• Report: #307964
Complaint Review:

Pro Quo Books ,'International Books' On Amazon.com

  • Submitted: Mon, February 11, 2008
  • Updated: Sat, April 14, 2012

  • Reported By:Cambridge Massachusetts
Pro Quo Books ,'International Books' On Amazon.com
1401 Severn St. / P.O. Box 27006 Baltimore, Maryland U.S.A.

Pro Quo Book, 'International Books' On Amazon.com Take money and don't ship product. Say you're refunded but you don't get your money Baltimore Maryland

*Consumer Suggestion: How to handle a problem with an Amazon Marketplace seller

*Consumer Comment: International Books Case #307964

*Author of original report: Oringal Poster

*Consumer Comment: You're a moron

*Consumer Comment: I think it's a rare occurence...

*Consumer Comment: An order made on November 11

*Consumer Suggestion: The Post Office isn't fool proof

*Author of original report: Update 2/15/2008

*UPDATE Employee: Sometimes, things go wrong.

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Pro Quo Books (internationalbooks) is a company that sells on Amazon.com. They have recently changed their phone number from (410) 633 0410 --> (443) 957 1321. This is a common practice with fraudulent companies. They move offices/contact information every so often to stay under the radar. The Better Business Bureau keeps a close eye on companies like this to avoid frauds. But enough about that, let's get to the story.

I ordered a book on January 10th, 2008. I received a confirmation email from Pro Quo Books saying my order had been shipped the next day. It said "Your order was packed and shipped on 1/11/2008 via Standard mail as requested. Expected transit time for this shipping method is 4-14 business days. In rare instances items may take up to 21 business days to arrive." Note: Amazon.com states that it should arrive in no more than 14 business days. Pro Quo Books added the 21 BUSINESS days garbage (by the way, 21 business days ended up being a month).

I called twice during the 21 days to locate my book or even get a tracking number of some sort with no luck. I was told they couldn't do anything about it until the 21st business day had come and gone. On the 22nd business day I called and was told they would give me a refund. Woo flipping h*o. I bought the book to learn about SQL databases for my work and ended up being a month behind schedule because I waited for this book.

After being told of my refund I asked that they send me confirmation that I would be receiving my money. Since they were able to send me confirmation that my book was "shipped" I thought it was fair to request confirmation of my refund. But, they had an excuse ready before I could finish my sentence. They said that Amazon takes care of the refunds so I will have to go through them for confirmation. Just to tie something together, they blamed the Post Office for losing my book in the first place then pointed me to Amazon for my refund. Pretty sketchy business practices if you ask me.

So, off to the Better Business Bureau of Maryland with this. I would recommend not buying anything from this shoddy operation they call a business. I only wish I had Googled them before buying anything from them. Little did I know that Amazon does not do a good job of inspecting their third party vendors. This makes Amazon look very bad as well but I know it's not their fault completely.

And just for the record, the book was only $6.60 so I hope they enjoy my money. Thieves.

Cambridge, Massachusetts

This report was posted on Ripoff Report on 02/11/2008 11:18 AM and is a permanent record located here: http://www.ripoffreport.com/reports/pro-quo-books-international-books-on-amazoncom/baltimore-maryland-21230/pro-quo-book-international-books-on-amazoncom-take-money-and-dont-ship-product-say-y-307964. The posting time indicated is Arizona local time. Arizona does not observe daylight savings so the post time may be Mountain or Pacific depending on the time of year.

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Updates & Rebuttals

#1 Consumer Suggestion

How to handle a problem with an Amazon Marketplace seller

AUTHOR: KS Kumar - (United States of America)

I have bought from Amazon and many of their marketplace sellers on a regular basis for several years. I have had a couple of items not show up. All I did was call Amazon and they got me either an immediate refund or replaced the item the very next day.

It's that simple. I have had one really bad experience where I was harassed when a seller did not like the feedback I gave them but I called Amazon and they took care of it immediately.

Always call Amazon right away if you have a problem. They are great about getting you your money back.

I shop at my local Ukazoo Books and I love them, they are a great business and their stores are run well and the staff is great. I trust them.

If they told you to go through Amazon for the refund then you should have called Amazon.

I've had the USPS lose things on several occasions. I've even had UPS deliver things to the wrong place.  That's not Amazon's fault or the seller.

These problems are rare. You also need to look at the ratings for the third party sellers. I never buy from anyone with less than a 98% positive rating so I rarely have problems.

