Well, summer's now officially over! We hope everyone had great vacations and read a lot of books.
The PBS Store items are going like hotcakes. We have had to re-order BookMates and they have arrived! We now offer larger BookMates for trade-size paperbacks or hardbacks, and also "extenders" to make your BookMate I work with larger books. Get your order in soon, because the BookMate"sale" prices are good only through September 15th. If you want a special-size T shirt, don't forget to send your request to firstname.lastname@example.org, with sizes and quantities. When we have enough special-size items to make up a "lot", we will notify you by email so that you can place your order. And if you want a color/style/BookMate product that we don't carry in stock, we'll be glad to special order it for you! (This is less expensive for you, because our shipping rates are lower than those charged on the BookMate site, and you can receive other items from PBS with your BookMate for no additional shipping!) Just send your special request to email@example.com, and we'll email you when your product arrives. You can then order it through the kiosk, and we'll ship it to you!
Is it too soon to think about Christmas? We're considering offering items in the PBS Kiosk that are suitable for gift-giving. One of us will be starting a forum topic on this in the coming days. We hope you will share your thoughts with us. PBS and the store are here for YOU. We need your input!
The Wish List Limit went into effect on September 5th. All Wish Lists are now at 200 items or fewer. Items were removed first for which you were furthest "back" in line; then items that you were "1 of 1" for. When you mark a Wish List book received, PBS will automatically remove all other versions of that book from your Wish List—we think that will help keep Wish Lists up-to-date. And please note that if a Wish List book is declared lost in the mail en route to you and is unavailable in the system when that happens, it will still go back onto your Wish List, and you will be in the #1 position—even if you already have 200 items on your Wish List! So no need to "save space" in case a Wish List book you have ordered never arrives. (If the item is "lost in the mail" and another copy is available, it will go onto your Reminder List as always.)
We hear and obey! The auto-repost feature has been removed from PBS. This feature used to "schedule" every book received through PBS for reposting automatically after the default interval, if you did not choose otherwise at the time of marking the book received. The default setting for new accounts was 1 month. Many members used the auto-repost feature happily; but many new members were unaware of its existence, and were confused when books they hadn't posted were requested from their bookshelves! After getting many requests to remove this feature, we have done so. You can still repost your books easily from the Repost Books area or your TBR Pile, both accessible by clicking "Book Lists" on the right menu of your account page, and choosing "Repost Books" or "TBR Pile" from the dropdown menu. And of course you can always repost your books manually if you like, by using the Post Books button at the top of the right-hand menu of your account page and entering the ISBN.
*For more information, see the Help Center item "Why do my books repost themselves?" at http://www.paperbackswap.com/help/help_item.php?id=118
Holy Cow, did you see those numbers at the top of the site? We are almost at three-quarters of a million books! Our goal of making it to 1,000,000 books before the end of the year gets closer every day!
Dear R&R—I just found out about the canceled transactions page and I was surprised to see books I sent out on the list! How come I didn't know about these? Will I get credit for sending these books? -- Startled in Sheboygan
Never fear! There are many reasons why a canceled transaction might be on your Canceled Transaction list (which is available by clicking the link at the top of your Transactions Archive page). The only ones you wouldn't be notified about are:
(1) those you canceled yourself
(2) Wish List offers (of books you posted) that were declined, and the book was passed to the next Wishing Member, to whom you sent it
Check your en route and completed transactions—you will see that the active or completed transactions for these books are there, and will earn you credit (or have already earned you credit)! Each transaction is an agreement between ONE sender and ONE requestor—if either cancels, the transaction goes onto both members' canceled lists. Thus, a book can be involved in multiple transactions, even if you have only one copy of the book to send out. One active, completed transaction is all it takes to earn you credit for sending the book!
*see the Help Center item "Can I see my past swaps?" at http://www.paperbackswap.com/help/help_item.php?id=18
Dear R&R—I got a request for two books, but when I accepted it, one of them disappeared! What happened??? -- Bewildered in Buffalo
When you accepted the multiple-book request, did you check the box next to each book that you could send before clicking "I can mail"? If not, you canceled any book that didn't have its box checked! When a multiple-book request comes up on your account page, the instructions are written there. When you click "I can mail" on the multiple-book request, a box pops up asking you to confirm that the number of boxes that you checked (and therefore, books you have agreed to send) is correct. Please read before you click! I am sorry that this happened. You will need to repost this book to your bookshelf again, to wait for another requestor. I hope this book is requested again soon. When you repost it, it may be offered to the previous requestor, if there were no other copies in the system when you canceled. So you may be able to send both books to her in one package after all!
*see the Help Center item "My request disappeared!" at
Dear R&R—How can I tell who's requesting the book from me when I repost it? -- Buffy again
Simply click the PM (Personal Message) button on the active transaction for the book; the requestor's name will come up in the To: field of the empty Personal Message. You can also download the address file to check the identity of the requestor, by clicking Print Wrapper and clicking Print Wrapper Now on the Wrapper Settings page. You don't have to print it—just open the downloaded file to see the name and address there.
Dear R&R—When do you sleep? -- Concerned in Kalamazoo
Thanks for asking. We don't get a lot of sleep! With the return to school, our schedules are crazier than ever—and so, I am sure, are many of yours! We appreciate those members who have made the effort to find the answers to their questions in the new Help Center. We still get a lot of feedback, though! We may need to take some "R&R" (Rest and Relaxation) in the next month: we may try a feedback-free week (no feedback responses for a week) to see if we can reduce the daily numbers of feedback messages we receive. Please use the Help Center! Not all of your questions can be answered there, but many of them can. The Forums, the Help Center, and the Tour Guides are all excellent resources if you have a question about the site.
Speaking of Tour Guides — and all our volunteers — if any of you are feeling overburdened, please let us know. You can "take a break" any time, and return whenever you wish. We love our Volunteers, but we don't want to wear you out! PBS should be fun — and we want you to have time to (you guessed it!) READ.
*You can get to the Help Center by clicking the gold button in the left menu of any page on the site.
TIPS & TRICKS
Don't forget the postage! We have gotten some feedback about items arriving postage-due. This not only costs the requestor, but if the requestor refuses the package, it could cost YOU! Media Mail rate does not include the return postage, so you might find yourself paying full Media Mail postal rates to reclaim your book. Better overall to put the proper postage on to begin with. Remember, the capability to print postage on the wrapper is not yet available—you need to apply the correct postage (plus 14 cents if you use PBS Delivery Confirmation) to make sure your book gets where it is going! For a typical paperback sent without PBS-DC, the Media Mail rate is $1.59 (four first-class stamps PLUS one three-cent stamp).
Don't forget to mark your books mailed! This is always true, of course: a book that is not marked mailed before the deadline to do so will be canceled, and will not earn the sender credit. But it is also important to mark your books mailed to get your Quick Credit. Even if your package sent with PBS-DC is scanned and USPS transmits the information to PBS, the Quick Credit can't be given until the book has been marked mailed! So mark your books mailed as soon as possible after mailing them with PBS-DC, to be sure to get your Quick Credits before that Wish List book is offered to you.
We are working on making PBS Money usable for anything in the Kiosk! Soon you will be able to buy credits, DC, and your Tote and BookMate from the money in your PBS account. We are still working on the ability to print postage directly onto the PBS Wrapper—stay tuned!
New features are "brewing" over at SwapaCD.com! If you haven't checked PBS' sister site out yet, click the link in the left menu to go directly there. You can easily transfer your PBS account information to register at SwapaCD, and you can also transfer credits between the two sites! Just click "Transfer Credits" in the right menu of your SwapaCD account page.