Discussions of Possibly Problematic Mooches #28 (The vent/rant thread)
This topic was continued by Discussions of Possibly Problematic Mooches #29 (The Vent/Rant thread).
Join LibraryThing to post.
This topic is currently marked as "dormant"—the last message is more than 90 days old. You can revive it by posting a reply.
Welcome!! (and Warning!!)
This thread is for the discussion of what may be problems &/or challenges with mooches.
**If you have a question about a mooch and you would like an opinion on it, please post your questions here.
**Or, if you just want to vent your frustration regarding mooches, book conditions, packaging or the postal system, you may also do so.
To the BM Newbie & other visitors: These posts are NOT indicative of the normal BookMooch exchange. These problems arise from differences in standards, languages, abilities & ethics. We sometimes even vent about ourselves & the mistakes we have made... and we do make mistakes!
The exchanges mentioned here are only about 1% to 2% of ALL BookMooch exchanges!!
Most mooches go very smoothly & without problems of any kind.
**If you are a Newbie Moocher, please visit the Newbie Thread in this group.
**Newbies & Visitors, please also visit the "I Just Had A Great Experience On BookMooch!!" thread for a better indication of how great things happen on BookMooch.
- - - - - - -
Lastly, if you are someone who never has problems with anything happening in your life & thinks that no one else should have any problems either, or that people shouldn't complain or solicit solutions for the challenges they encounter, please do not read this thread or complain about what you read here.
This thread is not for perfect people, because you don't need this thread and you will be fine without it.
- - - - - - -
and let's play reasonably nice with each other in this sandbox!!
This doesn't mean we can't vent or rant or complain, just be nice to each other, PLEASE!
referring to a post from the previous thread:
We've said before that bad mooch experiences are only 1% to 2% of all mooches. maryjanemanolos' comments show this. She said that out of 150 transactions this was her first negative one. Less than 1%!!
So, as frustrating as bad mooches are, they are only a small portion of all of our mooches. It is just the attention that they require that makes them memorable!
I've sent almost 500 books out and luckily I've only had one person who gave me a -1 because the book I sent was a trade paperback instead of a hardcover even though I added it by ISBN. (I thought a 0 would have been more appropriate but - ok. And now I'm even more careful when loading books). On the other end, when I first joined and didn't really understand too well how "ask first" really was supposed to work, I had to refuse someone because some else had asked first. He/she gave me a +1 anyway on the transaction which there was no need to do. But it really made me feel good about BM. And, although I don't think I've ever gotten a really nasty book, even when the wrapping is really less than appropriate (like the book is falling out), I try to be veerrry diplomatic in how I respond having seen some of the responses that some have mentioned on here.
I just got my first neutral feeback, and I'm a bit upset. I know it's silly, but I do enjoy having all +1s. The user left no feedback comments, so I've sent an email out to him/her, but I don't imagine that this was done in error, as he/she has left positive feedback on a few other transactions. I imagine that the user was displeased as to the condition of the book, but I clearly stated in the condition notes that there was a lot of writing in the text... Gah, I just get so annoyed when people don't bother to read important things.
Uggghhh I think it's *very* annoying when people don't leave feedback comments, especially for anything other then a +1! If there is an issue big enough to leave a different feedback score, it should be big enough to leave a comment about it. And it doesn't do potential-moochers any good, either, if you don't leave a comment when you give feedback.
I think posing by the wrong ISBN number is annoying. At least put notes in that states yours is a different edition. I like a certain side paperback because I can read it without my glasses on; which may sound vain but having a break from wearing them all day to see is nice. Additionally don't call a book Good when the book is starting to split inside.
Oh well back on the wishlist for a larger trade size copy and this copy I will give to a friend.
That first neutral feeback is awful (trust me I know) and even more so when you dont know why - but try not to let it get to you, although I know that is easier said than done.
I've only had one neutral feedback, which was because a book that I sent out had a torn page that I wasn't aware of. Understandable, so I sent an e-mail apologizing to the recipient and I hope everything turned out alright.
Here's an idea. Instead of bothering to respond to an international mooch request why not just remove the book from your inventory? Another new user with more mooches than she'd expected apparently, but a bit of politeness couldn't be all that much trouble surely?
Well, I'm finally thinking about giving BookMooch the boot. It's just getting too tiresome, not knowing whether I will actually receive any book that I mooch. I mooch too many books and then the person I mooch them from drops off the face of the earth. Today was the last straw. I reminded someone about a mooch I made months ago and her response was to cancel with a "Gee, I forgot I was a part of this website."
I've given out a lot of books via BookMooch, but I'm not getting a lot back lately. I've ended up donating a lot of points to charity because finding books to mooch is so tough.
sturlington, I'm sorry that you feel that way, but the attitude that you refer to isn't exclusive to BookMooch. I belong to PBS, too, and that happens there, too. The only difference is that you don't have direct contact or communication between "moochers."
On PBS, there are times when I request a book & it will go the full five days without the current owner accepting the mooch. After 5 days, if there is another copy of that ISBN in the system, then your request will go to the next member. Sometimes the next member is also no longer active. This can go on for a few times & can be extremely frustrating, especially since on PBS, there are time limits for requests, sending & receiving books.
Many site owners, admins, etc., will tell you that people join sites & then abandon those same sites all the time. There are many abandoned LT memberships, frustrating potential members who would like those usernames.
Yes, it seems as if it happens more frequently on BM because we have such direct access to each other & the statistics. (on PBS there is no access to data... none, nada, zilch)
And on BM (and especially with this group) we are more aware of what happens, good & bad, to the intricacies of transactions. We cheer with each other & we vent with each other. With great knowledge comes great anticipation & great disappointments.
Participating on BM can be very frustrating & I know it, too!
But I also know that BM (& PBS) have taught me patience..... whether I wanted to learn patience or not!!
Good Luck with whatever decisions you make.
sturlington, that does happen sometimes, but you can reduce your frustration factor by simply canceling mooches if you haven't heard from the book owner in a while. My rule is if I haven't heard from the owner in a month and it hasn't been marked sent, I remind, then (after at lest 24 hrs wait) cancel. You could wait as little as a week after the expected mailing time then cancel if it hasn't been sent. I think that would be reasonable.
I know this can be frustrating because you can't always get books on BM, but I've found I tend to get wishlisted books in spurts. And it's really worth it for that once a month great find (like new hard to find books for instance) on BM.
I am feeling a bit sad about the box of wishlisted books that I could post sitting in my office. But since I don't think there is any hope of using up the points I already have and I don't have alot of money, I can't justify putting them up on Bookmooch. I could take them to a used book store and get credit for books, but I know some of my mooching buddies would love them. So they sit in a box. sigh
Ugh, tell me about it. I have two piles of books, *plus* a box of ex-library books, that I could possibly put on BookMooch... But I have 42 points right now, and can only send out once a month, so I don't feel right adding tons of them. I have been adding a few at a time, over the last few months, though.
sturlington, I've been on BookMooch for more then 4 years, and I definitely know exactly how you are feeling. It is frustrating when people don't respond to mooches.
Skittles makes some good points, though. People leave websites, abandon accounts, all the time... LibraryThing, Twitter, Facebook, MySpace (I still have an account there and haven't logged in for years...).... It's just the nature of the internet. BookMooch is no different in that respect, we just *notice* it more because we are actually contacting these members, and they don't reply. No different then leaving a message on someone's profile here on LT and them never responding, except that we expect books from BookMoochers, and get excited when we think we might get one.
Over the 4 years I've been on BookMooch, I've been burned, definitely. I've had people not respond, I've even had rude encounters. But I've also mooched (and successfully recieved!) over 700 books, and made many many friends. BookMooch, like any other site, has it's pitfalls, but it really comes down to how invested in it you are. I pitched a FIT when some of the newer changes first happened, I even *cried* over them, and yet I didn't leave, because what it comes down to is that I still love being a part of BookMooch.
sturlington, The scenario Skittles has described on PBS has only occurred for me once or twice there out of almost 600 trades. I think you might try PBS and see if you have better luck there. Maybe keep both accounts to compliment each other as some people do. Also some books are more available there.
I'm getting nothing on PBS these days. My points there will soon surpass the number of points I have on BM. It's all cyclical. I'll have a week of nothing, followed by a week of daily wishlist hits.
