• Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    Should the Postal Service market stamp images that focus on a younger audience in hopes of reaching beyond traditional collectors and generating sales? Yes. I am the mother of three young children and for the first time they are getting stamps in their Christmas stockings--per their request! They are now talking about pen-pals and mailing Nana homemade cards. Will it last? I'm not sure, but you've got their attention and a little extra revenue.

    Should the Postal Service be allowed to develop themes and images that do not focus on American heritage for the sake of sales? I think the USPS should be allowed to focus on themes that are significant to American culture even if they're not of American origin, including Harry Potter. Although HP has British origins, Americans embraced Harry as a universal character. Young and old were reading these books everywhere. Remember the erudite-looking adults on the Metro reading these books with other dust jackets on the outside to cover "the boy who lived" books?

    Or, should stamps be works of art and pieces of history and not based on fads or celebrities? I think there can be a mix. I foresee controversy with fads or celebrities certainly, so perhaps there should be a "waiting period" as a litmus test of enduring staying power.

    What stamp images would you like to see? Well, this may seem odd but when the time comes, I would like to see Louis Zamperini on a stamp. I hope he's with us for many years to come, of course. When the time is right, he's an American deserving of recognition.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    I'm 68 years old and Thrilled!!! with the HP stamps! Ordered four sets on line as soon as I learned they existed, and hit the PO the next day to buy more. Will send them as pressies to all of my HP fans, ranging in age from 25 to 79:-). So enough of the 'youth appeal.' HP is just a huge part of our culture and thus a brilliant idea. Do wish USPS would reprint some of the more popular recent stamps--loved the 'flowers' and 'bonsai trees' -- they seem to have disappeared. Tho
    not a collector, enjoy checking out the new releases and buying whatever connects to me personally...so will definitely stock up on Harry. Thanks for asking.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    Stamp images should glorify the U.S.A., by showing its history, people, places, goals, and accomplishments. They should help educate people about the best of this country and its history. They should show pictures of U.S. people, places, things, literary figures, inventions, artistic and scientific accomplishments, etc. that accomplish this glorification. Besides these, there are many potential simple stamp designs of U.S. items like national and state birds, capitals, maps, and parks, as well as sports, literary, and scientific figures to provide more than enough pictures. Every stamp does not need a picture, some can be words only. But, under no circumstances should they show either pictures of Harry Potter, Adolf Hitler, Queen of England, or other foreign people, literary figures, or objects or gangsters or refuse piles.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    I've reconsidered my initial (negative) response to "pop culture" stamps. I love my local post office and I'm grateful to the good people who work there. Quick snapshot: I handed over ten one hundred dollar bills to the man at the counter today to pay for several bill-paying money orders and was credited with only $900.00 paid. The counter worker and the manager assured me that they would "count the drawer" at close of day. Happy ending: I received my uncredited $100 promptly at closing time. Just an example of the integrity (and honesty! how easily a single missing bill might have "disappeared"!) still to be found at our Post Offices. So, to return to the question of what sort of stamps our U.S. Postal Service should sell: I yield to those who acknowledge the wisdom of potential earnings--as opposed to purity of representation.
    ANYTHING--within reasonable taste--that adds to the USPO coffers and allows these good neighbors and friends to continue their service to our urban and rural communities has my support.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    Why? Why cannot stamps be fun, and help keep the USPS solvent in the process? I strongly support issuance of the Harry Potter stamps.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    Most philatelic hobbyists, as well as other postal and non postal persons, familiar with the operation of the Citizens Stamp Advisory Committe, will likely agree the proposal to put Harry Potter and other subjects of contemporary popularity with young people on stamps is unrealistic , even disingenuous, as a means of resurrecting the moribund hobby of stamp collecting in a digital age of widely popular video gaming and ubiquitous text messaging. Considering that increasing the rate of stamp retention significantly is unlikely, associated revenue gains will, therefore, be marginal in helping to mitigate the USPS's muti- billion dollar budget deficits. Taking such realistic, albeit harsh, considerations into account, USPS should not allocate requisite costly production, distribution, and marketing resources while also sacrificing the venerated historic , customary selection of stamp subjects of a uniquely American character.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    Please go ahead with this series. It is a win-win for the U.S. public and the USPS. As a consumer and advocate of the USPS, we need to find ways to make this service both sustainable and profitable.

