PaperBackSwap Blog

Archive for September, 2008

Dear Members, Newsletter – September 2008

Monday, September 8th, 2008

Ah, September.  Summer’s over…back to school…the weather will be mild for a while longer.  What could be better?
September is a lot of things: National Library Card Sign-up Month, National Pediculosis Prevention Month (you don’t want to know!),  National Read-a-New-Book Month, National Hispanic Heritage Month, National Better Breakfast Month.  It contains the holidays National Newspaper Carriers’ Day,  National Grandparents’ Day (this Sunday!), International Literacy Day, POW/MIA Recognition Day (the third Friday of the month) and Patriot Day (the eleventh, of course).  Past Septembers saw these new inventions appear: the safety pin, Scooby-Doo, the department store, the first edition of the New York Times….September is a month of beginnings and remembrances, of starting new and also looking back.
We are looking back at 4 years of PaperBackSwap! Yes, we launched in September 2004.  Since then the club has grown beyond anything we could have expected.  Nearly 4 million books have been swapped between members; innumerable features have been added; sister swapping sites for CDs and DVDs were launched; we’ve been mentioned in more media outlets than we can name–major magazines, innumerable blogs, television news spots, even the Wall Street Journal!  During all this, we have “met” a ton of people whom we think of fondly as family.  Our members have been so patient as we work to improve the site.  Members who started out with us will recall that in the beginning we didn’t even have Personal Messaging!  We’ve come a long way.  And everything we do starts with the members–you tell us how you use the site, what’s not working for you, what you’d like to see–and we listen, and look at the issue from all angles, and try hard to find a way to solve the problems and implement the suggestions.  Sometimes it takes a while to get to something (our To Do list is huge!) but rest assured that if we can do something, and it will benefit the membership, we’ll find a way to do it.
We think of every feature we add, every improvement, as a kind of “present” to our members.  We really try to make this site better wherever we can.  See “NEWS” below for the new features this month–sorry we didn’t have time to wrap!
Happy Birthday to all of us!
Richard and
The PaperBackSwap Team

New Features: Newsletter – September 2008

Sunday, September 7th, 2008

Happy Birthday to PaperBackSwap.  Looky looky at your presents.  No, you can’t exchange them.  No, we don’t have them in a different color.  Click What’s New at the top of any page on the site, or go to the Help Center and read the items under What’s New to keep up with what features have been newly added to the site.

Bookshelf Header. New feature.  The Bookshelf Header allows you to add a custom, publicly-viewable message at the top of your PBS Bookshelf.  You can introduce yourself – give an overview of the types of books you have –  comment about a specific book you have posted – invite members to join your Game in the Games Forum – or just say Hello!  Read more about this feature here.

Book Notes. New feature. Book Notes allow you to write a private (only you can see it) note on any book in the database.  No matter where you are on the site when you apply the note, you will see the note (which appears as a yellow sticky-note applied to the book cover) pretty much everywhere you see the book, and putting your cursor over it will show the note. Read more about this feature here.

Yahoo Address Book LinkNew Feature.  We have had terrible trouble with Yahoo not delivering PBS emails lately.  The Yahoo server will accept the auto-emails from our server but then doesn’t deliver them!  This is at least partly being caused by Yahoo members clicking “Mark as Spam” on PBS emails (which can affect the reception of PBS emails for ALL Yahoo users at PBS).  Adding the PBS auto-email addresses to your Yahoo address book should solve this problem for an individual member.  We have provided a link for our members who use Yahoo.  Go to your Account Settings in My Account, and beside your email address (if you use Yahoo) will be this link: Yahoo Mail users: Click here to ensure receipt of PBS emails. Click that, sign into Yahoo if you need to, click on the next page, you’re done.  That will keep those Wish List offers and book request emails coming to you.

Upgraded Features: Newsletter – September 2008

Saturday, September 6th, 2008

Update to the Bulk Request feature. Upgraded feature.  Now when a member adds a book to the request she or he has submitted to you, you will be told that you need to reprint the wrapper to include all of the books.  This will make everything much clearer, and make it easier to send multiple books in one shipment to save postage.  No need to read more about this feature; it makes everything simpler and you don’t have to do anything to use it–it will work automatically.

Push a Book. New last month, but hey! we don’t think members noticed this. You can now suggest a book to a Buddy that she or he might like to read. The Suggest option is available from the dropdown menu under More Options on the Book Details page.   You can see all the books that have been suggested to you in a new My Lists item in the menu under My Account; you can order from there (this will order from the suggester, if the book is on the suggester’s bookshelf when you click the Order this Book button on the suggestion), and you can also click “Not Interested” to remove any item from the list.  Check it out!  Read more about the Suggest a Book feature here.

