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Dan Gould

The USPS SUCKS

210 posts in this topic

I know it can't just be me ... lately I've had the experience of items that don't get scanned until they suddenly show up, but this latest takes the cake. Order placed, Priority Mail, with Da Bastards Tuesday March 10th. Shipping confirmation received Wednesday March 11. See the attachment for how the USPS handled it since then.

Yes, 11 days for it to be scanned at the main sort center in Chicago! And 13 days to arrive, and they have the temerity to call it "On-Time"!!

Any other horror stories?

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Pre-shipment info is not the product. Your product wasn't delivered to the post office until the 20th.

Anything that comes in is scanned. It's not like they throw it on a shelf and scan it later.

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Pre-shipment info is not the product. Your product wasn't delivered to the post office until the 20th.

Anything that comes in is scanned. It's not like they throw it on a shelf and scan it later.

Then Dusty Groove lied to me when they said the package was picked up on the 11th.

I believe Dusty Groove, the USPS, then you, in that order.

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Don't believe me, just do your own homework. Preshipment info means that only a shipping label has been printed. That's it. Packages that come in are either scanned in on the shipping dock, or at the drop off counter.

These are not opinions, they are facts.

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Scott is right. But the USPS also sucks (and I don't think it used to be as bad - it was, in fact, pretty awesome when I first started mail ordering records in the 90s). The weather is a big part of it as well. I've had things from Dusty take as long as a month, and I've had things from Europe end up farting around on the west coast before winging their way back to NYC.

But it could be worse...

Edited by clifford_thornton

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In my experience all shipping companies have their ups and downs. I've had excellent and terrible experiences with them all. Fortunately, the excellent experiences far outpace the negative ones.

My most recent negative experience happened late last year with Fed Ex.

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I am finally completely done with attempting to ship things from the US to Canada. I was having 3 used books sent and there was a $3.75 tax due (which is totally BS in the first place but so be it) and then $7.50 handling that I had to pay for (on top of whatever I already paid in shipping when I ordered). A 200% markup/holdup. I'm done. On the positive side, I am saving quite a bit of money, but at the cost of being further disengaged with newish music (or more often repackaging of old music).

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I've had this discussion with Dusty Groove in the past.

Some things show up in 2 days, some in 2 weeks.

Nobody has a good explanation.

At least they provide tracking information.

Right now waiting for an order from Jazz Messengers in Barcelona.

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I've had this discussion with Dusty Groove in the past.

Some things show up in 2 days, some in 2 weeks.

Nobody has a good explanation.

Most likely a function of poor bookkeeping. Happens with a lot of companies out there. They'll think they have something in stock, but actually don't.

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I've had this discussion with Dusty Groove in the past.

Some things show up in 2 days, some in 2 weeks.

Nobody has a good explanation.

Most likely a function of poor bookkeeping. Happens with a lot of companies out there. They'll think they have something in stock, but actually don't.

I don't know. Their (Dusty Groove) site seems pretty accurate when indicating that something is not in stock.

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yeah, shipping to Canada is brutal (sorry Peter). I think it is actually worse than shipping overseas. Their customs must be pretty stringent.

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Having lived with the Canadian Post Office for (still, though barely) most of my life I find the USPS terrific. And I love their stamps.

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I've had this discussion with Dusty Groove in the past.

Some things show up in 2 days, some in 2 weeks.

Nobody has a good explanation.

Most likely a function of poor bookkeeping. Happens with a lot of companies out there. They'll think they have something in stock, but actually don't.

I don't know. Their (Dusty Groove) site seems pretty accurate when indicating that something is not in stock.

So do most places I've dealt with. Or so it appears on the surface. One sales not entered into the database can change everything. I've seen cases of it with brick and mortars where their websites shows it's in stock, but it actually isn't.

Thing is, with you and Dan both having similar experiences from a common vendor raises a red flag.

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Well, with DGA, their volume has just increased a ton over the last several years, though the size of the physical store and the staff is still relatively small. I'd still say they are a solid resource on most of this stuff, at least here in the US.


they are also nice folks, which goes a long way.

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I've had this discussion with Dusty Groove in the past.

Some things show up in 2 days, some in 2 weeks.

Nobody has a good explanation.

