• Reply to: Jenny Come Lately   4 days 14 hours ago

    I agree - this issue was overpriced and the general public was unaware of this issue. Since you chose to change the value from $0.24, making it the standard rate would have gotten more of the general public to know that it existed.

  • Reply to: Jenny Come Lately   4 days 14 hours ago

    I agree that the intentional creation of a rarity is a terrible idea (imperforate press sheets are a good example of this)

  • Reply to: Jenny Come Lately   4 days 17 hours ago

    This might have been a good idea--had the stamp been issued as a stamp people would have actually used. It should have been a "forever" stamp, or perhaps an international-rate "global forever" at absolute most. By issuing this stamp in a high denomination, and then artificially creating a rarity, USPS is giving the impression that it is just trying to milk the collecting community. It is absolutely no surprise that this stamp's sales are so low. No one likes to feel cheated.

  • Reply to: The Road to a New Delivery Fleet   4 days 17 hours ago

    I think you guys really should consider air conditioning for the carriers that run in places like Arizona and other very hot places. It would speed up the delivery system as you feel better when you get take a few moments out of the heat to cool off and possibly decrease human error. Being over heated can cause you to miss seeing that mailbox, curb, and other careless mistakes that occur when you are so hot you can't even see any longer cause the sweat is in your eyes.

  • Reply to: Jenny Come Lately   4 days 18 hours ago

    First and foremost, I would like to say "thank you, thank you, thank you" to the Postmaster General for even considering the philatelic community and giving us a boost in importance. We definitely feel like the "neglected step-child" and ANY attempt to generate interest and involve our hobby should be roundly applauded, whatever the outcome. Could this have been handled differently...of course. Did it have to be a $2 value? Was the distribution equitable? Were federal rules broken? I don't have answers to these. But did it give our hobby a shot of caffeine, you bet!!! My initial reaction was and remains extremely positive. I've bought about 10 sheets and have a running joke with the USPS employee where I do business: when I get to the counter, I ask for a $12 lottery ticket. She laughs, asks me how many sheets have been discovered (she knows I subscribe to Linns), and hands me a package of Jennys. I'm sure the naysayers will outnumber me 25 to 1. Get over it stamp collectors. I still contend that whatever gets our dying hobby into the news and creates some interest is OK with me, and I think the USPS did a very positive service to the community. In hindsight, EVERYTHING could have been done better, but that is not really the point. The USPS actually considered the stamp collector and I think that is the real issue at hand.

  • Reply to: Jenny Come Lately   4 days 18 hours ago

    We feel limited editions would be snapped up by dealers and the average collector would be left out or have to pay a high price for one stamp to complete a specific year. We agree that collectors have been helping the USPS by keeping stamps out of service. We also agree that the publicity (or lack, thereof) about the Jenny stamp was poorly handled.

  • Reply to: The Postal Service and Its Obligation   4 days 19 hours ago

    I have rented a house in McAdenville, NC for over 10 years. I have never been able to get mail delivered. At first, I was advised that I needed to rent a PO Box at the Post Office. When I tried to do that, I was told that I needed two pieces of ID with my local address so that I would be allowed to rent a mailbox. I got the address on my DL changed to my home address, but the DMV could not mail me the copy...as there is no mail delivery. I obtained a form from the DMV that stated my address. When I brought the form to the Post Office, I offered my US Passport as a second ID. The postal worker told me that this was not valid as ID, or as identification of address...as the address is written in pencil. They did rent me a box, which I kept for one cycle. It was such a pain that I changed my address to my daughter's rural home in another (nearby) town. It is slow, but that does work...and I don't have to pay to get junk mail. Recently, I took over the water bill for the property that I rent (it was originally included in the rent). When I went to the City Hall, I explained that my mailing address was in a different town. The water department clerk advised me that my situation is typical and no one receives mail without renting a PO Box, or using an out-of-town address. Is there a solution to this apparently age-old problem?

  • Reply to: Jenny Come Lately   4 days 19 hours ago

    This was an interesting idea, which if were executed as advertised might have been pretty good. Instead it was more of a fiasco. The real question now is what to do with the 80 or so sheets that have not been sold? I do not think they should be destroyed - that would make the 20 or so out there even rarer. My suggestion, assuming the Post Office still has control of some or all of the remaining unsold sheets is to do something similar to what was done with the incorrect cowboy sheets. Raffle them off - one entry per address. Money order for the face value of the stamps. Draw the number of entries corresponding to the number of sheets remaining. That way everyone has what is essentially a fair opportunity to get one. Continue the numbered card from the PMG to account for each. Any sheets that are in the distribution system should remain there and they will hopefully be purchased by someone at some point. Finally, the post office should continue selling the regular sheets until all or most of the error sheets have been accounted for.

