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Coming: 3 point intl mooches

In 3 months, I will change the cost of mooching a book internationally to be 3 points, so that the points received by the giver (3 points) are the same as the points paid by the person receiving the book.

I'm giving you 3 months' notice of this change, so that you have plenty of time to plan for it, however you like.

More info about this change:

  1. this will be a 6 month test of this change, and may not be permanent. I will be closely monitoring the "vital signs" of international mooching, currency float, and other measures, to see what the positive and negative impact of this change will be.

  2. The reason for this change is that the old system where an international mooch cost you 2 points, but the person received 3 points created a new point for each international mooch, thus causing inflation. In general, there are too many points on BookMooch and not enough books, so we need to adjust things to no longer create point inflation. 20% of each day's mooches are international, "printing" about 440 new points every day.

  3. The old 2-points-to-mooch/3-points-to-receive is uneven, and causes problems when applied to mooch ratios. Specifically, since international mooches are supposed to be balanced with international giving (a 1:1 ratio) according to the mooch ratio, however today you receive 3 points for sending, and 2 for mooching (a 3:2 ratio), you can't actually spend all the points you receive when you're trading books internationally (the mooch ratio prevents that). That doesn't make a lot of sense, and it'd be good to correct it.

  4. Why am I making intl mooching cost 3 points, instead of 2 points? The reason is that my rough survey of mailing costs is that for BM's main countries, it costs roughly 3x to 4x in real postage costs to send out of your country (Canada, France and Finland are important exceptions that I'm aware of). I thought that 2 points wouldn't provide enough incentive to send books internationally, and the general problem I see is not enough people willing to send internationally (*not* the reverse: it appears plenty of people are willing to mooch internationally).

    Here is typical comment I saw when discussing this last week on the forum:
     "Speaking from an Australian perspective, a decrease in the 3 points I get for sending internationally would force me to go 'my country only' as it is that extra point that helps make it worth my while to send internationally (which costs a significant amount from Australia)"

  5. It might seem backwards, but I believe this will help international mooching. Here's why: under the old system, you only needed to send 2 books internationally to have enough points to mooch 3 books internationally. Over time, this creates a lack of incentive to send books internationally. Without enough people sending, mooching isn't possible. This change should help rebalance things.

  6. This should help cause more Angel mooches, since Angels will now get even more value out of helping books get to other countries.

To reiterate:

  1. this change will not occur until after April 20th

  2. this change may not be permanent. I might revert to the old system after a testing period.

  3. international mooches will cost 3 points, and the sender will receive 3 points.

  4. Over time, this should help increase international trade

  5. Domestic mooches will stay at 1 point.


In closing, I'd like to quote this relevant and funny comment that Nancy Gluck made a few days ago, when discussing the mooch ratio change:

 The tenor of the discussion is like when they redraw election districts or devalue the national currency. Everyone hates the old system until they try to change it; then they anticipate how much they will hate the new system.

-john

John Buckman
3 years ago

Comments



Tough on those of us who can't get books in our reading language in the country in which we live. There aren't that many English books on offer in France, so I have to mooch outside France.
jacquie
3 years ago
This is great. I totally see the value of fighting inflation.

My question: what else have you got planned for BookMooch?

Michael
3 years ago
John, thank you for striving to keep the system fair, and free! I LOVE the site and would not want to use any other!
Darcie
3 years ago
6) This should help cause more Angel mooches, since Angels will now get even more value out of helping books get to other countries.

How exactly? Currently, the Angel pays a point to get the book domestically, but receives three points when the book is mooched by the international member. How will this change? Not at all as far as you have explained it here.

RidgewayGirl
3 years ago
I applaud the move...it'll make me more discerning in my international mooching, but that is not a bad thing.
Rebel Sun
3 years ago
John,
If you combine this with a 2 point regional option, I think this may work. I am worried that less people (ie Americans) will be willing to mooch from me (in Canada). They may be more likely to wait and hope the book will become available from someone in their own country. I am happy to send elsewhere, and people from other countries may be willing to mooch from me for 3 points for surface mail that can take 3 to 4 months, but there is a lot of cross border trade between Canada and the U.S. that may dry up now.
Cara
3 years ago
 6) This should help cause more Angel mooches, since Angels will now get even more value out of helping books get to other countries.
How exactly? Currently, the Angel pays a point to get the book domestically, but receives three points when the book is mooched by the international member. How will this change? Not at all as far as you have explained it here.

You're right that Angels will continue to receive 3 points, so there's no point change for what they do.

However, by creating less inflation, and making receiving a book the same points as giving a book, the change should increase the number of people sending books. This means that the Angels will have greater opportunity to spend the 3 points they earned, because more people will be offering more international books that they can mooch themselves.

Currently, because of points inflation, lots of Angels have more points than there are books they want, and they continue to Angel mooch out of kindness, not because it makes points sense.

My goal is to create a situation where being a mooch angel is both a kind and generous thing to do, and it's rewarding from a points-earned-and-there's-stuff-I-can-spend-it-on point of view.

-john

John Buckman
3 years ago
As Scarface133 said. Mooching a book won't be cheaper for me than buying it new - and books are very expensive here in French Polynesia !
hayashi
3 years ago
Anything that would getmore people to send internationally would be great and worth trying. I was a bit worrid at first that no one would now mooch from me from overseas but then most of us have built up a lot of points, and at the moment have nothing to spend them so this might well be the answer and worth a shot. And John, thanks for the heads up this time! It is a great site and we do really appreciate the time and great effort you put into this, and that you have listened to all our concerns.
Jo Gadsden
3 years ago
As a Canadian member I mooch and send most of my books internationally. I realize that this change will help BM in the future, but for me, it means spending an average of a $1.75 more on each book. That's a significant difference when you mooch as many books as I do. With this change implemented, I will probably mooch and send much less. I liked the idea of setting up a charity bank to provide the extra point better. I think a lot of people would be willing to contribute to that, myself included. During the temporary test, I think my mooching activity would decrease by around 75%.

I think that there definitely should be changes made on BM in regard to Canada as sending just one medium/small book that exceeds the lettermail qualifications can cost a ridiculous amount. Sending within Canada is so expensive that for most books it would be nearing the amount of which I am not willing to spend even for an international 3 points package, let alone 1 point.

Thanks for all the work and changes you do, John! I just don't really like the idea of this one. :)

Tiffany
3 years ago
John, I am sorry, but your math skills stink. I angel a LOT of books. I also enjoy mooching international books and sometimes use angels myself. Let me spell it out for you:

When someone asks me to angel a book for them, I request it from someone else. This costs me one point. When I send it abroad I get 3 points. My net gain is 2 points (excluding the .1 bonuses, which I am fine with removing).

Currently, I can use those 2 points to request one book internationally. A 1:1 ratio, since you seem to be big on ratios lately.

Under the new system, I will be unable to use my gain from the angel transaction to request an international book. Yes, I can still request two domestic books from the transaction like I could before, but over time, angel transactions will bleed my points dry if I try to request a similar number of international requests unless charity or smooches are involved.

Angels will have to either require smooches/charity or cease their services. Those who require heavy use of angels will face either being able to mooch much less than they send, or will simply run out of people willing to angel to them. As the number of people willing to angel decreases, those left will be faced with an increased burden and be less able to afford it ourselves.

Here's a crazy idea... maybe point inflation has NOTHING to do with what's wrong with the site. Maybe a lack of marketing to bring in new customers is a big factor. Maybe you need to be hitting the Facebook ads and fan page to generate fresh blood at affordable prices instead of lamenting the fact that you're not getting as much press attention as PBS.

And here's a crazy idea... we all WANT new members because it means more books for us. Maybe more people would "give a little" if it was for a specific ad campaign.

Maybe you're not getting new people to sign up because the site looks like it was cobbled together in 2002 and new people don't feel confident that it is trustworthy.

Maybe you're not getting good retention because the site does a poor job of teaching newbies how to properly package a book, of giving them incentive to list the condition, and of preventing abuse by new members. Many members join for a time and get burned by bad transactions and leave as there is basically no recourse for them. One area you SHOULD consider copying PBS is their help documentation and how easy they make everything which prevents a lot of problems before they start.

Becca
3 years ago
Thanks for your FEEDBACK, Becca.
Michael
3 years ago
John said:

>My goal is to create a situation where being a mooch angel is both a kind and generous thing to do, and it's rewarding from a points-earned-and-there's-stuff-I-can-spend-it-on point of view.

I would add that, when I was angeling, another unexpected bonus was that I would open the envelope to make sure all was well and that the book was as described, and then say - oooo! - and promptly email my angelee (is that a word?) to say: "If I read it really quickly, can I send it to you afterwards?" No one ever said "no", and I discovered some excellent new authors via that method - I don't think I'm alone in enjoying that aspect of mooching.

Anyway, a good change, and this seems the best way of minimising point inflation/hoarding. And for anyone who suddenly feels short of points, the Bank of Bookmooch (have had too much wine to add link) still seems to be going strong - and, in response to Becca, I always smooch my angels - even the ones who mooch from me to send abroad - and, once again, I'm not alone in this. Trust your fellow moochers to help you out, in whatever you need!

Okay. Will step away from the keyboard now and continue drinking wine ...

Sophie Houston
3 years ago
OK, thanks for letting us know before this time. :) I probably won't use the site during the trial, but I'll be sure to keep an eye out to see what the result is.
Annis
3 years ago
Sigh... This actually makes me a little bit sad. I understand the necessity of the change, more or less. I love Bookmooch and it's been a great place for me to get rid of all the books I don't need.

However, I anticipate I'll run into some difficulties with my mooching after the change. I live in Finland and I think this change will hit countries like mine the hardest. As has been stated a few times in the recent posts, there isn't that many Bookmooch members here and the opportunities to mooch books domestically are very few and far between. Even if there is a book I could mooch, I always feel a bit quilty to actually do so due to the high domestic postal rates. As a result 95 % of my mooches have been international.

So after reading this blog post I was curious and checked the postal rates, since the postal rate will directly indicate the cost of the books I'd mooch in the future. Apparentely, as long as my books are all under 3 cm in thickness, I'll be relatively fine. However, thicker books than this result to considerably higher postal rates and sending a book even within Europe will cost me about 6,50 euros (elsewhere it's 8,15). So any book I'd mooch with these points, so to speak, would cost me the same. Now why would I want a used copy of a book (possibly even in a very dubious condition), when for that money I can get a brand new one from Bookdepository?