SHOUT-OUTS: Newsletter – September 2008

Friday, September 5th, 2008

Calling all RVers: SmiLynnLady (Lynn P) is a full-time RVer, and loving it!  She wants to know how many other full-time RVers we have in the club.  Click her nickname above to go to her profile on PBS and send her a Personal Message, like a virtual honking of your horn to say Hello!   According to Lynn, there are a “million + Americans living full-time in our RVs, and… PBS meets our special needs for books-on-the-go!” For those who don’t know, RV = recreational vehicle.  If you have to ask, you don’t have one!  Also if you have to ask, you might want one!  Contact Lynn to find out more about this lifestyle, and who knows!  You might be joining the “road crew” sometime soon.

Heartfelt thanks. LoveBeingMOM (Shai G.) wrote us to say “I want to thank the wonderful members of PBS for their support during the difficult time my family is experiencing. Many members have offered prayers, best wishes, are sending items for my husband and son, giving credits. The emotional support I am receiving is of great help. I am proud to be a member of PBS.” Aw, Shai.  Our members are so wonderful and we wish you the best.

Cookbook Update: Newsletter – September 2008

Thursday, September 4th, 2008

We have a message from Sherry (royaltech), who is editing the PBS Cookbook.  She is very sorry that her illness has slowed this down, but she has an energetic assistant editor now who is helping push the project through to completion. Thanks, Elizabeth (Cattriona), for your help with this!

Sherry said:

“Hi PBS,   I know that many members are questioning by now, where those cookbooks are that were expected to be finished and ready to be mailed by the end of March.   While many knew I was very sick over the winter and this was slowing down the production on my end, many don’t know that we found the reason. I have now had a double mastectomy, and have started my chemotherapy, which will be followed by radiation.   This does not mean that work has stopped on the cookbook, it simply means I’m slower. I expected to heal much faster from the surgery, but that turned out to be wishful thinking.  The best news tho, is that I now have a helper, and she will be working with me on the layout and I expect us to be able to have this ready to go to the printer very soon. Very soon, as in a couple weeks! I will update in the topic PBS Cookbook News also.   I want everyone to know that this is an absolutely fabulous cookbook that they are waiting on. I know it’s hard to be out the money for the book and not have it come in, but if they will think of it more as being on their wishlist, and a guaranteed granted book, maybe that will help them hold out 🙂   I hope this helps and that everyone will just be able to hold tight and watch the topic above for news and updates on how the book is coming along.   Sincerely, Your biggest fan!” – Sherry N. (royaltech)

Vinyl Stickers are back!  Vinyl Stickers are back!

Books You May Have Missed: Newsletter – September 2008

Wednesday, September 3rd, 2008

Many of you know Lori G, auntielala-thebookpimp, from the Forums.  Her book recommendations get rave reviews.  So many members have been helped by reading Lori’s recommendations that we asked her to send us some.

Two Books Lori Recommends:

Stripped by Brian Freeman – “fantastic!!!!”
Immoral by Brian Freeman – “must read!!!!”

Two Cozy Mystery Authors Lori Recommends:

Victoria Thompson – Gaslight Series.  See this author’s bibliography here.
Cleo Coyle – Coffee house series. See this author’s bibliography here.

Two Romantic Suspense Authors Lori Recommends:

Hunter Morgan
Allison Brennan

Member of the Month- September 2008

Tuesday, September 2nd, 2008


Nominations for Tammy have been coming in since we began the MoM feature.  Some of the comments we got about Tammy:

“She always has something insightful to say with a twist of humor. She often lightens the mood on the forums.”

“She is a kind woman, who does nice things for people without flaunting it. I think that it would be great for her to get some recognition for everything that she has brought to the PBS community. I can’t say enough about what a great friend that she has been to so many of us, and how much she has brightened up the place by sharing her humor and her fabulous story telling abilities. I love Tammy, and I think she should be Member of the Month.”

Tammy, clearly the monkey avatar is not the only thing that is rockin’ about you! You are our Member of the Month for August. Congratulations!

If you have any nominations for Member of the Month,
submit them to us here.  Your nomination will not “expire”–anyone you nominate will have a chance at getting Member of the Month if enough nominations accumulate over time. Each month the person who has the most votes accumulated when the Newsletter goes to press gets to be Member of the Month and gets a newsletter mention and a nifty MoM icon to wear on profile and forum posts with pride.  So go for it! Tell us who’s helped you in the Forums, who’s been a great swapper, who in your opinion is a credit to PBS.  We are keeping a list of all the nominated members.  Who knows–one of them might be YOU!