BookMooch logo
 
home browse about join login
Forum: BookMooch Blog
PREV -
NEXT +
MESSAGES >
?



International mooches now 3 points

Three months ago, I blogged and there was much discussion about changing international mooches so that they cost 3 points, and the book sender received 3 points.

At the time, I agreed to wait 3 months before making the change. It's been 3 months now, and so mooches now cost 3 points, and those 3 points go to the book sender.

Previously, an international book cost 2 points to mooch, but 3 points went to the book sender This was a policy meant to provide an incentive to international mooching, though it did have an inflationary effect. If you want to read more about the thinking behind the change, you can read about it here: http://blog.bookmooch.com/m/thread/bookmooch_blog/42

Note that this change only effects mooches from this point forward and has no impact on the past. This change also has no effect on how mooch ratios are calculated.

-john

John Buckman
3 years ago

Comments



Like going to the dentist, I can't say that I really like the idea, but I know that it's probably the right thing to do...I'll have to be a little more picky from here on in (but that's just 'cause I'm a Bookmooch spendthrift).
Rebel Sun
3 years ago
This is a major downside for us from small countries. There are about three or four members here from my country so that means all my mooches are international. I often get a no when I want to mooch from the States because of the shipping costs and now I'll also have to spend an additional point when I do get a yes. But I guess it's still better than having to buy a new book. :)
Brigita
3 years ago
I imagine no one will mooch from me anymore here in Norway, so I'll just use up the points I have and then use the money I would have spent on postage at Amazon.

BTW - not pulling my inventory, just don't expect anyone to mooch it now.But I hope to be proven wrong.

Update: April 21 - Thanks to the EIGHT people who mooched from me since I posted this,yesterday, pluss the new friend! I admit being wrong and very glad for it, as I love book Mooch.

Judy Storset
3 years ago
I will happily give back one point to any international moocher when they mooch from me if they find the extra point a hardship for them.

I will still mooch from international sources assuming they are willing to send to the USA.

Darcie
3 years ago
Sadly, I have to agree with Judy Storset
Amelia
3 years ago
Agree with Brigita and Judy Storset. Very disappointed. It's already difficult enough to get stuff moving when you're located in Finland and no-one wants to send to your country, now no-one wants to mooch from me either.

Also, (even the 2nd class) shipping from here is so expensive that I end up just spending all my money on this instead of giving some & getting some.

Veterok.
3 years ago
I missed the blog about this 3 months ago, and I am dismayed at the increased cost in international mooches to three points a book. I just moved to Australia from the US, and really feel the great disadvantage of being an "international" (i.e. non-US) member of BookMooch now. New books are much more expensive in Australia compared to the US (e.g. a paperback which costs $7.99 in the US would cost $23.99 in Australia - and the Australian dollar is now equivalent to about US$1.05). And as it now costs 50% more in points to mooch from outside of one's country, I can also see how it will be detrimental to international mooching - and particularly discouraging for new members. I hope that this is not a permanent change, and that we will get the previous system back (i.e. an international mooch costing 2 points) after this trial is over.
msaggie
3 years ago
Well, I'm giving back points, too, to moochers from other countries, since it's downright impossible to get rid of your books or get books you want in Finland. Take a look at my status message for further information.
Minna
3 years ago
I'm a little confused by the blog post here. It reads as "I agreed to wait, then do exactly what I was going to do in the first place."

I'm sure, John, that you spent some time during those three months thinking about other ways to resolve the inflation problem. Surely you didn't just leave the discussion at the point it was three months ago. Already in these comments we see two people pulling their inventories -- and people pulling inventories is pretty much never good for BookMooch.

Would you be willing to share any of the thinking you did? Three months of brainstorming and listening to the community about alternate suggestions seems like it could come up with a lot of ideas. None of them solved the inflation problem without alienating international moochers?

BLW
3 years ago
Veterok, I checked out your inventory in the hope of mooching from you, but as you have just four books listed, it was hard to do so! And are you really sure that no one wants to send to your country? At all? When I could afford to send internationally, I sent many, many books to Finland (and made some good friends in the process), so please don't give up hope!

If the three points system cures the problem (and many people have complained of this) of having too many points built up, then people will be encouraged to add more books to keep their points level healthy. If this effect doesn't happen, then I'm certain John will review his decision - after all, it's his site and I don't really think he wants to see it fail, considering the years of hard work and oodles of hard cash he's put into it ...

Sophie Houston
3 years ago
In the long term this change is definitely for the best. If the number of mooch points in circulation continues to be artificially boosted then everyone will end up with "too much money chasing too few goods", ie. too many points and not enough books to spend them on. Then we'd have to raise the cost of mooches anyway to combat the amount of points everyone had accumulated. It might seem painful in the short term, but this is a necessary change, one which is important for the long-term survival of bookmooch.
drewr236
3 years ago
I know that I won't be mooching internationally.

This change won't really have an effect on American or British moochers, who form the majority of the BookMooch membership. I will miss the international aspect, though.

John, will you please give us the results of how this changes BookMooch? You did say that this was a trial period, and so I'm sure you're tracking the results closely. Is this something you are willing to share with the membership? I would also be interested in seeing if and how the other recent changes have altered things.

RidgewayGirl
3 years ago
:(
infiniteletters
3 years ago
Sophie, I've had several problems with getting the pieces I want. Many people are not willing to send outside of their country (not sure why? Especially when I have noticed that in most cases the postage wouldn't be expensive at all) and it's always with the books I'd really really like to have. Fortunately I have found some great angels for these mooches but in a way I think that angelling means just a bit more trouble for everyone, all the organising & advertising.. It's such a shame. As a Finnish person it would be stupid of me to send only to my country so I always try my best to send internationally.

True, I don't have a million of books listed right now and most of the ones I'm currently offering are Finnish editions. So far I've had no trouble getting them moving, most of the moochers have been non-Finns, but I'm still very doubtful about the whole 3 for 3 system and how it would work in the future.. It just feel like majority beating the minority once again.

Veterok.
3 years ago
I'm going to smooch back a point to any international moochers. I've got a bunch of points and, since I'm attempting to clear out some books, am happy to do so.
Katrina
3 years ago
Veterok, I'm one of those people who cannot send abroad - and it really isn't a case of not being willing, but simply as a result of my already very low income being reduced by almost 50%. And BM angels don't see what they're doing as being "trouble" - they enjoy angelling, and that's why they offer to do so (I used to get a great buzz from being an angel, and miss it very much) - so please continue to use them, as otherwise you're depriving them of the chance of a guaranteed mooch and the pleasure of getting books to people who want them! I appreciate that Finland, Canada and France are countries in which domestic postage is very high compared to international postage, but I'm not sure what the solution is, other than lobbying your respective governments very loudly and forcefully ...
Sophie Houston
3 years ago
I hope this is not a death knell for bookmooch. This will discourage international mooching even more. Sadly, I think this site is much worse than when I joined several years ago. Alas, all good things must pass...
TokyoJim
3 years ago
Who will mooch a book from me now internationally for 3 points? This will completely discourage international mooching.
When you live in France it's really difficult to get a book from the US. It's "only to my country" and when it's "ask" you can be pretty sure they will say no. I am hunting for books that I don't get and I spend a lot of money in postage sending worldwide, so I suppose it will be wiser to just use up my points and go back to my former booksuppliers BetterWorldBooks/Amazon
Amelia
3 years ago
I am also willing to smooch back a point to international moochers! I am very fond of sending my books far away, and I am sorry that international moochers are discouraged by this development.
JennyGardener
3 years ago
As a Dutch moocher I'm happy with it. It makes people more selective. No more request to send stupid paperbacks over the ocean, but only harder to get books. This system makes more sense to me.
Harmen
3 years ago
As I said 3 months ago, I'm pretty sure the only result of this change will be a dramatic decrease of int'l mooches - by sure it will kill mine, and those of many people here in Europe ( I live in Italy ).

Without the extra point incentive, it will be cheaper now for me to dispose of the old books and buy new ones at bookdepository, than mooching second hand copies though BM. In the unlikely case somebody is still willing to send abroad, of course - it's more and more often now that you have "no" as a reply when you ask. And this has nothing to see with the so called book inflation, this is just the economic crisis!

I still hope that this will be just a test period, and the old rules 3:2 be back soon. Otherwise I'm afraid BM will become soon a US-only website.

MarchRose
3 years ago
@everyone who thinks 3 is too expensive: the (only?) other option is to make it 2/2. Would that be so much better?
Harmen
3 years ago
While it may be painful for some people it was either this drastic surgery or a slow death of the site. Hopefully this will bring more liquidity to the site.
Jonathan
3 years ago
@ Harmen:

I'll try to explain with an example:

to send just one pb to the US from my country (Italy), the fee is 10 euros, that is 14-15 US dollars. If the pb is thick, it will cost 14 euros, that is 21 US dollars.
( This is the reason many people living in my country try to send out more than one book in the same package btw - usually, 2-3 can fit in in the "bulk" delivery at a 21 dollars cost ).

But for simplicity, let's assume I'm shipping just one slim book: postage = 10 euros.

If now I send a pb in the US, I spend:
- the value of a 2nd hand pb ( 3 US dollars maybe? )
- postage 10 euros = 14 US dollars
Total: 17 dollars

and I get 3 points for this.

I can use these 3 points to get one 2nd hand pb,that is a 3 dollars value.

Therefore, I spend a value of 17 dollars to get an object whose value is 3 dollars. Nonsense.

If I spend only two points instead of three to get one book - as it was until yesterday - things are slightly better. It means that I can get one and a half book ( 4.5 US dollars ) by spending "only" 17 dollars.

Now, nobody in my country is any longer able to afford shipping a single book to the US, so all this is quite theoretical, but the advantage is (proportionally) the same for multiple mooches as well. It means, in other words, that the extra points in the old 3:2 ratio allowed a certain compensation of the huge int'l delivery cost.

John's reply to this remark has been in the past, "you can always use the 3 points coming from an int'l mooch to get 3 books in your country".
My comment: this is possibile in the US, not elsewhere. I would LOVE to get 3 books in my country, if I just could; unfortunately we are too few and there's lack of choice - no English books, for instance. I have 1000+ books in my wishlist now, and NONE is available in my country.

Hope this clarifies.

@ Jonathan

imho this will be a *quick* death of the int'l side of the site.

MarchRose
3 years ago
I think it's sad that some people are not willing to give this a try. I'm not thrilled about it either, but saying "No one is going to mooch from me anymore, so I'm pulling my inventory" just seems silly to me. Give people a chance before deciding that you know what they will or won't do. If you pull your inventory you are bringing about the very situation that you are complaining about. I am an international moocher/sender (I have to be, living in a small country) and will continure to mooch and send as before. Please don't give up on the site without waiting to see how things actually turn out.
AlineM
3 years ago
*sigh* I'm not thrill about this, not really! I'm willing to send if anyone mooch from me but I won't mooch anything international at the moment and wait for the results. I could still go back to Amazon and buy new ones.
ylef
3 years ago
I will be a bit less likely to mooch all the books I did in the past. My dad has been having words with me about how much house space my books take up, and it'll take me longer to gather 3 points for mooches. I am in the UK but most of the books I want come from the US. I will definitely still be sending books out. I love BM and I need space! I'm doing a 3-for-2 offer, trying to buy books cheaply to list on BM, and generally want to encourage mooching. I'd love to see that 2-point regional mooch option we discussed briefly come in - like Europe, North America etc. I think that would be popular and helpful.
Lydia Marmorstein
3 years ago
I'll still send books from my inventory internationally, but this is why I left the Angel network.

I'll definitely be more selective about what books I request internationally... which then turns me into one of those evil people that receives more books than I sent (never mind the massive cost I racked up being an angel) due to mooching more domestically.

All in all, I see this having the opposite of the desired effect. It's a shame, there are much better ways to fix the existing problems on the site.