The point of all this is, that this doesn't really encourage me to send out more books internationally, since there won't be much point for me to list those thicker books. My sending activity will significantly diminish, since it just won't be worth it money-wise.

Just my two cents. Thanks for the opportunity to vent. The change will come and there's nothing I can do about it and that's fine by me. I'll just have to make my own decisions and adjust to the status quo accordingly.

Riikka

RiikkaT
3 years ago
Dear John:

Your change makes perfect sense to me.

Thank you for explaining it.

Robert

Robert Nunnally
3 years ago
I recognize that it costs more to ship internationally, but personally I'm not spending 3 points to mooch one book. I'll be patient and wait until it's available domestically.

This doesn't encourage me to ship internationally either. I realize it makes sense to ship a book internationally for 3 points and then mooch an international book for 3 points, but it costs a lot more *real money* at one time to ship books internationally and I don't usually have the extra cash to do that.

I understand why you made the change; it just doesn't benefit me in my current financial situation.

Kathlib the Prophet
3 years ago
I will also add, to counter John's argument that this will encourage and increase angel mooches...

If I get two angel requests and do not require or receive a smooch, I will earn two points each.

If I want an international book that requires an angel and a smooch, it will cost me four points. So sending two angel books without smooches will equal receiving one angel mooch with a smooch.

If John wants to kill the angel system, that's fine. It's his site and his right. I choose to angel and I can choose to stop any time. I am spending extra money out of my pocket to do something that benefits him.

I am only pointing all of this out because John stated, "This should help cause more Angel mooches, since Angels will now get even more value out of helping books get to other countries" This does nothing to increase the value that angels get.

Becca
3 years ago
 Maybe you're not getting new people to sign up because the site looks like it was cobbled together in 2002 and new people don't feel confident that it is trustworthy.

Meow !

John Buckman
3 years ago
This change makes perfect sense.

As a new member I'm not yet set in my ways, so I don't feel particularly put out. I can't imagine many people will be jumping for joy though, but thanks for the good long notice period! I expect there will be a serious amount of international mooching going on in the next 3 months whilst people scramble to spend any stockpiled points!

Grace Hall
3 years ago
Too bad that it is delayed until April as I have just shipped to Australia. I generally accept mooches from other countries. And have repeatedly had mooches rejected from foreign countries. This change may help .

Virginia

virginia emerson
3 years ago
Well, being fair, the site is awful in terms of its actual layout and look, it does give the impression of something thrown together in an attic bedroom by a 12-year-old geek.
I've been a journalist, including digital media, for 20 years and the more professional looking the site the more likely people are to think it's worth using.
I remember the first time I visited BookMooch, I nearly didn't stay, it was only because I'd been recommended it by a fellow book nerd that I chose to hang around.
Louise
3 years ago
I think it's a good change. I like the idea of experimenting with it for six months and then deciding to keep it or not.
ayasuu
3 years ago
I really don't understand how people who are enjoying the benefits of using a FREE service feel justified in tearing it apart.

John, you do great work and I applaud your willingess to put up with wildly different viewpoints so that we can trade books world wide (or not) as we choose!

Darcie
3 years ago
P.S. I happily mooch from and send to international moochers and will continue to do so. Sometimes I might have to delay sending and let the moocher know when I expect to send, and sometimes people I'm mooching from let me know they can't send for a couple of months, but as long as we let each other know our limitations it's all good!
Darcie
3 years ago
I also fail to understand how this will help angel mooches. The angel moocher will be 0.9 points out of pocket each time they act as an angel.

I personally would be prepared to pay an extra point to get a book angelled.

The angel network will disappear unless the extra point is supplied

brownbear
3 years ago
It seems perfectly fair to me that, if I get 3 points for sending internationally, I should spend 3 points to mooch internationally. My only concern would be whether this is unfair, or will become excessively burdensome, to people in smaller countries where most of their mooches are international. But I imagine that's something you'll be looking at during the trial period.
Maureen
3 years ago
I have been reading the comments talking about the layout of the site. I think that, overall, the site looks great! (I particularly like the main graphic.) However, one thing that does annoy me is that putting quotation marks around a phrase when searching Bookmooch, which on most sites makes it be received as a phrase, does nothing here. Is there any way to change this?
Adele
3 years ago
That seems fair. From a US perspective, I would love to see a "regional" feature sometime in the future. Sending to Canada is more like 2x, and I understand that Canada to US is cheaper than in-country. What's that about?
Rosemarie Larkin
3 years ago
I'm willing to try out the 3-3 international rate. At least then we can see if it helps things at all.
Lisa
3 years ago
I've been thinking about this and figuring the economics and have decided that this will raise the cost of a book to more than makes economic sense for me to mooch. I average in postage between $2-$3 a point sending international ($10 a point domestic). Sometimes a little less, for a multimooch, sometimes a little more for a single sizable book. This means (as someone else from Canada has mentioned) that buying books new from Bookdepository, and used from Betterworldbooks (which now has free shipping to Canada) will be cheaper. Only hardcovers, larger trade paperbacks and hard to find books will be worth using Bookmooch for. I was thinking of posting lots of books before April in order to give some of my mooching buddies a chance to grab some books before the price goes up;) I am now rethinking this. I already have more points than I can use (I have given away hundreds of points over the years). If I stockpile a bunch of points now I have doubts whether I will be able to use them, since I won't be using them for newer children's paperbacks and mass market paperbacks (unless they are older and hard to find) since I will be able to get them cheaper elsewhere. I won't leave Bookmooch (I think) because I have enjoyed this community for the last few years, but this will curtail my activity.
Cara
3 years ago
One interesting side effect of all this talk of points inflation and lack of books: I've *stopped* listing books as I have plenty of points that I'm finding hard to spend. So I have about a dozen books that I haven't added to my inventory as it's not worth the mail cost (I'm unemployed, BTW) as I'll just get more points I can't spend. I wonder how many 'unlisted' books exist that moochers are holding back for the same reasons?
Jonathan
3 years ago
This will "fix" point inflation for the people who have many points. It will hurt the people who have few, particularly international members in smaller countries.

I don't think it will affect the Angels in the US directly, but international members will have fewer points to make said Angel mooches.

infiniteletters
3 years ago
I feel like the issue of countries with few members is something that would be best addressed by trying to get new members from those countries somehow.

As for the 3:3, I'm open to seeing it. It does seem like it will make Angels less able to mooch internationally, though, which I wouldn't want to do. Would a 2.5:3 make any sense, or would that be too confusing/not help the inflation issue enough?

Andrew Scruggs
3 years ago
John, will you be sharing the results of this experiment with the community?
RidgewayGirl
3 years ago
Thank you, John, for all your hard work. Without Bookmooch I would not have tracked down some really hard to find titles. I really appreciate your time and energy in keeping us all sharing our love of reading.
Mmathabo (UK)
3 years ago
I have no problem with sending books outsides the US as long as the person on the other end is willing to mooch 3 to 4 paperbacks because then I can send them Prioirty Flat rate enevelope for $13.95 or rater $3 to $4 a book. But it is NOT feasible to mail a single book overseas for $7 to $8 a book. Canada of course, is an exception for mailing to from the US. At times, it is CHEAPER to mail to CANADA first class then to send the book across town here book rate. So I never turn down a mooch from CANADA.
2 for 3 or 3 for 3 doesn't matter that really but rather the TRUE cost of mailing ( postage ) is the GREAT DECIDER.
People need to post more books and actually mail them. I have had people post books then I mooch and 2 months later I have to cancel because they have not mailed them or do not have the money to send them. I can understand being BROKE. Just let me know so I can mooch from someone else and PLEASE DON'T REPOST the same book up right after I have had to cancel the mooch. HECK, if it's a book or bunch of books I really want badly I have even sent people the money to mail them to me.
Just be HONEST with your fellow moochers. If you can't afford to mail or are going to be laid up for awhile, put your account on vacation til things get better. You can still come back at times and mooch books if you have points.
International moochs are cool and I have made many friends , just remeber to MULTI-MOOCH to make it finacially feasible!
Thomas Nufer (3 for 2)
3 years ago
Any chance of implementing your suggestion of reduced point cost for multi-mooches at the same time. Whenever I've mooched internationally (which lately has been a bunch,as I've been seeking hebrew children's books) I've offered to mooch multiples, and have ended up with anything from 3-8 at a time. I'm guessing this would be impossible with the new points. a multi-mooch incentive would help. I realize not for everyone, given weight issues, but I think still for many.

Thanks

Sarah Swift
3 years ago
I was about to post what Sarah Swift said. What if the 1st intl mooch costs 3 points, but later mooches cost 2 points? The sender would get the same 3 points with all intl mooches.
infiniteletters
3 years ago
QUESTION: since this change seems to be less controversial than I feared, would people be ok with my implementing it in ONE MONTH rather than THREE MONTHS?

-john

John Buckman
3 years ago
I'm concerned for BookMooch members in countries where English-language books are rare (Peru for instance); these folks may eventually find themselves unable to mooch books because they have no English-language inventory to send out. Meanwhile it is easy and cheap for me to acquire lightweight paperbacks from library sales, thrift stores, etc.

So I'm thinking of being not a BookMooch angel, but a sort of cherub. If a foreign member's having trouble acquiring inventory, s/he could email me. Depending on finances and mood, I would probably be willing to send a box of English-language paperbacks. They wouldn't be fantastic, but not total garbage either. This should help foreign members gather some BookMooch “currency” to spend on the books they actually want.

Radical idea? Ill-conceived? How would it affect the system?

Bluebird
3 years ago
Insofar as I get the reasoning by balancing the points given/received for international mooches, I think this will bring about less activity on site - members choosing more carefully what they mooch overseas and thus fewer books requested to and from. This, in turn, will make it more difficult and over a longer period of time to earn more points and/or use points. For me, it will be the 'earning' of points to be able to mooch, and mooch more selectively than randomly as I have been to date

I mooch and send locally/internationally and am very active. 99% of the time I mooch more than one book at a time from the same member which can be anything from 5 to 20 books. I then regularly revisit those I've mooched from in the past and mooch more. Come April, I'm afraid this will not be possible or will be very rare, unfortunately.

My concern is with the 2 points being raised to 3 for international mooches - and this in regards to multi-international mooching. I know others have also mentioned this as a concern.