Most likely a function of poor bookkeeping. Happens with a lot of companies out there. They'll think they have something in stock, but actually don't.

I don't know. Their (Dusty Groove) site seems pretty accurate when indicating that something is not in stock.

So do most places I've dealt with. Or so it appears on the surface. One sales not entered into the database can change everything. I've seen cases of it with brick and mortars where their websites shows it's in stock, but it actually isn't.

Thing is, with you and Dan both having similar experiences from a common vendor raises a red flag.

Except that, if you knew Dusty Groove, you'd know that they confirm physical possession of the items before shipping. That is the option I chose, it is the one they followed. These were used LPs - there is no 'restocking' of singular items. Do you think they charged my card, lied about giving it to the USPS, all in the hopes that these two LPs would walk in the store again so they could pack the items 11 days later and actually let the USPS have it?

Occam's razor says that they had the items on March 11 when they sent the shipping confirmation. The lack of scanning doesn't prove shit. I had another order show as being received in CA, never departing, until it magically arrived at my Post Office two weeks afterwards.

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You're right, Dan. No reason for me to argue with the person who knows exactly what happened. It's obviously the fault of the USPS.

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Dan is right in that they confirm physical stock before shipping on used and new items. I recall having a recent order get scanned for pickup but it took three weeks to get to NY. I attributed that to shitty weather out here and general fallout from holiday insanity, since it was January. February was also terrible weather-wise and that may have slowed up the game a bit.

If the LPs are lost or damaged, Dusty Groove will pick up the tab and credit or reimburse you. And unless it's something like the Archie Shepp "Viva Jomo Kenyatta" test pressing or one of those solo Frippe things on Bird Notes, there's likely not just one copy of what you've ordered out there...

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I'm not arguing any of that, Clifford.

What I'm saying is that Dan doesn't seem to understand the difference between pre-shipment info and shipping confirmation. They are mutually exclusive.

And if two different people have experienced the same 2 day/two week disparity, that screams out being a source issue. Unless the folks at the local post office are just randomly choosing not to scan and ship parcels. And they just happened to randomly choose items from the same original source? That is one HELL of a coincidence!

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In support (I think) of Dan, I've tracked items that have entered the USPS system, then have apparently not moved according to tracking info. for 7-10 days & then suddenly show up in my mailbox.

In support of DG, they've always made good on any issues encountered.

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Here, this will better explain what I'm saying. Look at the tracking notice again.

Pre-shipment info was sent on the 11th. This means DG printed out a shipping label. That's it.

Now, note you have an arrival scan at 6:15 on the 20th. This was when the truck carrying the package first delivered it to the sorting facility.

Then another arrival scan on the 20th at 7:45 from the shipping center.

Yet another arrival scan on the 22nd at 7:52 in the city of delivery.

Then a departure/delivery scan on the 23rd at 3:39 where the package was put on the truck for delivery.

Now, doesn't it strike you as odd that the arrival and departure scans are so meticulous? Yet, we're supposed to believe that the package sat at the original sorting facility for 8 or 9 days WITHOUT being scanned?

The rest of the delivery process kind of debunks that myth. Suddenly they got their ass in gear?! C'mon, folks.

The sorting center did not receive the item until the 20th. Period. Everything is scanned on arrival. They don't just takes bags of shit and toss them on a shelf and get to them…"whenever".

Edited by Scott Dolan

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The rest of the delivery process kind of debunks that myth. Suddenly they got their ass in gear?! C'mon, folks.

The sorting center did not receive the item until the 20th. Period. Everything is scanned on arrival. They don't just takes bags of shit and toss them on a shelf and get to them…"whenever".

Sorry -- I lived in Chicago and had very up and down mail service. I find it entirely plausible that shit would sit on a shelf for a week. What is somewhat likely is that DG has a good carrier and then he or she was on vacation and the replacement did in fact let a lot of stuff pile up.

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I got the Euro-Equivalent of the "pre-shipment" notice from the Jazz Messengers shop a few months ago and the thing didn't change status for a month. Contacted them, and they worked up a new shipment (at no charge) that arrived quite promptly and tracked accordingly. The a week or two later, the origianl order shows up, not having moved at all in tracking I compared order #s just to make sure). I wanted to give the items as gifts so I told the JM shop to charge my CC a second time, which they offered to NOT do, but I said hell, I got the shit and I'm going to use it, let me pay for it (take a hint there, Jordi...), and they did. All's well that ended well, and we might end up getting along fine, although that Jordi thing, still not feeling the warmfuzzies there.