Yes, the non-responsive people are annoying. At least on BM there is a feeling of control over the transaction. I send an email after a week and a reminder a week later, then cancel soon after if there's been no response.
Ask Firsts... we've all complained about people who don't respond... I'm about to rant about the *other* side of things...
I recently changed to ask first. Changing jobs, going back to school, health issues... they're all happening at once this fall. I wanted a chance to control my spending just a little bit more.
So as a responsible moocher, I have answered all my ask first requests... and have said 'yes' too.
...And the book sits there, reserved, and NOT mooched.
Why bother asking if you are not actually interested in the book? Grrr!
Or how about the people who "ask first" and then immediately mooch, without even waiting for a response??
There are definitely bad experiences/issues with *both* sides of ask-first.
I've come across one wishlist book recently where the person is set to ask first, but the ask first email gets returned as mail delivery failure. Email from profile results in the same thing. People from the USA mooch, but no one else can, and I don't like mooching directly because it is an ask first setting. This isn't a case of them not responding to the email (which has happened a lot), they just aren't getting any emails from what I can tell. :(
I've mentioned it to admin with no response whatsoever, so have no idea what's going on. They could at least put a note on the person's profile to check whether they're getting any emails from BookMooch, or change the email service so it is workable.
21: if the username is very similar to the email but there is a letter wrong, it's worth trying some permutations, I remember seeing a story of success on here with that solution (e.g. the username was abcdefgh but the email was abddefgh@hotmail - turned out they'd put a typo in the email address).
If not, sorry about the frustration :(
#21: If that happens, I just mooch with a very apologetic note, telling that I will cancel if they want. They probably don't know what's going on, maybe they are wondering why they never get any international mooches. Anyway, no-one has ever taken that badly, so far, with me.
I appreciate everyone's response to my previous rant. I haven't decided whether or not to leave yet. I've been on BM for a long time (3-4 yrs?), and I feel like my frustrations have ramped up lately. I remember when I first started that it was such a great experience I told everyone about it. Perhaps more people have heard about the site and joined, only to abandon it?
I just got back from vacation. I think I'm going to leave my account on vacation for a while, sort out the books I have left to give and make a decision then. Maybe it's just a matter of taking a break for a while.
#24 – I know how you feel, and I think the decision to give yourself a vacation (rather than a complete separation) from BookMooch is a sensible one. BookMooch is going through a rough time at the moment, largely brought about by the changes to mooch policy, although the GFC is also a big factor. Like you, I used to rave to everyone about BookMooch. These days I don’t even discuss it. But I still have faith that things will pick up again. Or, if not, that the moochers I so love interacting with will come up with a functional work-around.
Advice needed: I mooched 3 books in a series from an ask-first (having asked first, obviously) overseas, and she delayed a little but then posted them - perfect communication throughout. Problem is, instead of sending books 4, 6 and 7 which is what I had mooched, she sent 3, 4 and 7. I already own 3.
What is the accepted protocol in these situations? I want to email offering solutions, not problems.
>26 readingwithtea: Probably the best solution is a points refund for one of the books, and if she does, marking it received with +1.
#26 That's only happened to me once but the incorrect book was one I also wanted and the owner also had the book I'd mooched which she listed and reserved for me so it ended ok.
I'd email her and explain one of the books she sent was different to the one you mooched. She might also have book 4 and have just put the wrong book in the envelope.
If she has book 4 you could offer to return book 3 once you've received book 4, or relist book 3 for her to mooch back and have her relist book 4 for you to mooch? If she's been good at communicating so far it will hopefully work out ok although it's always a bit of a pain dealing with situations like this.
Or as rainbowgirl said she could just refund your points or send you book 4 and tell you to keep book 3?
The time I sent the wrong book, I sent the correct one immediately and then let the moocher keep the incorrect book. The time I received the incorrect book, it was corrected by her sending me the book I wanted and then she mooched back the one she'd sent me in error.
Hopefully, the book owner will be quick to correct their error and will be happy that you are pleasant and understand that mistakes happen.
I did have a bad experience where the book owner expected me to rush the book received in error back to her for free. I might have been willing to do so, but she seemed to think the whole thing was my fault and the idea of spending a point to retrieve her book was outrageous. She did want her book back. I ended up letting her mooch it back with the understanding she'd send the correct book, which she never did -- her explanation was that she'd spent the money on postage and if I wanted it, I'd have to pay her.
So, be pleasant and polite and things will probably resolve themselves to everyone's satisfaction. Your book owner was good at communicating with you, so I think that it will end well. But do decide what you consider to be a good solution and work to achieve that.
29: Oh goodness. That's... wow. *shakes head at book owner*
Possibly-problematic-but-hopefully-good: I got an email from a user that I had mooched from 3-4 months back. I had ended up leaving negative feedback with the explanation that the book had been accepted to send "in a few days", and then no response after a reminder and email, and the person hadn't logged in for 20 days.
So anyways, today I got an email apologizing for that and explaining that they had things "in order" again and did I still want the book? So I mooched it again, it's one I really do want so *crosses fingers* hopefully it will work better this time!
Would someone please remind me how long it takes for the force receive button to show up once you hit remind? And do I get a notice from BM that I sent a reminder? I have a couple that have been hanging for a while and the people seem to have vanished from BM (actually I just looked again and one person was on only 2 wks ago) that I'd like to get off my pending page. I've only had to do this once before and I thought someone said that if you hit "remind" again after you first did it the clock starts over. Thanks
I "reminded" someone and it now says "You reminded them: 28 days ago" under their address. I think someone said you have to wait 6 weeks before you can force receive but am not sure.
I have heard "6 weeks" mentioned before too - 4 months for international. And it's that amount of time AFTER the official reminder was sent.
Thanks - I thought it was something like that. Guess I should remind
ETA: That works for me. I don't remember it saying that the last time.
dudes22: 4 months international is for declaring lost. Forcing received is 6 weeks after the reminder - which is one of the reasons it is such bad manners to remind someone when the book can't possibly have arrived yet.
>36 wester:: No both were to the US (although you made me go check just to be sure ). One I sent in Apr and one in June.
This may have come up on another thread, if so I apologize.
What is the difference between force receive and lost, if any? I'm now 29 days into "reminding" someone about their book. 42 days will be 6 weeks, then I get to somehow get it OFF my pending page. (She didn't respond to two previous e-mails).
When a book is reported as lost, the sender keeps their point, but the receiver gets their back. With a forced receive, the receiver is assumed to have gotten the book and doesn't get a free point.
If you haven't heard from them, and you have sent them an email and a reminder, the forced receive is appropriate.
Thank you, RidgewayGirl! On the countdown for getting it off my pending page.
I had to mark two transactions +0 today. One was mailed a month and a half after it was marked sent. I emailed the sender a few weeks ago to see if they actually sent it, since they had feedback that indicated this had happened before. They never replied, but I guess it spurred them to actually send the book.
The other was mailed 16 days after marked sent, and it was in terrible condition. The cover is almost falling off, it has a large rip running down the side that goes more than halfway down.
I try to give people the benefit of a doubt, but both of these were too out there to ignore!
I never understand the whole "sending way after marking sent" thing. I've only had it happen a couple times, where the sent-date on the package was more then a week after they marked it as sent (with no communication about a delay, of course). I just don't understand it. If something comes up, that's fine, but why no communication to that fact? Do they just assume that we won't care as long as it eventually arrives?
(I've also had a case where someone sent the book two weeks *after* I cancelled and left negative feedback. Seriously?)
I usually mark sent before I go to the post office, but only when the book is packaged and addressed. On very rare occasions I might not make it to the PO until the next day, but if something longer came up, I would definitely let them know.
I don't care if they mark it mailed early as long as it's sent within a few days, but a month and a half is ridiculous.
Another 'interesting' response to an international mooch request (see my previous 9). New user, incidentally, but I patiently explained that international mooches were worth 3 points. I politely asked if she would hold the reservation till I found an angel if she'd prefer not to send overseas. And the response? Well no reply, why bother? Just quickly reset her send status to my country only. Seriously!
45. I've had that happen before. It is annoying when there's no response then you notice they changed their status. Did you explain what an angel moocher is etc.? New moochers usually do not have a clue what this means.
Thanks bookel. I said something like 'someone in your country to mooch the book for me' rather than 'angel' so I don't think I could have been much clearer.