Might I also suggest the possibility of a reduction of points required for international mooches if mooching more than two books etc from the same member? The owner should still get 3 points per book but the moocher should be offered a reduction of overall points (of 3 per book) if they multi-mooch.

For example: if I was to mooch 5 books from Person X in the USA to be sent to me in N Ireland - rather than it cost me 15 points - could there be a reduction to 10 points? Or something like that?

It worries me that there will be less people 'able' to mooch internationally regardless of how many folk are 'willing' to send internationally.

Thanks for the advance warning and hopefully by April, any teething problems/concerns will be sorted out to the understanding and benefit of all.

That said, I foresee a busy time of it with folks using up all their points internationally before April and then a lull thereafter. Had I more points in credit, I too would join the rampage! Lol

IrishPenJen
3 years ago
Just catching up on the last few messages:

PLEASE honour the time frame to April. One Month is not fair to many folks who probably only visit BM on a weekly or less frequent basis. To spring this so suddenly, plus so soon after the Ratio Change, will possibly cause more grief, confusion and lead to folks packing it all in. Do please let folks adjust and prepare for the dramatic changes. Thanks.

IrishPenJen
3 years ago
To the one month: No no no, dear G*d please no! And that is me being polite/non-hostile. The reason it seems less angering to people is because you are giving us such long notice. The three month gives people a chance to use up points, rather than *Devaluing points they had under the old system and paid good money for*.

The question of whether this change should be made in one *needs to be a seperate blog post* if you are serious about the inquiry... otherwise people may miss it among all the other posts, and your data is worthless. Since you are so keen on research I am sure you understand this ;) The post above me (Posted after your post) even says 'in April', rather than the sooner change your proposed.

So NO it would be a very *Bad* thing to make this change in one month. Not only that, you *Just told us* it would be THREE months. Not everyone reads the comments here.. many of the members will now be going on your official post of it being three months, and would be very surprised to see a post a few days later stating it was now one month. Morale in BM is already low, I am afraid suddenly going back on your word would be the last straw for many people :(

Bcteagirl
3 years ago
Speaking only for myself - I am so fed up with the disadvantages to my mooching, from all these changes you are now implementing, and if I can't use up the points I have accued under the old system and you alter the changeover to one month; it will just mean I will be leaving two months earlier.
What's the point in stating an opinion opposite to yours John, or objecting in any way - you will only ignore it, will not act on it and have already stated that we (who have invested a lot of time and money into this site too) have no redress because it is your site. So why bother I say.
But just in case; and because you hate shouting, but not nearly so much as I hate what you are doing to something (which was, but not anymore) precious to me:

I OBJECT VEHEMENTLY TO CHANGING THIS AT ALL - LET ALONE IN ONE MONTH RATHER THAN THREE!!!!!!!!

Message received?

Lman
3 years ago
Since I send many more books internationally than mooch internationally mostly because I angel. I have more books mooched than given overall. Before mooching a book Internationally I look at what I can get the book for on all the above mentioned sites. Usually I will end up NOT mooching the book, at 2 points, as it is just not cost effective at the 5 euros plus I see on the envelope. I more or less look at my point as $2/credit so I will also compare that price to what I am willing to pay. In addition I try to mooch multiple books from international members. At 3 points per mooch I will probably mooch very infrequently. I used to mooch from Canada frequently as I have the extra points and the economics were better. Maybe you could make it 2:2 for mooch/give from Canada?

I really don't see this as encouraging International mooching, rather it will discourage International mooching. It'll hurt the Canadians the most since they are the 3rd largest membership and would rather trade with the States. Sending between Canada/US is just not close to sending overseas in price, might be good to make the price reflex this.

I see the inflation in the system not so much because of the imbalance of International mooching. Seems like the US gets mooched from more Internationally. If the US member doesn't mooch themselves internationally, like me because already I feel with most books it is more economical not to, books mooched to given ratio goes up. I have probably spent more for sending my given books, as a good number are overseas mooches, but my balance of mooched/given per actual book is high.

As a few people pointed out the 0.2 points is a bigger problem. This inflation is for all mooches domestic and international. Just going through the points of most of the people posting here and adding up how many points they have for the added 0.1 for each mooched/given and you start seeing members that would be at a negative balance. Maybe these people would if they didn't accrue all these bonus points, list books and be willing to send international to get points.

You quoted how many extra points per month were from International imbalance. Can you quote how many per month are from the 0.2 bonuses per each book in the system sent?

I don't see this as a positive. I still would send Internationally as that has not changed, but I would rarely mooch Internationally.

I feel that I am bloated with point 119. But as I pointed out before, 75 points are from 0.1 bonuses alone. I think that is about even for the number of mooched Internationally but like I said at 3 credits per book, I would have probably mooched only 1/3 of the books.

And yes, the more points you have, the less likely you feel you need to post. In fact posting becomes more selective and exclusionary. So there is a reason for John wanting to eliminate the inflation in the system. I kind of thing the credit, "debt", in the system needs to be eliminated too. I thought the 3:2 was a really good incentive to International trading though. I guess we will see.

I don't really care if it is next month or April.

Amy W
3 years ago
Keep it at 3 months if you're changing at all.

I also agree with edit your post to include the 1 month question.

infiniteletters
3 years ago
I don't think one month is a good idea, especially after you already announced that it would be three. I have many angel mooch requests pending and they often take more than a month to go through. I haven't decided if I am going to keep it up after the change, forcing us to make hasty decisions will not end well for anyone.
Becca
3 years ago
I can definitely see how this change makes sense for the long-term viability of BM. I am also very concerned about the limited numbers of people willing to send internationally and if this change helps address that, great. However, I do think this may have a negative impact on newer members (and bringing in more members). An international mooch only being twice the cost of a domestic mooch makes it less intimidating for a new member who is nervous about emptying their fledgling account. And making BM seem like a great deal makes it more attractive to new people who have less emotional (and financial) investment in the site. 2 points is a great deal. 3 points is not.

I've only been a member for four months, and I was very conservative in my mooching until recently. I only started trying (unsuccessfully) to mooch internationally in the past week. As a new person, you have less of a sense of the moochability of your collection or the likelihood that books on your wishlist will appear. As a newbie, I'm not sure that the novelty of getting a book from another country would have been worth paying two or three times the cost of the book from amazon or a used book store. I understand that many longtime members have lots of points and nowhere to spend them, which has resulted in too many points in our economy and no incentive to post more books. But many people commenting are also concerned about bring new members into the system. I think it's important to consider the impact this change may have on our ability to market BM to them.

ShanaM
3 years ago
One month or three months doesn't make that much difference to me. I have already decided that I will have to curtail my mooching activity, since 3 points makes most BM books more expensive than buying the same book at a used book store or on-line. I am going to post some books to give moochers the opportunity to take advantage of the lower rate while it lasts, but I don't think I'll post as many now, or after the change, as I have more points than I will be able to use already. I would suggest you do a system-wide email to announce the change.
Cara
3 years ago
I appreciate the work and changes. consensus is difficult.
mattkime
3 years ago
Don't change the time frame! You said three months. People will be planning for three months.
With the changes, I will not be mooching from anyone who requires two or more books mooched internationally.
Cyrel
3 years ago
It seems to me that you missed that the majority of the posters don't like the proposed change but are resigned to it as you are the owner. They appreciate the warning.

Still I think this is not the first thing you should do to limit the devaluation of credits. I would like you to state the statistic on how many extra points are printed each month due to the 0.2 credits per book traded. How many books are traded averagely over say the last 4 months?

Oh, didn't see that you are already getting rid of the 0.1 for marked receiving. Still think the listing credits should be eliminated for all but the first 100 books at max.

Amy W
3 years ago
Im sorry but i guess im with everyone else who think these changes are not for the best. I will not be mooching nor sending internationally anymore due to these changes being created. I do not feel right mooching from someone when it cost them more than the book is worth to mail it. I feel as if BM is going down-hill in popularity and wish someone would take notice of it.
Devon
3 years ago
I object to changing this in one month instead of three. It's getting to the point where I wonder what will change each day. I feel I cannot count on Bookmooch to be a consistent, reliable site with consistent, reliable rules of operation. And I'm a fairly new member, so it's not as if I've been "married" to the old ways for years. But I intensely dislike the manner in which these changes are happening, and I dislike that to me, they seem to disadvantage Angel moochers who are the most generous of Bookmooch members, and who often take such pains to ship internationally because they truly want to participate in an international community.
Amy Sisson
3 years ago
Some people are saying point inflation isn't the problem, lack of new members is. Sure, new members are essential, but you have to be able to keep them. Here's what I suspect happens with increasing frequency, AS A RESULT OF POINT INFLATION:

New member signs up, lists 10 books in their inventory. 8 of them get requested almost immediately. Newbie finds this a bit overwhelming, but sends them all, thinking of the good stuff she will get in return. Waits for books from her wishlist to be posted... Waits... Waits some more... Waits even longer... Logs on less and less... eventually gives up.

If with 800 books on my wishlist I can go a full month without finding anything I want on here despite logging on daily (keep in mind that I once mooched 29 books in one month, back in 2008), I can only imagine what the odds are for someone with 100 or 50 or 20 books on their list.

Bookmooch had to take action, and I'm glad that they are doing so. I can only hope that it's not too late.

EDIT: Also, I've always been happy to send books internationally, and to do so quickly, no matter what the size, weight and destination are, and I will continue to do so. Oh wait, no I won't, as I've basically stopped adding books to my inventory, since at this point any new points I get are almost entirely worthless - I can't use them on any of the books I want.

Patrick
3 years ago
*Please* stick to 3 months. Thank you.
Jace
3 years ago
As a Canadian moocher, I know that I, for one, will no longer be using Bookmooch once this change goes into effect.
kimifly
3 years ago
I personally don't understand why people have been so angry about the changes that were made/are going to be made. Honestly, the fact that until now mooching a book internationally cost you two points, but the sender received three, wasn't right. It was nice and convenient (most of my interactions, both receiving and giving, are international, so I'm not just saying that - I loved that it was that way), but it just didn't make any sense.

I really don't get why this seems to be such a big deal. I find it ridiculously easy to accumulate points, and the members who I know who really use Bookmooch frequently, all have a lot of points as well. I for one don't see any reason for this. What good does it to anyone that I constantly have more than 50 points? It's not like you can save up for something really expensive - every book costs the same. I don't think it's good that it's so simple to get to high amounts of points, and one of the reasons that it was like this so far is that international mooches were uneven.

