Half a croissant, on a plate, with a sign in front of it saying '50c'
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I left it *here*

  (+43, -2)(+43, -2)(+43, -2)
(+43, -2)
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Dear FedEx,

we pay a lot for delivery through you. We supply lots of information - phone numbers, addresses, all that. That's mostly because we really want to actually get stuff to the intended destination, and not have to walk around late at night 1 1/2 days late, fruitlessly quizzing our neighbors whether they've seen an envelope, about this |<-->| big, was supposedly "Left at Front Door", responds to the name Kitty.

(OK, it doesn't actually respond to the name "Kitty".)

Suggestion: Instead of the little terminals that accept people's signatures for delivery - signatures that aren't compared to anything and mean nothing - equip them with still cameras. Cameras are useful for taking a picture of the recipient (in case of fraud), or of the place where the &$#@! envelope was left. Once these pictures are uploaded to your tracking site (via base stations in the vans, perhaps), I have at least a fighting chance of figuring out whether it was stolen, or just misdelivered a few houses over.

Thanks. (And no, I still haven't found it.)

jutta, Oct 14 2007

Dear Jutta , we left your package with this person http://www.viewimag...id=3&partner=Google
[Ling, Oct 14 2007]

Cheap Bike Chain.. http://www.amazon.c...=1192406184&sr=1-23
could work. [rascalraidex, Oct 14 2007]

mailbox-XL Eight years on... [hippo, Oct 15 2007]

"Do-it-yourself Brain Surgery" https://www.amazon....owley/dp/0584970730
Has a chapter on "Breeding Combat Hamsters" amongst other useful information. [8th of 7, May 07 2019]

[link]






       Maybe have them record GPS data as well. It would be nice proof for them that they delivered at least at the right location.
Worldgineer, Oct 14 2007
  

       They're supposed to put it in a place where it's not likely to be found or stolen by passers by.
quantum_flux, Oct 14 2007
  

       My Sister saw one delivery guy in L.A. He dropped a package for her on the side-walk with one of those notes to say sorry you weren't in.   

       Trouble is, he never left the cab at all.
Ling, Oct 14 2007
  

       And for dubious "comes in a plain wrapper" deliveries, do you get to wear a brown paper bag over your head as an appropriate disguise?
xenzag, Oct 14 2007
  

       //And no, I still haven't found it.// - imagines another site called: "It's Mine Now, Neagh! Neagh!" where proud, smug new owners of YOUR stuff show it off.
xenzag, Oct 14 2007
  

       A related idea would be to call the mobile phone number which was provided at order time and ask the guy where to leave it, or when he'll be in so redelivery can be arranged.
vincevincevince, Oct 14 2007
  

       xenzag, - baked - ebay.
Ian Tindale, Oct 14 2007
  

       // baked - ebay// a friend of mine just lost £400 through an ebay/paypal rip off. Caveat Emptor !!! I call ebay thievebay.
xenzag, Oct 14 2007
  

       You know, conceptually, this bears similarity with the situation prior to the adoption of the mobile phone and after the adoption of said tool: Prior to the mobile phone age, the purpose of a phone number was to ring a specific building or location, in the vague hope that the person you're really after might actually be located in that building. Or they might be out. Usually that was the case, but someone else might have been in, so they took an indecipherable message that they'd forget to give you. Or you might have an answering machine. Or you might have an answering machine and no friends, consequently never quite being sure if it was ever working or not.   

       After the mobile phone age began, our expectation of phone number usage is that they'd more often than not map to a specific person wherever they may have wandered, and not quite so much tied to a location or building or room (ie, people have cordless phones in the house, office phones are more route-able and transferrable than prior decades*) - you now really do ring 'a person' rather than really contacting a building that you associate them with.   

       Delivery networks and organisations are still pretty much stuck in the first mode.   