It's understandable that they'd panic if international postage is a bit high (or they have no idea and couldn't afford it etc.)... kind of rude not to respond but you get those unfortunately. (I've also come across a couple recently where the email was returned and the moocher didn't get it -- email delivery failure. It would be sooooo nice if "ask first" requests were on the pending page.) I went through my save for later today and cleaned it up except for two where I'm waiting for the correct editions and wow, there were a lot of expired "ask first" requests I had made where I didn't get a response. I made the requests and tried to forget about them, then finally asked someone to angel the books when I had enough points.
I have read several times of the same request; displaying ask first requests on the pending page. Before you say it I know that John does not read these forums on any real basis. Has anyone taken the time to write up a polite and clear email about what is being requested and send it directly to John?
Where I work; we love getting fresh ideas from the users of our website products. When I interview customers I ask the following.
What problem are you trying to solve
What is the hardest thing to do on the website
What do you find the easiest thing to do on the website
My job is to remove the ????? over your head when using the products. That would be John's goal as well. Try emailing him and explaining the problem and your ideas. Maybe he would look at adding this feature in a new release.
Actually, wasn't there talk of the ask fists being added to the pending page "soon" like ages ago? I wonder what happened to that.
>50 Conachair: Oh gosh, I think it was at least a year ago. Well, even with all its imperfections the current system is still better than the original one.
I note my international mooch requests on my profile page when I remember, but it would be good to have an automated function, particularly if it posted something on the owner's pending page.
Another odd function that needs fixing: even though I'm no longer eligible to mooch the book because the owner changed her send status to 'my country only' it's apparently still reserved in my name.
Only the book owner can remove the reserve, true? Which is why expired listings still show who "asked first" for it, and they cannot ask again because it shows the "mooch" button.
Augh. I need to stop looking at wishlist books on LT. Every time I see an available book I go, goody, and check. Then see most available books are on paperbackswap (cannot use), and most wishlisters are elsewhere (mainly BookMooch). :(
#54 I think you can change your settings so that you only see books available on bookmooch.
If you go to Edit profile and then Sites/apps there's a list of swap sites with boxes you can tick. I think if you only tick bookmooch then the panel should only show you bookmooch availability. It's not always 100% up to date though.
Thank you souloftherose. All those tweaking possibilities hidden deep within LT - sometimes you just need someone to show you.
55 - Ah... thank you, that saves my sanity. It was getting so annoying seeing so many other sites I don't even use, and books available at them, and wondering why the books weren't where the wishlisters were! Yes I've noticed it's not very accurate. Sometimes it still shows someone wishlists a book when they don't, or that there's a book available when it's not. I found it a quick way of showing what editions were wishlisted out of curiosity.
57 - It doesn't live-update. I don't know if it's daily or weekly, but it does get updated. I keep a swap column in my library so I can see at a glance what on my LT wishlist might have something available and I also have it set to show up in the quick links on the work page so when I'm poking around LT looking for stuff sometimes I make impulse mooches right off the LT page! It's kinda awesome.
*curls up in this thread for awhile and avoids the "value of BM credit" rant-fest* *did give into rant-fest and posted a rant-rebuttal, but now will hide*
I actually typed a long answer in the other thread and decided not to post it....
Isn't "Ask first" the default when you create a new account? Maybe they had no idea they had allowed it... maybe they have no idea they can answer your mail; maybe they freaked that you can send them a direct mail (yes - I had seen a few like this). Or maybe a mail got lost - yours, theirs... who knows.
I just wish that the sign-up page would have the "I am willing to mail to" options as radio buttons. People would actually have to consciously make a choice about the whole thing. We know that the default is because John wants to encourage the international aspect of the site, but it seems like mostly it just makes for hard feelings.
Agree (and I cannot really remember what the default is -- although I am almost sure it is not "In my country only".).
I have always thought the default should be your own country so that newbies would not run screaming into the night. John may have wanted to encourage the international aspect of the site, but with the point change, he's not going in the right direction.
I also think he should do something to encourage US-Canada mooching because of the horrendous postal rates in Canada. I've stated in my status message that I'm happy to send to Canada even though I'm set to my country only.
>65 karenmarie: The problem with a "my country only" default is newbies from countries with small mooching populations. Honestly, people just really need to pay attention at the choices, and not everyone actually groks that the drop-down menu is, well, a menu. With options. Blech. Drop-down menus are just not the way to go for questions like these.
My personal **rant** An annoyance like that fly on the wall that won't stop buzzing or nails on a chalkboard.
A person posts a book or two or 25 new books and there is a book I want. I go to mooch it and read the person's status page that says they won't be sending books out until
...The first week of November and already have 25 books to send
....Over 150 books to send out and says this will start sending again in September
....Not sending out books until January 2012 and has a stack already to send
....lists the books they are planning on sending each month for the next 6 months
If you can not afford to send out books; please don't add books to your inventory until you catch up. I understand some people might not mind waiting 6 months or longer to get a book and yes I would be decreasing the number of books in BM but these are not true books in circulation if you are not planning on shipping for 6 months. Why not just post them when you have the money to ship them. Someone will still want the book in 6 months.
**End of personal rant**
....No comments necessary just wanted to get this off my brain.
Does anyone have expierience with shipping time from the Phillipines? I am waiting for a book that was sent in May and I am not sure if I should start getting twitchy. The annoying thing is, this is part of a series, and I have read all books before it, and I have all the following books but I really would like to read this one before the others.
# 68: I would have to look up the specifics, but shipping from the Philippines can indeed take a long time, it is one of the worst countries for shipping speed.
You may want to take a gander at betterworldbooks.com and see if they have the book. They offer free shipping worldwide. Might be better than waiting 6 months :)
#67 ZoeyEve - my guess is that people want the points right away from listing then accepting the moooches. Not right in my opinion. I only add books when I know I can ship if they're mooched.
67: That's definitely not cool! I've talked about this on the BM boards before, because apparently some people think that *any* sort of delay means you should just take down your inventory (I often have a month-delay).... But there's a huge difference between that, and having a long delay *and* adding new books.
It's understandable, imo, to not want to take down your inventory or vacation your account, if you are still active and just have a delay. But it's wrong to have a 2-3+ month delay, and then keep listing new books that you know you can't send! That's abuse of the .1-point given for adding books.
I just read possibly the worst status message & bio combination to date. I really just had to sit back and go "wow". Status, to sum it up, will not ship until Jan or Feb, and don't get mad if the book arrives in the stated condition *or worse*. Also something about being low on points so 'mooch away'. Bio, a rant against Texas and a statement that nobody wants to hire that individual so they are not looking for a job at the moment. I think I'll pass.
Perhaps I take this a bit too seriously, but that kind of attitude really grates on my nerves.
Oh goodness. *shakes head* I definitely agree, it grates on my nerves as well.
"nobody wants to hire" them? Maybe because of their attitude! Or, yunno, the fact that *no one* seems to be hiring right now because of the economy! *hates people who take it personally when businesses aren't hiring* (Been there done that. No, we have no control over when the company will be hiring again. No, I'm sorry, we can't "just look" at your application, we have no positions available!)
... Anyways. I will not go looking for that user to check their history (will not will not!), but I doubt if the whole "don't get mad" thing wins any points for them! That's crap. A "don't get mad" message does *not* excuse users from abiding by the rules! If a book doesn't have appropriate condition notes, well that's all on you, and of course we will get mad! *sighs*
I've seen that type of message before, specifically one that was something like "don't leave bad feedback if I can't find the book!" or somesuch, and their history showed that was a definite pattern. Do these people honestly think that a notice like that means they can disregard BM rules/standards/etc?
And then come and complain that their account is under review...
As someone's recent theme showed, people seem to think so...
75, 76: I didn't look at their record (couldn't get past that status/bio) but you got me curious. Actually, the user has perfect feedback, has been a member for some time, and has pretty much caught themselves up. So, overall a member in good standing (just with a pretty negative outlook right now). It could just be a glass half full/half empty kinda thing. Or expecting the worst, who knows. It's just the kind of attitude that bothers me a lot.
These baffle me the most -- a good standing member that just sound off... for some reason.