Becca
3 years ago
I missed the change in points too.I will have to be more selective.If it is cheaper to buy from Amazon I will.
barbara
3 years ago
@Elizabeth Shorley - I wasn't trying to attack you (or anyone else) or your actions. I completely understand problems with high postage and difficulties in getting people to send books outside their own country. Choosing to pull your inventory because you already have so many points is also understandable (though a bit sad). I was just confused by it being presented as a reaction to the point cost change.

I am afraid that the change will hurt international mooching, but as it makes international mooching more expensive, not international sending, I couldn't see the logic in pulling your inventory because of it. I guess I'm just worried that people's reactions to the change will end up being what hurts BM, more than the change itself.

AlineM
3 years ago
I'm glad to hear about this change. It will be unpleasant yet necessary.

bookmooch can't be in the business of subsidizing postage. if used book are too expensive to mail then they're just not going to move. perhaps another system needs to be created but i simply don't see how bookmooch can work if the price of postage exceeds the price of a new book.

mattkime
3 years ago
@MarchRose: thanks for your reply. Sometimes it just doesn't makes sense to send things to America. So be it, just because it's fun to do doesn't mean it's economically worthwhile.
Here in the Netherlands postage to everywhere in Europe is ok, outside Europe the prices are just as insane as you're quoting. So, I'm happy to send anywhere in europe, but not outside. And there are plenty european moochers, so it's still fun.
Harmen
3 years ago
I am afraid that the change will hurt international mooching, but as it makes international mooching more expensive, not international sending, I couldn't see the logic in pulling your inventory because of it. The relationship between the increase in points and international sending in countries like Canada is the cost per point ratio is so high that a 3 point book becomes more expensive (and chancy, unlikely and hard work) than buying used, or in some cases new, elsewhere. Especially since "ask first" requests are often turned down (even from the United States, which makes no financial sense, it's a better point per $ ratio for Americans to send to me than each other). Those of us who have mooched for awhile and accumulated many points will now have fewer options to use them. It isn't worthwhile mooching small paperbacks or most children's books as they can be bought cheaper. Rather than using money to spend on postage to accumulate more points that I won't be able to use, it makes more sense for me to use that money to buy the books I want to read. I am still posting/sending books every few weeks, but only because I love this community. I won't be posting many. And I understand Elizabeth's decision to empty her inventory.
Cara
3 years ago
my international mooches have been mostly unsatisfactory so i don't envision requesting or sending books internationally in the future
vjconnor
3 years ago
This change will not alter the way I mooch or send out books!

I don't really see what everyone is complaining about. I know we are all allowed a ratio of up to 2:1 (2 books received for every 1 sent out), but morally, surely each member should try to keep their ratios closer to 1:1 in terms of fairness. So anyone currently abusing Bookmooch is likely to be lost, making Bookmooch a better place.

All it means really is that it will be harder for members to amass points, so the only ones I can see suffering are the Bookmooch Charities which rely on point donations from others.

So will everyone please stop complaining and moaning at John, he's only trying to make Bookmooch a better place and I think he should be applauded for his efforts!

Amelie
3 years ago
@Amelie So will everyone please stop complaining and moaning at John, he's only trying to make Bookmooch a better place and I think he should be applauded for his efforts! I certainly applaud John and all his efforts at making Bookmooch a better site. However, I don't feel like I am whining when I point out the sad financial realities of mooching from Canada. I also do not feel like I have been somehow abusing Bookmooch because the way I have (from necessity) been using Bookmooch by mostly sending and receiving internationally has meant that I have accumulated many points. I have given away literally thousands of points to charities and other moochers. So, yes, this may be a necessary change for the overall health of Bookmooch, since there are more members in the UK and USA than the rest of us. It is, however, a very bad development for the minority of us from elsewhere and I don't think I am whining by pointing out that fact.
Cara
3 years ago
I am also a member from Canada and I have to tell you that sending within Canada is damn near impossiable.

I've spent almost 20 dollars on sending 1 book not only within Canada but within my own province. So for 20 dollars I recieved 1 point. Also in the past I have sent a box to a member in the US for about the same price. In the box there was 13 books, becasue it was a charity I smooched back 2 points per book keeping only the "extra" point. I got 13 points for sending to the charity and only 1 for sending within my country. Yes I could use that to attempt to mooch 13 books from within Canada but I would probably get one of two messages when requesting the book from a fellow Canadian: "I'm sorry that book is too heavy to send within Canada" or "If mooching within Canada you must mooch 2 or more books." Now they are willing to send but I must mooch another book, what happens if that book was the only one I wanted? Now I have to choose a book I don't want from their invintory, spend a precious point and then relist it hoping someone else will mooch it from me.

If I then place that book into my invintory and several Americans have it in their invintory as an American moocher who are you most likely to mooch from? The member that you have to spend 3 points to get it from or the memeber you can mooch it from for 1 point? This change isn't going to help international mooching especially for Canadians.

There are a few of us who are making use of the meet and mooches here in the GTA but many of the books on my WL are not books that my friends have. And there are only so many times we can share books with one another before we no longer have any books the others may be intrested in.

I really can't see myself spending 3 points for a book that I can go to the local thrift shop and buy for 2 dollars. I most likely won't be mooching internationally during this point increase unless I have to have a specific book.

I will keep my invintory up and will continue to send internationally but I don't expect many requests to do so. I hope that this doesn't kill bookmooch, but I do not see this helping international sending.

ArtemisAthene
3 years ago
As a Canadian, this is rather disappointing. Postage within Canada is absolutely terrible, $7 - $12 for one book domestically is pretty normal. Lots of Canadians either refuse to send within Canada, or they have mooching conditions, like I do, simply because I have no other choice. It's cheaper to send internationally, but this change will lose the incentive for international moochers to mooch from us. And there's so few members on Canada in the first place that it's hard to find the books we want domestically. Looking internationally works better, but the large majority of the members in the US do not send internationally - even though their postage costs are so much better than what we have to deal with. Before the problems were enough to cause irritation, but this just amplifies everything and makes mooching for Canadians SO MUCH WORSE. :(

Basically, for us Canadians, us poor minority who already have so many problems on BookMooch:
1. we have a TON of limitations to mooching within Canada already
2. we already have issues getting books because most US members don't send out of their country, and a lot of those who are "ask me" never reply (anyone who's "worldwide" or who send as an "ask me"... you're my hero.)
3. Canadian postage is terrible making each mooch cost more
4. it's now WAY more expensive to mooch internationally
5. less international people will mooch from us

The only good thing I can think could stem from this change is that maybe some of the US members who only send within their country will consider sending internationally now. But then again, this change is basically driving away all Canadian members, so what does this matter? and I wouldn't be surprised if it's also driving away all international members who don't live in the US (and the UK too? I'm not clear on this point). I hate to sound rude, but why doesn't BM just become an annoying discriminatory US-is-the-only-cool-country site like that PBS site? because that's where this change is taking BookMooch. :/ John, don't take me wrong, I love BookMooch. I love what you do with it. I think you're pretty awesome too. The fact that you're only trying to make things better is great, and I appreciate the fact that that is what you're trying to do, and that you're not actually intentionally trying to drive away all international moochers. But this is terrible. :(

Melissa
3 years ago
I understand many of us are not happy about this, but there have been the same complaints in all of the previous blog posts. Personally, I prefer to wait and see what happens when a change is made before declaring it will kill the community or closing my account in frustration. I'm sure this will change things, but it will likely be better for some, worse for some and exactly the same for many others. I know I am I'm lucky to be in the USA where we have a large population and low postage rates for books.

If I was in a country that wasn't so lucky (and wasn't Canada with its high internal postage), I would make a serious effort to recruit other people in my country who read books in my languages to bookmooch.

Sarah
3 years ago
I promised myself (and several friends) that I wouldn't get as upset when this happened as I did when it was first announced. I will continue being an active BookMoocher, although of course my international participation will change.

I will say it as many times as I need to, though: This is yet another blow to the international aspect of BookMooch. I really, honestly feel that this site is going to eventually be almost completely US moochers, or US moochers and internationals who will not send outside their country. It feels like these changes are pushing BookMooch *away* from the international aspect that *used* to be heavily encouraged here.

First we get *retroactively* penalized for every single time we mooched internationally, by way of mooch-ratio change. Now we are getting charged *more* per international mooched. ..... I definitely don't see this doing any good to international participation.

Heather
3 years ago
What an incredibly stupid idea.
Kevin
3 years ago
I have and will continue to send / mooch internationally.
I've sent books to Finland !
Manuela Ziemer
3 years ago
This will not affect how I mooch or send books, I will continue to try and spend every point I have as quickly as possible to keep the system moving. ;)
janie
3 years ago
I'm in New Zealand so 90% of transactions are international. It won't change what I do at all. The idea of recycling books is brilliant.

There are times when the cost of sending a book is greater than the cost of buying the same book second hand. To get around this, I limit the number I send in any one month - but that rarely happens.

Bill Bennett
3 years ago
Ive sent books to dozens of countries, and mooched from just about as many. When I mailed books to India or Australia or wherever, the extra point was nice. But I wont be requesting too many books from overseas anymore... 3 points isnt worth it. I simply wont mooch internationally at all. I agree with many of the posts above; I feel like Bookmooch isnt nearly the vibrant and thriving community it was when I joined 4 years ago. A poor decision all around.
Swift
3 years ago
I both mooch and send international. I have been turned down several times when trying to mooch from Canadian members. I am told that postage s too expensive for them to send to me. The most expensive country for me to mail to is the UK. It can cost $9-$12 dollars to mail 1 paperback. And yet I mail more books to the UK than any other country. I have mailed to many European countries and will continue to do so. I like sharing my books. However, I can't afford to mail heavy hardcovers international and will so state in my book conditions.
For those European and Canadian members who think no one will mooch from them anymore, I just want you to know that I and the charity I mooch for will continue to do international mooches if you have a book that we want or need. Looking at the names of the European members who have commented above I see several names that I have either mooched from or I have sent books to them. At least one I mooched a book from their inventory for a BookMooch charity within the last week. If you have the books that members are looking for, they will mooch from you.
LaVonne
3 years ago
I must say that I'm surprised at many of the responses I've read so far. Was this ever going to be a popular idea? No...but neither are washing dishes, paying taxes, learning your math tables or cutting back on chocolate....even though they are all probably better for us in the long run (OK, maybe not that chocolate one...what was I thinking). I must admit that I am one of those that took full advantage of the previous point system and my library has grown considerably as a result. But, even so, I thought from the first that it was a little too good to be true, and now the chickens are coming home to roost. The one point value for one book domestically doesn't strike anyone as being unfair, so why should three points for an international one...it makes sense. I'm sorry that some countries have expensive postal systems, but this new system will not change your sending costs...only the amount of books you might receive (significant, yes, but still one for one if all of your transactions are international). And finally, for those of you who were surprised by the change, the posts have been up for the last three months...it's somewhat of a Bookmooch irony that people might be angry about this "suddenness" of the change because they didn't read.
Rebel Sun
3 years ago
Unless you count a tentative decision to stop angeling, this isn't going to drastically change my sending habits. Mooching is another matter. Even with a fair number of my own points to spend I keep a pretty careful eye on whether it would be less expensive for me to just buy a given book. With two-point international mooches it often worked out at about the same or cheaper as a used copy, so I'd go for the mooch. Now? A real-life example was quick to present itself.

A few hours ago, a "my country only" newbie outside the USA put up two books I'd genuinely like to mooch. Unfortunately, it's not going to happen. First, I'd have to find an angel, which is getting more difficult. (I can't even go into the effect on angels.) Then it would cost six points instead of four. Then if I wanted to smooch someone for being lovely (affirmative!) it would be seven points total for me. The thing is, even if I didn't smooch a point I could still get those used books brand new on Amazon for basically the same amount of money, and it wouldn't take several months to get them, either. Ta-da! Two international mooches prevented.