I wish you better luck in the future.
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#2 Consumer Comment

International Books Case #307964

AUTHOR: Paul E. Schmid - (United States of America)

25 November 2011

This note is in response to Daniel's negative experience with International Books related in Subject Case #307964 dated February 1, 2008. I had already signed up for a $200 plus investment with International Books (via Amazon) for a rare one of a kind book when I ran across Daniel's "tale of woe" regarding his $6 investment experience with the same company.

I prepared mentally for the worst case scenario, planning on how I might recoup my investment by withholding credit card payment, calling the dealer, calling Amazon ,etc. But then a miracle happened, the book showed up in better condition than expected and within the promised span of delivery dates.

So in an imperfect world sometimes things go wrong but then again many times they go right. Not every failed transaction is due to fraud and abuse. Sometimes it's just old fashioned human (or computer) error.

My wife was right. I just needed the faith of a "mustard seed". I hope this note helps calm the waters in this particular case.

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#3 Author of original report

Oringal Poster

AUTHOR: Daniel berube - (U.S.A.)

Well, I've had emails the past few days about some activity on this thread I posted a while back. It has been about a year since I spent money on a book that I still have not received (any day now). I have also not received a refund from Pro Quo Books/International Books/BWI Books/AbeBooks. I have come across a few reviews of this company that coincidentally match very well with my original problem (i.e. - not shipping book/blaming Post Office/not issuing refund).

Just google "Pro Quo Books". It's that simple to find some of the horror stories about this company. Notice, they are overwhelmingly negative.

In particular, Ripoff Report and Baltimore City Search will tell the story.

I say to B Miller from Tucson: You provided no feedback on Pro Quo Books whatsoever, but instead, took an aggressive and provocative shot at someone you have never had any contact with. I simply shared my experience and made a few assumptions using my incredibly sharp intellect. You sir (or moody woman), started your comments with an insult and therefore, lost credibility with me. I hope you will do your due diligence in the future and at least run a search of the company's name. Perhaps you will then be able to contribute something of value. But then again I paid a company money to get nothing in return so what do I know? I must be crazy to think that a company would refund money or even respond to several emails/voice mails to clear up something like this. Thankfully at least I know they have done this many times so I don't feel as bad.
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#4 Consumer Comment

You're a moron

AUTHOR: B Miller - (United States of America)

You sir are a moron.  Read the rules of the site.  Amazon does allow up to 21 days for delivery for Marketplace sellers, Amazon DOES handle the refunds, and it is more than reasonable to suggest that there is a possibility that the book has been lost by USPS.

What is unlikely is:

Your claim to him being fraudulent based on a change to a phone number.  Assuming that this seller that has a successful business on Amazon.com would be trying to scam you out of a $6 book.  If this is something that was needed for work, as soon as a problem seemed to have arrived, I would have spent that almost nothing you spent in the first place to get another, or gotten it locally and handled this situation with communication or a claim.  With my priorities in line, I'd at least have secured the book from another source.

You assumed the seller was able to provide you with confirmation of a refund, since they can obviously give you a tracking number (By way of creating a shipment and paying for the tag).  Never mind the fact that the seller has nothing to do with the merchant account Amazon uses to process these payments, the seller has no access to the "confirmation" number.

The seller is also held to strict guidelines put in place by Amazon which would identify the types of seller you claim this party to be.  If they were the type of seller you claim, they would have been banned and it is impossible for a seller to get back on the site.

You're a sketchy buyer, I wish amazon would allow us to block some buyers.  I'm willing to bet you didn't even give the seller ample time to respond.  I'm sure you found out about it possibly being lost in communication from seller on an A to Z.
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#5 Consumer Comment

I think it's a rare occurence...

AUTHOR: thebigtexas - (United States of America)

If this is the same company as Ukazoo, I'm sorry to hear of your trouble. I've been a patron of Ukazoo for a couple of years now - since they opened their Towson store, and I haven't had any bad experiences. It's actually quite a cool set up. It's like a giant used book store, and you can find some really cool stuff there. They really aren't a shady operation, so I'm sorry to hear the guy from Mass. had a bad experience. I've never bought from them online or through amazon, but in store it's quite fine. They have friendly staff, and it's actually quite a good deal to go in there and find a book that you probably wanted but you'll just buy it used. I hope they're actually doing ok, because they're kind of near a Barnes and Noble right up the street - and I must confess I do patronize B&N. But I don't want to see Ukazoo fail. It's definitely a great concept and I will continue to use them - and I encourage others to do the same. Hopefully what happened through amazon is just an isolated incident.
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#6 Consumer Comment

An order made on November 11

AUTHOR: Michael Richman - (United States of America)

To all and sundry:

     I ordered a book from Internal Books via Amazon.com on November 11, 2009.  I received the book on November 21, in good condition, and well within the deadline of December 4th.  So whatever troubles they may or may not have had in the past, my experience with the company was quite satisfactory.