I don't have a problem if you clearly state a delay and then don't add more books until you know you can afford to send them--at least to the general public. Reserving books is a different matter btw... :)
I get it that things happen and you might not want to vacation your account; put please don't add books and then delay them upwards of 6 months. Yes I agree it is abuse and I know the admins are busy but if these are reported then they should all be handled in the same matter. I think BM should for anyone reported where it is clearly shown a 3+ month delay in sending out books the ability to not allow them to post more books until they have sent all outstanding books.
I don't care if you spend your points; you have earned them but please stop posting if you can't afford to ship.
....OK I will get off my soapbox now.
You haven't really earned the points until you send the books... I mean I know how Bookmooch works and gives people the benefit of the doubt, but it is easy for people to scam the system if they abuse the delay feature.
souloftherose I unticked everything except BookMooch, but it doesn't appear to be working (today at least). It still shows available books elsewhere.
Hello everyone - I've come across a glitch in the BM system and was wondering if anyone else had? I'm in the UK - there's a book in the US I requested and it was marked as sent to me in mid-July. It has not showed up (it should have done by the beginning of August). The sender has ignored emails asking for information which was an immediate red flag, and based on recent feedback has not actually mailed anything for the last several months. So I tried to mark the book as lost. A message popped up saying that I cannot do that until mid-November since I need to leave enough time since *I* posted it. Except I am the receiver, not the sender...
The only thing I could think of to do was send a 'report abuse' email on the sender's page explaining the situation, so I did that. I'd prefer not to wait until mid-November to get this dealt with, and on principle need to call out the sender. Any thoughts?
#81 Are you looking at the swap column in your catalogue bookel? It works for me, it might be worth reporting it as a bug?
#82 It's not a glitch (well except that the message doesn't sound very clear). You have to wait three months before marking an international mooch as lost. This is because some countries have surface mail options which mean that sending a book internationally can take three months (or more) to arrive.
In your case it sounds like the member you mooched from may have not actually sent the book so clicking the report abuse button also sounds like a sensible thing to have done. But I think you'll still have to wait until October to mark the book lost and get your point back.
You can't mark a book lost until after 4 months for international mooches. The message is a standard message which is badly worded (it should read "since it was sent"). The system is set to give 4 months for international and 6 weeks for domestic mooches before they can be marked "lost". If the person is not mailing books than clicking "abuse" was the right thing to do, but it won't speed up the process of resolving the transaction.
Thanks for coming back to me - guess I'll just have to practice being patient...
It shows only BookMooch's numbers in the swap column in catalogue, so guess that part is working. On book detail pages it shows others still (although now BookMooch is in bold). When I first unticked all except BookMooch, it made the rest disappear (which was preferable). Maybe that wasn't the default display? Shrug. Oh well. At least it works in catalogue view. I'll just have to ignore the rest! :)
>86 bookel: On the swap page it's going to show you everything, but you can do this shortcut on the work page:
You already have the swap column in your catalog like this:
But the icing on the cake is adding Bookmooch to the quicklinks box to bypass loading the swap page entirely:
I have mine set up for BM and PBS both, as you can see, and it has led to a LOT of impulse mooching from random browsing, let me tell you.
Quick Links, didn't realise that was editable (never really looked at it), thanks!
/groan. Thanks Macs... just what I needed. I've finally got the tbr avalanche under control, and them you show me yet another, easier way to add to my mooch and wishlist.
(seriously, tho, thanks. I never realized how much I could customize LT to my uses.)
I had a mooch go smoothly, except it was sent in *two* Priority envelopes. One was turned inside out so I didn't get owe any postage, but I'm not sure if I should leave feedback letting the sender know that she shouldn't use the Priority envelopes unless she's actually sending Priority. I don't know how to word what I want to say either. It was a great mooch and I want to leave good feedback, but to politely let her know that she could end up having a problem in the future.
I'd go ahead and leave positive feedback without mentioning the wrapping method and send a separate, brief, and polite email mentioning your concerns.
Whenever I email separately about a problem, I always mention that I could have left the information in the feedback, but thought that they might want the information privately.
but I gently insinuate that I could put it in there anyway....
If they react to my email badly or rudely or with an entitled attitude, then I change my feedback, since others NEED to be warned.
See? I'm not really all niceness & cheer!
Ok, I'm continuing to whine about an obvious issue. I've a humongous 13 points just sitting there, a wishlist of 800 books, and nothing! I know, some are priced out at $98.59. But many others are at $0.01.
I am SO impatient...
Sandydog1, some weeks I get nothing. This week I've requested 4 wishlist books (so far). Are you subscribed to your RSS feed? That helps.
Just the usual. I mooch a book and my request is ignored for weeks, although the book owner visits the site regularly. My friendly email and my later reminder are ignored. I finally cancel and he takes himself off of vacation mode within an hour. And now that book is staring at me from my wishlist again. It's not important, but it does make me wonder why a (very small) proportion of BookMoochers behave as though their actions, or lack of them, has no impact on anyone else.
Of course, this happens rarely, but it still irks.
97 and 98 If you haven't given the transaction a negative feedback, you could always go back and do so, given the fact the person has logged on and/or is mooching but not responding to mooch request.
Here's a bit of a gripe- I got a book in the mail that had some BM bookmarks stuck inside, which is fine. But there was also an "anti-circumcision" bookmark covered in propaganda...um? I was kind of offended. I have 6 month old boys who are both circumcised and I don't care what a stranger's opinion about it is. Besides, what if I was like...a single guy who didn't have kids? It was just weird, and offensive, and...icky.
#100: contact abuse & ask them to contact the sender about including political/religious/opinion items with books. Let them handle it and don't worry about it yourself. You may not hear anything, but you don't have to deal with the fallout.
If you complain directly, then they have your email address & you could end up being harassed that way.
That's definitely against BM rules (Admin has talked about that type of thing before), so yes, definitely contact them.
I need some advice about feedback. First, this is for PBS, not BM, but I feel much more comfortable with you guys here than I do asking complete strangers on the PBS boards, so those of you who also trade there maybe have some advice.
I received a book, promptly and in decent enough condition, but with huge unremovable 'used' stickers on the back cover and spine which I specifically don't like. Normally that's ok for PBS, but this is my RC:
"Due to allergies please check that the book does not have mold or smell of smoke. Exposure to pets is ok as long as the book is not smelly. I request that hardcover books please have their dust jackets. Please no ex-library books that have non-removable stickers or tape on the outside. Inner stamps and card pockets are fine."
The book is not ex-library, it's ex-college-bookstore, so I don't know if I should say anything as it is following the letter of the RC, if not the spirit. It's a disposable book for me, so I don't REALLY care, but, I'm a little annoyed, you know? I hate stickers.
Should I say anything? I've had 4 out of my last 5 books rejected due to RC from people being overly cautious in the other direction, so I just feel frustrated that I can't find a happy medium. Any suggestions for rewording it? I care about allergies, and I care about stickers obscuring the spine (I hate the way it looks on my shelves.)
I think that since it is technically not violating the RC since they are not library stickers that you probably can't lodge an official complaint about this one. If it were me I wouldn't send it, but I'm one of the overly cautious ones who has probably rejected several requests that would have been fine because I wasn't one hundred percent certain they comply with the RCs. I almost always reject vaguely worded ones that say things like "must be in good condition" unless a book is absolutely new, since interpretations of "good condition" can vary. Your RCs are very specific, so that's not a problem. Maybe you should amend them to say that you don't want stickers of any kind.
Do you include your username in your RCs? I can't tell you how many times I thought a book was probably okay but since I wasn't absolutely certain I ended up rejecting it since I had no way of contacting the owner. I recently had one where the username was included and I was able to do so. It turned out she was fine with the book and I was happy to send it knowing that I wasn't risking the loss of a point. Perhaps you could put in your username and ask people to PM before rejecting.
That's a great idea, to put my user name in the RC!
I wasn't going to put in a formal complaint, because it doesn't technically violate the RC, as you said, and I figured I probably wouldn't say anything at all in the end (which is the way I'm leaning, since I am so conflict-avoidant) but I feel better having someone else agree and chime in. I think your suggestion to include the user name will be a big help counteracting the great number of rejections I seem to get.
mac, I've gotten mysterious rejections on PBS and with the last one I tried contacting the book owner and asking why (politely, of course) they rejected my request. They immediately admitted that they don't read the requestor conditions, so if I wanted her book she'd be happy to send it to me. It arrived and was fine. I think some people simply reject all requests with conditions automatically and with a bit of communication will change their minds.