    I agree, US postage stamps are mini-cultural educational lessons, they reflect aspects of our history, values, popular culture, and future (eg, Space stamps). Stamp collecting also provides our young people an opportunity to collect part of our American hertitage. However, there will be a challenge with the USPS and pursuing this line of stamps - defining what is "popular" and what is not. I hope this concern does not prevent the USPS from pursuing a wider design for commemorative series (perhaps - limit the number of copies to increase the value?). Finally, I endorse the policy that we should not place a living person on a stamp, please continue this practice. I look forward to collecting more USPS stamps, varied and unique, in the future.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    I prefer American subjects and love stamps of lighthouses, the 50 states, ecosystems, recycling, wildlife, & historic figures. I have trouble believing that many younger people will ever be drawn to the hobby, but if a Harry Potter stamp is successful, fine. I think it's okay to have more commercial stamps AND the traditional ones. I'm not a collector; I just like to put interesting stamps on the mail that I send.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    1) I vote NO for Harry Potter
    2) Stamps should reflect USA themes (history, pop culture, geography, people, etc)
    3) Pop culture and celebrities are acceptable (Elvis, Ray Charles, Bugs Bunny, Mickey Mouse, Movies, comics, etc.) Pop culture themes have been fun & great. Keep them coming!
    4) Stamp Suggestions: VISTA - Volunteers In Service To America; AmeriCorps; RSVP - Retired Senior Volunteer Program; Jerry Lewis; The Three Stooges; comic book covers featuring mailmen or characters receiving mail; The Andrew Sister;, U.S. Coast Guard; more Motown; Million Dollar Quartet (Presley, Cash, Perkins, Lewis);

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    I do not like these "fad stamps". I believe stamps should reflect the heritage, vistas and portraits of great Americans, and not cartoon characters or commercials for movies.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    the commemorative stamps should be based on American Heros & Sheroes. How is Harry Potter pertainate to our many many unsung Americans past and present? Really Harry Potter???

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    Harry Potter is as much an icon of a recent young generation as Dr. Seuss was of mine. We should encourage that generation to be buying stamps. As for commercialization of the USPS, Congress said it's supposed to act like a business, so let it.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    Both the numbers of new issues and the cost of the new issues has destroyed U.S. postage stamp collecting. Harry will not solve the problem. The U.S. isn't the only country to do this. The hobby is now for wealthier folks or older collectors who still enjoy collecting. It appears that you will have many comments from a turned off stamp collecting community.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    I don't believe U.S. postage stamps should be replaced by advertising labels and I don't think any decisions about appropriate designs should be made by going around the design committee. The committee should make all decisions concerning new stamp designs.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    I agree with you Chuck. I was surprised when I saw the Harry Potter stamps. They do look cheap and nothing special about them - almost like children's stickers instead of stamps. I thought at least the images would be drawn instead of photographs.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    I think stamps should represent the best of art and history and not be thrown open to the ever encroaching commercialism that has just submerged Thanksgiving!

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    A stamp for a fictional character that is nothing more than a commercial, money making success? I'm still waiting for a stamp dedicated to the 241 brothers I lost in Beirut, Lebanon October 23, 1983. The reason 911 happened was because this country chose to forget what happened that horrible day. This was the true begining of the "war on terror" yet they don't teach that in school, do they? There is no commemoration at our nations capitol of the best young men America had to offer in that era, just an occassional small blurb on the news once a year. Yeah, a Harry Potter stamp, great idea afterall he's a fictonal, British "hero"; excellent choice for a U.S. postal stamp!

    22 MAU, MSSG-22, BLT 2/6
    Beirut ,Lebanon
    14Feb.83 - 31 May.83

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    As a life-long fan of the Postal Service, an avid purchaser of stamps, and as a person who still writes letters by hand to a variety of friends across the country on a very regular basis, I find the notion of the Harry Potter stamps depressing. Our stamps are best when they educate us about our history and affirm the depth of our nation's cultural contribution. Must everything go the way of kissing the ass of the least common denominators in pop culture? Keep those Potter stamps away from me. Most sincerrely, Robert Kokott

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    This may be a neat idea to work with social media to create an interest in stamps and written correspondence.

    Working with Zazzle, the USPS could offer competitions that allow the public to offer their preferences for new stamp lines in their stamp purchases. Both amateur designers and stamp design professionals could enter their designs for competition. The best selling designs that meet established criteria could win cash prizes and winning stamps could have the honor of a national production run.