  • Reply to: Jenny Come Lately   4 days 20 hours ago

    The "upright Jenny" sheetlet was a scam to pick the pockets of collectors, and it also purposely violated USPS regulations. It was the final scheme that prompted my quitting stamp collecting. I'm pleased the Inspector General is taking action - better very late never.

  • Reply to: Jenny Come Lately   4 days 20 hours ago

    It was a lottery scheme that seemed attractive but not great for the honesty and integrity that we should expect from our postal service. Perhaps reissuing the non-inverted Jenny in amounts similar to the inverted panes would discourage the public from participating in any future postal lottery schemes. Those violating postal regulations should be held accountable through the legal system.

  • Reply to: Jenny Come Lately   4 days 21 hours ago

    When the limited printing right side up sheet was originally announced I was in favor of the idea. I knew it went against Postal Service regulations, but regulations are just guidelines, not laws. When the boat is sinking, you don’t ask permission to begin distribution of the life jackets, you do what you think is right. The Postmaster General was making a bold move and I liked it. The special sheets were to be randomly distributed along with all the regular upside down sheets. This meant the more sheets someone bought the better the chance of getting one of the special ones. So I started buying Jenny sheets. I made several small purchases but my largest purchase was an order for over 100 sheets. I was trying to get the odds on my side and get one of the “randomly distributed” special sheets. When I read in the philatelic press about how the special sheets were not really randomly distributed at all, but rather most were sent to big cities and the rest saved at the USPS cave Philatelic Distribution Center and forgotten about, I was very disappointed. It seems very little was actually random about it after all. That means very little about it was fair at all.
    This was a wonderful opportunity to give stamp collecting a big boost. There were great news stories about the sheet and collectors lucky enough to have gotten one. The more stories I heard about them being found gave me more reason to keep trying to get my own. But that all ended when the real story came out. Please figure out a fair way to distribute the remainder of the right side up sheets. It will not be the big success story it could have been, but at least you can do the right thing and make the entire 100 special sheets available to collectors as was planned from the beginning.

  • Reply to: Jenny Come Lately   4 days 21 hours ago

    I strongly believe that, although the creation of the reverse, reverse Jenny could have been handled much better, it was a valiant attempt to increase interest in stamp collecting. I support this effort.

    Returning to philately after many years away from it I have been shocked by the overwhelming numbers of new issues and varieties of stamps. I think this is one of the most significant reasons that new collectors are not entering the hobby.

  • Reply to: Jenny Come Lately   4 days 21 hours ago

    I was disappointed when I learned of the USPS creating 100 Jenny Sheets as rarities. I remember an incident by a prior Postmaster General trying to do the same thing. Farley's Follies were required to be produced in sufficient quantities that they were no longer rarities to correct the inappropriate action of James Farley. When the USPS doesn't follow their own rules for printing of stamps, corrective action should be required. I think an additional printing should be required of the inappropriately printed Jenny sheets.

  • Reply to: Jenny Come Lately   4 days 21 hours ago

    As far as stamps and postage is concerned, the management of USPS should focus on the creation of postage that will meet the legitimate needs of the mailing public. Those responsible for philatelic sales in particular should aim to meet philatelists’ needs to acquire quality examples of those legitimate postal products. The creation of revenue through the production of ancillary material marketed solely or even primarily to philatelists should not be a consideration.

    A First Class forever stamp reproducing the classic 24-cent Jenny airmail would have been fine. Producing se-tenant pairs of an upside-down airplane next to the properly-oriented design would have been okay, too. But going to a $2 denomination, and deliberately producing “errors,” were steps too far. [I won’t even go into the absence of production values as evidenced by ink bleeds and bad centering.]

    Unfortunately, this was more the norm than the exception. The saga of the upright Jennies is a manifestation of how the USPS has moved to “milk” collectors exponentially over the past decade or so. Exacerbating this problem is that the organization is not only producing increasing numbers of needless products, but has failed to effectively manage the production and distribution system for philatelists. Two other examples of greed and mismanagement from 2013:

    • The imperforate Eid press sheet was released in August. It was listed as sold out after a few months. Then it mysteriously reappeared on sale at the USPS website in early 2014 and remained on sale for as much as a year or more thereafter. Production was said to be 500 press sheets. Was that the final number, and how was it that the product was sold out but resurrected for a long run thereafter?
    • The Jenny Collectors’ Edition contained so-called production samples from the Jenny printing. It was sold for $200, a huge premium over the face value of its contents. Initially, USPS reported that the stamps contained in the package were valid for postage; later, this position was reversed. So what were they selling and who approved it?