All the changes really don't bother me that much, because I just can't imagine that they will really change the dealings of a lot of members. Seiously - how many books does everyone here mooch and send? Reading some of the comments, it seems like everyone regularly mooches 30 books a month, but only sends 1. I for one mooch quite a lot of books, mostly because I'm an active journal participant, but at the same time that means that I send the same amount of books out, since journals travel along...

Hannah
3 years ago
Another vote for the three months here. Not that I'll change my user habits, I'll still send and mooch internationally. But some people sound like they need time to adjust to it and I'd rather keep them in the community than have them storm off in a huff.

I know it must be really painful to read these comments John, knowing that you have to take these measures to stabilise the economy. Please remember that all this passion comes from the fact that the people posting here love the site you created.

Jonathan
3 years ago
I've been reading some of these comments and it's important to remember that you STILL have an advantage if you send internationally. You can get three points and use them to get three domestic books.

I can see some people are very outraged, but who ever heard of a currency that appears out of nowhere? I pay 2 dollars for a coffee but the shop gets 3?? No.

Anyway, I will still be sending and mooching internationally, I have limited space on my bookshelves so I have found that it's healthy to have an equal input as output, just keeping the books in circulation. The only people this really effects is people who want to mooch more than they give, which is what we should be stopping.

Angels
3 years ago
Wait three months, please! It's better timing, and it's better to not renige on things. Also, three months *is* a better amount of time for people to adjust to the idea and get things in order. One month would feel rather sudden; this is time enough to feel more like a gradual transition. And that is much better for everybody.

Do you think you could add a regional tier at 2/2 (for Canada/US, particularly) before you change this? Or at least launch both things simultaneously? I think that 2-point cost for Canadian/US mooching is very important, and it isn't necessary to receive a third point between those countries to offset the cost of sending.

I think this change is a real shame. Understandable reasoning, but a real shame. I understand why you're doing it, and I can't say it seems unfair, but . . . (Sigh.) Just a real shame.

One more question: Do you think it would be possible to also implement that "multiple mooch discount" idea you mentioned earlier in three months' time, as well? That would still be a bit inflationary, but not nearly as much, as you mentioned, and it *would* help to offset the rising cost (and any disappointment) over this change. If you could implement that, as well as a 2/2 point change for Canadian/American mooches, I think that would work well. Plus then people would have something to look forward to when this change happens -- and it's good to have things people can look forward to, as well as dreading!

Emily Martha Sorensen
3 years ago
"I'm concerned for BookMooch members in countries where English-language books are rare (Peru for instance); these folks may eventually find themselves unable to mooch books because they have no English-language inventory to send out. Meanwhile it is easy and cheap for me to acquire lightweight paperbacks from library sales, thrift stores, etc."

In my experience, the books in Spanish that I've listed in my inventory will eventually get mooched after waiting for a bit (it may have helped that many of them were children's books so they were good for people who were starting to learn). I love that I've been able to get books in Spanish to people in the US, Italy, UK, New Zeland, Canada, and Switzerland. What usually prevented me from listing more books or relisting books that I mooched is that if the book was slightly over 250g then it would just be too expensive to send (right now costs are about $10 for an under 250g package and 18$ for an under 500g to the US - considering the lower cost of living, it's very expensive). I still sent away because books in English are *even more expensive* and not widely available and Bookmooch helped me mooch many wonderful books that I've lent and given away to many of my friends and family (for that I'll be forever grateful).

I see that the problem now will be that other low cost sources for books will be more attractive for people who mooched internationally. BookDepository doesn't ship to Peru, but I'm in Spain for the rest of the year. I can send a package under 500g within the EU for 6 euros or I can buy a new mass market paperback from BookDepository for about the same... I guess now the people who will mooch internationally will be those who have lots of points or those who don't have many other sources for the books that they want. But that's OK as long as people are still willing to send internationally...

Andrea (from Peru)

andrea
3 years ago
It is obviously hard to have one fit for all countries. I hope people will still leave feedback despite the removal of the 0.1 point. I can see why you want to have 3:3 on international mooches (ratios - I get it finally...) but to be honest that makes it impractical for me to mooch internationally as it will be too expensive. In turn, as I will never be able to spend the points on books available in the UK because there are simply not enough, there will be no point sending books abroad or even putting books on at all. I think, even with my dodgy maths, that means less books....

I did write an article some time ago for the magazine Newbooks praising BookMooch which they kindly printed (I emailed you to tell you it was in but never heard anything back. I don't know if anyone else saw it or you had any response. You did OK me writing it.) I also tell people over here about the site at every opportunity but very few people seem to know about it. I think the appearance of the site is fine - it's abit quirky and different - and I appreciate the hard work that's behind it.

I also think condition notes are so important and will become more so. I have accepted older books and books that have not always been accurately described because the cost of mooching books was relatively cheap but as the cost of mooching goes up I perhaps won't be prepared to accept this.

I rarely have any books on an inventory: they usually get snapped up. If a book doesn't get mooched after a time, then I remove it because I simply haven't got the space to keep it and I am trying to find the book a new home so I send it to a charity shop or give it to someone else.

I've really enjoyed my time with BookMooch and thanks to everyone involved for making it the success it has been. I think it is right that you give people fair warning - three months - so they can make the right decisions for them.

Claire T
3 years ago
I can see how this change makes sense for BM in the long haul.

It wouldn't be a problem if not for my country's new, increased postal fees for international shipping and the fact that I haven't a way to acquire cheap English books in Italy to send out and even my ratio.
If BM is to become too "pricey" due to postal fee AND I'll not be able to rise my international sending ratio I'll be forced to leave this site.

Well, let's see how it works. I'm willing to test it and then I'll know, but I fear I'll lose my favorite (and cheapest!) way to obtain foreign books >__<

Il Gobb
3 years ago
Oh, incidentally, my two cents about the site!

I think it's wonderfully simple, which gives it short load times and an easily intuitive interface. I will admit that it seemed over-simple to me when I first joined (so I suppose that is worth considering), but within approximately two days, I preferred that to PaperBackSwap's overly-complicated one, and that's never changed.

I find it quirky and endearing. It's comfortable, easy to understand, and doesn't look like it's trying to look "cool" (which usually dates a site or otherwise makes it look stupid eventually). Perhaps a flashier design would wow more people into joining, but I think this interface gives the site better "staying power" in people's minds and hearts, as it were.

But I would like to see better forums, definitely. ;)

Emily Martha Sorensen
3 years ago
I would have voted no to the change but you've previously made it clear that these changes are not up for discussion. Why waste the time?

I think that if you were serious about BookMooch's health you would leave a span of time between each change so that you could actually get a picture of what helps and what hinders. Otherwise, you're just playing around.

RidgewayGirl
3 years ago
I'm happy to see that there are steps being taken to reduce BM inflation and thus increase the number of books listed.

Out of curiosity, are you considering any measures towards deflation, i.e. to completely remove excess points from the economy?

thanks for all the hard work,
Hibou

Hibou
3 years ago
Personally I have no problems with 3:3 as I think that the 2 values should be the same. I do think that we need a proper angel mooch program where the moocher has to spend an extra point which gets given to the angel. It should not have to be on an ad-hoc charity basis

However, please can you look at a 2:2 as well. This would have to be based on where the person is, but there must be scenarios where it is cheaper to send to a closer country than half way around the world.

It may be that this will encourage more "local" mooching ie within europe or within North America.

This would also need some more Send to options.

brownbear
3 years ago
NO, definitely NO to altering it from three months to one month. Please honour your initial stance, John. There are many reasons, most of which have already been mentioned above.
crimson-tide
3 years ago
Of course you won't believe me, and I don't even know if you'll read this John, but this change will in no way help to increase international mooching.

People may list more, people may be keen to send more internationally, but the bottom line is that this will make less people mooch books internationally.

And without a request, there can't be a send.

crimson-tide
3 years ago
I am reacting here for the first time, because this development will take away the reason I joined. I joined Bookmooch because it would allow me to get rid of books I don't want anymore and get something in return. Almost all of my mooches have been and will be international, because I live in the Netherlands and read only English books. I have been able to do that because I also send books internationally. The new points system will stop that. I will give actual numbers to illustrate why I will stop offering books here.

Currently, I get 3 points for sending a book, which costs somewhere between 6.30 and 10.00 euros. That is on average 2.50 per point. That means I spend 5.00 euro to mooch a book. In the new system, I have to spend 7.50 for a book, which I can probably get new at the book store for the same amount or less. In that case, I would rather give away the book to a friend and buy the new copy. I hope you will reconsider this change and think about your small country moochers!

Simone
3 years ago
But Aras. The whole BM thing is not made for people in small countries with small mooching populations.

I seldom mooch from my own country. I don't find the books that I'm looking for.

The system is made for the USA and so are the new rules.

Zjanette
3 years ago
Could this maybe be implemented as part of a 'my region' approach? It's been mentioned before about allowing people to set their status to 'my region' as it's often cheaper to send within N. America/within Europe/whatever. Maybe we could have 3:3 for within regions and the original 2:3 for outside? It's obviously not a simple matter of 'sending internationally costs more' as severla people have pointed out, and that would reflect that in the points so people still get that extra incentive.

Regardless of the points, I'd still love it if a 'my region' setting could be introduced, or something like 'my region always, ask first otherwise' as I reckon it would encourage people to think about if they can send to *some* countries even if not others and it would also speed up mooching when people say they'll always send to their region (I do know you can ask and then mooch straight away but that seems counter intuitive). Also, it would improve the angel network as if, for example, someone in the US will send to all of North America, a Canadian angel could mooch the book to send to another region.

Fern
3 years ago
You are SO right, Zjanette.
crimson-tide
3 years ago
I will stick with doing this 3 month's from now, as originally stated in my message.

-j

John Buckman
3 years ago
Also, it would improve the angel network as if, for example, someone in the US will send to all of North America, a Canadian angel could mooch the book to send to another region.

Yes, that could work

I've got 5 or 6 books on my wishlist available right now that I have not mooched because they're only from other countries, so I've spent the points domestically. I don't just factor in that the person I'm mooching from gets to mooch 3 books from their own country because of my points spent, but hard postage costs.

