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Topic: I guess I screwed up...federally

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Subject: I guess I screwed up...federally
Date Posted: 8/3/2007 3:22 AM ET
Member Since: 5/6/2007
Posts: 4
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  I just got a complaint from someone who I sent a book to.  Mind you, the book cost me over $4 to mail because it was so heavy.  Apparently I left some newspaper articles inside the book.  I didn't know that we couldn't do this.  I don't look through every page of every book since a lot I get in boxes of other stuff at auctions.  I guess I will have to do that from now on.

  This guy really dressed me down.  In my already state of depression right now with home things going on, I really didn't need this. 

  It is my fault, I just never removed anything like that because I thought the receiver could use extra information.  I guess it didn't help that it was thoughts against the beliefs in the book, but I didn't really even look at the stuff, I hadn't read the book and thought I would just pass it on.

  Is that the way people are around here?  I have gotten bookmarks inside of books, but I guess that is illegal also.  I always thought it was nice, it saves a little on the kids crimping pages, although it doesn't save on them arguing over who gets the bookmark...lol.

  Since that also includes the papers that are printed out from BOB, how the heck is someone supposed to know who they came from without going through a bunch of stuff.  Heck, I traded with someone with the same first name and last initial.

  I for one have written down this guys name and user name and if he requests from me again I'm going to cancel the order, I won't "give" him something anymore, especially after the exorbinate shipping.  And by the way, all the dressing down and not a thanks for the book but....

  I came here to trade and have fun and this joker has me wanting to pull my books and go elsewhere, suppose I accidently leave something in the middle of a book and someone else makes a federal case out of it literally and I have the FBI at my door because I haven't bothered to go page by page through a 1000 page book.

  Well, thanks for letting me vent, and to those of you that have sent something extra, from me...thank you, just watch those ingrates out there.

Date Posted: 8/3/2007 10:56 AM ET
Member Since: 9/21/2005
Posts: 65
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Sorry you had such an unpleasant experience. 

I've learned to flip through the pages to make sure there isn't anything in the book - and a good thing to, I found a credit card statement I had apparently used as a bookmark.  Thank goodness I didn't mail that, the receiver would have known I'm a shopaholic!!!

Plus, I'm leery of including anything with the books because I don't want to inadvertently violate the media mail rules.

Hang in there. 

Date Posted: 8/3/2007 11:39 AM ET
Member Since: 12/21/2006
Posts: 315
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I don't see personally anything wrong with leaving the occasional item in a book ... but the USPS disagrees. Should they choose to inspect the package, ANYTHING inserted in the book makes it no longer eligible for Media Mail, and the package will be delivered Postage Due -- and often the postage they think is due will be the Priority rate.

Date Posted: 8/3/2007 12:19 PM ET
Member Since: 12/18/2005
Posts: 1,807
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There's a discussion going on about this under the Club Members' Thoughts forums:


Some people clearly would take offense at something like this.

Date Posted: 8/3/2007 1:37 PM ET
Member Since: 6/23/2005
Posts: 379
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Here's the link to the USPS Rule itself, which describes what can go by MM: http://pe.usps.gov/search/jsp/search/vv_docread.jsp?k2dockey=http%3A%2F%2Fpe.usps.com%2Ftext%2Fdmm300%2F173.htm%40PE_DMM300_HTML_5&serverSpec=

Specifically, look at this from section 4.0:

...any printed matter that is mailable as Standard Mail may be included loose with any qualifying material  mailed at the Media Mail rates.

Date Posted: 8/3/2007 1:48 PM ET
Member Since: 8/18/2005
Posts: 7,977
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Last Edited on: 7/26/09 6:01 PM ET - Total times edited: 2
Date Posted: 8/3/2007 3:21 PM ET
Member Since: 8/1/2007
Posts: 5,034
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That is a good reminder to check books before sending.  I personally like to find relics in books because I find them interesting.   It would be interesting to have a forum where people list the wierd things they have found in books.  About the other forum in the link from the above item, yes, I think its tacky to religious and political tracts and what not, but if I were to receive such, I would just toss it and not have a second thought.  For the book receiver to go bananas over an accidental addition, that is just nuts.  I can think of several mental self-helps books you  might want to send him free of charge :  ).   My opinion is the book receiver was anal and we should all take a quick fan through books before send them.

Please don't let this let this guy who "went postal" on you deter you from bookswap.  In fact, come pick a book off my shelf for free if wish.


Date Posted: 8/3/2007 3:57 PM ET
Member Since: 9/21/2005
Posts: 65
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To Lita from Alita:


I like your name....plus I like the idea of starting a topic "What is the weirdest thing you've found in a book."  You should start it!!

Date Posted: 8/3/2007 7:20 PM ET
Member Since: 6/28/2007
Posts: 182
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Two thousand years ago, some angels stopped by and shared good news with a group of shepherds. 


Today, those angels would be looked upon as 'attacking' and doing something 'ugly.'  Because the thoughts on a new religious occurence and teaching (the coming of God's kingdom) were unsolicited, they would be viewed with distrust and suspicion, and met with hateful words. 

so very strange...


