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Scott Specialized US Catalog.time For A Discussion?

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Posted 05/02/2021   5:27 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rismoney to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Rogdcam. I'll decline to answer, but my physical copy is the same year so I should be legit. The pdf is super handy on my phone, tablet, pc when I want to check something. The best thing is searching.



The digital copy of the error catalog is a huge letdown with their viewer, login, and pain as it's kludgy. Wish it could have been epub/pdf. Won't buy another one.

There are also several sites with legit older Scott catalogs for reading online, such as open library. I use them to track price changes through the years.

I haven't found a Durland electronic edition... Yet.
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Posted 05/02/2021   5:58 pm  Show Profile Check 51studebaker's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add 51studebaker to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Some folks in this community tout "The Internet Archive" and they have been stealing everyone's websites for years. Amos does not seem too concerned that "The Internet Archive" has stolen every single Linn's article or the rest of their copyrighted website content.

The internet changed the way people get information and content. In my opinion hardcopy hobby catalogs are the drive-in movie theaters of our hobby, enjoy them while they last.

Imagine thinking about starting a hardcopy catalog publishing company today. You'll need cash (loans, investors, etc.) for the startup so you put together a business plan which basically says, "we are going to cut down trees, incur costly shipping and distribution costs for raw materials, and incur costly shipping and distribution costs for our final product. We will be trying to compete with online resources which ID stamps instantly and for free. Our product will contain valuations which consumers can also get for free using simple auction site 'sold' searches". What are the chances that banks or investors would be willing to loan money on such a company in the internet age?

I love my books, I love my little but ever shrinking personal library. But people want their information with them in the form of ubiquitous computing and real-time content delivery. The other day on a whim I asked Alexa in my car, 'tell me about Stamp Smarter'. My car instantly mentioned my name and described my website (kind of scared me). I then asked, 'tell me about the Penny Black' and instantly got feedback on the history of the stamp. I am a dinosaur but a dinosaur who understands what happens when a comet hits the earth.
Don



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Posted 05/02/2021   7:04 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add tsmatx to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Scott donating their catalog system to Wikipedia is the best idea I've heard all month. I also have a searchable PDF catalog. It is so much better than physical books and you can search for a keyword over thousands of pages in literally just a couple of seconds and is so much more efficient, not to mention space saving, portable, better for environment etc. Unfortunately Scott/Amos won't even sell it to you. Only their proprietary online system or physical books.

Scott has done a great job making themselves irrelevant by fiercely protecting their catalog. You can look at how music has changed. 20 years ago musicians didn't want you downloading their songs for free. Now it is completely the opposite and they beg you to listen to their music because it helps their brand and keeps them relevant in the industry, and they monetize mainly through other means besides selling music (e.g. concerts or merch etc). If Scott/Amos wants to preserve their brand and catalog system, they need to figure out how to do the same thing. Shouldn't be hard to do--have freemium online access plan to catalog, sell official hard copies to dinosaurs who still want them, offer special premium services for dealers etc.

One of the groups this is really hurting is new/young collectors. It is terrible for growth of the hobby. Nobody who is dabbling in the hobby is going to spend hundreds+ or thousands of dollars just to get a catalog, yet you are lost without the catalog since it is de facto standard. It is a huge barrier of entry to new collectors just getting started.
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Posted 05/02/2021   7:06 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add revcollector to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
No reason the catalog cannot be printed on recycled paper.
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Posted 05/02/2021   7:25 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rogdcam to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
All of those hard copy auction catalogs need to go as well.
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Posted 05/02/2021   8:50 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add PostmasterGS to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Scott really is stuck in 1950. I get that their current clientele is probably older and prefers physical books. But that clientele is rapidly dwindling due to age, and they're not going to attract a new, younger clientele with their current model.

