Guidelines: HOSTING a swap

Join the fun! Please read swap guidelines before participating.
Please thoroughly read these guidelines before posting to host a swap.

Right now the guidelines are quite easy-going. We'd like to keep it that way, but if problematic circumstances arise we may have to impose more rigid rules for swapping. So please strive to follow these guidelines so that doesn't become necessary!

The swap forum has three sections:
"Open For Sign Up"
"Closed and Creating"
"Completed"

Start by posting your swap in the "Open For Sign Up " section. Below is a suggested guideline for posting and hosting your swap to help ensure that you have a fun and successful swap. As your swap progresses, the forum administrator will move your swap to the appropriate sections. You may edit your title to reflect each section as your swap progresses.

Suggested Swap Template:

Name of Swap: This is your topic title which should also include the due date for the swap. If you have room you may also include the deadline for signing up for the swap in your title.

Example with both dates:

Christmas Tag Swap, Due 12/01. Signup by 10/20

Description: Give a full detailed description of what you want your swap participants to make for your swap. Include any other details that are relevant to the swap. For example: size, colors, any specific embellishment or technique etc.

Quantity: State clearly in your swap details how many each swap participant should make for your swap. Let them know if you will be swapping round robin style , a running list or in groups of a certain number. If swapping in groups, let them know if they can join more than one group and if you require them to make their swap different for each group.

Deadlines/Dates: Make sure your swap description also includes the deadline for signing up for the swap and the date that the swap is due in your hands. Let your swap participants know how soon you will be swapping out the swap and returning their swaps to them once the swap has ended. Swapping out and mailing back to the swappers within 5 days of the swap deadline is a reasonable amount of time. Please let your swap participants know if you need more than 5 days to swap out and mail back the swaps.

Mailing Instructions: Post complete mailing details in your swap description. You may refer to the "Mailing & Packaging Guideline for Swappers" if you like. It is suggested that you PM or email your swap participants privately with your mailing address. However, if you choose to post your address in your swap description, keep in mind that "everyone" can see it. Let your swappers know if there is a specific size of envelope that you require them to send for the return trip. Also let them know if you are willing to reuse the envelope they sent their swap to you in as their return envelope. Be sure to tell your swappers how much postage they should include for the return trip. This is all covered in the "Mailing & Packaging Guideline for Swappers". You may find it easier to just copy and paste the guideline into your swap description if it fits your mailing requirements for your swap.

Additional Guidelines for Swap Hosts:

Receiving and Returning Swaps: When swaps arrive, open them up and make sure that the swaps conform to the rules. Count them and check for return envelopes and postage.
If you find that a swap did not follow the rules, contact the swapper asap. If there is enough time, the swapper might be able to fix the mistakes. Hosts reserve the right to not accept swaps that did not follow the rules.
If a swapper did not send enough postage to return their swap, you may hold that person’s swap until they send you the additional postage needed. Swap hosts should not have to pay to return swaps. Hold only the swap that needs extra postage – not the whole swap.
Make sure that you have a way to calculate the correct postage to return a swap. If you do not have a postage scale, take them to the Post Office and have them weighed. Make sure you know the rules for mailing the type of package you are sending. Postage is related not only to size and weight, but also thickness and other factors. Having incorrect postage may delay the swap’s return or it may not be returned at all.

Communication: Communicating with your swap participants is essential in ensuring a successful swap. Listing the swap participants in the swap description as they sign up lets them know that you acknowledge that they are in the swap. PM, email or post on the swap thread when you receive their swap. PM or email your swappers midway through the swap and one week before the swap is due with a due date reminder. Once the swap is completed, let your swappers know the date you have mailed back the swap. You may also want to update the title of your swap at this point to reflect the date you mailed the swaps to the swap participants.

If there is a problem: We're all human and make mistakes, so if a problem does come up please contact and discuss the problem with the swapper first. Through such communication we hope that you can come to a resolution. If you are not able to do so, then (and only then) contact the administrator for assistance. If such instances become frequent we may have to change the swapping rules, as mentioned above.

The most important thing in hosting a swap is to have fun. Providing complete and clear details in your swap description and communicating throughout the swap with your participants will help ensure that you have a fun and successful swap.

Thank you for taking time to read these guidelines. Happy swapping!
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