But Ann, someone misunderstood your intentions.  I am so sorry that happened to you.  It is no reflection on you WHATSOEVER because you did not have base motives.  Even if you HAD left the information in the book intentionally, it was the receiver's choice to assign bad motives to your actions, when none existed.  Thank you for sharing, I imagine we will all be a little more careful.. although I think that is a shame personally...but that is just me.  Please don't lose any more of you peace of mind over it.

Date Posted: 8/3/2007 8:17 PM ET
Member Since: 7/18/2005
Posts: 209
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Thank you everyone for responding to this before I got to it.

  Ann, forget it.  If that member can't understand that it was a mistake then that is on him, not you.  He could have refused the postage due and the book would have been returned to you.  People like that aren't worth getting your peace and tranquility messed up over.

Date Posted: 8/4/2007 9:15 PM ET
Member Since: 11/18/2005
Posts: 5,508
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Ann, don't let it bother you. Some people just can't  get past complaining about something.

Date Posted: 9/28/2007 5:22 PM ET
Member Since: 7/4/2005
Posts: 25
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I would have been very offended if I recieved your book. This is not an appropriate place to send out religious information. I would have reported you & I hope the reciever put a comment in so people can decide if they want to order from you or not. Join a religious club if you want to prosthelitize.

Date Posted: 9/28/2007 6:31 PM ET
Member Since: 8/16/2007
Posts: 15,234
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Wow, I did not see ANYWHERE that the OP sent the info herself or that it pertained to her own beliefs, it was just something left in a book she picked up.

I would definitely add someone who responded with so much hostility and judgement to my Buddy list under the my category of DO NOT TRADE. I think an appropriate PM would have been "Did you realize there was X in the book? Including this stuff in a book can cause the book to be disqualified for media mail and USPS will deliver it postage due or send it back to you postage due. In the future it may be wise to leaf through books before you send them and remove any items like this."  There is no reason to attack a sender based on assumptions of their intent.

Don't let one assuming hostile person drive you from this site. Most people around here are nice, helpful and understanding.

BTW: a listing of the content is OK in media mail. Sometimes the address being inserted in the only way books have been delivered after USPS destroyed the packaging.

Date Posted: 9/29/2007 4:13 PM ET
Member Since: 11/18/2005
Posts: 5,508
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Yes, Ann, relax..you didn't do anything wrong......someone just has their knickers in a knot.  I have gotten "extra" things in books that  I just knew someone had used as a bookmark.  I would have taken it out, maybe read the information, pitched it and sent you a heartfelt "thank-you".....

Date Posted: 9/29/2007 4:27 PM ET
Member Since: 10/3/2006
Posts: 1,063
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Ann, don't worry about it, most people wouldn't go off on you, at most they may have sent a PM saying "hey just so you know x, y, & z arent allowed in books when usuing media mail, you may want to make sure to check them before sending..."

I volunteer for our local FOL and once found $300 in 20's in a bank envelope in a book that was donated....and it was from a bank that closed at least 15 years ago, so who knows what interesting things one can find :-)

Date Posted: 9/29/2007 5:02 PM ET
Member Since: 2/16/2006
Posts: 2
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I only check books that I send out because I accidentally left my marriage license in a library book!

Date Posted: 10/1/2007 10:44 AM ET
Member Since: 7/10/2005
Posts: 646
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I use misc. items as book marks too, and sometimes I forget to check my books before mailing. I haven't gotten any negative responses from anyone. When I find items left in books, I check to see if it may need to be returned to the sender or toss it if I don't want it/need it.

I don't blame you for not wanting to trade with that person anymore, there are things that you need to just let go.


Date Posted: 10/1/2007 11:37 AM ET
Member Since: 9/25/2007
Posts: 91
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So, wait - just to clarify.  I sent two books to a requester, which I packaged together.  I folded the second page printout for each of the books and tucked it in the books.  Is that okay, or should I have not done that?  I am new to PBS, so I have no idea what i'm doing!

Date Posted: 10/1/2007 12:40 PM ET
Member Since: 7/10/2005
Posts: 646
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Nicole that's fine to do. Those second sheets are sort of like invoices. If it was a bad thing to do, PBS wouldn't include those in the printouts.

Date Posted: 10/1/2007 4:38 PM ET
Member Since: 9/25/2007
Posts: 91
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Thanks Jessica.  I will keep doing it, then!

Date Posted: 10/4/2007 10:22 PM ET
Member Since: 3/25/2007
Posts: 102
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wow! even if they aren't supposed to be included this person handled telling you in a totally rude manner. I feel sorry for those who have to deal with him/her every day in real life.

It must be tough to be perfect...

Date Posted: 10/5/2007 3:01 AM ET
Member Since: 12/26/2005
Posts: 21
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Welcome to PBS, Ann.  Don't take that PM too much to heart.  We're generally a fun, very friendly group.

 Recently, I returned a book to my parents that I'd kept longer than I should have.  I found a gift card that I'd gotten for Christmas from my brother!  I'd been using it as a bookmark.  Could be worth going through those books before you post them!