They really need to overcome the fear of copyright infringement and get on the digital train. Not to beat my usual drum, but Michel has almost fully embraced digital (online e-books, PDF catalogs, online relational database version of the catalog, smartphone app, desktop catalog and inventory app, etc.), and it makes my collecting considerably easier.
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Posted 05/02/2021   9:11 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add DrewM to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Why stop with digitizing catalogues? Let's digitize the stamps we collect, too. That way we can research our digitized stamps with a digitized catalogue, then put them into a digitized album, and pretend we live in a real world like in the past where people actually enjoyed looking at real stamps on real pages in real stamp albums. Ahhh . . . what a wonderful world that will be.

Sure, I get it, digitized the Scott catalogues is not a bad idea, and it will come to that eventually. But I prefer reading books on actual paper and I prefer using a paper catalogue, too. If Scott offered a digital catalogue I could access on my computer or cellphone, I'd probably buy it . . . maybe . . . but how is it any better than the paper copies I have now? It would contain the same stamps with the same material, wouldn't it? Beyond the late-breaking news of changes in stamp prices -- which I can wait for later -- they're going to be the same thing. Still, a digital catalogue might help when I'm at a stamp show. Or I could always look at the one the dealer always has with him? So maybe I don't even need it for that. The monomaniacal assumption that everything will soon be digitized and that it's inevitable is misleading as the large increase in books sales seems to show. I subscribe to two national newspapers and over a dozen magazines -- all printed on paper -- as well as to their websites. But I much prefer looking at the paper versions and spend relatively little time on the websites. Stamp collecting involves real stamps mounted in real albums, so it's not exactly a shock to discover that people who enjoy that sort of thing might also prefer actual paper catalogues. There is now digital artwork you can buy, but something tells me that paintings and drawings you can hang on the wall aren't going away anytime soon.
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Posted 05/02/2021   9:35 pm  Show Profile Check 51studebaker's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add 51studebaker to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply

Quote:
...But I prefer reading books on actual paper and I prefer using a paper catalogue, too...


Open digital catalog then File|Print
Don
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Posted 05/02/2021   9:37 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rismoney to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Digitized stamps... Enter the world of NFT. Have a look what nbatopshot and topps has been doing. Been quite popular thus far.

Not my thing, seems like gambling not collecting.
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Posted 05/02/2021   9:55 pm  Show Profile Check 51studebaker's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add 51studebaker to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
The one thing that many folks seem to 'not get' is the amount of philatelic information and data that is being lost every day, week, month and year.

I am currently in-processes with digitizing a 70 year run of the US Cancellation Club's NEWS; packed with great US cancellations information. In one of the 1955 issues, the editor mentions this problem; and here we are in 2021 still dealing with the very same problem. We suffer from a constant brain drain as those in our hobby pass without committing much of what they know and have learned over the decades they have spent in the hobby. Very few wrote and published books, few wrote articles. And consider the amount of wasted time and money that has been spent covering the same ground over and over because so much was never committed to a format that could be used as time passes. Being able to digitizing philatelic knowledge preserves AND makes it highly shareable for the future. Not limited to some cost restricted tiny print run, not locked in some far away library or personal book shelf; but rather readily available to anyone who would might need it.

I should also mention that the early 1950s issues of the USCC NEWS are in poor shape (paper toned, brittle, and crumbling into dust), I highly doubt that they will last another 20 years. Same for the run of Quaker City periodicals that I digitized a few months back. Ditto for the early La Posta's that we did.

Yes, we all understand the nostalgic and intrinsic enjoyment of curling up with a book in front of the fireplace. But no one is taking that away, you can print out all the books you would like, get them bound if desired. But in my opinion the personal desire to have a hardcopy book comes at a significant cost to the future of the hobby. This is why I am spending 100+ man hour digitizing this run of philatelic literature which will be freely available to everyone. Hardcopies are simply an inferior content delivery system on many levels including cost, durability, and distribution.
Don
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Posted 05/02/2021   11:00 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add PostmasterGS to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Don,

You make an excellent point that is a huge concern of mine. Because I'm a specialized collector, I have some philatelic resources that are extremely specialized and which are the only existing sources of info on certain topics. Many of them are just someone's passion project that they put together and published in a single print run through a philatelic study group or something similar. Some of these had print runs of less than 50 copies.