Macs, those stupid 'used' stickers that university bookstores always put on used books usually come off pretty easily with a product called Goo Gone. I have used it many times in the past to clean up some of my used books. I wouldn't use it on a fabric-paper-like book cover, but mmpb's, hardcovers, and pretty much anything that has a more shinier surface it does not damage the book at all.
>106 RidgewayGirl: That could definitely account for some of them. One of my rejections last week gave me the explanation "This is a used book." Sometimes I re-request without RC if they explained why they rejected and I'm ok with it, but with that one I didn't bother to ask.
The hard thing is that if you reject an RC the system automatically offers your book to the next wisher. You can't see who is making the request until you reject it. By the time it is rejected and the requester gets back to you and says they want the book it has likely been offered to the next person automatically. I think this is really a flaw in the system. I'm sure there are people who automatically reject anything with an RC, but I'm sure there are still plenty like me who accept if the book clearly complies or would be happy to PM for more clarification if I can figure out who is requesting.
#107 Good idea on the Goo Gone, I never thought about that. I've also had good luck on a lot of them using a rubber cement pick-up on the sticker residue.
macs, there are quite a few PBSers who automatically & without reading, will reject all condition requests. Their mindset is that the conditions set by PBS are enough & anything else is being picky. And it is too easy for the picky ones to get free books by saying the condition wasn't met. Some on the boards have come right out & said it!! "if you have conditions of any kind, I will reject your request."
Obviously, they've never known anyone with allergies or breathing problems!
Perhaps the book fairies could change their mindset without them getting allergies.
With your RC, I still would have marked it with a problem. Some used stickers are easily removed, others are not. Unless the person who sent it to you has a problem with reading comprehension & problem solving.
And I don't get RC condition notes with a lot of books that I post. I'm surprised that you've gotten so many!
107, 110 > I've heard of Goo-gone from other sources, but I have never tried it. I do have a rubber cement pick-up though, so I will try that since it's on hand.
111> I don't receive a lot of requests with RC, but the ones I do basically have one or more of the same things listed in mine. I do have a problem with getting my own RCs rejected, and have gone through several variations trying to find a sweet spot. I used to not have RC at all, but that did not work at all, no, it is definitely necessary.
Thanks to all of you for your advice.
>103 macsbrains: I totally get the mold and smoke smell. something I read recently was about a product called
Smelleze® Reusable Book and Antique Deodorizer
I have seen it on amazon. I am not saying it would work but you might want to take a gander; it is suppose to remove smoke and other smells from books.
just this week I had a request rejected because the sender said "No funds to send outside US. Sorry." I have an APO address so PBS automatically has a RC warning the postage may be slow. I had no way to reach out to the sender to let them know APO postage is domestic postage, and the book went to the next person on the list.
I wrote to PBS to ask them to let the sender know for the future about APO shipping, and to complain that no money for int'l shipping is hardly a legitimate reason to rejct a book on a site that doesn't actually accommodate int'l users. PBS basically said that the user can reject because of RC which didn't at all address the point I was making.
I have to say the entire transaction left me pretty peeved.
#114: if you go into your transaction archive on PBS, the book owners user name should be there. You can then PM them & let them know about the domestic postage.
But PBS does allow rejection of the APO addresses because they require (?) a post office visit because of the customs form that has to be filled out. (unfortunately)
There are a number of people who use the PBS postage or other online postage vendors to mail out their packages & avoid the PO visit.
Even on PBS, there are people who are clueless.....
and there are those of us who are fine with APO addresses. We know the postal service may take a long time, and it may go officially 'lost in the mail' at PBS and that's ok too. We trust you and we know you'll mark it received when you get it. We're grateful for your service or your spouse's service and we hope we can make it up to you about the other people who are pinheads about APO addresses. :)
Hey, macbrains, have you considered changing the RC to 'no stickers on the outside' - that would take care of your problem, AND if you had bookcrossing books that you didn't want (well....the ones with those stickers on the outside, anyway).
Quick question about PBS... do you actually have to send out books? Or can you just purchase points to get books?
117> I have never sent out a book on PBS. I just buy points from people in the bazaar and request books.
118: Thank you. Ideas and light bulbs are going off in my head now.
... & back to our regularly scheduled ranting...
>116 ealaindraoi: I have gone back and forth about the stickers thing. I don't want to be rejected for price stickers, barcode stickers, award emblems or things that will come off easily, but it's hard to get all that into only a few words. I decided that the major culprit was library spine stickers, but I didn't want to reject all library books because often the ones I get are in great condition, and I don't care about stamping on the inside, so I specified the stickers. Before I did so I had had several mmp books in a row come in great condition, but with library genre stickers on the side, obscuring half the title, and even worse, two books in a series where one had "sci fi" in a huge sticker and the next one "fantasy." They really look ridiculous on the shelf. I don't even try to get them off becuase it's like they're soldered on.
I don't remooch a good condition book with a sticker, but I do like to display my books and I like the spines to look nice.
I really hate watching to see if a train wreck will happen... I just can't look away!
Checking my RSS feed one last time for the night, and noticed that a user had posted 4-5 books on my wishlist. None were 'must haves' but out of curiousity I checked the user out.
New user. Joined last night. In the USA. Sent to 'Worldwide'. And listed over 100 books right off the bat. All of them romances, many of them wishlisted authors. Oh dear.
I sent them a friendly email letting them know that if they get overwhelmed, they can vacation themselves until they get caught up. But she already has quite a few mooches pending overseas and I'm feeling pestimistic about this one.
That is exactly why I think users should be encouraged to set to their country only or have a limit on the number of books they can enter first thing.
Train wreck indeed.
I would agree to the limit, but vehemently oppose set to their country. This was an international site (Not to mention countries where there are only a handful of members!).
I only meant set to own country initially - I know lots of people like sending internationally.
Make it an option when you sign up is what I would like to see. And not make it worldwide by default which causes the issues.
It is. Setting to my country only as default would be catastrophic. Many would never bother changing it. This is an international bookswap site, not PBS.
It is Ask First, but you have to pay attention to the drop down window to change it.
I think it's sneaky and I'd be interested in how many people actually change it when they join to My Country Only (probably a low %) and then how many newbies get scared when all those international mooches start turning up and they finally realize what they got themselves into.
I guess it would depend if they were requests (E.g. are you willing to send, ask first) vs. Mooches (Set to will send, get mooch requests).
Ask First seems like the best default setting. It's an international site after all. New users can always decline if they don't notice the setting. If the default was my country only many would probably never even notice the other options. I do think there could be better instructions though. What's there is not easy to find and is in several different places. If new users were aware international mooches were worth 3 points there may be a lot less panicking.
What gimboid13 said.
I'm honestly at a loss when this kind of thing happens, as in "HOW can it happen?". Do people just sign up and do whatever they want without looking around the community first? Spend 10 minutes on the wiki, or in the Newbie section of the forums, and you'll see tons of Newbie-tips on exactly what NOT to do. And I know there's a big huge-text saying that newbies should only add 10 books or so, so they don't get overwhelmed...
Unless it was a failed-wishlist-import or something, I'm at a loss as to *how* newbies can sign up to BM and list 100 books without seeing all of those signs.
Once or twice before I had several wishlist hits come from the same newbie inventory. Each time it turned out to be wishlist books put into inventory by accident. I always expect this when my RSS feed gets hot.
There really should be some sort of "you've listed 10 books are you SURE you want to list more right now?" for the newbs. That would double as a notification that they added to inventory instead of wishlist so they could catch it before the books go live.
(I actually did the same thing about a month ago, and I'm hardly a newbie. I was browsing distractedly and put a book on my WL then I got a request for it and panicked like it was going out of style. Thankfully, the moocher was understanding.)
I dunno... she's accepted most of the mooches so far, and found a few of her own. I suspect that the big shock will be at the post office.
I remember how excited I was about BM until I visited the post office. I had some idea of postal prices due to selling on Amazon, but it was still kinda nasty.
I think that a lot of newbies get excited and don't consider the time, effort and expense it takes to package up those books, get them to the PO and pay for shipping. Does the information given newbies include information on how to use media mail? I often receive books from new members that have been sent first class, or even priority. The PO has no incentive to explain cheaper options.
