When officially to complain?

Hello everyone,

I was wondering: When is it OK to complain about something?

I usually stay away from contacting the admins as to not be a bother and nothing really bad happened to me in all these years.

I have complained once, when I have received a postcard from a Scandinavian member who sent a postcard to me via the senders country’s post office meaing - the sender gave my address to the post office and they sendet the postcard to me.
As to me this was a third party that my address was given to, which according to the guidelines is not OK, I complained.
However the answer was, that in this case this was OK as the address was given to a post office and many users would not be able to participate postcrossing any other way.

So now I am wonderen when should I complain about something?

For example: I send to repeated countries and get many German addresses (which is absolutely OK). However many profiles are completely written in German with no translation into English. I saw that with profiles of people from other countries as well. Not Ok, but should I report every of these profiles?

Or I have cards travelling to postcrossers who have never received a card. One has sent one card, the other has sent 3 cards. My cards are travelling for quite a while and these users have not been online for 2 weeks or 2 month. Should I write to the admins about that?

What I am trying to ask is: When is it OK to complain? What do you complain about officially?

As all admins are doing their Postcrossing jobs in their free time I find it hard to say when to complain and what to suck up. I do not want them to give their time to something that can be avoided.


Interesting question. I’d like to know the answer too.


It’s always worth reporting. If no rule is found to be broken, no action will be taken - people don’t just randomly get banned because you send a message.

I don’t think it’s bad to give an address to the post office given that is information they require regardless. Any other third party services I would report and have reported because others cannot consent to those on your behalf. I would also report a profile fully in a foreign language.

People go inactive for all kinds of reasons. There’s not much to complain about there. Eventually the travelling card will get deleted.


I don’t usually check on expired cards, but one time I did, the person had 5 postcards sent and zero received. So it looks like the person signed up for Postcrossing, sent out 5 cards, and then did nothing more. I don’t know what the administrators could do about that. I just accept that there are going to be situations where someone doesn’t do what they’re supposed to. The good of Postcrossing certainly outweighs the bad.


I have never pulled an address entirely written in German, but if I did I would have to ask myself: does this person expect every other postcrosser in the world to understand German? OR, does this person expect every other postcrosser to go to the trouble of translating the profile? (The same would go for any other entirely non-English profile.) I think I might alert the mod/admins, it would depend on my mood on the day. I might just shrug and send them any card and that would be that.


When you think it is necessary


I understand your dilemma, but don’t think of it as complaining — think of it as bringing something to the attention of the team, so we can have a look!

If you can help by doing some things yourself (like gently nudging newbies to translate their profile into English), that’s great… but sometimes only the team can help in certain situations or fix some bigger issues, and so they really should to be brought to us.

In the end, improving things for you will improve things for everyone on the site, which is our goal. So don’t feel bad about bothering the team @Robinchen — we’re here for you, even if sometimes it takes us a bit to reply! :sweat_smile:


My thought is that if you believe something might have a negative impact on Postcrossing, you should mention it. You never know…something you take note of, the admins may not be aware of. You are a very mature member. Periodically we have swapped via RRs.


For the full German profiles, I have seen 2 now. As well as hurray messages sent to me completely in Russian. I stick them in Google translate and then very carefully and politely ask them if they could write in English next time. Some people get their official postcrossing website entirely in their mother tongue (the wonders of IT) and don’t even realize that it is an automatic translation and then just pursue in that language. One German postcrosser whom I asked about her profile told me that her version in English was so terrible that people asked her to write in German and they would translate it. And then here I am asking for it in English again. In the end, she swapped it back to English because of the rules I pointed out to. But not everyone will be as understanding. You can only kindly request something and see how the other person reacts.


Life also happens. We can’t know what’s going on in someone’s life that leads to absence or withdrawal. Because the community is fairly open with little accountability, there are some things I expect we have to accept. Such as someone deciding, even after just a short time, that Postcrossing is not for them.


I’ve never sent a message to the team about anything. I believe you can definitely send them a message if someone is not following the rules. Having no English in your profile is against the rules, so you can report that. Not being online for a while is not against the rules, so I don’t see why you would report it.

I don’t see it as complaining though.


