Skip to main content
PBS logo
Want fewer ads?

Discussion Forums - Questions about PaperBackSwap Questions about PaperBackSwap

Topic: Book Guidelines

Club rule - Please, if you cannot be courteous and respectful, do not post in this forum.
  Unlock Forum posting with Annual Membership.
Generic Profile avatar
Subject: Book Guidelines
Date Posted: 11/8/2007 10:03 AM ET
Member Since: 10/2/2007
Posts: 44
Back To Top

I am new to Paper Back Swap and I have a few questions on book quality.  I have lots of old library books, which I read are okay to post, but is there a place to say it is a library book? 

Also, I am currently reading a book I noticed has a wish list.  I plan to post it when I finish reading it.  I am worried about whether it is more than "gently used".  It is paperback, and the pages are totally fine.  The front and back cover, however, have curved considerably from being read so much.  If the book is layed flat, the cover doesn't stay closed.  Also, the plastic film that is part of the cover, is beginning to curl around the edges.  i have only received 3 books from this club so far, and I am not sure if books of this quality are normal to post.


Thanks for any help!

thebookpimp avatar
Member of the Month medalFriend of PBS-Diamond medal
Date Posted: 11/8/2007 10:23 AM ET
Member Since: 5/27/2006
Posts: 11,985
Back To Top

Welcome to PBS Stacey. Here are the guidelines from the help center on what can and can not be posted here.  Hope they help.

When you Post a book, you are asked to confirm that the book is "in good condition, and not excessively worn".  It is impossible to list all of the ways in which a book might be considered excessively worn, but the criteria below are as comprehensive as we have been able to make them. If you feel your book falls into a "grey area", you can either post the book and send a Personal Message to the requestor, or not post the book.  We have delineated what we can, and we expect members to follow these guidelines, and use their common sense in cases that are unclear.  If you would not mind "paying" a credit for a book you are considering posting, then it is probably okay to post.  However, book condition can be a subjective matter.  Keep in mind that a pattern of sending out poor-condition or inappropriate books will jeopardize a sender's membership. All of the information below apply both to swapping for credits and Box-O-Books swapping. General remarks:
  • This is a used-book swapping site; books are not expected to be in like-new condition.
    • Older books may have some page yellowing or spine-creasing or dogeared pages; these are all OKAY.
    • Decirculated library books may have various markings and/or stamps inside or outside or on the page edges of the book; this is OKAY.
    • BookCrossing books may have stickers or stamps or markings on the outside or inside covers or page edges of the book; this is OKAY.
    • Hardbacks do NOT have to include their dustjackets.
    • Audiobooks MUST be the original cassettes/CDs, but do NOT have to include the outer "box" that held the set.
    • Audiobooks must be playable.
    • There is an exception to general condition guidelines for textbooks; see below.
    • There is an exception to general condition guidelines for cookbooks; see below.
  • We do NOT have a place for members to describe the condition of a particular copy of a book.
    • ALL books on PBS are expected to be in "good, not excessively worn" condition
    • Books are requested in FIFO (first-in, first-out) order
  • If you would like your books to be in "better-than-PBS" condition :
    • You are responsible for setting Requestor Conditions on your account.
Guidelines:                                                                                                                                        Overall Condition:
  • No damage at all from water or other liquid
  • Not soiled
  • No stains (exception for cookbooks--see below)
  • No mold
  • Must both be present (front and back)
    • note that a paperback missing its front cover is  usually an illegal, unsold copy
    • "cover" does not = dust jacket.  Hardcovers do not need to include their dust jackets to be swapped here.
  • Cover not torn
    • some used book stores cut out a small part of the cover; if the amount missing is less than 1 inch, this is OKAY
    • a small rip (less than 1 inch) in the cover is OKAY
  • A bookplate inside the cover or on the flyleaf is OKAY
  • Must be intact, with no separation on the inside or outside of the book
  • If the book tends to open at a particular page, this is OKAY
  • Small amount of fraying or denting at top or bottom is OKAY
  • No torn pages
  • No loose or missing pages
  • No writing or highlighting on text pages
    • a signature or note on the flyleaf or inside front or back cover is OKAY
    • an author's signature on the title page is OKAY
    • writing or highlighting on the text pages is NOT OKAY
      • Exception: if it is a textbook or workbook, these are expected to have highlighting/writing
        • if you post a textbook/workbook, the condition must be described to the requestor in a Personal Message
        • AND the described condition MUST BE AGREED TO before the book is sent
        • This is the one of the ONLY two cases in which a PM exchange about a book is required before the book can be sent(the other is for cookbooks--see below).
  • No staining

    • Exception: Cookbooks may have some mild staining, since these are used in the kitchen and while cooking, and some minor degree of staining could be expected in a used cookbook.  Also a small amount of writing in cookbooks could be expected
      • HOWEVER, if you post a cookbook and it is stained and/or written-in, the condition must be described to the requestor in a Personal Message
      • AND the described condition MUST BE AGREED TO before the book is sent
      • This is the one of the ONLY two cases in which a PM exchange about a book is required before the book can be sent (the other is for textbooks--see above).
      • this exception applies to the covers of cookbooks also.
nashvillethecat avatar
Date Posted: 11/8/2007 10:53 AM ET
Member Since: 8/1/2007
Posts: 5,034
Back To Top

Hmmm... its sounds like the book might be coming close to "excessively worn" but that is very subjective.  One way to handle would be to offer it as a freebie in the Book Bazaar forum if someone orders a "postable" book off your shelf.  If you do it that way, you won't have any guilt over "is it too beat up?" and the person getting it will be expecting a less than stellar condition book.  I tend to err on the side of using my "not so great" condition books as freebies to send with an order.

About the Library book thing..... if I have a hardback that is a library book, I will send a PM to the requestor letting them know as a courtesy just to make sure they still want it.  Most of the time they do.

Generic Profile avatar
Member of the Month medalFriend of PBS-Silver medal
Date Posted: 11/8/2007 11:20 AM ET
Member Since: 8/9/2005
Posts: 20,024
Back To Top

Im the opposite of Lita. Its the requestors responsibility to state if they dont want ex library books so if they dont have a condition I send the book.

junie avatar
Standard Member medalBook Cover Image Group medalBook Data Correction Group medalTour Guide medalFriend of PBS-Silver medalPBS Cruise Attendee medal
Date Posted: 11/8/2007 11:22 AM ET
Member Since: 1/14/2007
Posts: 18,369
Back To Top

Stacey:  As  library books  are ok to post,  you do not need to PM the requester about it. Of course, if they have in their conditions they do not accept library books, you must decline.

As for your other book, I would not post it if it was mine, but would offer free with an order from my shelf. If I am not sure about a book, I just don't post it. 

Susanaque avatar
Friend of PBS-Silver medal
Date Posted: 11/9/2007 10:15 AM ET
Member Since: 11/18/2005
Posts: 5,518
Back To Top

I also wouldn't PM to tell them a book is an ex-library book. If they don't want them, it should be listed in their requesotor conditions.

Generic Profile avatar
Date Posted: 11/9/2007 2:48 PM ET
Member Since: 10/2/2007
Posts: 44
Back To Top

Thank you for so many helpful replies.  I really appreciate it.  Now I am going to work on setting up a thread in the book bazaar for my excessively worn books.

hugbandit7 avatar
Book Cover Image Group medalBook Data Correction Group medal
Date Posted: 11/9/2007 3:32 PM ET
Member Since: 5/10/2007
Posts: 5,526
Back To Top

You can also put it in your signature so that anyone reading any thread might see what you have to offer.  You can do this in the settings area

Want fewer ads?