• Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 8 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 8 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 8 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 8 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 8 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 8 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 8 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 8 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 8 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 8 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 8 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 8 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?

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 8 months ago

    The Harry Potter stamps appeal to a younger audience and have the potential to generate revenue from new sources. I think this is a great idea and the Postal Service should use stamps to promote itself.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 8 months ago

    I alwasy thought someone had to be 1) a rea person 2) deceased before they went on a stamp. I do not agree with puting fictional characters on our postage stamps 0- for collecting or using!

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 8 months ago

    USPS should not be supporting commercial interests of any kind. Nor should it be running a lottery as it is doing with the "uninverted" inverts. Management needs to be reminded that USPS has a public purpose and that total revenues from stamps sold but not used is budget dust. The Harry Potter stamps, in particular, suffer from a bizarre distribution system which is compounded by a woefully inadequate normal distribution system.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 8 months ago

    Give the people what they want and I mean all the people, not just the traditionalist or modernists, young or old. Just make sure the stamps are appropriate for everyone and all ages. This not some sort of private club. The United States Postal Service serves all the people.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 8 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 -- absolutely!! If the Postal Service wants to encourage young philatelists, they have to appeal to this market. That doesn't mean you ignore the more traditional collectors. Market stamps to both groups.

    Should the Postal Service be allowed to develop themes and images that do not focus on American heritage for the sake of sales?

    Of course. American heritage is a wonderful thing, but I do not see the sense in limiting stamp images to a few moldy historical figures or overdone iconic imagery. Every now and then, a break from tradition is refreshing. Get rid of the Citizens' Stamp Advisory Committee -- don't they realize that if the Postal Service fails, stamp collecting will go away?

    On a side note -- the Harry Potter stamps must be doing well. I tried to buy some at my local Post Office this morning, and they were sold out.

    Or, should stamps be works of art and pieces of history and not based on fads or celebrities?

    Develop both kinds of stamps. People like different things -- why not generate interest with a broader offering?

    What stamp images would you like to see?

    How about a celebration of classic rock groups? I would love a Pink Floyd stamp series. Just sayin' . . .

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 8 months ago

    What a great idea! I was an avid stamp collector as a youth and am in great despair that this wonderful hobby has lost traction with today's youth. Hopefully this will engage some kids and make for some new members in the American Philatelic Society.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 8 months ago

    Stamps are tradtionally depictions of literary or cultural figures. So tell me how stamps depicting characters fron a series of books that sold millions of copies and inspired thousands of costume parties and other events would not be following in this tradition? Oh I see the problem is that these are books and culture for young people. I can understand the narrow point that the books didn't begin in the United States, but I have to wonder if every other stamp face was also born in the US.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 8 months ago

    I appreciate the desperation which is driving USPS to Harry Potter, but this is not a solution to the system's economic woes. Issuing Harry Potter stamps may prompt some youngsters to buy and keep a few Harry Potter stamps, but this unfortunate decision is unlikely to turn them into serious collectors -- and, even if a few do stick around, serious stamp collecting is more likely to prompt them to buy Penny Blacks than pop icons, which will do nothing for the USPS bottom line.

    I would much prefer to see USPS honor the dedication and knowledge of the Citizens' Stamp Advisory Committee and not make any further end runs around their advice and counsel. Let's keep our stamps on a higher plane than Harry Potter offers...

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 8 months ago

    The USPS is on a slippery slope, changing and then violating their own rules about stamp subjects. There are good reasons for not allowing living persons portrayed on our stamps, but they cut the time limit from 10 years deceased to 5, then ignored that entirely. If they had relaxed such rules in the recent past, we would've probably had Lance Armstrong stamps issued - think about it. We've got enough reminders already illustrating how our politicians cave in to moneyed interests, and we've already had plenty of stamp subjects chosen just to suck up to Time-Warner (big shippers and users of the mail).

    Time Magazine honored Adolf Hitler with a cover in the late 1930's. Do we want our USPS to make a similar blunder?

    I'm just saying...

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 8 months ago

    Why not? It might help matters. It certainly won't hurt matters.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 8 months ago

    Harry potter would make a great stamp. My niece is crazy about harry potter and she would collect all the stamps.please make harry potter stamps

  • Reply to: Fall Mailing Season Gets Rolling   1 year 8 months ago

    It doesn't sound like you've actually used any of these stamps yet. That black line through "forever" is only on pictures of the stamp. You can also see this same element on many thousands of pictures of denominated stamps. It's there primarily as an anti-counterfeiting device to thwart people from printing out a picture of the stamp and using it instead of a real one. If you're ever able to purchase any of the actual stamps, you'll notice that line is not present.

  • Reply to: Will Harry Cast a Spell on Young Stamp Collectors?   1 year 8 months ago

    What does it matter if the only stamps available where young adults shop are flag stamps?

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