date Posted: 5/28/2010 4:49 PM ET
Member Since: 6/15/2006
Posts: 6,060
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I will say that as a Wisconsin resident only one book shipped to me had been inspected, and it was re-wrapped so well I never would have known it was opened if there hadn't been a notice. 

But it's still silly.

Date Posted: 5/28/2010 8:07 PM ET
Member Since: 9/17/2008
Posts: 110
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Wow, I live in WI too and I think out of the 200+ books I've recieved, only three have been opened, and not recently.  Thats very upsetting though.  I will have to talk to my PO next time I go in to see whats up!  I live on the WI/IL border so maybe that helps?  Dont know, probably not lol.  I think I will use DC more often or pay the extra for First Class, which I do sometimes anyways but this makes me want to even more.  I also have had no complaints about books I've mailed out being opened and damaged so thats good (knock on wood)

Date Posted: 5/28/2010 11:02 PM ET
Member Since: 10/13/2007
Posts: 36,445
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LOL No wonder the clear plastic idea came to mind.. I do remember getting books sent to me via bookclub in clear plastic.. Like the kind they use to wrap houses with..Never got one damaged.  Australia loves plastic wrapping..LOL

Date Posted: 5/28/2010 11:40 PM ET
Member Since: 8/25/2009
Posts: 695
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"I will say that as a Wisconsin resident only one book shipped to me had been inspected, and it was re-wrapped so well I never would have known it was opened if there hadn't been a notice. 

But it's still silly."

 

You might not think it was silly if you had seen some of things Ihave seen sent as Media Mail:

Box of yes, books, but wrapped up in clothing and also containing other household goods.  this was a kid that was moving & shipped all her stuff back to Mom, everything mixed in together.  To qualify for Media Mail rate, all the contents have to be Media Mail items & ended up costing the Mom over $100 postage due.  Yikes.

A clock radio.

A pair of rubber boots.

A couple pairs of blue jeans.

I think people just see Media Mail is the cheapest rate and decide that's what they're going to use, maybe don't even realize there are limitations on what can be sent that way.

Date Posted: 5/28/2010 11:55 PM ET
Member Since: 7/19/2008
Posts: 15,402
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That is one of the reasons that PBS is so strict with it's media mail guidelines.  No magazines.  No letters, just the invoice.  (And bookmarks.)  So the PO will never think we are not following the rules.  And PBS will never be a focus of targeted inspections.

The post office is in rather serious fiscal trouble.  The amount of catalogs and magazines are down.  Misuse of media mail is a serious problem as they do not make any money off of it.

But I do wish they would target the eBay labels and skip harrassing our members.

Date Posted: 5/29/2010 2:06 PM ET
Member Since: 6/1/2006
Posts: 5,066
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I live in Wisconsin and I've had only one book go lost in 4 years.

As for books being inspected that were sent to me, I've had 3 that I can remember.

I was grilled one time at the PO when I was sending out 4 books. The guy at the desk starting "quizzing" me on the books I was sending, such as, what's the name of this one, who is the author, what's the book about. Luckily I had just recently read them, knew which book was going where, who the author's were and what they were about.

At first I just thought he was just interested, but he then made a comment about media mail and inspecting the packages so there had better be just books in the packages.

 

 

Date Posted: 5/29/2010 5:31 PM ET
Member Since: 2/25/2010
Posts: 388
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Denise, I think I'd have some choice words for that guy.  Sheesh!  Treating you as if you were a criminal when the only thing you're guilty of is mailing a book. 

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