A simple tutorial for new members would prevent many from making the mistakes that drive them from the site. It's nice that there's a newbie thread in the forums, but I suspect most people only discover that later on. And the wiki is hardly visible.
Wouldn't it be lovely if there were a tutorial that a new member would have to page through, that included the basics like settings options, starting small, checking spam filters, condition notes and then a brief explanation of how to package and mail books, explaining media mail and customs forms for users in the US, and appropriate information on postage depending on the country the new user is in?
Good: Mooched a few books today, including a few from long-inactive members that I'll most likely end up vacationing. Sent an Abuse-report about a member with a very unfriendly bio-note, and Admin responded promptly.
Bad: Mooched from someone who had the whole "I won't send international to people who won't do the same!" thing in their status. Sent a very polite email to them about the rules, phrasing it in an "I've seen people get reported for this before and I wouldn't want you to get in trouble" way.
But I've been in this position before, and most people don't take too kindly to even the most polite notes about this specific thing, and in the past I've ended up having to contact Abuse anyways because of their responses to my polite-note. So... yeah. I'm a little concerned about that one.
Can't really blame them.
In a situation where you can afford only *some* of the international requests you get, especially if you often find yourself hitting the wall of "my-country-only" or "ask-first-but-only-Canada", trying to favor first those who could possibly contribute to your own book flow without needing an angel swooping in would be at least as logical as, say, being forced to just take up the first who ask after you get your paycheck, as the current BM rules seem to enforce.
Though I'm sure there are plenty who are on ask-first and do pick in some way or other (or just let less desireable requests rot) even if they don't advertise it on their bio. You just have their statement that they're not willing/able to make that expense now... and thankfully no right to raid their homes for their bank statements or to hound them about other books they may have chosen to send within the same timeframe.
138: Are you responding to me?
The thing is, that is against the rules on BookMooch. People can't have "conditions" on who they will send to, it's in the wiki and it's been said outright by Admins that it's simply against the rules. You can't reject a mooch because you don't like the person, or don't like the way they ship (which includes who they can afford to ship to).
And that is what makes BookMooch such an open place, honestly, is the fact that people aren't allowed to discriminate that way. I've seen people reject mooches because they don't like the country the person lives in, the politics there, or what they *think* the person might do with the book (booksellers, etc). Those are all against the rules, and for good reason. We don't want BookMooch to become an elite "I'll only send to people I like!" type of place. Points are what gets us books, not specific conditions we have to meet.
If you can only afford so many internationals at a time, say so in your status message and then switch to "my country only" for awhile when you hit that wall. People *will* understand. Don't try to make up rules.
And the whole "being forced to take the first to ask".... um, that's what BookMooch *is*. We *are* forced to accept the first person who mooches, international or domestic, no matter what their status. Unless the person is obviously breaking the rules, or you honestly can't afford postage, *everyone* is forced to do that.
Speaking on behalf of potentially overwhelmed newbies everywhere, I initially listed quite a few books, (many wishlisted, many mooched internationally), when I joined. I had used amazon.com or half.com in the past, though, so I wasn't necessarily thrown by the package prep, the cost, or the volume of requests. That being said, I do wonder sometimes if I made some older users hold their breaths to see if they would actually get their books.... haha.
If you have more international mooch requests than you can afford, put them on delay instead of rejecting them.
Please don't make assumptions about 'ask first' accounts. I've only ever rejected one international mooch which was for a book I'd already marked as too big to send overseas.
If sending internationally is proving to be too expensive for you, no one will fault you for switching to "my country only" and then going back to "worldwide" or "ask first" when the financial situation improves. I suspect that most of us have financial limits -- or we'd just order everything new, right?
The problem with the "I'll only send to you if you send internationally" is that you don't really know their reasons for sending only within their own country. It's awfully judgey to dismiss them out of hand and leads to allowing people to not send to people who have books in their inventory they disapprove of, or to countries whose policies they disagree with.
I'm set to "worldwide", but make a note in my condition notes when a hardcover is too heavy to send internationally.
I tend not to ask first, unless I desperately want that book, as it feels to me as though people with the "ask first" setting really don't want to internationally, but feel compelled not to set themselves to "my country only" because so many users do mention that they won't send to people set to "my country only".
>142 RidgewayGirl: Some people certainly put themselves on "ask first" for appearances' sake, but mostly I think people do it because they like sending internationally and can't always afford it. A lot of "ask first" people are just shy of "worldwide" in practice but need the wiggle room. That used to be me, in fact. *nostalgic sigh* Money, please come back to me! I promise I still love you!
In different grumpy news, I think two books I mooched in August have gotten lost. It'll be six weeks tomorrow and all the other books the person sent at the same time have arrived. This will be my second or third unsuccessful attempt on one of them. Grr.
Is it ok for a domestic (US) book owner to require that a domestic moocher request 2 books? I received this note after mooching something from my wishlist today: "In order to minimize costs, I'm asking moochers to mooch more than 1 book at a time."
There is not another book I want from this person's inventory, which was my sole answer to the request. I checked the wiki but couldn't find a specific answer. The book owner is not a newbie. I don't want to be the one to cancel if I don't have to.
Thanks for any insights.
Not US, no. In some countries, because of postage cost, it is okay to require a multi-mooch, but not in the US.
It's okay to *suggest* a multi-mooch, but requiring or rejecting because someone doesn't isn't allowed.
"Although you have many nice books, there are none that I want or need at this time. I understand your request for a multi mooch will minimize your postal costs, but BM does not allow US moochers to require multi mooches due to postage costs. I am sure your request was actually just a suggestion, not a requirement since you have been a member for x years and are aware of the BM rules."
or you can just say:
"Although you have many nice books, there are none that I want or need at this time. I understand your request for a multi mooch will minimize your postal costs, I cannot just mooch an extra book that I do not want."
Or you don't have to say anything to the user if you're uncomfortable doing so. You can simply mooch the one book you want. You can notify admin and let them tell the user that that is unacceptable.
I've run into that, too. And noticed that they were fine mooching single copies from other people. It can be frustrating when people think that they can "adjust" the rules to suit themselves.
I recently mooched a book from someone who "required" two or more books - at least that was my interpretation. Like you, KAzevedo, I only wanted one book. I simply mooched that book and waited for the response. She gladly mooched me the one book without saying a word.
Thanks for the responses guys. It wasn't until AFTER I mooched the book that I received her requirement; it wasn't in the condition notes. I did send just the email stating that I understood the desire to reduce costs, but that there was only the one book that I wanted. The person has rejected the mooch, only repeating the original message that was sent to me. So I guess I will have to notify TPTB. Bummer.
>149 KAzevedo:: You might consider leaving her negative feedback, too (and leaving a public comment explaining the feedback). I think it would be warranted in this case.
ETA: Durn it, she has a single book I want, too.
Is it worth trying an Angel variation here? If there’s someone else in the US who has a book you also want, get her to mooch that for you, and then you mooch the two from her when it arrives?
I'd be very happy to attempt that variation, but we might not have luck in this particular transaction. KAzevedo's book is currently reserved for an international's ask first; my request was accepted without comment from the book giver. Presumably because mine was a small paperback and KAzevedo's a heavier hardcover?
Wait, are we all looking at the same transaction? To me it looks like Kasey's was a small paperback. Actually, to me it looks like Kasey's was a small paperback and then they:
1) rejected it because they didn't want to send an individual book (despite accepting several other individual books, some of which were bigger)
2) removed the book (along with most of their inventory)
3) posted a different (hardcover) edition of the book
4) reserved that one for Kasey
I AM SO CONFUSED RIGHT NOW.
We are looking at the same transaction! ....I, er, just didn't read it properly. Chelomianmobile's summation is the accurate one!
Maybe they realized they posted the wrong book (ppb vs hb) and then really just do not want to send a hardcover alone. Still against the rules but...
@ Chelon, It's reserved for me?? I just got home, so I better check.
OOO, you're right, except it took me a while to find it as the edition is different than the one linked to in the owner's GIVEN list. My reserved one was linked to his inventory, if any of that makes sense. I'm assuming that admin already communicated with him; they responded to my notification almost instantly earlier today. So, I mooched it. But why replace with a hardback which will be more expensive?