@Rebel Sun - I think some people are surprised because they'd forgotten about it, given that John hadn't said anything for a few months. A week's notice would have gone a long way, especially since we've had newbies since then who might not have seen the initial blog post.

chelonianmobile
3 years ago
Well a book on my wishlist has just come up and it is in the US, just last week I would have requested away but today I had to think about it.
Is this book worth £4.50 odd rather than the previous £3 - and I'm afraid the answer is no. I'll hang on till a UK copy comes on or get it from a UK swap site (where a direct swap'll cost more like £1-£2.50).

My wishlist is therefore no longer a list of books I'll definately mooch if they become available but a list of books I'll mooch if it is domestically available or hard enough to find that I'll consider £4.50 a decent price. The 'save-for-later' list therefore is now pretty redundant if wishlists aren't used as they used to be.

No idea how this idea was supposed to encourage international mooching, it just puts people off as it is instantly more expensive at a time when most peoples budgets are already suffering.
If many of us will be mooching less internationally due to the cost then clearly it'll be harder to send abroad too.

seanat
3 years ago
This won't change how I mooch; if I want the book and can't find it in my country 1 point isn't a deal breaker. Second hand books are not cheap in Australia and BM is still a great place for me to find books I want at a resonable cost.
As for sending, it is no different I still get the same number of points and as the cost of sending in my country is $1.80 to $10.95 for one book and from $7 to $13 to most other countries, the cost of points is generally less if I post internationally. I am set to ask first, but only to control my budget, I rarely say no. If people still want to mooch internationally from me, I'll still send.
Sonia
3 years ago
@seanat: No idea how this idea was supposed to encourage international mooching, it just puts people off as it is instantly more expensive at a time when most people's budgets are already suffering. If many of us will be mooching less internationally due to the cost then clearly it'll be harder to send abroad too. <--- YES, THIS. That's the main argument the naysayers have, which is why this was initially proposed as having a trial period. It's not entirely clear to me whether that's still going to be the case or not.

@Sonia: If people still want to mooch internationally from me, I'll still send. <--- Well, that's the question, really. You might still be willing to mooch from them, but are they still willing to mooch from you? Given local factors the extra point still balances out okay for you, but for a lot of people that's not the case, which means your pool of potential moochers just shrank.

chelonianmobile
3 years ago
Well, what this did was make me hesitate yesterday to mooch a book on my wishlist because I really didn't think it was worth 3 points to me. So I guess I'm going to be a lot more selective. So will other people, I think, and thus we may end up having a larger inventory in bookmooch but not nearly as much movement in the end?
xeyra
3 years ago
This change was necessary to remove the massive increase in "money supply". One of the reasons that so many people find there is nothing they want is because they have more points than they have given books. Multiply that across the whole system and you get pressure for inflation. As the "price" of a book is fixed, there is no room for inflation. Something had to give.

What we all need is MORE people with MORE books so we have a better chance of getting what we want locally (except for Canadians who seem to need international mooching because their internal post is so wildly expensive?)

mfkirke
3 years ago
With this change it is actually cheaper for me in most cases to just buy books in used-bookstores or wait until they show up in a German inventory than mooch them international. Sometimes even amazon will be a better option in the future.

I loved the international aspect of bookmooch and found it very exicting to not only send but also recieve books from all over the world. Now that won't be the case any longer for me or only on very rare occasions.
And yes, I did delete my inventory. No need to collect any more points right now if I will use them only for national mooches.

While I appreciate very much what you did with and for bookmooch in the past I fear that this will not help to increase international mooching much and will make things only harder for people not living in the US.

sousha
3 years ago
@ mfkirke

I did all what I could to support BM, I devoted several articles to BM in my blog, I talked about it with all my friends, but you can only bring a horse to the water (this is the English expression for it, right? apologies if I did it wrong but English is not my first language ). In our little European countries BM members will be few, because our countries *are* little, it cannot be helped.

Personally I think that if in the whole US there are "only" 15,800 BM members, having 700 BM members in Italy is a HUGE success. Our little, faraway country is now the 4th nation in terms of BM members after the US, the UK and Canada, and this is just great! But in absolute figures 700 people are not enough to have a strong basis for national mooches, and it will never be.

So penalizing the int'l aspect of BM by removing all incentives to int'l mooching will make people stopping sending abroad, because mooching from abroad is no longer economically sustainable. So why to send, if you cannot afford to receive?

MarchRose
3 years ago
Since I live in a small, non Anglophone country, I feel I have two choices: take it or leave it -- and I chose the former.
I mostly get OKs from "ask me first" owners, and when I see how much the postage costs I am truly grateful. I will continue to mooch internationally, and to send books to anywhere we have postal connection (that leaves out Saudi Arabia, Iran, and a few others -- their loss). I almost always send books by air mail (even to people who do not send out of their country). We do have the possibility of surface mail (except, for some reason, to Kosovo), but our postal rates are relatively affordable, and that compensates for the fact that I can't always rush out the next day (or even the next week) to mail the books. Does anyone really send out the very next day?
So, wherever you are, feel free, and happy reading.
NinaBryna
3 years ago
As a resident of the US, I joined BM for its unique international aspect and the chance to obtain books from outside the US. However, my personal economic status now prohibits me sending internationally, so I'm no longer comfortable mooching internationally either.

The increased cost is also a major disincentive as with patience, most of what I want will eventually appear in the US and/or is significantly cheaper from other sources.

If this change results in only same country mooches (barring Canada) being economically feasible for many, I don't see it as a plus for BM at all - quite the reverse in fact, because that makes a significant decline in the amount of books available to each member, and for those in smaller countries, really whittles the selection.

JL Welling
3 years ago
NinaBryna, I nearly always send books out the very next day - except of course when I send out on the day of the request! It's not as selfless as it sounds - I work from home, and if I didn't take every opportunity for an hour's walk, I'd end up looking like Homer Simpson ...
Sophie Houston
3 years ago
Wow, reading these comments has my head spinning. I see valid points (no pun intended) on both sides of this issue, but I have to say the problems started long before this announcement. Back when I discovered BM, I spent hours upon hours interacting and getting to know the community. I had a blast! I made friends, I sent internationally and Angel mooched for others. I had fun, and I enjoyed taking other people's wishlists to my used bookstore in the hopes I could make someone's day and find him/her that treasure. That meant something to me -- more than the $3 value some are placing on these "silly little paperbacks". When times started to get a little tough, I had to back off the Angel mooching and sending outside the US and Canada. But, guess what? I also stopped listing inventory and checking my account. Something happened and all of a sudden it just wasn't fun anymore. The bickering, the arguing, the complaining, the nastiness of it all. No longer did I get a warm and fuzzy feeling -- and no more did anyone want my help finding a treasure.

I am now set to "ask first". To this day, no one has ever asked. I guarantee you I will send to Canada if you can wait a few days for me to make it to the post office. I say "ask first" because some days I have a little extra for postage, and some days I don't. I really hope I can change my situation soon.

On a side note, for those of you who are in Canada and any other country where the postage within your country is prohibitive...has anyone asked John if it's feasible to program BM to treat those types of transactions as "international"? Perhaps treat US to Canada as "domestic"? Perhaps redefining the mooch zones may help make the system more fair. I think it's appalling how much it costs to mail within Canada, but maybe John can do something about how BM sees that?

Just a suggestion.

Denise
3 years ago
I'm glad that I read this! I just started "mooching" and I sent a book from the USA to Argentina and Singapore and thought Hmmmm do I really want to do this it's soooo expensive especially since one of my requests to the UK had been denied . . . and then I read your blogs and saw price comparisons with my USA domestic rate and I will continue to send them out to others just because I see the problem . . . How can we make this more equitable? for smaller countries?
Deborah Bertschi
3 years ago
this is very disappointing.i have no motivation at all to mooch internationally anymore,if it is going to cost me 3 points.and i don't think any one in a different country would want to mooch from me either.so now i'm stuck with all my unwanted books,unless someone in country mooches from me, and have nothing else to do with them than to let them rot.
i'm sorry but im pulling out.i don't think this was one of the best ideas bookmooch has had.its not worth it anymore. :'(
Ekong Amanda Oben
3 years ago
I don't choose my swaps based on pts, I don't even think about them. But whoever said int'l swaps don't cost that much obviously hasn't shipped to Brazil- $15 for a paperback
Jo
3 years ago
The reason to mooch a book from another country is surely that it is not available from your own?

Bookmooch points are currency and I would never spend more money on an item if it was easily available for less and the same goes for bookmooch points!

mfkirke
3 years ago
 i'm sorry but im pulling out.i don't think this was one of the best ideas bookmooch has had.its not worth it anymore. :'(

Why pull out? Why not just wait and see>? It does you no harm to leave your books and see if they still get mooched.

There are a /lot/ of people out there with /lots/ of points who will not baulk at mooching internationally.

It's a defeatist attitude to remove your inventory because of this, a self-defeating act.

r

Rob
3 years ago
I will be mailing 3 books to the other end of Canada today (from the west coast to the east coast). It would have been cheaper for me to order the books from an online bookstore and have them mailed to the Maritimes. I am going to mail them because the moocher honoured my request to mooch at least 3 books and she sent me a wishlist book in exchange which probably cost her at least $12, (and I wouldn't have spent that much to buy it.) The Canadians who are speaking up here are not just complaining about an increase in price that is unavoidable (like the price of gas lately), but the fact that this change makes Bookmooch financially unfeasible for us when before it was just barely so. And that we pointed that out 3 months ago and brainstormed ways to mitigate that fact and nothing seems to have come from that discussion. I am glad that because of geographical or financial circumstances this change will not adversely effect everyone. I hope Bookmooch will have a long and healthy life. It will just have to be with far less participation from Canadians (and we were the 3rd most populous group on the site). I say "were" BTW, because we have been vacationing a lot of inactive Canadian accounts recently: Inactive Accounts Clean-up Project
Cara
3 years ago
Lots of people have complained that they have points piling up that they can't spend, so I don't think we should assume that "no one would spend 3 points to mooch internationally." If you have 100+ points that you are looking to spend, 3 points is not much at all, for a book you want.

To the question "why would someone mooch from me for 3 points, when the book is available domestically for 1 point" - moochers have probably already been preferring domestic mooches, haven't they? I mean, why would they have spent even 2 points if they could have mooched it for one?

And as far as people being willing to *send* internationally, they will get the same deal as always: send a book, get 3 points, so what difference will it make to senders?

I don't see this making as dramatic a difference as people think. Folks who are short on points might be less inclined to mooch internationally. But on the bright side, addressing inflation will gradually lead to more people putting up more inventory, which will be great for all of us.

J'aime
3 years ago
It seems to me that Canadians should stop complaining about BookMooch and spend their time fixing their postal system.

As for me, the change will cause me to be quite picky about which books I request internationally, although I think I've only mooched two books from other countries so far, one of which I probably wouldn't have if I had realized it was coming from overseas.

As for sending, 10% of the books I've sent out were from overseas. My account is set to "ask me" but the only time I've refused an international mooch was the one time I literally did not have enough money to mail the book to the necessary location and did not expect to have enough money in the coming weeks.

Samuel Kempf
3 years ago
1)Postal charges the world over seem to be arbitrary and irrational. But certainly inter-province mooching in Canada should be declared international, so that at least the extra points would mitigate the onerous postal rates.

2) I don't understand the furious kvetching about equalizing the giving and receiving points for international mooches. After all, domestic mooches are 1 to 1, so what's the problem with 3 for 3?
As the Americans (at least in some of the books I read) say: "Chill out!"

