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Uppercase Box Duplicate Book Policy Update

Liz Cadman
ByLiz CadmanSep 23, 2016 | 6 comments


FYI - Uppercase Box is ending their Duplicate Book Policy on October 1st. The full letter from founder Lisa Parkin is below, but here are the highlights:

  • Formerly, Uppercase Box offered active subscribers who received a duplicate book their choice of an extra bonus item in their box or a refund for 50% of the Amazon.com price of the book.
  • In September, no other book subscription choose the same book as them.
  • They will be ending the Duplicate Book Policy, effective October 1, 2016.

When I first created Uppercase over 2 years ago, it was the first and only YA book subscription box.

Since then, many other YA book subscriptions have popped up and that means that if you subscribe to more than one, there is always a chance that you could receive the same book in any given month.

I understand that this can be frustrating and disappointing.

Some of you have asked why Uppercase doesn't have a theme or offer hints about what book we'll be including. If you've wondered why, I would love to explain our philosophy:

Uppercase Manifesto - Why There Are No Themes or Hints

Uppercase has always been about the books - not the items - and I want you to experience the best YA books every month.

I personally read dozens of advanced copies of books every month to find the absolute best book to send you. We even created the interactive reading experience and send you signed books because to us, the book is what matters most.

We don't give hints about the book because we know you value the element of surprise - receiving your package in the mail and being delighted at what's inside.

Many of you have followed my reviews from my book blog over the past 6 years, and I am incredibly thankful that you trust me to choose books that you enjoy reading and look forward to receiving, even if you have no idea what book you'll receive. Your trust is so valuable, and I don't take this responsibility lightly.

The reason there is no theme is because having a theme would prevent us from choosing the best book. To have interesting and varied themes would require us to let the theme dictate, at least in some part, the books that we choose. Since we want to send you only the best books, that's a trade-off we're not willing to make.

Having a theme would also impact what items we send you every month. We know you value practical and useful items - things you will keep and use. I would rather send you items you like, enjoy, and use instead of sending you items that are vaguely connected to an arbitrary theme.

Duplicate Book Policy Update

This June was the first month that another book subscription box sent the same book as Uppercase.

We choose the books we send several months in advance, so there was no way to know ahead of time this would happen or to prevent it. And, since the book is most important to us, we would never change what book we chose for that month even if we could know in advance.

In June, when this first happened, we created the Duplicate Book Policy and committed to offering active subscribers who received a duplicate book their choice of an extra bonus item in their box or a refund for 50% of the Amazon.com price of the book.

This wasn't something we had to do - we just felt it was the right thing to do.

We value our subscribers (that's you!) and want to do everything to delight you. We understood the disappointment and acted immediately to do what we could to help rectify the unfortunate circumstance for those affected.

We had no idea that in July and August some subscribers would receive a duplicate book again. Despite it happening again, we gladly upheld our Duplicate Book Policy and continued to offer our subscribers who were affected a 50% refund off the Amazon.com price of the book even though this was completely out of our control.

We're thankful that in September no other book subscription choose the same book as us.

Now that the risk of subscribing to multiple book subscriptions is understood, we want to give you advance notice that we will be ending our Duplicate Book Policy, effective October 1, 2016.

Over the past 3 months we've gone above and beyond to keep our subscribers satisfied, even though the situation was out of our control, and we could do nothing to prevent it - and we were happy to do so.

However, our focus is on sending you the best YA books every month and as a small business, we can no longer continue to offer refunds if a duplicate book is received from another book subscription.

My hope is that the risk is now clear - signing up for more than one YA book subscription box might mean that you receive the same book.

If receiving duplicate books is a concern of yours, you may want to ensure that you are only subscribed to one YA book subscription at a time.

In addition to being the most affordable YA book subscription box,Uppercase offers several benefits that add value to your subscription - including an interactive reading experience with author videos and exclusive content, in addition to being the only YA book subscription that sends you signed books every month.

These extras increase the value of your subscription and hopefully the depth to which you can experience and enjoy the book.

I sincerely hope you understand our philosophy and our position regarding duplicate books. We value your support and want to be transparent with you by giving you this advance notice.

If you have any questions, comments, or suggestions about our Duplicate Book Policy please reply to this email and let us know.

As always, thank you for being a subscriber to Uppercase. Your trust and loyalty mean the world to me - and I am so thankful to have the opportunity to share the most incredible YA books with you every month.

Lisa Parkin
Founder, Uppercase Box

Check out my Uppercase Box reviews to see what you can expect from this YA book box subscription.

And check out our reviews of all Book Subscription Boxes, too!

Liz Cadman
Liz Cadman
Liz is the founder of My Subscription Addiction. She's been hooked on subscription boxes since 2011 thanks to Birchbox, and she now subscribes to over 100 boxes. Her favorites include POPSUGAR Must Have, FabFitFun, and any box that features natural beauty products!

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Mary kate

I adore UpperCase. I think that the thought and love that goes into each box is exceptional. I have subbed to other YA book boxes and since canceled all of them to stick with UpperCase. IMO, no other book box comes close and especially not for the price! 🙂

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My daughter and I love Uppercase! The book-only option is so affordable, plus you can add-on items from previous months and the books are signed. We won’t be canceling anytime soon!

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Sounds reasonable. Multiple sub’s of the same type will undoubtedly generate duplicates.

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I don’t see why they would have any backlash this is one of the most cheapest YA book subscription out there so I’m pretty sure they will keep their subscribers plus it’s not their fault, if they would add maybe one more small item in their boxes it would be the best YA book box ever.

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When I received the e-mail from UpperCase I was worried that there would be backlash. I really think that this sub offers some of the best reads out there. (Gave tried a couple of other book subs including young adult specific ones – personally, UpperCase rocks!) I have also had an issue with an add on I purchased and their customer service is phenomenal. I hope they don’t lose subscribers over this. I want UpperCase to be around for a long time.

My feelings on duplicate books is yes, it is probably one if the worst things to get a duplicate item of but it is also something that happens in other non-book sub’s (quite common in certain subs where a particular company is pushing an item and they seem to appear in every box) and it is that nature of the risk of a sub. Unless you have a sub that has a pick or preview option the items you receive are a surprise. Every time you pay for a sub you are taking a gamble that there will be something(s) that make it worth it for you to subscribe. And it is all so uniquely personal. Look at some of the really popular subs: you can get tons if people saying “Best box ever!” and others saying “Worst box! Cancelling my subscription!”

I find the curation that Uppercase does to be extremely valuable. I hope many other subscribers feel the same.

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Liz Cadman

I agree with you – I think Uppercase has fantastic curation of books! And I appreciate Lisa giving us background on this decision.

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