Dutty Battards, hell, I've been ordering from them for years. I've talked to them on the phone, I've3 called them on the phone and asked them to pull an item for me RIGHT NOW, I've even Skype-shopped their bargain basement through my daughter. The only disappointment I've had was the first time I thought I got an over-graded piece of vinyl, and that was then I learned the DG grading method - look for the "+", always, and expect the "+" to be applied to be applied more liberally the older/rarer the item is. I've had media mail orders take a loooongass time to get here, I think the longest might have been 4-5 weeks but they've all gotten here. We get along fine.

The USPS, I've had some concerns with them recently, as I've seen new faces and erratic delivery times. But that seems to have stopped about a month ago. Calling the P.O. directly, I was told that they were experiencing a combination of employee turnover, reduced staffing, the same "do more with less" that everybody's up against these days, and to be truthful, it looks like they've begun to ficure out what works. I know they kicked ass over Christmas, and during our recent snow/ice, they held up a helluva lot better than I expected to be honest. Plus, I have never had an unpleasant experience when personally dealing with a USPS worker, either on the street or in the post office. We get along fine.

Mistakes happen, and mistakes suck, and mistakes that affect you personally suck donkey dicks. I make mistakes myself,and those are the ones that suck most of all. But unless/until it becomes a sustained pattern, I have learned (more or less...) to live with the occasional suckage. I don't have statistics at hand, but locally, it looks like the USPS is looking to transition their delivery priorities towards packages over "paper". Given the decrease of paper mail and the increase in parcels due to online shopping, that's a smart move, I think. But considering how "bigger" packages are (in every way), so is the profile of an error when it happens. and it just takes one person having an off, not even day, but minute, literally, a minute - or less! Might not even be a person, might be a package slipping out of a stack in a truck or something, there are any number of variables when it comes to shipping packages, for shit to fuck up. One cat could ahve a 39:59 PERFECT work week, and all we on the other end see is that 1 minute where something did not go 100% right.

So, let's look at how USPS defines the term "Pre-Shipment info sent to USPS": https://tools.usps.com/go/TrackConfirmAction?qtc_tLabels1=9405503699300413599558

The U.S. Postal Service was electronically notified by the shipper on November 8, 2014 to expect your package for mailing. This does not indicate receipt by the USPS or the actual mailing date. Delivery status information will be provided if/when available.

What I take that to mean is that when DG (or anybody) prints a shipping label with a tracking # on it, that info goes into the USPS system (Space Age Computer Technology!). After that...anything could happen. The store could get sloppy (somebody gets distracted, sits the package down for a while, somebody else picks it up, sets it down somewhere else, hell, who knows? Bomb threat and lunch delivered at the same time? Package don't stand a chance!), the individual carrier could get sloppy, the facility could get sloppy, hell nobody could get sloppy (aka "shit happens"), all that can be conclusively proven is that a shipping label with a tracking # was printed on Day X and was not scanned again until Day Z. What happens in between, you'd have to be there to see it yourself in order to know for sure.


Also, if you're like me, you choose the Media Mail rate, and that means that when decisions have to be made as far as prioritizing handling, you don't get anywheres near put to the front of the line, if you know what I mean. Again, people being asked to do more with less, decisions do have to get made, and them that pays more, gets more.

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And you knew the USPS had the item because…?

BECAUSE I ASKED DUSTY GROOVE AND THEY TOLD ME THAT IT WAS HANDED TO THE USPS ON THE 11TH.

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I feel you pain, Dan, but unless you got a sworn statement from the person you spoke to that he/she was the very same personage who conducted said transfer, I'd say the odds are good that they gave you that information from looked at their records, which would reflect the date of label creation and/or recorded date of handoff to the carrier. Odds favor DG telling you correctly, but are in no way absolute. They fuck stuff up there too, as well, had it happen to me once or twice (which out of 50 Bajillion orders ain't bad).

No trying to mitigate your fuquitousness about the situation, just encouraging you to spread it around to all possible parties. the more people who squirm, the better!

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