NinaBryna
3 years ago
It seems to me that Canadians should stop complaining about BookMooch and spend their time fixing their postal system. Thanks, I'll just go do that now.
Cara
3 years ago
I LOVE BOOKMOOCH!! This doesnt change a thing to me. I am a USian and ship internationally with the ask me signifier. But I have never turned a request down AFAIK. I am careful to only put up things I know I can afford to send but since I am not a materialist nor a capitalist I do not bother with such observations such as I am sending an X-valued object at price Y with Xbeing less than Y and Z being the price I can pay to buy it somewhere else with Z less than X less than Y or conversely X less than Z less than Y. Who gives a $%!^. Somebody out there wants a thing you have and if you have the means to send it then do it. The lesson of this site is that IT ALL COMES OUT IN THE WASH in that the onus is on the sender but paying it forward means you pay a lot for something you dont want for the VERY GOOD POTENTIAL of getting something you really really want FOR FREE! The biggest problem I run into is that my tastes are fairly eclectic so I have many many books on my wishlist that have been on there since day one (since 2007) and I suspect it will always be that way but then there are books I imagined would NEVER pop up on here and I have already read them and sent them on. Frankly I just want to read the book and then when I am done I want to be rid of it. Hopefully people will look past the materialism involved here, send the damn book if you have it and have read it or never will. Worry about your points and ratios and all that BS another day. One thing I have learned about this AWESOME site is that it is VERY forgiving if you approach the spirit of the site (SENDING BOOKS WITHOUT DISCRETION without stupid value judgements) in earnest.
Christoph
3 years ago
Tim,

I'm just glancing at what some of the messages are saying about Canadian members, and not liking what I'm seeing one bit. I don't want to take part in an "Us" vs "Them" kind of discourse. I just want to take this opportunity to give you my personal feedback.

I was really gung-ho about BookMooch when I joined a couple of years ago, because it fit with my ideals of easy international exchanges and of encouraging and supporting an alternate form of economy involving trading and bartering on an individual basis. However, as you've already heard many times, our shipping costs are so high in Canada—to ship internationally is very expensive, to ship within the country is downright ruinous—that until recently, it still made some kind of sense to use the international option, where the trade-off with extra points more or less evened things out for me. I asked my moochers to be patient as could only send out a small amount of books every month, and loved the personal exchanges and easygoing attitude of most people I dealt with. I must say however, I've often been disappointed with the fact that an overwhelming majority of US residents refuse to ship internationally, invoking high postage costs, and the fact that moocher anywhere in the world who refuse to ship outside their countries often have no compunction about mooching internationally.

Until fairly recently, I was still hanging on and using BM because it fit with my personal ethics overall; among other things, I liked knowing that I could send my ever-so-gently used books to good homes around the world; I also liked dealing with individuals rather than corporations. This even though purchasing new or used books worked out to a very similar expense, usually with less investment of time with this latter option.

To my great chagrin, with the new international point policy, using BookMooch is no longer viable for me. If I were in a financial position to donate a larger portion of my income to causes I believe in, I'd gladly keep using BM regularly, but that is not the case. With the current situation as it is, between our recent increase in postage fees and the new policy here at BM, it now makes more sense on many levels for me to purchase inexpensive books and donate them locally. Of course, there's still a worthy component to that option, though of course the international trading aspect would no longer apply.

I may occasionally keep using BM to send a few books to friends now and then to enable me to perhaps find rare or out of print books (if I have any luck in that direction), but other than that, it saddens me to say I must bow out.

I wish you the best of luck with your endeavours.

i.

Ilana
3 years ago
i have weighed in before, but i think this definitely disadvantages those of us who are not native speakers in our countries of residence.

i'm an english speaker in japan and there aren't that many books available as "domestic" mooches here. certainly not many of the more unusual wishlist items i've listed and have had listed for years. it's ok, i still mooch internationally, but i am running into more and more self-righteousness about the fact that i don't send internationally. the reason i don't is because when i did, almost all my inventory got mooched immediately by people in the US, which meant that more english-language books got shipped OUT of japan, leaving even fewer for the minority of english speakers here in japan. i have a lot of points right now although i'm wondering how my ratio will fare over the longterm with the changes in that system as well

i do occasionally ship abroad when approached by somebody who's been looking for a relatively rare or academic book, of course. now, this change means that the majority of my mooches will cost me more, and i'll have to send out three books here to get one back. that just doesn't make sense for me.

i'm not in this for the savings. i am lucky in that postage in japan is pretty reasonable, for domestic and for surface mail (yes, we still have surface mail!). and i am also lucky that i have a stable income and can afford it. i'm in book mooch because i like the idea that a mooched book has a longer life and won't go in the trash pile. i like the little joys i can get from the kindness of strangers and the little notes i sometimes get with my mooched books. i like getting things from around the world and seeing my books go to other english speakers here who are starved for books in their own language. it's those good feelings i hope will continue.

so the changes recently that smack of economics just make me sad. i thought the point was we all do what we are able to do; i am lucky enough to be able to do a lot. others who aren't, can't, but they can get angel mooches. it seemed like such a fair system. almost marxist.

julia
3 years ago
Christoph, that is a wonderful attitude to have about this change, and I'm very glad that you can afford to have that attitude.

Some of can't. Some of us simply can't afford to *not* look at the postage-to-points cost, and how much more this change is really costing us. One book mooched international now costs me 3 points. If that book is available at a used bookstore for $5, points-wise I am spending *more* for that book then if I went out and bought it myself (since it's been established that one point seems to be equal to $2-3). I don't really care that I now *get* more points for sending international, because it really doesn't equal out. As a direct result of this change, my ability to use this website has been lowered.

Oh, and the whole "VERY GOOD POTENTIAL of getting something you really really want FOR FREE!" is complete crap. THESE BOOKS ARE NOT FREE. It really frustrates me when people use the "but it's a free book!" arguement, because that arguement is completely invalid. If it's free, why do I have to spend money at the post office to send books to people in order to get those points in the first place? Definitely not free. Unless you've found some way to send books through the postal system for free, in which case, please tell us!

Heather
3 years ago
As I generally pointed out, of course you can make economic arguments all day about this. And if you are in that mindset then yes you will see the FREE books that you get sent to you when you want them are only as much as the last bit of postage you paid to send some book to someone else. Of course thats the completely wrong way to look at it because then you are always going to try and be paying less for something than what its "worth" and im sorry that is a straight up capitalist mentality. This is not a capitalist initiative in the slightest actually its completely the opposite in that it is completely social. The more that are involved the more books are traded and the more people get what they want. But if you are trying to be "ahead of the game" then its all going to be a mess anyway. If you dont have the money to spend to send a book overseas then you probably shouldnt be here anyway unless you have the ask first signifier but even then an economic (nor ecological which is some bs i have gotten before) argument should not be the excuse. It should be a purely logistic excuse. At the end of the day each individual is going to make their own excuse for why they do or do not want to be here. And look, by making all trades across borders equal its fair. Unless you value points in some hierarchy based on economic interest blah blah blah. Money does not equal points and points do not equal ratio that is the bottom line. Let me tell you why I am here, I want to be here to give away rare, unusual or amazing books to people who WANT them. And thats what I am looking for from you. GOOD LUCK TO YOU ALL WHATEVER YOUR CHOICE MAY BE!!!
Christoph
3 years ago
I think the increase of international mooches to 3 points hurts the BookMooch members who are newer, and have less points to start off with, the most. When I first joined almost 4 years ago, it was wonderful to have the boost of the extra 0.1 point for leaving feedback - but then, when I accumulated more points from mooching, the extra 0.1 point was not as missed as they would have been when I started out. Now, many new members who have a limited budget to send books and accumulate points, and have very few points upfront will probably opt out of mooching from outside their country. Thinking of how we can have incentives for new members, and help them build up points, could the 0.1 reward be reinstated for a limited period until they have a more solid BookMooch history? (e.g. the first year of membership).

A major advantage of BookMooch over PaperBack Swap in the US was the international community. I am sad that the participation from non-US members may be impacted (especially from all the posts so far on this) - I still am mooching internationally (well, I now live in Australia, so most of the books available are from outside my country), but that's because I have "spare" points - maybe that's what it's come to - i.e. to push those with many points to use them, and one can use them faster by mooching internationally. But the new international mooch system now favours the "rich" (i.e. those rich in points are more likely to be less affected, and thus will continue to mooch internationally) - thus I think that BookMooch is becoming more capitalist (in response to what Julia in Japan said about the old system being almost marxist!)

msaggie
3 years ago
"If you dont have the money to spend to send a book overseas then you probably shouldnt be here anyway unless you have the ask first signifier"

Seriously? That's.... horrid. So the thousands of dollers I've spent on this website don't matter one bit if I can't afford to send *overseas*?! So the *thousands* of "my country only" users on here should either pony up more money that they *don't have*, or leave? That's a horrible thing to say!!

Heather
3 years ago
@heather: i totally agree. and that is basically what the changes in book mooch are saying to us.
julia
3 years ago
Nothing will change for me, I am in the fortunate position of having quite a lot of points because I send most of my books overseas, I also save on postage costs by sending books by surface mail rates from the UK, (I know this is not an option from the US and some other countries) so it really is not that expensive for me, between £2.50 up to £4 at the most per package, the average price being about £3.25. Sending books to Europe from the UK is really cheap, even by airmail and I use airmail rates to other countries as well if it is a light book. So I am happy to mooch from those members who still send books overseas using 3 points to do so, and I am happy to be mooched from, from overseas, and more than happy to smooch back the extra point to the member concerned if it is a problem for them, I tend to give a fair amount of my points to charity anyway, always keeping enough so that I can mooch books from my wishlist when the opportunity arises. I tend to mooch less for myself from overseas these days anyway, as I feel guilty asking someone to send me a book that is going to cost them an arm and a leg to post to me when I can pick it up for pennies from the abundance of charity bookshops that are near to my home, something like 10 or 12 at the last count. It also means that I always have a ready supply of books to put on BM.
Jenny
3 years ago
Thank you for keeping your word about giving fair warning, and then doing exactly what you warned us you'd be doing. I'm sure I speak for all of us when I say we appreciate it.

I would definitely like to hear the results of this later, as I'm sure you're closely monitoring (thank you for always meticulously doing this!). Like others, I am hoping and praying that this "trial period" proves to be a mistake, because I do feel like it's a bad thing. But your call is the important one, as always.

I would definitely love to see US/Canadian mooches made 2:2, if 3:3 is otherwise going to stay. That would probably be fair and accurate, and make it easier for requestors in both countries. Perhaps that would encourage more US folks to request from Canadians (which would sure help them collect affordable credits), and it would definitely make it easier for Canadians who request primarily from people in the United States.

Again, thank you, and I appreciate everything you do. I hope this proves a bad thing, but I'd like to hear the results, whatever they say to you. ;)

Emily Martha Sorensen
3 years ago
You know those times you just can't help yourself? >:->

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LAYMJnO9LBQ

I just spent 3 points mooching from Finland, now I need to find some more books to give away as I have 3.9 points left. See, it's working already!

Jonathan
3 years ago
Based in Singapore I get hardly any local mooch requests and almost always send to international moochers. I even try to send to moochers in countries were I know it's more difficult or more expensive to get english books. This is a positive way to encourage international mooching and I welcome it. Rather than complain - encourage your friends to participate and expand the pool of lovely books :)
Mel
3 years ago
i just had 3 international mooches declined and of them, 1 person told me they are now not sending outside of europe because of this change, so i anticipate more refusals to come. since i never turn down international requests, and since the domestic mooch market in my country is almost non-existent, the new system is going to be very inequitable financially for me.
scarlettraces
3 years ago
Why would someone refuse to send outside of Europe because of the change? They're still getting the exact same recompense for sending as they always did. That just sounds spiteful and ignorant.
Samuel Kempf
3 years ago
@ Samuel

I have tried to explain the reasons behind these refusals in my previous post (it's just my interpretation of course - time will tell if it's correct).

The "cost for point" with this change has just increased for all int'l mooches, so that now mooching from other countries is no longer economically convenient for a good number of us.