       * Which makes me wonder why it still seems fit to have a whacking great box on the desk in the office, cabled into the company phone network when by now I'd have thought that all office workers could have their own internal little cordless phone system much like a cellular unit - certainly not a commonplace sighting compared to the hard-wired desk hogs still prevalent.
Ian Tindale, Oct 14 2007
  

       yeah... the DHL guy was about to leave my girlfriends 900 dollar laptop out on our front porch. Luckily I was awake and answered the door. He looked kinda shocked that someone was home, had me sign for it and pointed to the ground,"I put it right there" so I guess he kinda baked it.
rascalraidex, Oct 14 2007
  

       If someone stole it,though, they could just throw it away.
rascalraidex, Oct 14 2007
  

       Most IDs have the magnetic strip, so they could really easily just swipe it. Probably faster than signing.
rascalraidex, Oct 14 2007
  

       + yes. Once we were sitting in the living room waiting for a delivery only to look at the kitchen door ten minutes later to see the note, "sorry we missed you" etc, so we called UPS and made the driver come back.
xandram, Oct 14 2007
  

       My UPS driver steals my goodies, and leaves me the empty wrapper. (He handed me a package once with half of the product missing. It was either him or the processor. The packagage was C.O.D. You can't open or inspect a package till you pay. Then once you open it, it's too late. It's yours!)   

       Anyway, anything that solves any of the probs they have, since Christmas is coming soon, gets a bun from me!
blissmiss, Oct 14 2007
  

       They should email, or otherwise send you a pin number that you have to enter, or NO delivery is logged. Only you know this number, so the driver, or anyone else can't fudge in your signature. Would this not solve the problem?
xenzag, Oct 14 2007
  

       [xen], I like that a LOT. You could give the PIN number to your assistants. Or, more easily remembered, the name of the recipient, which the driver doesn't give away.   

       But, based on something anno-ed earlier, I'm morphing that over to a phone number the driver has to call. (He could have a special phone with delivery numbers put into speed-dial or something automatic.) If the person who wants the package doesn't have the ringing phone, he doesn't get it. Or if whoever answers the phone says to give the package to the homeless person or just leave it on the porch, the package guy could record the call.   

       As was said, use the available technology to catch up with modern times. [+]
baconbrain, Oct 14 2007
  

       Heh, this has happened to me a LOT - my buddies in scotland sometimes send me things, and I know of at least one occasion whereby the package never arrived. Also when buying things online, the delivery guy left my stuff *on the porch of my house* - this isn't exactly the most secure thing to do, as recently there have been a spate of burglaries, and some enterprising bastard would prolly walk up the driveway and steal it.   

       What they should have on the truck is a mini trebuchet, which would deliver the package onto the roof of the house (where it is easier to get off the roof when you actually live there), or failing that, have 'second addresses', such as you're mates house where they'll hold it for you.
froglet, Oct 14 2007
  

       How about a cable lock system that they can just tether your package somewhere on your house. Unlock with a 4 digit code you received on your invoice or via email.
rascalraidex, Oct 14 2007
  

       seems like it might be a security issue. revealing other people's faces and addresses on the internet... (sorry it got lost!)
k_sra, Oct 15 2007
  

       I didn't do it.   

       <glances around shiftilly>   

       Yeah! Like all the suggestions. Anything to make it safer.   

       I've had a few packages turn up with contents missing. The worst was when I was waiting for a new passport to be delivered and my Granny died. I couldn't fly home for the funeral without my new passport and the delivery firm (DHL) said that it had already been delivered and signed for. Only by going to the depot and forcing the unhelpful bastard on the counter to go and look if it was there with his eyes did I get it at all. If I'd not gone that day, they would have sent it back to the embassy and I would have missed the funeral.
squeak, Oct 15 2007
  

       [+] I had a package missing for 3 days. My girlfriend saw the delivery truck in the neighborhood but he never cam to our door. There was a car in the open garage which usually signifies someone being home. 3 days later (after filing a complaint with the company to find out where the friggn' package was left), I found it *in* my garage next to the tire of her car. We practically ran over the thing for 3 days because the jerk didn't ring the doorbell.
bleh, Oct 16 2007
  

