Oct 8, 2012

Oh, Canada.

Well, I must say that was an interesting survey. Lots of varied responses. However despite some of the comments, the actual tally was surprisingly positive.

Now because when we created the survey we didn't have everything as thought out as we do now, so let me address some reoccurring concerns I saw in the responses. And let's use bullet points for them.
  1. I would NEVER EVER require anyone to ship to Canada. I did state in the form that it would not be a requirement, but perhaps grey doesn't stand out against blue and no one saw that. Guys, if I don't require you to donate or even review the books you get (the thing that matters to me most), how can I require you to spend more money? See, I can't.
  2. With the option being, well, an OPTION, not sending a book to a Requester once it has been requested is like the worst thing ever. Even if you are in Montreal and the Requester is in Alberta, you cannot say "Oh, JK, I just want to ship to Montrealians only." NO. You will feel my glare all the way from Texas, I promise you that. If you agree to US/CA, then you will ship either to Georgia or British Columbia.
  3. I am aware it costs more to ship in Canada. Canadians, MEDIA MAIL DOES NOT EXIST FOR INTERNATIONAL SHIPPING. Seriously. Please know that. Americans, if you pre-purchase padded envelopes at Wal-Mart, it's cheaper. Also, when you go to mail, you can legit go to the counter and say "Hey, this is going to Quebec, and it needs to go the cheapest way possible." Unless your post office is ridiculously maniacal, they will give you the cheapest way, which should be about $12. About the price of mailing two media mail packages in the US.
  4. A number of you suggested Canadians help paying for shipping. While it's a valid point, it gets horribly, horribly complicated. Paypal, fees, then the whole web of me acting as a platform, while my Donators are actually shipping. It gets really confusing, really fast, so unfortunately, we're gonna have to keep it the way it is, as an act of charity. 
  5. Lastly, there needs to a certain kind of balance. There were a few suggestions like, "Oh, Americans should ship to Canadians, but we shouldn't have to ship back" and the basic principle of fairness is being neglected here. If we don't have willing Donators or Requesters, that's one thing, but to shut off the option entirely? No. Money aside, that doesn't make sense.
That being said, I'm going to refine some of these ideas. These are not the official rules YET, but here's something what they would be like:
  1. For American Donators, you can donate books to be American only or US/ CA. This means if a book is US/CA it can either go to an American or a Canadian.
  2. There will be a Canada to Canada ONLY option. Since Americans get US to US only, it's only fair you guys get a CA to CA only, yeah? Right now it's not really possible for us to keep track of shipping and receiving province because, guys, OMGs, my spreadsheets can only do so much. I still have to interpret them and provinces is a bit too much at this stage.
  3. Someone suggested a limit on books being shipped to Canada, while you Canadians might not like this, I think I agree. Right now, I'm thinking one book per Canadian per two week period.
Now,  I'm going to ask for your opinions one more time. This survey is, as Jack Sparrow says, much more better than the last. A lot more specific and clear. Guys, surveys are hard to make! If responses continue to be positive, we do a TRIAL. Which means I will put some books up to be US/CA and see how it goes. Then we'll move on from there. Whew, no one ever said international relations were easy...