But:

If you only mooch nationally, there's no need to send internationally! You can go on by sending to your country only, since the "cost for point" is cheaper (this is not true for Canada, as many said, but it's true all through Europe, to a higher or lower extent).

By switching your account to "domestic only", chances of having one's books mooched will decrease of course, esp. in case of English books in not-English-speaking countries (this includes most European countries).

So as a result in the coming weeks/months many people living in these countries will be spending all the points they have left, and pull out their inventories from BM to look for different trading/selling solutions (which btw is the medium-term intention of many people I know).

MarchRose
3 years ago
Ouch! My ratio!

I snapped and bought some books from Amazon. Even the international moochers couldn't help shorten my wishlist. :(

Adam J Richardson
3 years ago
Fellow US moochers, I know that most of us send Media Mail. Even for hardcovers, most single-book mooches are less than $3 in postage. Please consider that if we didn't have Media Mail, you would also be complaining about certain domestic postage. For smaller books, we would still be okay without Media Mail. A 9oz paperback (average mass market plus packaging) is less than fifty cents more domestically. But try running the numbers for larger books. Currently, if I want to send a 17oz package (average hardcover) to Canada, it costs me $6.60. If the book fits in a flat rate envelope, I can send it anywhere in the US for $5.20. Still less expensive overall, but a crap deal for points. If the book doesn't fit, it's $5.15 for parcel post to my grandmother in New York or $8.67 to Daniel Dae Kim in Hawaii (wishful thinking). That postage to Hawaii is the sort of cost moochers in some other countries are dealing with for even an average-sized domestic book. If you might wind up spending over twenty dollars in order to get the three points to mooch something internationally, you'd be cranky too. Some of the Canadians were already spending that much when it was only two points.
chelonianmobile
3 years ago
@Serge S. I think that was a bit harsh. John is doing his best to try to make Bookmooch a thriving site. He is trying out a solution to a perceived problem (point inflation) which may or may not work and is certainly not a solution that works for all of us, but he is motivated purely from a desire to improve Bookmooch. Attacking John or each other, or Canadians for that matter;) isn't going to help Bookmooch be the healthy book loving community we all want it to be.
Cara
3 years ago
@chelianmobile why thank you;) Yesterday I mailed 8 books. 3 were to a fellow Canadian ($16). The rest were to the U.S. I spent around $42 in total for 18 points. That's worth 6 books internationally. That works out to $7 a book. I can buy many books new, and most used at that price. That doesn't factor in what I could have gotten in trade by taking those same books to a used book store. I would have been able to get more than 6 books back for my 8 books plus $42. I am sorry if some people feel I am being commercial or greedy or ungrateful or whatever. I am still posting and mailing books. I am still helping out with the Inactive Accounts Clean-up Project by mooching books I don't need (Anyone want a copy of The Devil Wears Prada? and we could use some help from Australia). Many of us are still here and still participating but please don't dismiss the concerns of Canadians as meaningless.
Cara
3 years ago
It's nice that you could get half a book for free under the old system, but that is not sustainable on a large scale over time (John talked about that in one of the earlier posts on this subject). This amounts to a price increase that affects everyone differently, mostly depending on the country you live in. No one likes price increases, but most of us deal with them in our non-book budget. I see lots of people saying that they will now get a better price buying a book elsewhere, new or used. If that's the case, it makes sense to use that other source. I don't think that will always be the case for every book.
Sarah
3 years ago
I have just spent the last 3 months listing books that would normally have been added over a year or more. As a result I have had many Mooches and accrued points that I hope to use for the more expensive Mooches in the future. I will, however, be much more selective as these points are going to be harder to replace once spent.

As I understand it, the reason for the points change was because points inflation was causing people's inventories to become stale, am I right? The resultant points spending spree since the announcement must have gone a fair way to cleaning out a lot of this backlog I'd imagine?? I've certainly send out a number of books that I'd had for a while.

So, my suggestion would be to have an annual 3 month amnesty, during which, we return to the 2:3 ratio and give international Moochers a chance to snap up 'bargains' and for inventories to get a bit of a spring clean.

Would anyone support this idea??

DubaiReader
3 years ago
@Samuel Kempf

It's just economics. For most European users, sending within Europe & countries that fall within the same postal range is cheaper than sending further way.

With international mooches now costlier in points, many will deal with it by lowering the limit they are willing to spend per point. Because in many cases the local pool of users and books makes mooching only locally NOT AN OPTION like it is for you folks in the US.

Now who's the ignorant one ?

Aude
3 years ago
That's simply non-sense. A further way to let people swap English books exclusively.
As for me, I'm in here in order to get foreign books only, so I DON'T CARE AT ALL about the domestic market. I'M LOOKING FOR VOLUMES IN DUTCH, PORTUGUESE, RUSSIAN etc. and it turns logically impossible to obtain them from Italian sources.
This new 3:3 rule is actually ridiculous and I'm really afraid loads of people are going to leave this site.
Daria
3 years ago
Someone mentioned a 17oz book costing $5 to send within the US. A 17oz book would only be $2.82 within the US.

I am willing to send to Canada because it's not bad. Not that I have anything good on my shelf at this time. I changed my status to ask first. I have access to a postage machine now and played with it today. I put a good sized tradesized book on it and picked random countries to send it to get a postage cost. (I was alone and bored at work today). I would probably do Canada for 2pts/book-unless it was a really heavy book. Anywhere else and it would just depend on my finances at the time. When I joined a couple of years ago I had a husband and our combined income made us quite comfortable. Now I'm a single mother who has to limit her expenses on what is basically a hobby.

The pt increase won't affect me much because I rare mooched internation anyway. Most of the books I want are easy enough to find in the US that even paying 2 pts for them was too much. Unless it was something I had been waiting along time for or hard to find. And I would pay 3 pts for those.

Msright
3 years ago
Daria, unfortunately people are already leaving because of this. I haven't seen closed accounts myself yet, but I've had multiple friends say they are thinking of going on vacation for awhile, and if this change is permanent, they will leave.

I shake my head at some of these comments. Us "complainers" are not trying to be whiny or spiteful or any of those other harsh words. Personally, I am simply saddened and frustrated that such a wonderful website, such a wonderful community, such a wonderful source of books and fun, is rapidly turning into a place that I cannot financially afford.

I have spent thousands upon thousands of dollars on this website over the past 4 years (I actually added it up about a year ago, it was *not* pretty), and I love this community so much. The recent changes, including but not limited to this point-change, has made it financially harder for me to remain as active here as I used to be. The economy made me change from 2-3 shipments a month to 1, but it's these changes that have made me feel like it's just not fun anymore. Like I have to do more calculating and fretting and research, just to see if it's possible for me to spend those *3* points on a mooch...

I love this site and I won't leave because of this change, but I do know people who are considering it. And I no longer feel the joy about this site that I once did... Where's the love?! Seriously. Where is the "encouraging international" aspect of this site that used to be such a major part of the site's workings? This change is, in a really big way, *punishing* people who want (or need!) to mooch or participate internationally.

Heather
3 years ago
@Msright - Perhaps I wasn't clear enough, but the entire purpose of that comment was to point out what the US domestic mooching scene would be like if we didn't have media mail. In that scenario a 17oz book would indeed cost more than five dollars to mail. :(

@DubaiReader - That is an idea I could definitely get behind! I've been trying to figure out what I can do to help make mooching from me less expensive, but it's slightly more complex than it was a few weeks ago in terms of giving both sides of the transaction a fair deal.

There really are books for which I would have no problem paying three points, and I've essentially done so in the past due to smooching people. However, even on my wishlist there aren't a ton of "three point" books, and I often don't mooch from my wishlist anyway. One thing I like about BookMooch is the ability to try a book you're not really sure about. For me, most of those books are a good deal for one point and were often an okay deal for two, but three points is a bit much when someone just wants to test the waters.

chelonianmobile
3 years ago
I acknowledge the fact that because I'm from the USA I probably don't understand how these changes have effected international moochers. But I just have to say that I think everyone takes how these changes are going to affect them way too seriously.

I love bookmooch just for what it is and the joy I get from sharing something I love with someone else who will love it just as much. I know sending books can be expensive, I've experienced that just as well as everyone else. Personally I've always found that sending books internationally is worth it just in itself. There is something joyful to me about sharing my love with someone across the world who I would never have been able to connect with normally.

I figure whether I'm spending points or dollars I will be getting something I will love and cherish. Because I love what bookmooch offers I would much rather spend those 3 points on an international mooch than spend the cash on the same book. Also the same goes for sending books internationally. I would much rather spend my money to share my book with someone who'll love it like I did then go out and buy new book. I can always turn someone down if I really can't afford it and until I can no longer afford it, I will continue to share my books with anyone who shows an interest.

Emmy
3 years ago
Emmy, it's great that you see it that way. Would you feel that way about this change if it permanently limited how much you could participate on this website?

That's why many of us are "taking these changes seriously". Because they *are* serious. Because we love the site, too, and we are upset that this change means we can no longer participate the way we used to. Especially for the people in countries where nearly all of their BM-dealings have to be international, this is a very devestating change. This isn't just a "oh my, look at this change, I hate change, I hate this!" type of reaction. These reactions are because this change *cripples* many user's abilities to participate in that site.

We wouldn't be so upset about it if we didn't care about this site in the first place. We love this community and love this site, and that's *why* it upsets us.

Heather
3 years ago
@Elizabeth Shorley
Canada: 851 people
United Kingdom: 1680 people
United States: 15775 people

but just look at a sample of the first 12 countries listed:
Browse members by country
Albania: 1 people
Algeria: 2 people
Argentina: 42 people
Australia: 594 people
Austria: 63 people
Azerbaijan: 1 people
Belgium: 88 people
Bosnia and Herzegowina: 1 people
Brazil: 217 people
Brunei Darussalam: 1 people
Bulgaria: 3 people
Canada: 851 people

Canada is not nearly so member-poor as the majority of countries! The sole reason BM is getting flack about this is because John is trying to address the lack of inventory being added whilst most long-term moochers have so many points to 'spend'. See my answer to Garrettt.

@Deborah Bertsch - something else I would like to see brought in - lower international mooch cost for countries with very small BM numbers - perhaps under 50 members international mooches should only cost 2 points?

@Denise - a number of people suggested a continental/regional 2 point mooch, e.g. Europe, Asia, Africa, N. America, S. America be introduced. This would address some of the issues about 3-point postage and encourage mooches to be more local generally. John's suggested mooch-meets are also a way to address high local postage costs for many city dwellers.

@ Darcie - so good to see an attitude like yours from the US. I have had a run of refused requests from the US despite always sending everywhere far in excess of my mooches.

@Becca "there are much better ways to fix the existing problems on the site." Let's hear them then! We all need some inspiration.

@msaggie You do still get 1/10 point for each listing!

@Jonathan :-) I do wonder whether the Canadians here have realised how much they are repeating themselves.
@Garrettt Whilst most people have sympathy with high Canadian internal postage rates, it really is not down to Bookmooch or John and a bit counterproductive for Canadians to keep moaning about it as if he can!
A BM acquaintance in Laos regularly crossed into a neighbouring country as an alternative to paying extremely high postage from his own country. You would do better to start a Canadian forum to look at ways to pressurise your postal services to reduce local postage - after all it can't cost them more to send internal mail than external mail - and to come up with a series of moots or other ways to overcome this local problem.

@DubaiReader Love the idea but think 3 months might strain the BM inflationary rate. Why not one month? John could pick the month when least mooching normally takes place.