       Our company had an address very similar to the address of a building in the same industrial park causing us to get each other's packages all of the time. If I could track it and see that the delivery driver left it "here" I wouldn't mind going to wherever I had to go in order to get it.
Jscotty, Oct 16 2007
  

       Just to help the driver out: A big feckin' box labeled "Put It *HERE*". [+]
Noexit, Oct 16 2007
  

       Yeah....i wish the tracking actually worked... I have recently been ordering quite a bit off the internet, and none of the tracking services work. All they say is shipped. Then I am sitting at home one day, checking the tracking again, and DING DONG. I run to my door and open in time to see the UPS truck taking off with my package just chillin. Maybe UPS guys are really shy, or they are just practicing for the Ding Dong Ditch Olympics.
rascalraidex, Oct 16 2007
  

       Brilliant.   

       I don't see how ebay improves on this at all - ebay is part of the source that feeds into the actual problem, which is delivery by a third party to an unspecified individual.   

       A photo of the recipient - preferably with the delivered item's current location also visible - is an excellent idea.
elhigh, Oct 18 2007
  

       "Why not a small GPS/phone module they chuck into the boxes."   

       Baked. US Military uses gps transceivers to track air cargo. They're about the size of an icecream sandwich.
wittyhoosier, Oct 18 2007
  

       I absolutely love this idea~~!!
nomadic_wonderer, Oct 18 2007
  

       Heh - an ice cream sandwich?
Ian Tindale, Oct 18 2007
  

       This would work, without being too high-tech!!! Not everything can afford to be high-tech. This doesn't need to be. [+]! How about if you put a thing on your porch, that flashes lights. You only turn it on if you have a package coming. Nobody can mix that up, I mean, come on...
TahuNuva, Nov 03 2007
  

       ...unless both you *and* your neighbour are expecting a delivery.
jtp, Nov 04 2007
  

       I came here for a rant. This time, it was DHL.   

       You would imagine, would you not, that things like collecting and delivering parcels would form part of the core competencies of, say, a courier firm.   

       Not so. My collection is currently 3hrs43minutes late so far, measured relative to the back end of the FOUR HOUR window during which they were supposed to collect it.   

       I mean, I pay for this shit, with actual money. It is very tempting to ship a half-dozen live rats in an easily-chew-throughable box.
MaxwellBuchanan, May 07 2019
  

       Bees. You can even send bees by Royal Mail.   

       Africanized killer bees - sterile, of course. And something in the box to make them bad-tempered.
8th of 7, May 07 2019
  

       The problem is that, as far as I'm aware, bees are not especially adept at escaping from boxes whilst in the back of a DHL van. They would, instead, be released by the intended recipient of the parcel, in the unlikely event of its ever reaching said recipient. Rats, on the other hand...   

       I may start work on developing Africanised Killer Rats.
MaxwellBuchanan, May 07 2019
  

       In which case we highly recommend the book in <link>.
8th of 7, May 07 2019
  

       Pah. That's a rubbish book. For starters, when they cover brain surgery they neglect to mention that you should leave the motor cortex until last, and get a friend to help. Also, using timber-connectors to close the skull is all well and good, but you either need to buy the really short ones or not drive them home all the way.
MaxwellBuchanan, May 07 2019
  

       // get a friend to help //   

       Well that's the Intercalary up the creek, then. And we can't see him asking any of your family to assist in impromptu brain surgery - not after last time, anyway.   

       // not drive them home all the way //   

       Yes, it's easy to be wise after the event.
8th of 7, May 08 2019
  

       [jutta], have you found the envelope yet?
MaxwellBuchanan, May 08 2019
  

       The neighbour signed for it and forgot. [jutta]'s reticent after a good but impromptu venting post.
wjt, May 11 2019
  
      
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