While I appreciate the sentiment, you have to understand that for some mmoochers from smaller countries the "hard postage costs" are totally worth it. They don't have the opportunity to buy the books elsewhere at a reasonable cost. Bookmooch is their best chance at getting books. They wouldn't post the books in their inventory if they didn't want to send them. If someone really wants to help international mooching, and you have the points and ratio to spare, go take a look at the "members by country" list and pick a small membership country or two. Look through their inventories and see if there is anything you would like to mooch (even as a remooching book). You can always email first if you want to be sure it wouldn't be too much of a hardship to them. And if it is an inactive account, you can put it on vacation if they don't respond. I wish there was a way to vacation inactive accounts with unresponsive "ask first" requests. I have a dozen or so Canadian and international inactive account requests in my pending which I will be canceling and vacationing in a week or so. And *please* mooch from Canadians. We would rather send to you than each other;)

Cara
3 years ago
Emily again I have to agree with you and say

"Do you think you could add a regional tier at 2/2 (for Canada/US, particularly) before you change this? Or at least launch both things simultaneously? I think that 2-point cost for Canadian/US mooching is very important, and it isn't necessary to receive a third point between those countries to offset the cost of sending."

Yes please consider this change at the same time as the 3:3 trial as Canadian/US rates should reflex the lower cost to send if it will be 1:1 ratio make it 2:2 points to Canada/US

"I think this change is a real shame. Understandable reasoning, but a real shame. I understand why you're doing it, and I can't say it seems unfair, but . . . (Sigh.) Just a real shame."

Here again I agree, understand the reasoning and the extra points accruing in the system but a big incentive to mooch internationally will be taken away. Fewer international mooches means fewer international sends. It won't change my decision to send but will change my decision to mooch internationally.

"One more question: Do you think it would be possible to also implement that "multiple mooch discount" idea you mentioned earlier in three months' time, as well? That would still be a bit inflationary, but not nearly as much, as you mentioned, and it *would* help to offset the rising cost (and any disappointment) over this change. If you could implement that, as well as a 2/2 point change for Canadian/American mooches, I think that would work well. Plus then people would have something to look forward to when this change happens -- and it's good to have things people can look forward to, as well as dreading!"

I think this might give an incentive to mooch internationally for me as I try to multi-mooch. Trouble is some countries actually go up in price once a weight is reached. Germany for instance; over 500 gram (to a kilo) cost more than double under 500 grams. So mooching more than 2 books will probably come in separate packages. Rarely 3 books are under 500 grams, rarely.

Thanks again Emily Martha Sorensen

Amy W
3 years ago
Yes, not every country has a flat rate system - in the UK, for example, once you get into the parcel rate (you can send some paperbacks as large letter, but you'd only manage multiple books if they were maybe children's thin books) then it's weight only, and international sending is all by weight.
Fern
3 years ago
Unfortunately, us moochers that do not come from the US will be forced to cut down on mooching internationally. If you consider that most of our mooching is from international members, since there are not so many members and books in our countries, that would mean that we will be forced to use the site less. I like Bookmooch because it is a site that gives equal opportunities to people from all the countries. This change will favor moochers from the US and will make things difficult for the rest of us. I love bookmooch very much and I feel awkward seeing it focusing on US exchanging.
vivi
3 years ago
I lived in France during the last two years where shipping books internationally was ridiculously cheap. Now, back in Austria, I don't see myself able to ship outside of Europe as it would cost me more than buying the book new. Even shipping a book inside of Europe costs me more than buying it used from a store in the States. Ergo, I am putting less and less books online as I can't afford shipping them, consequently I don't see myself able too mooch has many international books as I would like. In a small country like Austria you can stumble upon an English book from time to time, but generally, I mooch from outside. Paying three points for an international mooch now would decrease my usage of BM even more. I am not a fan of ebay but it would be more cost-effective for me in the future. And that's a shame as I adore BM and have found hundreds of great books via the system ... which worked for me as long as I lived in France or even Scotland. But not every country can compare its postal system with them! I am with the other moocher from Finland in this case. Sorry.

Katharina

PS: however, I would like to add, I like the style of the site, it's uncluttered, user friendly and easy to navigate!!

Katie
3 years ago
Am very disappointed that like everything Bookmooch is getting more expensive and mooching internationally will become something I have to think carefully about. I tend to think of each point as having 'cost' me about £1.25. At £3.75 an international mooch (£5 if I mooch through an Angel and smooch them) is becoming too costly for my purse:(

Not sure how the changes can encourage international mooching, to keep my ratio down I need to send abroad but the cost of an extra point will discourage others abroad from mooching from me. So more books I list in the hope of sending abroad will stay in the UK.

seanat
3 years ago
I agree with RidgewayGirl
Doing too many changes at once, as you are doing, does not make sense. You have to give each time to play out to see the pros and cons. You say all of this will help BM in the long run but i do not see how the way you are doing it will when you cant keep all the data seperate. Also, based on a lot of the postings it sounds like a lot of members will be mooching less and even leaving. That will not make Bm better in the future.
Devon
3 years ago
I am in the UK & sending out a book internationally can cost me the same amount or more as I would pay for a new paperback on Amazon. The fact that at the moment I can mooch 2 or 3 books in return makes it worthwhile. So this new system would leave me with 4 options:

1. Stop sending anything internationally. This will save me money, however, I would feel guilty asking people to send to me when I wouldn't send to them. So either I don't mooch internationally & have less chance of getting a book I want or I have to learn to live with feeling I was being unfair. This would also be against what you are trying to achieve - more books available to more people.

2. Switch to ask me & only agree to send the lighter books. Keeps costs down but will have to reject quite a few people. Also means I could do some international mooching without feeling guilty but again it will be against what you are trying to achieve.

3. Stick to worldwide status but only mooch from UK users (unless it's a hard to get book). I would still be able to get 3 books for sending 1 out at a higher cost & this would keep all my books available to everyone. But again I would be limiting how many books would be available for me to mooch.

4. Stick to worldwide status and mooch both internationally & within UK. This would mean I could be frequently spending more money in order to obtain a 2nd hand book than I would if I bought the same book new on Amazon & I can't afford to waste money.

I feel that the main issue is that the costs of books & postal systems around the world are just too varied. I don't see how you can come up with a system that will do anything but suit some people & penalise others.

With regards to multi-mooching. As the UK postal system is based on weight this means that unlike the US users, I wouldn't save any money doing this. I've never mooched from someone that says they'll only send internationally if you mooch x amount at once as I've never found enough books on their list I would want to read (probably because of how quickly books are mooched) and I'm not prepared to mooch a list of books I don't want just to get 1 I do.

Lori
3 years ago
John,

I'm not certain if anyone else has commented on the aspect of international bookmooching that I want to address today. I'll go ahead and make my point, with apologies to anyone who might have mentioned this aspect; I could very well have missed seeing those comments.

I'm perfectly WILLING to send internationally, but not financially able to do so... so my settings of "only to my country" are forced on me because of the monetary aspect.

Joan M.
3 years ago
I would like to agree with Devon and Ridgewaygirl... why not a larger span of time between all these changes to see what the effects of each are? Otherwise attempting to tease apart all the individual effects will be a headache indeed. For example if after 6 months things have gotten worse.. does that mean this change will be repealed, or will it be due to the other changes and 'general economy'?
Bcteagirl
3 years ago
I understand the reasoning behind this change, but it does worry me. It has been mentioned several times lately that bookmooch needs more listed books and more new members. I think this change is going to make that harder. When I became a member I calculated how much I would end up paying for each book (because postage is expensive in Norway), and found that if I only sent within Europe and only light books I wouldn't lose money by participating.

After a very short while I fell in love with the whole spirit of bookmooch and forgot all about my "only within Europe" and "only light books" rules. It's fun, my books are finding their way to new readers, and I'm discovering new books and authors. The extra money I spend on postage is worth it for the enjoyment I get out of it. BUT I would never have become a member if it weren't for the 3:2 ratio.

At a 3:3 ratio this will become a rather expensive hobby. I'm sure I will continue, because I really do love BM, but as a new member I would have been scared away. I only mooch/send internationally, so the fact that books in my own country would cost fewer points does not help at all.

My question is: wouldn't it be possible to have a small incentive for sending internationally, without it being a whole point? How about a 3:2.5 ratio, or 3:2.75?

AlineM
3 years ago
In my humble opinion, the new point policy isn't really going to encourage sending internationally; no more than it used to, at least. I mean, the sender isn't going to be getting more points than before this change. There's no extra motivation. They still get 3 points, same as before. The only difference is that what used to be an extra given point to encourage the international sending is now coming from an international moocher's 'pocket', not from the system. Sure, this helps free up the point inflation, but it's no more encouraging than it used to be. Those who didn't send internationally aren't going to start doing so now.

Mooching internationally, though, is going to be affected because a lot of international moochers depend on international mooches and people from countries with the bigger book inventories will probably rather mooch 3 books domestically than spend it on one international mooch. Before they could still justify it on the fact it was just an extra point. Not anymore.

xeyra
3 years ago
There aren't that many English books on offer in France, so I have to mooch outside France and tbh their aren't that many french members who want english books, so I mooch and send internationally all the time. I'm being penalised with the new system for living in a non english speaking country.
Me0wp00
3 years ago
I made this point in a different thread:

"I've been thinking about this too - so many moochers from smaller (in BM terms) countries say that they have very few fellow moochers, and so have to mooch internationally. How could we persuade these moochers to - for want of a better word - evangelise? If they can get hold of a stack of BM cards/bookmarks, they might be able to spread the word. (I spoke to a woman standing at the bookshelf of a local charity shop, who was sighing and lamenting that she'd read all the books for sale - so I handed her a BM card (I keep a stack in my wallet), and told her a bit about it - she left at high speed to get back home to her computer!) In the absence of cards, just putting a signature at the bottom of your outgoing emails, or simple word-of-mouth, might improve matters."

The person I was responding to mentioned the idea of posters in libraries - a very good idea!

In short, there are probably stacks of English books in France - we just need to encourage more BM members to join and list them!

Sophie Houston
3 years ago
Sophie,

"Evangelising" is fine, but how far do we have to go?

I have received BM cards thanks the generosity of brownbear in the UK and a deal with one of my UK suppliers that enabled me to ship those cards to France with goods from the UK.