As Bill Bennett said "The idea of recycling books is brilliant."
Also "There are times when the cost of sending a book is greater than the cost of buying the same book second hand." This is true for books available everywhere.
I have always aspired to be as "green" as possible, from decades before it bacame fashionable, or even seen as essential. However many books are not available everywhere. I sent a huge Oxford English Dictionary to a moocher in Egypt because it was not obtainable there. For the postage I could have sent a dozen books elsewhere and if I factored my fuel costs to get to the PO in I might give it all up, but the pleasure of giving scarce or difficult to obtain books to people who really want them is what keeps me going.
Books that are easily obtainable in one's own country for a lower cost than the postage will be should really not be mooched thoughtlessly! John's point change will give us all a reason to consider this. As to the people who complain they can't spend their points - give a bunch to charities. It will make you feel better.

tennantfamily
3 years ago
Thank you John for giving us the heads up 3 months ago--to be honest I forgot, but it doesn't make much difference to me.

Everyone else, bemoaning Americans who don't send overseas. I've recently redone my entire shipping methods. Unless the book will cost more then 4 times the price of shipping domestically, I ship overseas. The way I see it, if it costs the price of shipping 3 books, thats fair! If not everyone thinks so... that's too bad.

I'm hoping my liberality will encourage others to be more open, as I was encouraged.

I'll still be mooching from overseas, even at 3 points.

ljpbb
3 years ago
A change that could make a small difference for international mooches is if the international "ask first" showed up under Pending mooches. I get an email when someone asks me if I'll send internationally - and I usually wait to respond until I find the book (because I'll send anything small enough to fit inside a priority mail flat rate envelope). If I happen to not deal with that email for several days, I might forget about it - but nothing shows up in my bookmooch pending to remind me that I have an international request.

Someone commented about not receiving replies to the 'ask first' - since they only show up as emails & not in an easy to notice way on bookmooch (I don't look at each book in inventory to look for reserves), just overactive spam filter could be preventing people from knowing that someone wants to mooch from them internationally, if they are on 'ask first'

I've been debating with myself if being 'ask first' and saying yes to 90% of international mooches...or just going 'will send' and turning down mooches for the overly large & heavy books is better. I feel bad rejecting mooches.

I'm not happy about the 3 points for international mooches & will likely give me some pause about making them - just being a little more selective.

Christina Cat
3 years ago
@DubaiReader I think that's a great idea! And it would keep people from closing their accounts permanently, I think.
Esther
3 years ago
this is better than on some of the other trading systems, they've added fee's which is one of the many reasons bookmooch is the best swapping site out there.
Daniel
3 years ago
i don't mind the three points for international
Providence
3 years ago
@Gill & Mark Tennant - I've posted numerous times on various blog posts on what the real problems are with bookmooch. I don't feel like reposting everything, but one example can be seen here: http://www.librarything.com/topic/11269
Becca
3 years ago
@Becca.
It seems to me that inactive accounts is one thing that is being addressed by a clean-up operation being undertaken by numerous moochers. I am not sure whether emails alerting to wishlisted books are then still sent out, but it would be beneficial to those who are active members if emails were only sent to accounts not "on vacation".
tennantfamily
3 years ago
The inactive account cleanup does not address the problems raised in my post. Inactive/vacationed/on hold members appear as wishers of a book, making it difficult to tell accurately which books are in demand (especially confusing to newbies).

As far as anyone can tell, accounts that are inactive/vacationed/on hold still receive wishlist emails. This has never been refuted by TPTB. This is a huge reason why people don't get the wishlist emails quickly enough, leading to complaints about people never getting the books they want, leading John to make irrational decisions instead of fixing the real problems.

Becca
3 years ago
@Gill & Mark Tennant - I do believe Canadians have tried to figure out things to make domestic mooching easier, but certain things are unchangeable unless you want to force all Canadian women to have at least seven babies apiece. It is absolutely less expensive for Canada Post to send certain mail externally than internally. Montreal to New York City is a seven-hour drive over good highway. Montreal to Iqaluit (we have a moocher there!) is a trip to the Arctic Circle that requires a plane. The territory of Nunavut is the size of Western Europe and has MAYBE 36,000 people. You can imagine how cost-effective it is to bring the residents mail. Canada's population is about 55% that of the UK despite being almost forty-one times bigger. Canada Post has to subsidize the more expensive mailing with the things that should be less expensive, and frankly most of the provinces and Territories are much bigger than the UK, so everything is more expensive to send to begin with. The USPS subsidizes more expensive mailing as well, but the population size makes it more economically feasible. Basically, the likelihood that Canada Post will ever bring their prices down by any helpful amount (or even any not particularly helpful amount) is about the likelihood of pigs flying, because they wouldn't be able to afford it.

I guess the main reason I don't get the fuss about the extra international point is that I often wound up giving the "bonus" points away anyway because I knew I could still get an international book if I wanted. Come to think of it, I actually gave away more than I took in.

chelonianmobile
3 years ago
@chelonianmobile, re : testing books. Exactly. I have just come across a book by an author I wanted to test (it seems that I can't stay away from BM very long no matter what...), but then I remembered : "Oh wait... it costs 3 points now". I won't mooch the book - and the owner lost a chance to send abroad.
hayashi
3 years ago
I'm against the change for various reasons, none of which I'm going to mention here as many have already been mentioned. My main gripe is that vacationed accounts still receive the wishlist notifications. I listed a book recently that had 30 people listed as wanting it, all but a handful overseas. Great I thought, that will be mooched swiftly. Not so. I first thought that maybe the three points were putting people off, but when I researched further over half of the members were on vacation. I can see both sides of the argument here, maybe a wishlist notification will bring members back etc but from the point of view of someone taking the time (and points) to participate with the 'clean-up' of innactive accounts, it seems like the efforts of all involved will be somewhat wasted. I'll never know why my heavily 'wishlisted' book stayed in my inventory for a couple of days before being mooched (by a UK member who wasn't on the list). Maybe it was the notifications to innactives but just maybe the points issue came into play?
donna
3 years ago
@chelonianmobile Why thank you;) You explained the Canadian geographic realities very well. @Gill & Mark Tennant The Canadians may sound like we are repeating ourselves, but there are, as you pointed out, hundreds of us with the same problem. And we are not asking John or the Bookmooch community to "fix" our postal system. As chelonianmobile astutely pointed out, it doesn't need fixing, it operates the way it needs to based on the needs of our huge country. What we are saying is that we pointed out 3 months ago that the change was going to make Bookmooch unfeasible for Canadians, and brainstormed ways to mitigate that. Nothing seems to have come from that discussion and we are now, unhappily, informing the Bookmooch community of which many of us have been active and constructive members for years, that we will be either leaving or curtailing our activity on the site given the new economic reality. This does not diminish in any way the troubles people in other countries may or may not have with this change. We are not saying our problems are more severe, or more important, but there are quite a few of us so perhaps our voices seem a bit louder.
Cara
3 years ago
Re: inactive accounts getting wishlist notifications. People's accounts go "inactive" after one month. If they got a wishlist notification, they might be quite likely to come back and log in. People put themselves on vacation for various reasons but might, again, log back in if they were to get a wishlist notification. The Inactive Accounts Clean-up Project could still use some help, especially from Australia and Europe. We are vacationing many accounts, which will, at least, remove the inventories and those tantalizing wishlist books that you can't really mooch.
Cara
3 years ago
I could have sworn that when this change was discussed some months ago, there was also mention of some compensatory ratio adjustment. Whatever happened to that idea?
Peaceopi
3 years ago
Serge, you are sadly lacking in courtesy and consideration for others and you are totally self-centered. No one is forcing you to participate in Book Mooch. It is John's ballgame, and he puts in a lot of time and effort (and money) to create and maintain what is still the a wonderful way to reach out to the world and to find stimulating company. Francis Bacon wrote "Reading maketh a full man, conference a ready man, and writing an exact man. Read not to contradict and confute . . .but to weigh and consider."
You don't like this set-up, go make yourself a better one.
And yes, John does read these messages and endeavors to reply to them, even unto the most puerile of mewlings of spoiled brats.
NinaBryna
3 years ago
Cara - I have no problem with people who choose to put their accounts on vacation getting wishlist notifications.

But let's be real, the vast majority of vacationed accounts are due to failure to respond to a request, and they should not be getting wishlist notifications.

One of the root problems of the site is there is no differentiation between the two types of "vacations"

Becca
3 years ago
Yes, I think it's fairly safe to say that people putting their account on vacation for a month or two is *completely* different then the (many, many) people who haven't logged in to this site for 2+ years! Someone who has put their account on vacation because of budgetting or whatever, I completely understand them still recieving wishlist-notices. But for someone who hasn't logged on in *over 1000 days* (yes, I've seen it before), it seems really unfair and frustrating that *they* might get a wishlist email before dedicated moochers who actually want to participate in this site!

Admin doesn't seem to want to admit that inactive accounts are a problem here, and until they admit that and actually do something about it, it will just keep being a problem. The clean-up project does a wonderful job in vacationing inactive inventories, but the wishlist is still there, and as far as we know those people are still getting randomly selected for those wishlist emails. Which means that other people, especially the people who complain that they never get wishlist emails, have a very good reason for those complaints.

Heather
3 years ago
I understand why the point change was made, but I don't like it. I just can't fathom spending three points on one book, when I could just have a little patience and mooch it domestically for one point.

It generally costs me about $3 for every book I send, which is for one point. So, it basically costs me $9 or so (three points) to mooch one book internationally. In most cases (mass paperbacks), you can buy the book new for less than that. I just can't spend that much money on one used book. That's not to say I wouldn't do it in special circumstances, such as for a rare or out-of-print book, but not for the vast majority of books.

Kathlib the Prophet
3 years ago
I don't have a problem with the change to mooching points. My biggest problem is the added $9.00 (terrorist charge) that is added to books over 450g. I am a big international moocher and I do not enjoy rejecting mooches from people and friends I mooch to because certain books are too heavy. I cannot justify spending between $25.00 to $40.00 to post a book I only paid $20.00 for. Debbie Australia
Debbie
3 years ago
I don't want to hurt anyone's feelings but some people are taking this site and everything about it way too serious...as if someone forced you to offer your books here or as if it was some kind of job to keep this place alive.

I think that one of the main points is that you cannot even put a value on the points here. Depending on the value of each book you offer or mooch and the shipping costs to each country you send books to, they can have different values. And if you mooch and send more than one book per month, you can't even tell if you got "your money's worth".

Personally, I'm gonna keep using this place like I did before: Sell most of my books on the internet or give them to friends and put the rest up here. Yes, I admit that I prefer to sell my books because it's quicker and easier because, with the service I sell them to, I get to send out 10 or more books at once. The main reason for me to even use services like that or Bookmooch is that I have limited space and every now and then I need to "get rid" of books. There's no really good way of doing so by giving them to a library or local charities here so I found other ways. Now, I could just throw books into the trash if I can't sell them but then I figured someone somewhere may want them so I put them up here. I don't even care if I get to mooch as many books or where I get them from. I keep mine in my inventory and if someone mooches from me, that's great. If they don't...well, that is fine with me, too. But I won't throw a fit about changes like this here. Honestly, if you see BM as a reliable source to quickly satisfy your need for a certain book, you're usually wrong anyway. Sometimes, it takes ages for a copy of a book on your wishlist to be listed. And sometimes books will spend months in your inventory before someone mooches them. But so what? What else will you do with them that will get you more money or more of the good feeling of making someone happy by sending them "that one stupid little ancient book"? :)

Kathy
3 years ago
Kathy: If you like BookMooch and want to continue using this place like you did before, then this change *should* matter to you. It has already been proven that this change is forcing people to leave, people who simply cannot afford 3 points per mooch and who live in places where international is really the only option.

People who don't care about this change personally, should think about what it will mean for the website as a whole in the long run. Even if this change only negatively affects 40% of us (I'm pulling that number out of the air), that means that in the long run, BookMooch will be FOURTY-PERCENT less active as it is now. If only 3% of international moochers leave because of this change, that's still a *huge* number of books being pulled from the overall inventory.