Thanks again for all the detective work and response.
>156 KAzevedo: my theory? I think the member posted the wrong edition in the first place and on contact with admins realized that they needed to post it correctly.
Confusing, Yes! My mooch has now been accepted (with different eddition and only because I saw #153) but delayed with the note saying, when there is money to send. But, the other single mooches accepted after my first attemp, followed by my note to admin, and obviously some communication from TPTB, have not been delayed. Yet anyway. This person also did no Bookmooch business, until yesterday, during 2011. Perhaps I'm being punished? :^D
Mine was accepted with a month's delay and no note about saving money to send. I'm slightly sad about that as it would be a great ghost story collection to read for Halloween.
ETA: An an hour after writing the above, my book was marked mailed.
Bleh. I try to cut people a lot of slack when it comes to book condition notes. If they had no notes listed and I get a book with some wear, I don't comment unless the book is really awful.
But today I got 6 books from a member who had all of the books listed as VERY GOOD and LIKE NEW. They weren't. They all have quite a bit of wear, lots of creasing and such. They sent everything in a manilla envelope which ripped a bit, so I tried to cut them some slack. Maybe things got worse with shipping, but as I went through the books, it became apparent that most of the damage was there before shipping.
I marked them all +1 but with a lot of comments. I'm kind of wishing I had made one of the +0, but I'm not going to change it now.
I'm sorry, Becca. It's frustrating to get books in lousy shape, unless you know ahead of time.
That's definitely a peeve of mine. I happily mooch ex-library, cover-torn, highlighted books, but that's my choice. If I mooch a book that has no condition notes (or worse, inaccurate condition notes like that...), and the book ends up having lots of problems, I get very frustrated. I feel almost like I was conned, yunno? I mean, I pay a point for a book and I think I know what condition it's in, and then it's so completely different then what was said... Yeah. I hate that.
In post 138 it states:
The thing is, that is against the rules on BookMooch. People can't have "conditions" on who they will send to, it's in the wiki and it's been said outright by Admins that it's simply against the rules. You can't reject a mooch because you don't like the person, or don't like the way they ship (which includes who they can afford to ship to). "
However. in the interview with John posted on the public website (under What About Cheaters") it clearly states:
"For example, when you request a book, the book owner has the option of rejecting the request, which they very well may do if it looks like the requestor isn't an honest person. "
Since this is from the list owner, it would seem to give more latitude in rejecting requests.
It would seem that a clear definition of a "good reason" for rejecting a request is needed from the list owner. This might avoid a lot of subjective opinions, and thus eliminate some aggravation.
> 165 It’s one of those grey areas. You can refuse on the grounds of postage cost (and it’s up to you to decide how much is too much, and whether you apply that to moocher X but not moocher Y is something no-one will ever know but you). You can refuse because the moocher’s history looks bad (although this sort of rejection can lead to some nasty retaliatory feedback issues).
In practice, you can refuse for any reason you like, as long as the reason you give is one of the officially approved ones. But the reason that the official line is “you may not refuse based on the moocher’s race / religion / political leanings / country of residence / personal mooch status / star sign etc ” is to try and avoid bigotry wherever possible. Encourage people to focus on the shared love of books, rather than turning each transaction into a political statement. Encourage good behaviour by not permitting openly bad. It’s a worthy principal, even if it’s not absolutely enforceable.
165: "For example, when you request a book, the book owner has the option of rejecting the request, which they very well may do if it looks like the requestor isn't an honest person. "
That says nothing whatsoever about being allowed to reject a mooch because the person won't send internationally.
If the user may not be an "honest person", ie, might be scamming the site, or mooching without sending, etc etc, then yes, it is completely within the rules to reject (although it's better if you delay and send an Abuse-report, because many users will "straighten out" if talked to by Admin).
But John said nothing at all to insinuate that rejecting on *personal bias*, ie "I don't like this user because they won't send internationally, they live in such-and-such country, etc" is acceptable.
I'm not sure what you mean by "public website", either. The wiki is public and an Official BookMooch page. Admin, publicly on the forums, have stated acceptable and not-acceptable rejection reasons (no, I will not dig through the forums to find those specific threads).
I'm not sure why we need a specific list from the "list owner", when Admin have already spoken out on this issue.
edit: and just to comment on joannasephine's post: Yes, technically people can reject for any dang reason they want, as long as they *say* they are rejecting for an "acceptable" reason. However, Admin are fairly consistant in putting a stop to abuse within that area; If a person rejects too often, for whatever "reason", they will usually be talked to by Admin to make sure they are being honest.
I found someone whose status message actually includes "please only mooch from me if you send books overseas yourself. I think that is only fair." She's rejected half a dozen mooches in the last year on those grounds. I wrote to her and suggested, politely, that was against the rules but there was no response.
She has about 30 mooch requests going back to March and doesn't seem to have sent anything in that time. Her feedback is all good until recently but then there's just a string of cancellations. She seems to log in regularly enough to avoid being put on vacation for very long. I wrote to 'Abuse' but that doesn't seem to have produced a response either.
169: I've found that user too more than once. Not exactly a productive attitude to have.
gimboid, the admin will probably not get back to you, unless you are directly affected.
Yesterday, I found a book from my wishlist available from a new member. She had just joined, and immediately listed 158 books. She already had 33 pending transactions. I went ahead and mooched, but am not hopeful.
158 books! I think this must be a record!
Rant of the week. I got laid off two weeks ago, and I put my existing mooches on "delay" until I can find more work (I work freelance, so it's just a matter of finding a client/clients to replace the one I lost). Pretty much everyone was really understanding about it. But I got one nasty email about how I'm still mooching and it's not fair that I can still get books when I'm not sending them out right now.
Excuse me? I earned those points- why exactly can't I use them? I'm not on vacation. Plus, she was really nasty about how I should have found work by now, I've had enough time (WTH?!).
Ugh. I've half a mind to reject the request and put "moocher is a jerk" as the reason. But I won't. BUT I WANT TO. But I won't. *backing away from computer*
172: Some people don't want to play in the big kid sandbox, where sometimes life happens and jobs don't grow on trees. Personally, I want to tell them to go back to playing in their barbie doll house where the biggest worry is what to wear that day (Barbie has tons of job related outfits to choose from... no worries for her).
That may sound bitter but until I have my coffee I really should not be allowed near people who cannot show compassion for another human being.
Edit: Good luck with finding a new client. I have friends who work freelance, so I can understand how frustrating it can be at times. And my sarcasm was in no way aimed at you :)
# 172: You could always put "Due to circumstances beyond my control, I cannot afford to send book when moocher thinks I should. I offered a delay, but moocher didn't agree to it." as a public reason for rejecting the mooch.
If TPTB respond to their complaint, you have the moocher's rude email.
If they retaliate with rude feedback, you can modify your feedback to add something like "and moocher has temper tantrums to rival my two year old child."
173 and 174- It's not like I have a history of bad mooching...if she would just look at my feedback she would know I'm always good for it, and have never delayed mooches before. Sigh. It's just not a great email to start a Monday morning with (especially when you're hoping to see YOU'RE HIRED emails instead of YOU SUCK emails.)
#175: and she probably has a history of complaining.... which TPTB probably are fully aware of.
Do what you feel comfortable with doing... delay her or reject her. You are justified in both actions.
Good Luck finding more clients.
172/175: Uggghhhh that's horrible. Can I thwap her please? Goodness.
In the last 3 months my mom has applied for 53 different job-positions (yes, we keep track). WE can't control who is hiring or how the economy is right now. All we can do is try. Which you are obviously doing.
That's just.... UGH. Don't let me anywhere near that person. UGH.
ok so exactly what does TPTB stand for..I am trying to figure how you get Bookmooch admin out of it....
my grumpy mood today is accept the mooch..stick it on delay and then send out ever other book first and then any ordered after this person and then send it ultra last so maybe they will cancel first :)
172, That's awful! I'm sort of in the same boat and if someone did that to me, I'd probably just reject the mooch, but I also like 178's idea of sending "ultra last." People who think others can just get a job with a snap of the fingers really need to wake up! Best of luck finding a job.
Yeah, some people just need to get a heart.
>178 ZoeyEve: TPTB =The Powers That Be
Hang in there! And, I think that is absurd that people would be critical about spending your own points.