As well as sending cards to European moochers, I included a card with every order sent to my customers over a twelve month period. I'm not aware of anyone joining BM.

I've written an article for the my local international school's newsletter. No new members. I had a discussion with staff of the British embassy in Paris and sent them cards and asked them to publicise BM internally. Not aware of any new members.

Many books are swapped amongst expat communities through bookclubs, reading circles, coffee mornings and so on. Those books aren't hitting BM.

You can lead a horse to water, but you can't make it drink.

The BM cards are beautiful, but they're in English, so they're not really going to help a membership drive amongst non-English people.

If we want more members then someone "upstairs" has to drive a membership drive. When did BM last do a multilingual global press release? Interviews on US television channels won't reach potential members outside the US.
jacquie
3 years ago
Whenever I have a handful of Bookmooch cards, I take them with me when trolling through thrift stores and used book stores. I stick them in highly wishlisted books, or books that I have read and loved (maybe attract a moocher who likes the same books I do!). I also stick them in library books.
Cara
3 years ago
I agree with everyone who says that the system works poorly for Canada (due to the weird way that it's cheaper to send packages abroad rather than to mail within Canada) and that this change is not going to help and will probably hurt Canadian moochers.

I see the issue with point inflation, but could there be alternative ways of encouraging international mooching? In particular, to pull books out of the US and to the rest of the world? (I think some people in the US maybe don't understand how cheap it is to send books overseas for them, and especially to Canada.) The suggestion about regional tiers are an interesting approach which help; maybe US-Canada-Mexico could be one region, and Europe another?

As it stands, after about 18 months of active participation BM has been more expensive than I'd anticipated and kind of frustrating. I guess I'll stick with it for now, but ...

Anne Rubenstein
3 years ago
I agree with everyone who says that the system works poorly for Canada (due to the weird way that it's cheaper to send packages abroad rather than to mail within Canada) and that this change is not going to help and will probably hurt Canadian moochers.
Especially when you factor in the increase in the availability of reasonably priced books from on-line bookstores to Canada. I have found quite a few inactive Canadian accounts. I am in the process of mooching from and then vacationing a bunch (whose names begin with A, I haven't gotten to B yet). I think many Canadians sign up all enthusiastic and then mail their first domestic book, can't get anyone to send a book to them, and give up. I got a good start because I was mentored by some moochers I had met on Title-trader and I was able to figure out how to use Bookmooch more successfully. I try to mentor newbie Canadians when I find them, by informing them it is cheaper to send internationally and the 2 cm letter mail thing. But with the change in the price of mooching international, I am not sure I can, in good conscience, recommend Bookmooch as a reasonably priced source of books for Canadians.
Cara
3 years ago
Zjanette said, "But Aras. The whole BM thing is not made for people in small countries with small mooching populations.

I seldom mooch from my own country. I don't find the books that I'm looking for.

The system is made for the USA and so are the new rules."

Let's us just be taken with the flow!
I agree to you Zjanette...like you I only mooch internationally and this change makes me sad, it will discourage me sending out internationally and since there's scarcely to mooch within, I might stop eventually...

ylef
3 years ago
I used to live in Poland, so I sent and mooched mostly internationally. But, I now live in the UK, so I can benefit from mooching domestically (if there are any books available that I'd like to mooch), as well as internationally. My ratio went up slightly when the change came in and I panicked at first, but I've calmed down since then and realised that the 1 in and 1 out book policy is good. I don't return all mooched books back into the system as I love some of my mooches and will re-read them at some point, but I really shouldn't be keeping twice as many mooches as books I've sent out. I'd quickly run out of storage!

I've got more points than I can ever really use up (a modest 60, but it'll do me right) and so I think this change is fine. It balances better with the ratio and I'm fine with whether it's 1 or 3 or 6 months.

I'm a little confused as to how this affects the Angels negaticely. It doesn't at all. Angels mooch domestically, so pay only one point and send internationally, earning 3 points. They're still 2 points up, aren't they?

Well done John on braving the storm lately, it's been pretty heated on here! Still love Bookmooch and I still recommend it to all my friends. But change is never easy.

Kinga
3 years ago
This could be an interesting experiment to show why people don't seem to send as much as they used to. I can see three possible explanations, which should all give a different effect of this change.

1. People do have books they haven't listed, or can get them easily, and can afford to send them, but won't list them because they have loads of points already.
This seems to be what John thinks: "Here's why: under the old system, you only needed to send 2 books internationally to have enough points to mooch 3 books internationally. Over time, this creates a lack of incentive to send books internationally."
If this is true, this change should have a positive effect.

2. People just don't have the books.
In that case, this change would not really make any difference at all.

3. People cannot afford to send more than they do.
This would be my hypothesis, as it seems to agree with what I read in forums, and it would also explain the recent decline.
In this case, this change would have a negative effect, as people will effectively be able to mooch less internationally and thus be more cautious about mooching.

Let's do this experiment and find out what is the case, then!

wester
3 years ago
I have to admit that as a BM user in a country with few English speakers, I am a bit anxious about this change. It's almost impossible to mooch decent books from within Israel, so nearly all my mooches are international. Also, I don't mooch for myself, I mooch books for the free lending library I run (as English books are so expensive here and the choice is so limited), so I mooch in high volume. I'm not really sure how I'm going to be able to keep on doing it if the price goes up - if you mooch 20 books, suddenly a 1-point-per-book rise makes a big difference. I'm totally dependent on donations from kind members, so I think this will really impact us.

I will watch with interest how things go, hopefully either we can adapt once we see the lay of the land, or if it doesn't work out, things will return to normal.

Tzipporah
3 years ago
Definitely stick the the 3 months if you are changing this. I think this will reduce international mooching. I'm in the US, and it won't affect my sending books internationally, but it may well reduce my mooching books internationally, and nearly everyone has said this will reduce international mooching. One of things (many) things I like better about bookmooch than PBS is the international aspect, and I would like to see *more* international involvement & mooches, not fewer. Changing to a 3:3 ratio will most likely result in *fewer* international mooches.
Christina Cat
3 years ago
While the aim of these changes may be to balance the ratios and encourage international sending, I’m not convinced that the theory will translate into actual practice. Increasing the cost of International mooch requests makes them less appealing and if there are fewer international mooch requests, there will be fewer books sent internationally. Since the US already has the giant share of both books and members, there is little incentive to shop outside that market and this will be very detrimental to non-US moochers.
Jenni Canuck
3 years ago
My goodness, so many changes in BM lately. I am still shellshocked due to the intl mooch ration change and now this...

My mooches are 100% from abroad (exc. a few angel mooches). The books mooched from me were also mostly in English.

Indeed this will hurt international mooching. My Indonesian BM friends would certainly refrain from mooching internationally due to lack of points (caused by dismal national mooching/amount of users so we rely heavily on intl mooch).

I wish there is more option for regional mooch (Asia-Australia please) as mentioned repeatedly by other users before me.

Glad that the time is three months from now. Better spend my points asap then.

Silvana
3 years ago
Sorry but I think this decision will kill int'l mooches, especially in many little countries such as the European ones.

I live in Italy: since January posting a single paperback abroad costs me 7 euros ( i.e. 11 US dollars ) to European countries and 10 euros ( 1.e. 14 US dollars ) to the US.
Multiple mooches improves the situation only marginally: 9 euros ( i.e. 13 US dollars ) for European countries and 14 euros ( 1.e. 18 US dollars ) to the US for two paperbacks, perhaps three but only if very slim.
Besides this quantity, fees increase exponentially, such as 30 euros, i.e. 45 US dollars for sending out a little package, with no more than 6-7 paperbacks.

Please compare these rates to the cost of 1.28 euros ( that is 1.70 US dollars ) for posting a paperback nationally.

The extra point earned in int'l trades barely compensates me of the additional postage costs whenI send books abroad, and I have been forced anyway starting from January to accept only multiple mooches, since they're the only ones I can afford.

Should it not be any longer the case, that is, shouldn't the extra point being available any longer, I'll be forced to stop sending books abroad: it will be cheaper for me buy brand new books instead, which is just crazy!! So I'll try to spend my points as fast as I can, and then probably I will swith my account to "only domestic shipments", or perhaps close my account and switch to some other swap system, since BM subscribers in our country are too few and English books available in our country are too rare to make it worthwhile. So the objection, "you can anyway take advantage of points earned in int'l mooches for domestic mooches", in little countries such as ours does not apply. Whatever advertising to BM you can do, subscribers will be very few in absolute figures.

Pity, I had lots of fun with BM in the last two years.

MarchRose
3 years ago
"I live in Italy: since January posting a single paperback abroad costs me 7 euros ( i.e. 11 US dollars ) to European countries and 10 euros ( 1.e. 14 US dollars ) to the US."
Just like to mention that this postage MarchRose mentioned is for paperbacks under 350gr, if over, the price is "9 euros ( i.e. 13 US dollars ) for European countries and 14 euros ( 1.e. 18 US dollars ) to the US" Unfortunately for me I have had some paperbacks that are over the 350gr mark. For who lives in a non - English speaking country the inventory tends to be mixed often as inventory is mixed and people are very unlikely to mooch more than one book from us. If we keep a smallish inventory ( circa 20-30 books)
AllyBally
3 years ago
@ Allybally

you're perfectly right, I was just simplifying. If you have for instance a tradesize paperback, it certanly exceeeds 350 grams so that sending it to the US costs 14 euros, i.e. 18 dollars. I too have some tradesize editions and I don't know what to do with them.

John and others: what would you do if you were in our shoes? To send a book abroad the rates are at least 5 or 6 times higher than sending books domestically. And I cannot use the 3 points from an int'l mooch in Italy, since nearly nobody here has English books.
Want to do an exercise John? I have 900+ books in my wishlist. As of today, NONE of them is available in my country.

So, if you take away the extra point, which was the only advantage left, the only one allowing us to go on mooching internationally, what's the point of mooching for us?

MarchRose
3 years ago
As John said, he is aware that Canada's shipping rates (domestic vs international) make this country a significant exception to the norm.

As a Canadian, I just thought I'd explain what I pay to send off a book.

We'll talk about a slim book (which can slip by using lettermail rates), and then we'll talk about a fatter book.

International - earning "3 points"
To the USA, the slim book costs $3.50
To other countries, the slim book costs $7.00

So my point-cost is from $1/point to $2.33/point in *real money* for a slim book when I ship it internationally.