     It does not seem to be the policy of International Books to send an email when they ship the book, and that did freak me out a little.  Yet it still came.

Remember that their default shipper is United State Postal Service.
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#7 Consumer Suggestion

The Post Office isn't fool proof

AUTHOR: Almark - (Canada)


I can understand your frustration at your parcel being either delayed or gone missing. It happens with my business as well. All I can ask you to do is, in the future, don't be too quick to paint any business as a 'rip-off'.

Amazon can't guarantee delivery dates because, even as big as they are, they don't own the US Postal Service. Once a parcel leaves my warehouse (or Pro Quo's office), we lose control over it. If you pay for a trackable service (more expensive that Media Mail or Fourth Class Parcel rates) then you can watch the parcel crawl across the country, but the shipper can't influence a d**n thing!

What happened to the mail that was on board the US Airways jet that landed on the Hudson River? Do you honestly think that the USPS will contact the addressees and shippers of those containers of parcels that now would be waterlogged? Not a chance, so customers will be waiting for delivery of a parcel that will never come.

The same is true if a truck is involved in a highway crash, or even more devesating, a fire.

Just because the Internet has been a haven for less-than-scrupulous sellers, it's better to see that when a problem occurs, it's how they solve the problem.

The Japanese have a saying, "fix the problem not the blaem...then no one gets blamed".

If the Amazon procedure is to wait for 21 days or 21 business days, then you should be willing to wait at least that long. Once that time period has come and gone, and the parcel has still neither been delivered nor returned to the seller, THEN you should contact the seller, saying that the parcel hasn't shown up and that you would like a refund. Then see what both Pro Quo and Amazon does.

To give you an idea of the vaigaries of dealing with post offices, I shipped two identical parcels from Toronto (where I am) to Los Angeles. Each box contained two copies of the same book, destined for a bookstore in LA. They were shipped the SAME DAY. They went out of my warehouse in the SAME BAG.

They arrived in Los Angeles 15 DAYS APART! Neither had been opened by US Customs, it's just the unpredictability of the USPS.

If you ordered the book on 10 JAN 09, then you shouldn't even begin to worry until 31 JAN 09, and that's more than a week from now, so your concerns about the honesty of the seller is far too reactionary and way too soon!

Just calm down, sit back and let the mule train continue trudging its way to you.

Al Navis
ALMAR & CO. - Booksellers,
Thornhill, Ontario.
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#8 Author of original report

Update 2/15/2008

AUTHOR: Daniel berube - (U.S.A.)

Well, after dealing with Pro Quo/International/Ukazoo Books ( I wonder why so many different names...) I had no choice but to find another vendor for my book. This time I bought directly from Amazon.com instead of one of their sketchy third party companies. I ordered the book and it was in my hands the next day. I didn't even pay for overnight shipping and the best part was: they actually shipped my book! They didn't take my money and blame the Post Office.
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#9 UPDATE Employee

Sometimes, things go wrong.

AUTHOR: Seth Revelle Ukazoo Books - (U.S.A.)

First off, I would like to apologize to Daniel for the difficulty he had working with our company.

In regards to major points raised in this Ripoff Report:

1. Media mail can take up to 21 days, thus it doesn't seem unreasonable (from our perspective) to request that customer wait 21 days before we refund their order. Furthermore, the 21 day wait period before order is refunded is Amazon.com's policy.

2. We recently moved offices, from 2000 square feet of office space to 6000 square feet of office space. At the same time we switched from a traditional phone system to a internet based call center solution, and thus could not transfer our number. Old number should now be automatically forwarded.

3. As Amazon.com handles collecting payment for orders, they also handle refunding buyer's credit card. Again, this is simply a case of how the interaction between Amazon.com, third-party sellers on Amazon.com, and customers of Amazon.com works.

4. Sometimes the post office loses mail. I guess it is a common customer misconception that they don't, but as a seller who ships off 3600 packages a day through the USPS I can assure you that they do.

5. Customer has been refunded, and was informed of this by us, and Amazon as well.

Again, I am sorry that Daniel had a less then ideal experience with our company. We strive to work with all of our customers to resolve any problems which may arise in an expedient and professional manner.
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