    I agree with Barry Moss and others who believe they were defrauded by the USPS regarding the Jennies. We ordered copies of the Jenny sheet from Kansas City, in the belief that we stood a chance (however small) of receiving a rare rightside-up version of the sheet, based on what the USPS stated in its marketing materials. Now we find that, for much of the period of mail-order purchases, NO “error” panes were distributed. Is it time for a class-action grievance?

    In addition to greed and mismanagement, the USPS has a credibility problem. Thank heaven the old USPO was privatized!

  • Reply to: Jenny Come Lately   4 days 22 hours ago

    As a stamp collector for 40+ years, I felt it was not an appropriate action by the United States Postal Service, to willingly create an "error" with the effect of creating a lottery. Instead of buying multiple Jenny Invert sheets, I have purchased older stamps missing from my collection.

    To enhance the philatelic program, the USPS should take a page from Canada Post. Canada Post issues circular, hockey-puck shaped stamps of National Hockey League (NHL) stars each year, in a limited quantity (no extras to destroy). In addition, they annual feature stamps with flower gardens; their issue of the Canadian Football League (CFL) logos in a coil form was incredible! The Saskatchewan Rough Riders, CFL, stamp sold out within days. How about National Football League (NFL) logos on stamps?? National Basketball Association (NBA) logos on stamps?? The United States Mint has been flooding the nation with National Parks quarters . . . . how about revisiting the National Park series from the 1930s? ?

    Please don't try and balance the United States Postal Service budget on the backs of collectors. As Peter Sellers character, prime minister Count Montjoy remarked about the Grand Duchy of Fenwick, "we've issued so many stamps the collectors are getting suspicious .. . ", [The Mouse That Roared], Columbia Pictures, 1959.

  • Reply to: Jenny Come Lately   4 days 22 hours ago

    How about concentrating on moving the mail and leave the lottery stuff to the people in Las Vegas? The larger a government agency gets, the more dumb ideas it has. Turning stamps into a lottery is not good for democracy or stamp collectors. It is just another meritless gimmick, and violates its own rules.

  • Reply to: Jenny Come Lately   4 days 22 hours ago

    I was already buying very few new US stamp issues; my policy since around 2005 was to avoid cheaply produced stickers issued only to generate revenue from collectors. This issue intrigued me because I incorrectly thought that average post office patrons may have a chance at finding one of these panes. I wanted to buy 5 panes, but my post office only had 2 to sell. Both were the inverted, "regular" issue.

    Since then I've not bought any new US issues for collecting. I'm really very disappointed with the entire US stamp program when it comes to collectible issues. I used to buy examples of every US stamp, souvenir sheet, postal stationery, format -- you name it. But I could no longer justify the high cost of keeping up with USPS's output, when virtually all the stamps issued are only seen/used by the collecting community and have no possibility of having any real value in the future.

    I should mention that I have a major stamp collection; far better than most (according to dealers who are familiar with it) and I still remain active in collecting other countries as well as classic US issues where I still have a need. It's too bad that the USPS decided to do something as artificial and harmful to stamp collecting as this pane. Unless things turn around as far as stamp issues are concerned (look back a few decades to see what collectors wanted then), I don't see myself returning to collect new US issues.

  • Reply to: Jenny Come Lately   4 days 23 hours ago

    The issuance of 100 'misprinted' sheets was a huckster-type gimmick, but the distribution and manipulation that followed were fraudulent. USPS has sullied its name by this whole sorry episode. If a state lottery employed the same techniques it would be a scandal, everyone fired. Why is USPS in the lottery business anyway? Incompetence.

  • Reply to: Jenny Come Lately   4 days 23 hours ago

    Thanks for the attention given to this issue. Certainly, actions which are inappropriate are, well, inappropriate by definition. Therefore, this program was - inappropriate! However, I actually applaud the Postal Service for being exactly what it needs to be to remain relevant - creative and willing to take a risk. With a bit more of such creativity in services being offered that are competitive, perhaps the Postal Service will be able to survive moving forward? Specifically regarding my opinion of the Jenny program, I really enjoyed it and it got me to take several trips to my post office that I wouldn't have otherwise made. I think it was a great idea and a lot of fun. Kudos to the Postmaster General for having the guts to try something different and to take a chance on being successful. Even if "only" 13 million in revenue was generated, its a whole lot better than further deficits.