I mooched 4 books within my countrey from 1 person quite some time ago and he never responded to my mooch but he has been online after it so after waiting a long time, i have cancelled the requests. He relisted the books, so i mooched them again, i really wanted those. And as you may guess, never responded to this mooch either so i have to cancel it again. to get my points back. Such a bummer....
That is frustrating, nightvamp. You might try emailing the user and asking if he'd be willing to send the books, and if not, you can ask here (on the Angels Needed or Offered thread for someone to mooch those books locally and then have you mooch the books from the angel.
I just had my first book marked lost sending-wise and I'm bummed out. I want books I send to get to people who want them. I had a feeling this one would get marked lost since the moocher hadn't marked it received and I sent it over 2 months ago.
Wow. I just got a book in the mail that was wrapped in a SINGLE layer of newspaper, held together with a tiny bit of masking tape. Thankfully, the wrapping was still in perfect condition and the book is fine. But wow. What a close call.
Stating this just because I can....
I like bomb-proof packaging!!
I don't care how difficult it is to unwrap, open, or disembowel, There is a greater chance that my book will be in excellent condition based upon how difficult the package is to open. It shows that greater care was put into sending it than one layer of gift wrapping paper.... or newspaper.
To those who package securely: I salute you!!! (& thank you, too!)
I got a book like that once - between Sweden and Bulgaria in the winter. And it made it almost securely...
I just received a book that I mooched back in August. It was marked sent at the end of September, but postmarked October 15. At least I got it!
...... So, um.......
*hides under a blanket*
I was in the hospital all day today, 8 hours total. Which meant that I didn't work today. Which means that my paycheck will be THAT much smaller. Which means I am FLAILING about the packages I was supposed to send out tomorrow.
I don't get paid until the 5th, I was already planning to take a little out of our emergency-fund for tomorrow's shipment and then put it back in when I got my paycheck.... But now.... Ugh. Just UGH.
(I'm okay. .... I think. Hospital was horrible, a bajillion panic attacks and soooo much pain, but the official diagnosis is basically pressure around the brain (Pseudotumor Cerebri), which is what's been causing my vision-problems lately. I have to go back for more tests next week.)
>191 Heather19: Heather, I am glad you got a diagnosis. Knowing what is wrong is definitely a relief. My sister recently got a diagnosis for her debilitating headaches. She is looking at a long treatment and recovery, but just knowing what caused them is helping her to feel better.
I will pray for God's healing of your illness. I hope you start to feel better quickly.
I will pray to Gilgamesh and Saint Christopher (Hitchins) for your speedy recovery! I hope you feel better!
*hugs everyone lots and lots*
(Went back in, outpatient this time, for a Lumbar Puncture this morning. The actual procedure went okay, but since then I've been a big ball of emotion/crying/upset/discomfort/etc.)
And WHY do I never remember about holidays?! The 11th. No work. Which means less hours on paycheck. AGAIN.
Yeah, a lumbar puncture is a big deal. Take care of yourself, which I know is hard when you're curled up in a ball of worry over money, but is there something that reliably distracts you?
I give up.
I am *SO* tired of people not reading, or reading and promptly ignoring my status. I ask for a minimum of 2 mooches within Canada due to high postage costs. So why is it that every time someone mooches from Canada it is only one book?
Sigh. I can handle the thin books that can go lettermail. but the massive hardcover? Not a chance.
So remind me folks, I can reject due to high postage costs within Canada, right?
What is up with people on bookmooch lately. A friend mooched a couple of books from one person (you think they would be happy it saves them on postage) and no email back; no explanation why just a rejection and then the books are re-posted to BM for someone else to mooch.
This happened 2 times in 2 days for my friend...she is now very frustrated. I would be as well if that happened to me...
.....don't post if you wont' send it....and then don't re-post the book if you won't send it.....and yes this was all in the same country...not Canada with expensive postal rates but the good old USA with cheap postage.
Speaking from experience, sometimes it can be frustratingly easy to re-post a book to your inventory when you don't mean to. One slip of the mouse and that drop-down will change to "put book back in inventory".... Not saying that's what happened, but it *does* happen sometimes.
Has your friend left feedback and looked through this person's history? If this person has a habit of rejecting with no explanation, the Abuse team needs to be notified.
ZoeyEve, could it just be that frustrating things tend to appear to come in groups? Like if I mention a problem here, it's likely that someone else will say "hey, that just happened to me, too!"? It might not be a trend, but one of those statistical bleeps that says that while the average BookMooch user will have only a few bad experiences in every hundred books traded, there's nothing to say that all those unfortunate experiences can't all happen on the same week.
About a year ago, I ran into several new moochers who were mooching away, but rejecting all books mooched from them with the excuse that they were too broke to mail any books out. And then I stopped finding that. Probably this is pulled by a consistent number of new users, but I just encountered them all at once.
(and, seriously, who does that? If you can't send books out, don't join until you can!) (this is different than someone who has legitimate points stockpiled who removes their inventory and just uses their points, obvs)
The frustrating thing is when no one explains why; no email to say here is why I rejected the mooch--no comment left for all to understand; then to re-post the book for someone else to mooch.
At least one of the books was then mooched by someone else.
I told my friend to email the TPTB since that didnt' seem fair.
I've had several poor experiences (no response to a mooch request). But they could have been easily avoided. In my zeal to Mooch, I've often neglected to check the profile of the book owner, often Mooching away from inactive accounts.
Rookie mistake; never again; I'll check on mooch histories from now on in.
#203: I try to do the same, but in my zeal to get a highly wishlisted or wanted book (highly wanted by me!) I will mooch without looking at their history....
sometimes I'm lucky.... and sometimes I'm not....
I've done that too - mooched a book without checking the history or status of the account where it's listed. It's always because I'm "worried" someone else will get it before me. Like I'll run out of books if I don't get it - not.
I'm happy to mooch from inactive accounts. There's always a chance they'll get lured back. If not you can help clean up the site by putting them on vacation.
I never shy away from mooching from inactive accounts, because the worst thing that could happen there is getting to put an account on vacation so no one else has to be disappointed about them not responding.
However, I do look at feedback/history. I learned that the hard way, after one too many rejections-with-lame-excuses, and 'no response, put account on vacation, only to have the person log in a day later but still never acknowledge that I had mooched'. Those type of encounters can often be avoided by looking through their history, so I almost always do. Most of the books I want aren't likely to be mooched out from under me while I'm doing my research, anyways.
I'm so annoyed! A user in the UK had a note that s/he did not want to mail a certain book (that I would LOVE to have) outside of Europe. I asked her if she would mind holding it for me until I could find an angel, and she e-mailed me back that "another UK member had expressed interest first." I accepted that, but noticed several hours later that the book was still hanging unmooched atop my wishlist. That's when I got a little suspicious.
I went on the angel thread and obtained a UK angel, just in case. She just contacted me a little bit ago and told me that they "don't want it to leave the UK at all even through an angel." wtf? So they've refused her request and have not put the book back up.
I've filed an abuse report, but I'm really disappointed. :( This is the first time this has happened to me, and with a book I was really excited to see available, to boot.
wtf? That's the first i've ever heard of that! they don't want the book to leave the UK at *all*, even if they aren't the ones sending it outside? That's absurd! Glad you contacted abuse.
I DON'T EVEN KNOW.
Honestly, the only justification I can think of is a complaint I've heard from outside-the-US BookMoochers: that the US is a swirling vortex into which books go in but rarely come out. Even so, it's a weak justification, considering her/his mailing preference is set to Ask Me. Ugh idk idk.
if I ever get a sniff that someone doesn't like angel mooches, I don't let them know that I angel books.... usually I let the person know that I am angeling a book... but not always.
Could you find someone else to mooch it for you & warn them not to let them know that it is an angel mooch?
(frustrating though it is??)
and let TPTB know as well....
> 211 I absolutely considered trying again with a different angel, but they haven't put the book back up. I suspect that they suspect I'll do just that. Oh, well.
Edited to add: Myriad, it's called "Revolting Librarians Redux: Radical Librarians Speak Out." Basically, it is about everything awesome ever, and it's not really a book I was ever expecting to see pop up.
This topic was continued by Discussions of Possibly Problematic Mooches #29 (The Vent/Rant thread).
This topic is not marked as primarily about any work, author or other topic.