So if you don't care about this point-change personally, that's fine. But at least try to understand why some of us do. I love BookMooch, and I think it's frustrating and sad that people are being forced to leave because of this change. I love using this site, but if this change negatively affects even a small percentage of users, in the long-run this site is going to be that much less active then it used to be. And *that* *does* affect *everyone*.

And for everyone who keeps saying that they'll still send internationally and this won't affect them: It *will* affect you when people stop *mooching* internationally because of this change.

Heather
3 years ago
Anyone remember how John said he /might/ change this again if it was too much of a problem? I doubt he will, but if, as you say Heather, this dramatically introduces a problem to the catalogue, we will be hearing and discussing a new change to be introduced.

At the moment, as I believe I've said before, this change has actually made me more willing to send books I was 'hoarding' before. I may be spending a dollar more, per point per ratio per whatever, than if I bought it used, but I like not having to use my credit card online. I also come across books I never would have seen on here. When moochers offer a two for one deal? I feel obligated to check it out, and ultimately mooch.

ljpbb
3 years ago
Something I would love would be the ability to specify by book which titles I would be willing to send internationally. From Australia, it makes a big difference what the weight of the book is, and slim books are cheap to send overseas, normal sized books are *expensive*. I think 3/3 points is fair enough. The inflation in Bookmooch has really lowered the quality of the books available, to the point that I now rarely mooch as I was having trouble spending my points. Looking forward to seeing what effect this will have on the books in the system in coming months.
Emma White
3 years ago
I'm sad to see that this change went into effect. :( It is hard enough to get English language books here, or to find someone willing to send to Japan. I thought it was so much fun sending my books around the world when I joined, but I'm seeing more people with "only to my country" on their bios and have had a hard time getting anything on my wishlist from the get-go. The new system makes it even harder for those of us not living in Anglophone countries.
VIcki
3 years ago
Vicki, do you take part in the Angel Network at all? Lots of people are willing to ship overseas after mooching within their country.

And maybe for Canadians we can do the silly thing and mooch out of Canada and then ship back into Canada? :B

ljpbb
3 years ago
Jo et al.
I have sent to Brazil, to Venezuela & to Trinidad & Tobago (I had fun explaining that last one to the post office clerk). I don't know exactly what each cost because I usually take a a batch of books (as many as I can carry) to the P.O., so I just average out the total price by the number of books.
I did order a very old paperback from one the Amazon clones (Abebooks or Alibris, I forget which one) and with the postage it cost me almost $18 (U.S.). I'd rather spend the money on cementing international relations and exchanging books. Also, somewhere in Book Mooch land a kindred spirit is posting an obscure book which I would never find on Amazon et al.
NinaBryna
3 years ago
And maybe for Canadians we can do the silly thing and mooch out of Canada and then ship back into Canada? :B Some of us have actually done that: sent a book to a bookmooching buddy in the States and asked, when they finished reading it, could they send it next to another friend in Canada. Also, many of us save mailings for within Canada to mail when we are in the U.S. for work or pleasure. I have received quite a few packages over the years from fellow Canadians that were mailed from the U.S.A.
Cara
3 years ago
@Cara
Glad to see some positive steps to alleviate the problem are being taken. Gill
tennantfamily
3 years ago
Emma, I am set to Worldwide, but when I have a book that's too heavy to send internationally, I simply say so in my condition notes. If heavy books form a large proportion of your inventory, then set yourself to "ask first" and you'll be able to control which books you send.
RidgewayGirl
3 years ago
This system, as has been said by many others, places those of us living in small (non-English speaking) countries at a huge disadvantage. It's rarely been possible for me to mooch domestically and therefore I feel penalized by the new system.
As it's expensive to ship books internationally, the third point seemed fair compensation. I don't see why the point inflation was problematic- in my experience it also led to people kindly offering to smooch points. Part of the nice "community" feel mentioned above.
I understand the financial hesitation for people to send books internationally, but don't see what would be gained or how this would be changed by making the moocher pay more.
I sincerely hope the old system will be reinstated after this trial period.
penelopewanders
3 years ago
I haven't managed to read all of this, but I've updated my status stating that European International moochers will get a smooch back from me when they confirm receipt. I enjoy sharing books with those that can't easily get hold of English copies so am doing my bit. Not that I have a lot of inventory on here at the moment, but do add things in batches when I have spare cash.

I am trying to cut down on my book intake so giving up points isn't a problem to me!

Ellie
3 years ago
Christina Cat said - I've been debating with myself if being 'ask first' and saying yes to 90% of international mooches...or just going 'will send' and turning down mooches for the overly large & heavy books is better. I feel bad rejecting mooches.

To avoid this situation, when I list a book that is too large or heavy to ship overseas, I put a note in the conditions that the book is too heavy to ship international. That keeps me from having to reject mooches.

LaVonne
3 years ago
I'm also willing to return a point to international moochers to help them get the books they need.
Carole
3 years ago
I've asked this before, but what the heck. In the Inactive Accounts Clean-up Project the Canadian's helping have been going through the country list alphabetically while the American's, U.K. and French members can go through their lists geographically. This would be more helpful for Canadians than anyone else. Some hapless Bookmoocher in Halifax (Google it) is going to end up mailing me a copy of a Dan Brown or John Grisham that I don't really need for $12 or else having to reject the mooch just so I can wake up the account. If I could just mooch from people in my province and ask people in the other provinces to help it would be much better for everyone. Also, it would be easier finding books in our country that we can mooch and setting up moochmeets, two ways that Bookmooch might be made to work for Canadians. thank you for considering this change.
Cara
3 years ago
I got this message from a member interested in helping with Inactive Accounts Clean-up Project , does anyone know the answer?

Now that John has increased the amount of credits to 3 to mooch
internationally (something I very much do not agree with), I remember that in his original blog about doing this a few months ago he mentioned a trial period --I'm not sure if he's still doing a trial period, but if he is -- are all the inactive account clean-up requests that are international going to make it look to him (when he looks at statistics for this period) as if mooching internationally is alive and well (even thriving) and not affected at all by the increase in price? I'm worried that he won't take into account all the accounts put on vacation because of no response, and act as if these are legitimate mooches made.... and I very much do not want him to look at this traffic and use it as an excuse or reason to continue the 3 points for an international mooch. Or is there any way statistically for these mooches to be separated out, as they never actually went thru....
Cara
3 years ago
@Cara, I think your suggestion for listing Canadian provinces separately is one that would be very valuable to our Canadian members, and should be prioritised.
tennantfamily
3 years ago
A few months ago, I contributed 10 points to an 'angel fund'.
Now that this change has come into effect, are angels now receiving an extra point for each mooch from this fund?
Dorit
3 years ago
I'm sincerely impressed by the amount of kind, generous people willing to return one point to international moochers, BUT (and I'm speaking against my own interest):

Honestly I don't think is fair for people to try to compensate the faults in the "new system" by giving away their own points, ie money!

If people think that the "new system" is at fault, okay, let's prove it. Let's adopt the new rule as it is supposed to be, let's play the game as John asks us to play, no "special offers" or discounts for anybody besides the ones already in place before the change. Int'l mooches will probably be affected and then, at the end of the test period, we'll see what conclusions John drives out of the results.

If we all go on acting by good will, there's the risk John sees int'l mooches go on more or less like before, so that he will conclude everything is fine with the new rule.

MarchRose
3 years ago
@MarchRose I take your point, but if the results are already skewed by the clean-up inactive accounts campaign, then this will already be fantastically skewed. Also not being generous if one can afford to be may just drive more moochers to leave altogether.
tennantfamily
3 years ago
Like others, I think this is a real shame. I will not be mooching from overseas any more - just within the UK. In the past couple of years I have read some really interesting books - mostly from the USA - which are not available in the UK. Many I have passed on to other UK moochers. These are now closed to me.
pamela biss
3 years ago
I live in Greece and I obviously depend on other countries to mooch books thus I will continue both mooching internationally no matter what the cost in points and sending internationally as well.
This new system may actually be a positive thing and let me explain my thoughts: I've noticed that many US bookmooch members refuse to post outside the US but have no qualms mooching from abroad because it has only cost them 2 points up to now. Although I have never refused a mooch I find this quite annoying as there a lots of books I'd like to mooch but can't because of this refusal to post outside one's country. Thus with the new system maybe US members with either start sending internationally to earn more points which they will need to mooch internationally or they will stop mooching indiscriminately and choose more carefully, thus leaving our books for needier countries (meaning countries where particular books are harder to find).
Let's give it a try and see what happens.
Michelle
3 years ago
I read the first comment that explained it, but I'm not sure I understand why the inactive account clean up will 'skew' the rate of international mooches?
ljpbb
3 years ago
It could, in that some people are mooching from members outside their own country who are set to 'ask first' or 'worldwide'. The fact that these mooches wouldn't necessarily have taken place without the inactives clean-up, and that some people will receive books as a result, may have some effect, but it remains to be seen how large the effect will be.
donna
3 years ago
The much larger issue that will definitely skew the results will be due to those members who are totally disillusioned and fed up. Those who plan to use up all their points as fast as they reasonably can (whether domestic or international) and then close their accounts and leave BookMooch for good. There have been a number of members already indicate that this is their intention.

There is no way that TPTB can separate these international mooches from those of continuing members, so any "results" that transpire after the three months are up will need to be interpreted with that in mind.

crimson-tide
3 years ago
I think our main concern is that 90 percent of these inactive mooches are never completed because we cancel them after 7 days of no response. The hope is that those are not seen as a successful mooch despite the cancellation.
Sarah
3 years ago
They're definitely not successful, but my understanding is that they are still included in the mooch statistics...
crimson-tide
3 years ago
@ CRIMSON-TIDE

Oh, I agree, that will be an issue. I actually hadn't realized it, but that will /look/ like a burst of activity, but perhaps it can be localized? And I mean, John may be too busy to answer, but he and admins do read most things on this site, especially blog comments. Someone invloved with TPTB knows...

Also, I would assume unfinished mooches are not listed the same in statistics? Do we have someone interested in doing stastics about Bookmooch reading still or did we lose them.

(I love the fact that someone introduced TPTB as a way to speak of...
Cult TV FTW!)

ljpbb
3 years ago
cancelled mooch requests still count as a completed mooch towards your mooch ratio, so i would assume they still count in any other statistics as well.
sophiesoph
3 years ago
I send a LOT of my international mooches to America and I will not be smooching back points to them so I don't think my small act of kindness to European moochers is going to make a huge difference to the stats.
Ellie
3 years ago
I really don't think the Inactive Accounts Clean-up Project will skew the statistics that much. Most inactives are "ask first" or "my country" and there are only a few of us doing a few worldwide requests. We are trying to find helpers in each of the countries to mooch domestically (hint hint).
Cara
3 years ago
sophiesoph, I have canceled 56 requests and they don't show up in my ratio after I cancel them. Only the pending ones show up.
Sarah
3 years ago
i just know if i click 'books mooched' on my profile, it includes cancelled mooches, which were not actually mooched. without counting through all the details i can't be sure if they're included or not, but it seems they are. maybe i'm wrong and the fact that they show up in the 'books mooched' detail is just misleading...
sophiesoph
3 years ago
I see what you mean sophie, books that I cancel still show up on my "books mooched" page too. That page shows 100+ for me, but the number after the link only says 49 and my ratio shows 73 because I have 24 pending. So I'm pretty sure mooches you cancel do not affect your ratio.
Sarah
3 years ago
I noticed that I am listed as a moocher on the page about the book even f I never received the book due to time out, rejection, etc. I mean when you click on the book and are shown copies available and then the previous givers and moochers are listed. I noticed that I am listed as a moocher and/or giver even though the trade was never completed. I noticed this when I was trying to find a book so I checked out previous moochers to see if I could email them and I saw I was listed. So I would think that rejected or canceled mooching requests are in the statistics.
Roo
3 years ago
As another moocher from a country with a very small amount of Bookmoochers (active members not even reach 10 people), I just want to say that I'm disappointed.