Domestic - earning "1 point"
Within Canada, the slim book costs about $2.75 (if I don't get caught - more on this later).

So my point-cost is $2.75/point in *real money* for a slim book when I ship it domestically.

Now... let's talk about a book that is not slim. And here's the facts - according to Canada Post's regulations, you cannot ship ANY books by lettermail rates. Even if it's slim enough to slip through their slot, it is disqualified from lettermail because it is a "good" or an "article of value". Who cares that it would be hard to get 25 cents at a garage sale for the book - you can NOT ship a book by lettermail rates. My postmaster refuses me service now because he knows I'm shipping books, and I have to travel to the nearby village where I sneak them in.

OK, so how about a fatter book then.

International - earning "3 points"
To the USA, the fat book costs $6.50 (small packet surface)
To other countries, the slim book costs $8.50 (small packet surface)

So my point-cost is from $2.17/point to $2.83/point in *real money* for a fat book when I ship it internationally.

Domestic - earning "1 point"
Within Canada, the fat book costs between $9.50 to $12.00.

So my point-cost is $10/point or more in *real money* for a fat book when I ship it domestically.

So... is BookMooch dead for Canada-Canada swaps? Yes, pretty well. Unless somebody can mooch 3 books (which would ship for about $12-$14), there is NO incentive whatsoever for a Canadian to mooch from another Canadian. If the book's still in print, you can go on Amazon and buy it more cheaply than using Bookmooch.

But... is BookMooch dead for Canada-USA swaps? Maybe... if it costs 3 points to get my books, a typical US user will just wait until he sees the same book listed within the USA. There's a lot more US bookmooch users, so eventually any book that I'd list would also appear on the inventory list of an American user.

So if the US users aren't asking for my books... who is? Not the Canadians. So how do I get points then? I need points so that I can pay for the cost of my own Bookmooch requests.

Sorry John. This change may make sense for most countries, but it kills the site for Canadians. The site was already only half-functional for Canadians (for US-Canada swaps only, or Angel swaps), but now there are two users with little incentive to mooch from me (Canadians and Americans).

Bryan
3 years ago
Quoting MarchRose:
"So, if you take away the extra point, which was the only advantage left, the only one allowing us to go on mooching internationally, what's the point of mooching for us?"

I fully agree. I also live in Italy and, having quite small inventory, every point that I can get extra, when giving books and then mooching again internationally, is precious for me. Without that incentive, I see no reason to mooch books from abroad! I'll try to mooch and give away as many books as possible before the trial period begins and then I'll probably just quit mooching books, or wait patiently that some very rare copy in English language pops-up in my country.

Dragana
3 years ago
Is there a way to apply different international mooch ratios to different countries?
Christina Cat
3 years ago
I cannot comment on how this change will impact international mooching because I do not send internationally (nor, out of respect and fairness, do I request internationally). However, I am concerned that this change will not ultimately "fix" any point inflation or inventory recession issues on BM. I have plenty of points that I cannot spend, and I ONLY mooch and send within my country (and always have since joining BM). In my opinion, an important issue, as I've noticed someone else mention, is members not listing books simply because they have so many points they cannot justify the cost to send them out when they don't really need any more points based on the infrequency with which books on their wishlist become available (international or not). Unfortunately, I don't know that there is a quick fix to this - I wish more of my wishlist books were available on BM, but they just aren't and I can't make anyone add them to their inventory. I would say maybe it's the genre I read, but my husband and I share an account and he has plenty of more mainstream/bestseller types books on our wishlist, too. I still add books to the inventory when we finish them, but I am definitely feeling the build-up of points (i.e., money spent) that is not being used on a consistent basis. Books available on my wishlist or immediately available when I do new searches seem much spottier and less "rich" these days than when I initially joined BM. It goes in little spurts, but overall seems down.
Andrea
3 years ago
I wonder if I'm the only person who sends internationally but doesn't mooch internationally. I wait until I can use my points to mooch books domestically so I get two for the price of one :)
pookledo
3 years ago
I have no more comment as long as it is fair enough for members who send and receive internationally.

In the place I live the postage cost of sending 2 books roughly covers one new inexpensive book in local bookstore. While using Bookmooch I am entitle to receive 2 books internationally with the points, so the new system is still attractive to me.

Esther
3 years ago
how do you get mooch points I just signed up
Toni
3 years ago
One request? Could you please send a mass email note to people a week before the change, as a reminder? It's lovely that there is advance notice of this change (unlike the ratio change) - really helpful. I just know I'll forget the change date, so a reminder would be fantastic!

Thanks,
Helen

Beachcomber
3 years ago
I'll happily post out domestically for 1 point, or internationally for 3 points. But I'll only receive books domestically. I usually don't want to spend 2 points to get a book from abroad, when I could get it domestically (and another as well) if I wait. And definitely not if it costs me 3 points.

I'm looking at it from a "what does it cost me financially to earn a point" angle. It's roughly £1.50 to earn a point, whether domestic or international. So to receive a book domestically makes sense - cheaper than buying it myself. But getting a book from abroad at 2 points (i.e. £3 spent to get those 2 points) is doable, though I'll always pick domestic first (or wait if I think a domestic is likely).

But if it costs me 3 points for an international mooch, then that's £4.50 I've had to spend on postage to earn those points. And 9 times out of 10, I can get the book brand new on Amazon for under £4.

End result - 3 points earnt to send internationally, and 3 points to receive, might even out in a "you send one, you receive one" way. But the points that BM runs on, are created by MONEY. It's not like when you join BM, you are given 5 points and then you have to keep your account in credit by mooching (in which case, you would *have* to mooch 1 in/1 out domestically or internationally, to keep yourself in credit).

Because points are earnt through cash, it means that sometimes I will end up going to Amazon if the only way I can get a book is through an international mooch. I want to receive books from people abroad, I love getting personal parcels rather than Amazon ones. But if it's not economically viable (and if you end up with smokey or damaged books, which is a risk), then the shiny, cheap, new Amazon books become the better option. Second hand only wins when it's cheaper.

I'll still post books out internationally, but my mooching from them will be drastically cut back. It's just not worth it.

Beachcomber
3 years ago
@ Beachcomber:

I agree. And you're still lucky, since you have the choice to mooch either nationally and internationally.

If you MUST send books abroad ( since in your country there are only few moochers ) in order to get books from abroad ( since in your country they're not available ), and int'l postage is MUCH more expensive than national postage ( as it's more and more the case, in lots of countries ) the new 3:3 option simply kills you. It would be cheaper to buy new books at bookdepository, and dispose of the ones you don't want to keep, instead of mooching them from abroad. Sorry if it may sound harsh but it's true.

MarchRose
3 years ago
Dunno if anybody's mentioned this, but the current system encourages a certain sort of gaming that compounds the problem: I offer a book internationally, and also offer a bonus extra--5 bookmooch cards or whatever--to sweeten the deal on the understanding that I'll return the 2 points paid for the extra. The net effect when the deal goes through is that for one book and 5 cards I get 4 points and the other guy's only out 2.
Jim Kalb
3 years ago
I’ve been reading the comments, since the 3:3 ratio will affects me so much and that leads me to analyze the situation. The 3:3 ratio won’t promote international mooching. I’ve come to the conclusion that many countries with small members will reduce to the extent of nothing. Only those who can afford it will remain and even then, they will always try to use the best alternatives if there’s any. I enjoy and love bookmooch and that’s a bonus! But if I could no longer afford it, it won’t let me stay…others may.

Let’s analyze the situation of the 2:3 ratio for international mooching:

Problems:
1. Inflation: there are so many points in the system and not so many books available.
2. Ratio: incorrect because of the 2:3 ratio for international mooching.
3. Additional one point for international mooching is causing inflation.

Possible causes:
• Some members are collecting books and not putting back in the system (well, it’s their rights…they didn’t get the books if they didn’t send any).
• Some members have so many books in a pile waiting to be read. (This case falls on me, I won’t send a book I haven’t read…give me time).
• Some members have so many points and there’s no available book to mooch so they won’t list books to send (depends on person individually).
• Some members have so many books but cannot afford to send.
• There might be more causes I haven’t mentioned but these are the major causes.

Solution: Ratio 3:3 for international mooching
• No business man is going to buy a book and sell with the same price. If you want to promote international mooching, give us incentives and not to take it back what we already have.
• Prices are going up and crisis is going on…and so is the postage. Sending international costs more now than buying a new one (in my country).
• This 3:3 ratio won’t promote international mooching. I’m backing out now.

I’m not analyzing the situation just to back out! But I want to offer an alternative … maybe a compromise?

Alternative: RATIO 3:4 for international mooching

Effects:
• Members who send and mooch only to their country won’t be affected.
• Members who send only to their country and mooch internationally will be very much affected. In what way? They might considered sending internationally now. (positive effect for international mooching and more books available international).
• Members who send internationally and mooch domestically. They might be more willing to do so more than before. This case falls to our angels in which the problem of the ratio comes in. (In every rules there’s an exemption. The 2:1 ratio for books limit is good but if anyone has more than that…there should be a solution. You can’t just throw away points you deservedly earned. Suggestion: members who falls on this case whether an angel or not, should apply for expansion or whatever you will call it…means more work for admin.).
• The additional one point for international mooching has a less value than before. It won’t be eliminated but it will be less and more books available for international moochers.
• This 3:4 ratio support international moochers and promotes international mooching.
• It’s a compromise from the 2:3 and 3:3 ratio for international mooching.

ylef
3 years ago
I think ylef has a good idea. The 3:4 ratio for international still gives the sender a bonus, but limits the inflation.
Debbi Higginbotham
3 years ago
I agree with ylef idea. Three points are not rewarding enough to stimulate more intl mooching. Today I discovered that in my country (Italy) shipping rates were raised last December. Sending a book over 350gr (a common hardback) to U.S. costs now 14€ intead of previous 8,7€. With these rates it's crazy to send books overseas (and even mooch them, a kind guy last month spent 12 USD to send me a book, I better have bought a paperback copy on Bookdepository).
Aly
3 years ago
I am sorry but this would kill international moochs for me both ways.

I always figured that the extra point was to make up for the extra mailing costs which have expanded into new horizons Right now we in the US are lucky that we can ship up to 4 books overseas for $13.95 in a flat rate envelope and the Overseas moochers can ship by Sea mail, slow but less expensive so that single book mooches work for them. Killing the extra point makes it even less of an attraction!