I didn’t understand what is the reason to complain :upside_down_face:
Okay, people who share your personal information are not the norm. But other :see_no_evil:
Once i had the profile completely in Spanish. Translated into google translator sent a postcard. Wrote happy postcrossing and that’s it. No problems. You seem to be from Germany, what confuses you with the profile in German. It doesn’t bother me, even if I don’t know German. People who don’t know English should also be able to do postcrossing. As for me it’s great! :love_letter:

What is the problem with sending a postcard to a new postcrossing member. You, too, were once a beginner. Okay, you’ve sent a lot, so what. Poscrossing is not a ranking, there is no premium account. it’s about swap with anyone. People don’t make a shameful or indecent suggestion. Don’t use strong language writing to you. It can be reason for me.

I never had to complain, on the contrary, postcrossing taught me tolerance and patience. And I wish everyone the same. We are all different and that’s great. :cherry_blossom:


When a profile is only in another language, I do let the admins know.

Where I don’t complain but wonder if I should is when people say things like “if your card has been travelling for 30 days and I haven’t registered it, please send me the ID and I will register it, I know how awful it is for a card to expire!” or something like that. I know it is against the rules, but I haven’t the heart to rat them out…


That is why I asked the question.

What I don’t like about profiles written in another language is that the rules state English as the official postcrossing language. It is rude to force your language on others in my oppinion. But is it worth complaining about it is what I am asking.

About new members: I am not complaining about writing to a new member. I never care about that. I do not even look at their stats when chosing and writing a card. But do I need to draw the teams attention to a longer absense is the question.

Those were just examples as I am really not sure what it is I am suppost to report

However I have gotten many useful ansers (counting yours as well) to help me with this question.


Hmm, the only things I report are things that are not postcards (except folded cards, because most times they’re friendly made and I don’t have the heart not to register them… but I tell them that others might report them) and cards that lack sufficient postage. When I draw a profile that’s entirely in not-English, I ask them on the card if they could add an English translation. I never do anything about users who haven’t been seen in long… I just suppose that it’s of no use. I suspect that they won’t come back, no matter how many emails they get from the team. :thinking:

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@Robinchen You are one of my favorite people to be in an RR with. I trade with you all the time and was also lucky enough to get an official card from you. You are not complaining. :blush: If you feel the team should know something I am sure it is going to be worthwhile.

I only report rude, offensive and such profiles, sadly, I’ve encountered some.

Couple times I asked advice in what is postcard in order to register or not - I mean pieces of paper or letter instead of postcard (even though nowadays I would just write people that they are misunderstanding the guidelines a bit)

If profile is in foreign language, I write my message with help of google translate and point it out in the message, because I think most cases it’s a confusion because of auto translation in browser

Anyway, it’s reporting way-out-of-line things and asking advice for other things, I would say a word ‘complaint’ doesn’t reflect the actions. And for rest - we can always discuss and share opinions on the forum


There is always Google translate or other translating services.

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To be honest, I wouldn’t have complained about any of these things. Not trying to be rude, but you come across as a person who complains easily and searches for reasons to complain.

The person only gave the address to the post office, the post office is the official institution that sends the postcard. So I find your complaint a bit odd. I mean, the post office can’t be counted as a third party otherwise the postman would also have to be considered as a third party because he delivers your mail and looks at the address (and even comes to your house!) and the person who sorts the mail (because they see your address too). The post office has your address anyway to sort and deliver mail and of course they don’t save it so I don’t think they still have your address at the moment.

People who do not speak English should ideally put their profile into google translate but I wouldn’t complain about this because it is not really a problem. If they didn’t put it into google translate (maybe they are older and don’t know about it) you can put it into google translate. It takes one second. And yes, ideally people should speak English but so many people would be excluded so I wouldn’t complain.

Maybe these people have actually not received a card yet? So they haven’t logged in because of that. Because of Covid it can take a long time now. Or maybe they have serious problems in their lives. It’s okay, be patient. If they don’t register it it will be registered automatically after some time.

None of these things are anything to complain about, in my personal opinion. Why are you looking for reasons to complain?

In my opinion things to actually complain about:

  • someone sends a racist, insulting etc. card
  • someone writes something insulting
  • someone doesn’t send you a postcard but a napkin etc
  • someone’s profile is insulting
  • someone has a lot of very specific wishes and “don’t send me” and is rude about them (e.g. “I hate everything except for Tausendschön, Gotochi and illustrated reindeer and if you don’t send me these you make me very unhappy and maybe I won’t register them”)
  • someone harrasses you

No, you don’t have to. The team is already aware of that and your card will be registered automatically after a while. Also, it wouldn’t change anything. A person who doesn’t go on postcrossing anymore will also not read the messages by the administrators.

But you have already realized that it doesn’t matter so why would you report this? Just put it in google translate and if you feel like it write on the postcard to the person where to find google translate and that it would be great if they could translate it.