  • Reply to: Jenny Come Lately   5 days 11 min ago

    This reminds me of the 1935 Farley fiasco when he produced and gave sheets of imperforated stamps to select few friends & politicians including the President. This is no different. In this case how many were friends and who were they, how many were sold on a random basis? With Farley he was eventually ordered to have enough if the imperfs printed to satisfy public demand. It is not the role of USPS to deliberately create rarities, give them to a select few and then justify it by distributing a few on a random basis and call it good. Whoever has oversight must take action severe enough to stop this practice and see it doesn't happen again. Print enough to satisfy public demand. The Hammarskjöld invert was an actual error and USPS printed millions deliberately to negate this collectable error. This is not an error and was a deliberate act to create a rarity. Did anyone at USPS get a sheet?

  • Reply to: The Postal Service and Its Obligation   5 days 1 hour ago

    I've had many packages vanish in the ether between sender and reciever with no trace and my neighbors are constantly getting my mail. Some of them are trustworthy to return the letters, but often they become coasters in a neighbors apartment and are even sometimes thrown away. I have complained and made both the inside and outside of my mailbox a collage of my name and apartment number to ensure there is no blind spot and my name and address can be read at any angle, and still once or twice a week I fail to recieve my mail and have to go knocking on doors of neighbors, many of which never answer. I have set up direct deposit because of the unreliability of usps, but I still was sent many paychecks via mail while it waited to be cleared. None of them have been recieved, and I need to request cancellation and reissue. Most of us in the working class simply cannot afford to recieve paychecks a week late, it means waiting to pay a bill until its overdue and accruing fees, it means sending out a dozen email explaining why I have to wait a week to make a payment that I would absolutely be able to afford, given a reliable postal service. I have sometimes paid double to have packages sent UPS or FedEX to avoid the nightmare of USPS. Ive sent letters via UPS because I need them to actually reach their destination. It seems to me that the USO was set up as an acknowledgement that reliable postage is integral to a modern way of life. While the information age has reduced the need for mailed letters, it has increased sent packages with the growing popularity of online shopping, making postage, if anything, more necessary than ever before. The USPS is charged with being the guarantor that this need is fulfilled, and fails miserably at it.

    I have gone through so much trouble because the carrier can't distinguish "G" from other letters and seemingly has a converyor belt of packages leading into a black hole, I would pay triple postage and double the tax dollars to make it so everyday letters are sent via UPS or FedEX or a carrier that will actually deliver it to its actual destination in a reasonable advertised time frame.

  • Reply to: Your Experience with the Customer Experience   5 days 2 hours ago

    Twice in forty-five years our mail person has been taken off our street. Since he left and during each time he was reassigned the service got to be sad. We never know when the mail will arrive.

    If you go to see the Postmaster she is always unavailable.

  • Reply to: Jenny Come Lately   5 days 2 hours ago

    I feel cheated. As a semi-casual collector, I spent over $200.00 on the jenny stamps for the off chance of being lucky enough to get the "upright" version. To find out that some were given away and others were sent to top markets makes me a little upset too find out I had zero chance of getting the "upright" jenny at the PO where I purchased stamps. Overall as a collector.the hobby has been harnered, not just by this but the self adhesive stamps, stamps that fall apart in water, and the over abundance of new stamps that hve to be collected in whole sheets.

  • Reply to: Jenny Come Lately   5 days 2 hours ago

    I believe the USPS should refrain from any action that interferes with the actual production of postage stamp "errors". It is a short step to intentionally producing an "error" and then printing them for general consumption. It detracts from the mystique of collecting when the government actively participates in manipulation of what is a genuine error and what is produced intentionally.

  • Reply to: Jenny Come Lately   5 days 3 hours ago

    This was a good idea that flopped. It flopped for a number of reasons. First, the stamps were not randomly distributed as advertised. Once you tell a lie, it is hard to regain trust. More importantly, the USPS does not support stamp collecting. If it did so, stamps would be soakable. It is never too late to partner with collectors. Other nations support stamp collecting in a variety of ways such as selling packets of stamps at tourist locations. Better advertising also would not hurt. Produce beautiful, collectible stamps, reflective of our diversity, our culture and heritage and collecting might make a come-back.