If you are looking for more books to mooch this is NOT the way to do it. Point inflation does NOT correspond to books listed. As I have found that the people who have the largest total of points, list the most books and they are the people who actually honor (send) a mooch on a regular basis. It is the accounts that list 1 or no books and don't honor a mooch that are killing this site.

A lot of the New Moochers are Cherrypickers who sit and wait for
the 1 book that they want to come up to mooch. Which is ok. But I like to mooch different books that look interesting. Yes, I have mooched more books then I can read in a year but I am retiring soon and will be able to have the extra time to read more. Then the books will be put up for others.

I guess what I am really stating is use it or lose it! Bookmooch that is. ;)

Thomas Nufer (3 for 2)
3 years ago
Over the past few weeks I've been happy to smooch away some of my "surplus points". When I no longer "gain" a point on international mooches, I'll not build up points as quickly so may be less inclined to give them away. Many other people have been smooching points over the past few months. If all of those smooches dry up, then those people who are struggling to mooch might just go away, and that will give even less overall BM inventory.
jacquie
3 years ago
This may sound rather dumb, but just a quick question:

Why not reward those who regularly send out books internationally?

Like, perhaps some extra points for every 10 (a random number that I just came up with) books sent internationally?

Raymond
3 years ago
the whole point is, is "point inflation" the real reason for mooch requests decrease?
that is, is it the consequence of too many points around for too few books available?

Personally I don't think so. Imho opinion, the main reasons are:

- general slowing down of economy during the last two years forced people to cut all unnecessary, "leisure" expenses such as purchasing books & shipping books. Look at all the stopped book lines ( Dorchester stopped printing pbs ), at the closed bookstores, and at B&N case.

- increase of postage fees in many countries.

- progressive diffusion of ebooks.

I'm afraid that the 3:3 change is just going to furtherly reduce the amount of books int'lly available, since mooching from abroad will be so "expensive" in terms of points that most people will stop doing that (esp. US members: why should they spend now 3 points to get a book now, if it's enough to wait a bit and the same book will pop up soon or later in their own country at a 1 point cost?). In other words, exactly the opposite of what John hopes.

Just my two cents' worth.

MarchRose
3 years ago
Somewhat unrelated comment though related to internaional mooching: I live in the US, buy Dutch books when I visit my folks, and I find it impossible to add them to BookMooch because amazon does not know about Dutch language books. I managed it a couple of times by going to amazon.de or so, but it's just too complicated. I'm not bothering anymore.
Victor
3 years ago
I seem to be getting emails that really aren't meant for me. I have just joined BM and haven't asked any questions. Judy
judy
3 years ago
I don't know whether it's due to the point system or not, but I notice far fewer people have been mooching from me recently. As some of the books I've posted are the type which would have been snapped up previously, and many of them are on people's wishlists, I can only surmise that it is related.
I do note that I have relatively few points left available to mooch with and several people I mooched with previously now no longer have enough to do anything.
I was sorry when you stopped giving a tenth of point for people to acknowledge reception, and still feel the three points for international mooching is making it so there's a lot more hesitation before deciding to mooch a book.
When I had plenty of points I often mooched a second or third book from an unknown author to make the parcel and mooch more attractive to the sender. Now I would hesitate to mooch a book not on my wishlist. I don't think that was the point, was it?
penelopewanders
3 years ago
Since the changes there has been no action with my Bookmooch account. I have about 400 books on my wishlist and maybe (on a good day), two or three will be moochable, and they are always the same ones. I live in South Korea, and I used to have members email me and offer to send books on my wishlist. Now this is the first time I've logged on in like 3 months as I never get notifications that a book has become available.
It's too bad...I just went out and bought a kindle!
abluesgirl9
3 years ago
@sycoraxpine

The present amount of BM members can be easily checked at the "browse - by location" pages, and you can find November 2010 figures here:

BM Health

To check members by country, use the last link in John's message, then click on "membership statistics":

http://sunrisecodeworks.com/BookMoochStatisticsMembership.html

No idea about overall int'l transaction number, though. By sure mine are under a dry spell since last May.

MarchRose
3 years ago
There were 646 Canadians yesterday. I spent an hour or so mooching inactive accounts and a few more have closed their accounts or have zero inventory so don't show on the list. As I continue this round of the Inactive Accounts Clean-up Project this number will continue to shrink.
Cara
3 years ago
@sycoraxpine

during the last few months from time to time I had a glance to the # of BM members, and my feeling is that the trend vs. time has been more or less constant everywhere, ie decreasing. You can have a look at the UK figures too, for instance - pretty much the same drop than the US and Canada.

Italy, my country, is an exception: since the link to Amazon database was completed 3 or 4 months ago, there's been a sudden increase in # of members, so that it's now the 3rd most represented country in BM (it used to be Canada, after the US and UK).

MarchRose
3 years ago
We are down to 625 Canadian members showing on the members by country page. I'll continue with the latest round of Inactive Accounts Clean-up Project after the holidays and we'll see how much farther that number will drop.
Cara
3 years ago
I just wanted to comment on Beachcomber's point about the correspondence between Bookmooch points and money. I agree with Beachcomber that I think of a point roughly corresponding to £1.50 (as it costs me about £4 to send a single normal sized paperback to the US, £2-3 to Europe). So when an international mooch cost 2 points, I would do the math (2 points = £3) and it would be worthwhile. Now that an international mooch costs 3 points, that's roughly £4.50, which is too much: I can get a new/secondhand book from Amazon or abebooks for less than that. So that's what I've been doing this year (NB several of the books on my wishlist are available internationally but I haven't mooched them, as I'm thinking "I can get that for £2.76 on Amazon; I'll save my points for UK mooches."). Yes, the economy might have something to do with the larger picture; yes, maybe points inflation. But from the perspective of a single user in the UK, Bookmooch is a lot less useful and attractive since international mooches cost 3 points.
Elliot Smith
3 years ago
I would like to gently request an update on how things are going. I think there has been more than enough time to get an idea as to whether the changes have helped or hindered international mooching. If the downturn others are experiencing is real, what changes can be made to improve it? I do seem to recall you saying that you would be evaluating how things went and that the changes were not *necessarily* permanent. I would feel better about that if you would at least make public any analysis you have done. I am concerned it was said to quell the outrage, and now that the changes are in place, the promise has been so quickly forgotten :(..............
Bcteagirl
2 years ago
Now due to the USPS (United States Postal Service) rates having gone up on 22 Jan, it now costs over ten dollars to send an nine ounce book overseas.
Bast
2 years ago
@Bcteagirl - I agree! Some kind of 'statement' is needed if you don't wish people to assume you were making an empty gesture.
donna
2 years ago
Hm, interesting... I left a comment a few days ago but it looks like the forum ate it. So again:

I agree wie Bcteagirl, too. The test-phase is over for several month now, so some feedback on how the new point system worked so far and if it stays permanently would be nice.

sousha
2 years ago
It's coming up to almost a year since the changes were implemented. I'd have to say it was a dead year for me, but living in Canada it'd be silly for me to have anticipated _more_ bookmooch action as a result of the changes.

I think I might have completed 5-6 mooches in the past few months, whereas before the 3-point int'l mooches I was easily completing more than that per month.

That's just by memory, though, so it'd be interesting to see what trends John's data would show.

Bryan
2 years ago
Many members have asked for some feedback on this change - as yet nothing!

We are still waiting John.

donna
2 years ago
What on earth has happened to BookMooch? The last time I successfully mooched a book was in August 2011. Since then I've had nothing from BookMooch -- no notifications of either moochable books or requests. Now I log in to find that a) all my inventory has disappeared because BM has decided to put me on vacation, and b) someone requested a book from me in January that I didn't even know about. Not surprisingly they cancelled the request when they didn't hear from me.

I look at the "forums" and find only ancient blog posts. I'm about ready to abandon my 100 points as there seems to be no prospect of being able to mooch anything like that many books.

Veronica
2 years ago
It kind of makes sense. But I do wonder why I no longer receive any notifications from BM. I didn't even know the person had mooched the book, that's why I didn't respond. I know my email address is working, because the moocher has just replied to my email asking if they still want it. So it must be a problem at the Bookmooch end.
Veronica
2 years ago
I received a wishlist notification from Bookmoch a couple of days ago, so I believe that the Emails are still being sent. We'd probably see a lot of people complaining if they weren't.

There are multiple reasons why any particular email doesn't reach you - Email is not, and will probably never be, a completely reliable service. If your Email account has such a facility, I would recommend whitelisting the address that the notification mails come from (bookmooch@r.bookmooch.com, I think) and see if that helps matters.

Edit: Spelling - you vex me.

GarethM
2 years ago
I'll try that, although it's never been a problem for me until recently, and the address I use works otherwise. I do check my spam bin regularly too. I've added the Bookmooch address to my contacts, so we'll see if the new mooch request gets to me. Thanks for the suggestion!
Veronica
2 years ago
BookMooch email is not entirely reliable. I have seen threads in other forums where people have complained about not getting BM messages. I myself went through a brief period of time when I was not getting any messages from BM.

I would definitely suggest logging into the site periodically to check and see if you have any of your books that have been mooched. And as far as wish-listed books go, you are probably already aware that you cannot rely on getting an email when a book is available -- you have to come onto the site and check your wish list frequently.

I hope this helps.

valeriem
2 years ago
Well, adding the Bookmooch email address to contacts didn't work. I've changed to my Gmail address. Let's see if that's any better.

I subscribe to the RSS feed of books on my wishlist. That doesn't seem to have been working too well recently either. Although that could just be because of the dearth of internationally moochable books.

Veronica
2 years ago
Veronica,
I find the RSS feed works better now that I've added it to my iGoogle home page rather than on the Bookmarks toolbar. But that could be because I am using Firefox.
Cara
2 years ago
So...are we going to get any comments on how the 3-point change has affected international mooching? I've been quite curious, myself.
Suzi
2 years ago
I'm also wondering about if there's going to be any analysis/statement - the changes have been on for ages now, and while my mooched/sent ratio has stayed essentially the same my points were going down pretty fast.

For me and I guess much of the European bookmooch-population it's a bit of a failed experiment, and not seeing if followed up really isn't helping. It's a little bit disappointing not to get any feedback.

Birgit
2 years ago

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