As time goes on, many have become impossible to find. I have no doubt copies are lost due to wear and tear or an executor of someone's estate cleaning out the stamp room and consigning them to a dumpster or the Podunk Co. library. You basically have to wait for someone to die to get a copy, and then only if their stuff makes it to an auctionhouse, eBay, or philatelic book dealer. Because the books aren't digitized and/or can't be digitally distributed due to permissions/copyrights, that info is eventually going to disappear.

I have several that I've digitized myself, either by scanning the pages or converting the enclosed data into an SQL table, and which I have accessible for my personal use in admin-only areas of my site. But, I can't publicly share the info with other collectors who might have a use for it.

The only real success I've had in this area is with the German Colonies Collectors Group (GCCG). The GCCG was on the verge of being defunct, and I volunteered to digitize all their old journals (Vorläufer) and a couple of the publications to which they had the rights, and make them available on my site for GCCG members to access. It's been a huge hit, and it's ensured that should the GCCG ever disappear, the knowledge isn't lost.
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Posted 05/05/2021   12:38 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Taxpaid Revenuer to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Years ago I took an old 2009 Scotts Specialized and ripped out the pages for everything after 1954, this left me with a lightweight "travel copy" I used on trips, a "classic" catalogue of my own making. The binding on specialized books permits ripping out the pages and the binding remains strong.
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Posted 05/06/2021   06:18 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add angore to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Preserving online philatelic information was discussed at Pacific 97 in a roundtable chaired by David L Straight. It may be a challenging issue but seems philatelic librarians are not really interested in it. Some may be intentional as we know some organizations view anything online is beneath them.
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Posted 05/06/2021   09:15 am  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add gvol21 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
This bias (perceived, at least) against things 'online' strikes me as odd. Sure, the Scott catalogues aren't going anywhere, and sure, I prefer a physical book as much as most of us here. Our hobby is accumulating and studying bits of paper, so no surprise there. The bigger issue is what Don brings up: how to deal with the specialized books, papers, monographs, etc. that are lost forever when their owner passes on, or larger accumulations of literature e.g. more obscure newsletters that we're losing to time.

And the frustrating thing here is that the material barriers to entry have never been lower. Look at Jim Jackson's Big Blue website: it's all hosted completely free by Google on its Blogger platform. There's a massive amount of information accessible there, and I can't imagine the total number of hours that Jim has put into it, but apart from perhaps some additional image hosting costs (and I think there are ways to minimize/avoid this) and some photographing hardware, the financial outlay has to be close to zero. No server costs, no worrying about security or downtime: it's all subsidized by Google.

There's a chance, of course, that Google could one day decide to stop supporting Blogger, but such companies have been pretty good in the past about giving plenty of warning and, most importantly, allowing you to take your data with you elsewhere. Perhaps the solution lies in a Wordpress installation or similar, hosted by an organization like the APS; someone could underwrite that kind of initiative for relatively little money.

As I see it, there's a digitization issue on the one hand: how to gain access to this stuff, how to convert it to digital, how to store it, how to organize it, how to pay for it. It's clear that without the tireless efforts of folks like Don, so much more philatelic knowledge would be lost forever, but this isn't enough: there are still folks who shuffle off this mortal coil who take a ton of information with them.

So, the question as I see it is: how do we bring some information-gathering effort to them? How do we capture their knowledge (the hard part) and then figure out how to organize it/store it/ share it later (the easier part - certainly no piece of cake, either)? How do we convince more folks to become authors?
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Posted 05/06/2021   09:56 am  Show Profile Check 51studebaker's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add 51studebaker to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I think we would be remiss if we also did not also mention some of the downsides of free and simple digital 'publishing'; the absence of vetting.

So while 'anyone can publish anything anytime' it also means that 'anyone can publish incorrect information anytime'. In the past, and largely because it often was costly to print information, there was more oversight and error checking in the publishing process. Given this, I think it could be argued that 'free and easy' online publishing has contributed to a decline in the quality of information.

This decline means that information consumers have to be more cautious and more discriminating about the information source itself. But this is opposite of a common human trait, 'if I read something that I agree with then it must be true'.
Don
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