    This could also very much help the USPS know what kinds of stamp designs are of interest to the public.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    I think USPS should do whatever is necessary to encourage use of the mails, including designing stamps that appeal to different users. I am a senior citizen, but I just bought the Harry Potter collection because I love the stories. What DOES bother me is that the new four-stamp holiday collection includes kwanza, the Muslim religion, Hanakuh and one other but NOT Christmas. The last is the reason this holiday season began. This country is losing sight of - denying. If you will - it's Christian roots in favor of the so-called political correctness. Correctness does not mean excluding an idea just because you don' agree with it.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    Trying to get Young new stamp collectors is a great way to help the USPS, and I am all for that. There is also another way we try to get stamps sold, and that is to Honor the past and to educate through them. The Beirut Veterans of America (BVA) have attempted to have a stamp to Honor those Servicemen who lost their lives in the US Marine Bombing Oct 23, 1983 for over 10 years only to be told it is not of National Interest. I would love to convey how this is indeed just that because it was the FIRST major attack on US in the War against Terrorism. If you would need more knowledge on this subject, please let me know and I will provide any background needed. That goes for the History and the Records of the 10+ years of NO ACTION for this endeavor seeking a stamp to Honor the men WHO CAME IN PEACE. I am a member of the AFDCS and have collected stamps all my life. New subjects are Great, but the Past must be Honored.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    I am absolutely in favor of the Harry Potter stamp! Harry Potter is on par with the cultural icon that Elvis is - just for a different generation.

    Also, Literature and Film Making are both art forms. Who is to say that Harry Potter isn't art? Why shouldn't the Postal Service celebrate great books or movies - even if they also happen to be commercially successful ones? A picture of Harry Potter is at least as much art as a picture of Elvis (one of the most commercially successfuly musicians of all time, by the way)

    I'll be buying these.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    USPS should market stamp images focusing on a younger audience to generate sales. However, displaying living British actors, is NOT the way to do it. There are enough U.S.-centric themes, but if you must honor something generated overseas (i.e., Harry Potter), then use illustrations from the books, not screenshots from some commercial film conglomerate. Why should Tom Felton be on a stamp representing my country?! Who is Tom Felton? EXACTLY!

    The Postal Service should be allowed to develop themes and images that do not focus on American heritage, but since stamps are a national enterprise, such themes should be ones that further U.S. values or aspirations, such as international peacemakers, authors, or scientists. Purely entertainment themes cheapen the entire USPS brand.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    Unfortunately, the Harry Potter stamps crossed a line for me. The release reminded me of stamps I used to see as a kid from other countries - with the sole purpose of those stamps being to make money. Many issues from Manama, Hungary (Soviet-era), etc. were even pre-canceled for collectors without any pretense of actually being used for postage.

    I love the Postal Service and use it constantly. I'm working hard to get my children to appreciate the value of a handwritten note or card and sending it to someone via the mail. Not too many years ago, the Postal Service began crossing many lines with stamps that were entirely commercial in nature with little other real American significance. But where the Harry Potter stamps fail is that there is absolutely nothing American about them whatsoever. It's one thing to have a joint issue with, say, France honoring Edith Piaf or Miles Davis. Both were artists with deep ties in both countries. Such a stamp celebrates the arts in both countries. It is a ridiculous fantasy to believe that Harry Potter stamps will either encourage stamp collecting or use of first class mail by young people. The only thing that will encourage such use is to teach the value of this communications channel directly.

    A handwritten letter is to e-mail as a newspaper is to its website. Both forms of communication have their place and value. Years ago, I watched as one venerable newspaper in California remade its front page to 'sound' like television. It was a farcical effort later reversed. So, too, must the Postal Service realize that for this next generation the value of first-class mail and stamp collecting will need to be taught directly and not imbibed from one generation to the next.

    If the Postal Service wants to appeal to younger people, it had better get into schools and educate. All a Harry Potter stamp will be is a pop collector's curio that cheapens other Postal Service releases and dumbs down that standard. And if too much of that happens, I'll just kiss my collecting days goodbye as well - and I've been collecting since I was 5.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 7 months ago

    I don't think the postal service should be in the business of promoting commercial endeavors. It should stick to its roots. Otherwise, what's next: Corporate America paying to place ads on stamps?

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