But if it's the way this site must go, then I'll acquiesce.

I hope the BM bank is getting stronger after this ;p

Any news on regional mooch, John? I think Indonesian moochers like me could get books from Philippines or Australian moochers, vv.

Silvana
3 years ago
Roo: All mooches, successful or not, show up on the work's pages and in the people's history pages, so I guess that *all* mooches would count in the overall BookMooch statistics. However, unsuccessful mooches do not count toward mooch-ratio or anything like that, and I'm sure that it wouldn't be all that hard for John to pull together statistics of *actual* successful mooches instead of *all* mooches.
Heather
3 years ago
@Heather. Not all requests though surely? The hundreds of mooch requests I have made to "ask first" Bookmoochers who never respond and wait until the request week expires and then take a local mooch, those surely do not show up on anyone's history?
tennantfamily
3 years ago
I was not very happy with the changes though I really have enough points for the next years lol. But now I don't care anymore. I just saw the new prices from the Austrian post for sending national and (especially) international, just insane. Sending anything with more than 24mm thickness international will cost EUR 13,60, and there is still the weight restriction of 2000g. I do not want to request international moochers to mooch at least 3 books, but please under 2000g. It's so SAD that increasing prices are ruining the joy of being part of the great BM community. I've been here for more than 3 years, and I love this site, but I will probably spend my points and then close my account.
Sandra
3 years ago
@Gill & Mark Tennant "Ask first" currently doesn't leave a track, while some of them may legitimately end up in spam filters I suspect that this tracklessness also makes some people quite complacent about just letting them rot.
Aude
3 years ago
@Aude
My feeling exactly. Gill
tennantfamily
3 years ago
Yeah, "ask first" requests aren't actual mooches, they are pre-mooch asks, so they don't get recorded. They also don't show up anywhere at all on BookMooch, which is something we've complained about many times and is supposedly going to change sooner or later.
Heather
3 years ago
@Sandra, the 2kg limit is a feature of the international treaties which govern postal systems.
mfkirke
3 years ago
I haven't checked the blog forum so now I just mooched an international book and I was surprised to see I have less 3 points.
I'll keep asking internationally but there will be a point where I won't have points anymore, so...
I'm not against the new system, but it's a reality it's a much bigger change for those who have few points than for those with lots of them.
Sónia
3 years ago
The problem I have with the new system is, I guess, rare among the majority here, living in the States, Canada, Europe or, well, what we could call the "developed countries".
I live in Peru and, as you can see for yourselves if you look for people from my country here on Bookmooch, there are like three (including me) active members that I could mooch from locally. So far, this means that I'm simply not able to mooch books locally an my sole source of point "income" is international mooching/sending.
With the old system, this kinda worked right. I got 3 points for every book I sent (and sending books from here isn't very cheap; I pay at least $12 to send a 250g-or-less book) but I could only use these points to mooch internationally. Doing a bit of math, this resulted in about $8 a book (assuming I was sending small books, if not, this could go up to $14 a book) and I got basically paperbacks that I'm sure I could get for cheaper (or for about the same price, not taking into account the risk of the book getting lost in the mail) if only they sold them in my country.
The reason I kept mooching is that I liked the idea of getting "rare" (for Peru) books from strangers around the world. I really like the idea behind Bookmooch, but I think my problem may be a problem in other small countries with similar lack of books and similar high mailing costs.
Having said all that, I will continue mooching and sending (for as long as I can), I just wanted to give you guys a different perspective on how things are for everyone.
Alfonso
3 years ago
I wonder whether the problem really is with the new points regime - which everyone can see is a 'fair' system of a book for a book, or whether we are not all getting too wrapped up in relative costs.
We joined Bookmooch initially because we had a few thousand books we wanted to 'lose', so that our children did not have the impossible job of disposing of many thousands of books when we die, as we did with our parents. 50p per book for all my father's books, most of which were hardback first editions - well I know we were swindled by the dealer, and I would rather have given them to people who wanted them!


It always strikes me the real problem is ratio.


We can give away points, but if the member's ratio will not support it then the problems Alfonso is experiencing arise. I have frequently refused to give or loan points, because I can see it would push the requester's ratio well over the 2:1 allowed, and that would do them no favours.


I think it would help the feeling of Bookmooch, where there is still a lot of generosity and wish to give, if we could also give away ratio!
tennantfamily
3 years ago
I agree about the ratio. I think some kind of adjustment needs to be made for people in countries like Peru or the Philippines who end up being net importers of books, especially English language books.
Cara
3 years ago
Perhaps this is another point to support regional/continental mooching? (obviously another ball game entirely for AU) In this case, 2 points for moochee from moocher (no inflation) within region?

Does anyone think this might help Peru, the Philippines, et c.?

ljpbb
3 years ago
A regional/continental partition would be useless to me. I live somewhere between New Zealand and Easter Island (or, say, between Australia and South America), but for some reason it's cheaper for me to send to the USA, to Canada or even to France than to Australia.
hayashi
3 years ago
Mostly postal systems mean that postage is cheaper within continents - Europe for instance, and that may also be true for South America and for Asia and Australasia too. If that were to be brought in I would think it would be wise to ask for input as to which continent to include countries in where there are very small numbers of moochers.
Nessa, since you are the only moocher from your country if two-point continental mooching were introduced, I would suggest you would be asked which was the most sensible continent to include you in - and you could then opt to be included with North America.
For me in the UK surface mail prices are identical to Eire (Southern Ireland) which is an hour ferry ride away, and to Australia, on the opposite side of the globe - but for most of Europe it is cheaper, and so a good suggestion.
tennantfamily
3 years ago
Actually, here in Germany it's 100%. In Germany there is a book rate, and it's cheap. Outside of Germany it's the exact same price whether it's next door to France, or all the way to the Philippines. I'm not sure how the point change will affect me, but I'm trying hard to keep things going internationally. It can be a bit scary to see the point evaporate quite so quickly when someone has a few books you want.
Robin
3 years ago
@Gill. Yes, if a continental partition were implemented, it would be great to be able to choose which continent to be included in. I wonder whether there are many countries with a postal system as "strange" as ours, though...
hayashi
3 years ago
Situation update:

postage prices have doubled in my country, and the new weight limits means the price has trippled for overseas mooches. Sending a pocket book overseas now costs twice to three times as much as buying it - so instead of mailing I might as well pay the moocher - but buying strangers books for nothing (since I cannot get anything for my points these days) is insane. Not sure how I can continue.

irisin
3 years ago
@Lynn Herron
I believe that however much one enjoys programming it is impossible to devise an entirely 'fair' system for points. I have to use a gallon of petrol to get to a Post Office, for example, and people's incomes vary widely, as does their desire to share their books.
Postal rates also change - France has just had such a hike in internal mail costs that French moochers will not send internally too in many cases. It's not very green, but in order for a French student to get her books, they were sent to me in the UK so I could return them to France!
It goes to show that despite their words many businesses and governments are not serious about reducing their carbon footprint.

As for UK postage Lynn, surface mail is the same price to anywhere in the world from the U.K. for printed paper and packages. Surface mail to France takes about 2 weeks, the same as most of my US mail, to Australia and the Philippines normally about 4 months.: see
http://www2.royalmail.com/delivery/delivery-options-international/surface-mail/prices

tennantfamily
3 years ago
@Lynn Heron I certainly hope it helps you Lynn. I generally use either the fairly local PO branch where there is a whizz behind the counter who often serves three people at once, or an independent PO 20 miles from here but near where I teach, who are extremely helpful and very happy that I present them with 99% ready stamped with customs labels and proof of posting filled in ready for them to just stamp. I agree some retrained supermarket staff find the system difficult - the options on the RM site doesn't exactly advertise the cheaper options!
tennantfamily
3 years ago
The last book I sent overseas coast me $16 to send--The user could buy the book from Thriftbooks.com or Amazon for 1/3 that price including shipping. It's also difficult to get bookmoochers from abroad to send books to the US so I guess we are all at a draw.
bjr711
2 years ago
The user could buy the book from Thriftbooks.com or Amazon for 1/3 that price including shipping.

If you can't afford international shipping I completely understand, many people can't at this point in time. But please don't use the "it's cheaper for the moocher to just buy it" because that's not always an option.

I mooch internationally when I have to, because mooching is often my only option. I don't have the luxury of being able to order from Amazon/etc, because I don't have a credit card or Paypal account and cannot get one. I have points to mooch with, but I do not have the extra $20-30 to buy a book new from the bookstore.

If people can't afford to ship internationally that's fine. But I get very frustrated when users say that they don't want to ship internationally because the moocher can buy the book for cheaper then the shipping cost (There is a small group of users who use that excuse constantly). Sometimes buying simply isn't an option for us.

Heather
2 years ago
Actually Amazon charges $7 shipping per book in my country (Canada). Thriftbooks charges $3 which is better but puts the price of the used mass market paperbacks at as much or more as they would be new. And the shipping is even more to other countries. So no, it wouldn't be cheaper for many of us to buy it from Amazon or Thriftbooks.
Cara
2 years ago
@Heather. Totally agree, plus many books are not available in all countries. If one lives in a place without access to Amazon (credit cards from many countries are not allowed on Amazon, I know as a seller) or the book is not published in the member's country, then Bookmooch can be a lifeline. I have sent older books to the USA, amongst other places, which were available in the UK but not in the US!
Remember there are no car boot sales, bookshops or yard sales for many people.
tennantfamily
2 years ago
I'm sure I am not alone in giving far more books that I receive - we were lucky enough to have a large family generations of whom have been booklovers, and I like to share that around with those who did not. I give many of my points away to charities, I enjoy giving more than receiving.
Now I journal here, and journalling really is a way in which one can give and receive sustainably. It is also a source of great pleasure to many people in Bookmooch.
Anyone who is interested can go to the following urls for more information:

The_BookMooch_Journal_Project site page about how journalling works: COLOR = BLUE> http://bookmoochjournals.com/about/

the Bookmooch Wiki entry on journalling:
The_BookMooch_Journal_Project

and BookMooch Journals forum:
BookMooch Journals

The forum is a good place to advertise the availability of journals. (It is also sensible to check that anyone requesting a journal from you understands what journalling involves. Journal owners spend a lot of time and effort on their journals and it is sad when they do not circulate freely. We'd love to see potential journallers in the forum! It is not a high traffic zone, you won't be overwhelmed with messages!

tennantfamily
2 years ago
Why would you be able to reject a mooch like that? No, you can't reject a mooch just because they don't have anything you want. BM is not a book-for-book trading site, you get points instead of the direct-trade that some sites do. What the moocher does or doesn't have in their inventory makes no difference.
Heather
2 years ago
Maybe that's a leftover comment from when they DID have inventory ?
peachfuzz
2 years ago
On the subject of points. I notice lots of moochers have a lot of points they don't seem to be using. I myself, when I find I'm getting a pile and not using them I give them to new users who don't have many getting started, sending not only good wishes and welcome but helpful at the same time. They're usually very grateful.
June
2 years ago
This is a truly generous gesture. And it rebounds to all of us; by enabling new members to mooch more books, it helps to keep our books moving so that we can get the points to mooch others.
I hope your idea will spread.
NinaBryna
2 years ago
@June - beware getting people into difficulty by doing this. If moochers are given points, especially newbies, and are keen to get books, they are likely to exceed the permitted ratio of 2:1. If that happens you may be getting them suspended (and these suspensions can be permanent) because they will mooch more books than they are allowed on their current ratio.

I do the same as you from my personal account but always check that the recipient's ratio will bear it first. It is worth warning new users of this fact, as many fall foul of it. There are a lot of generous moochers out there. Unfortunately when you give away points, you cannot also give away ratio.

Bookmooch Journal Library Charity
2 years ago

Write a comment




Join this forum

Receive this thread by email

Security check: type the name of the author displayed in the image below

SAVE YOUR COMMENT >