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At What Point Does A Country's Postage Stamps Just Become Stickers?

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Pillar Of The Community

United States
1312 Posts
Posted 02/06/2023   2:37 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this topic Add Timm to your friends list Get a Link to this Message
Example: Paraguay for years printed so-called stamps that you never see postally used. The same could be said for many other countries.

Do the stamp catalogues need to do a better job of filtering what is a real postage stamp or just a post office sticker?
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Valued Member
United States
478 Posts
Posted 02/06/2023   2:48 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add joe1225us to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
The same can be said about many countries. The Carribian islands who issue many colorful stamps, the countries that issue many CTO's, the tiny countries that issue many stamps. Ant the gimmicky 3d stamps and the like.
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Posted 02/06/2023   2:48 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add rogdcam to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
I don't see how the catalogs could police stamp issues. If a Country is a UPU member and issues a stamp technically the stamp is valid for postage no matter how ridiculous some of these stamp issues are. It is really up to collectors to set the market by either ignoring the wallpaper or purchasing it because they want to.

As an example, Iraq was issuing stamps during the war and yet had no operating postal service. IMO some of the recent Ukraine stamps are purely philatelic in nature but people are clamoring for them. Ukraine does have a functioning postal service however so who should decide what is worthy of a catalog.
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Posted 02/06/2023   2:57 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add floortrader to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
For years I been saying we need a cut-off ,something like 1970 . Issue a Classic catalog for 1840 to 1940, then a Golden period 1941- thru 1970 specialized . End it there ,
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Canada
1337 Posts
Posted 02/06/2023   3:15 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add gmot to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Yvert publishes a very sensible "semi-moderne" catalogue from 1940-60 (in 2 slim volumes), to go along with their classic (to 1940). Wish Scott did the same.
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United Kingdom
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Posted 02/06/2023   3:16 pm  Show Profile Check GeoffHa's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add GeoffHa to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
As far as I can tell, much if the decision-making is random or reflects self-interest. Gibbons rightly excludes a lot of junk from the Trucial States, but includes pages of stuff from more or less uninhabited Caribbean islands. With, say, the ex-French Colonies! the countries that have consistently issued stamps with genuine local subjects are Morocco, Tunisia and Algeria. I don't bother with the rest (some of which are, of course, legitimate).
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United States
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Posted 02/06/2023   3:45 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Cjd to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Since we're all going to have a slightly different set of factors, I vote for letting the catalogue companies list it all and letting each collector sort out what is interesting to that collector.

I would probably buy a Scott Mid-Century Modern Specialized from time to time. Not as often as I buy the Classic Specialized, but from time to time.
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Netherlands
2673 Posts
Posted 02/06/2023   3:51 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add NSK to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Why 1940? 1939-1945 brings the German occupation of many European countries with occupation issues.
The 1960s and 1970s are a time of postal mechanisation, reflected by the use of fluor and phosphor inks.
The 1990s and 2000s are a time of rapid technical advances and also the struggle with forgeries.

Compare high-quality printing techniques now with the line-engraved Victorian issues that show all kinds of issues with the quality of printing.

Looking at the limited number of posts on Irish stamp issues the modern Birds permanent stamps appear more popular than the classic Irish Symbols issue. The Gerl issue that is one of the most complex appears to be ignored.

Quite a few countries have issued beautifully engraved stamps mainly after 1960.

A GB catalogue for the period 1840-1940 would either be a leaflet or a very specialised catalogue that comes in three or four volumes that set you back 200.

Among my favourites is the British 1 Postal Union Congress that, primarily, was issued to make a present to delegates and not so much to be used. Maybe that was a sticker and not a postage stamp.
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Posted 02/06/2023   4:52 pm  Show Profile Check johnsim03's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add johnsim03 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
A vexing question which probably has no correct answer. I sometimes envy someone who collects everything that comes their way. It seems to me that some sort of cut-off is logical - but that's just me. To each his or her own.

We don't need no printed albums;
We don't need no 20 volume catalogues;
No dark sarcasm in the chat room;
Hey, philatelist - leave them collectors alone!

(Apologies to Pink Floyd)

John
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United States
550 Posts
Posted 02/06/2023   5:09 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Cephus to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
It's not just stamps with a problem though, tons of other collectibles do too. Take coins, for instance. There are lots of countries that put out tons of collector-only coins that will never go into circulation. I know someone who does YouTube videos on UK coins and England hasn't issued a new commemorative coin into circulation since 2016, but they sure do put out tons of new coins every year, trying to get collectors to buy them.

As far as I'm concerned, if these things don't get used for their stated purpose, either as circulated currency or to move the mail, it's not real. Printed cinderellas might grab the attention of some collectors, but these things just aren't postage stamps.
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Posted 02/06/2023   5:22 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Bobby De La Rue to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Starting in the very late 1960s, Gibbons had an appendix in their World Simplified catalogues, for stamps being issued in excess of postal needs, among other reasons.

If the reason I've mentioned is a key criteria, then how far back do we go? The 1890s high value sets from Canada & the USA? The 1924 GB Wembley Exhibition?

For Australia, it's become progressively worse since the early 1990s, whereby it gets increasingly difficult to find many stamps in genuine postally used condition.

Cephus raises a valid point regarding coins, and the same sort of principle could easily be applied to trading cards.

I'm a HUGE fan of floortrader's idea of having a cutoff at 1970. Gibbons already do this for their Commonwealth/Empire catalogue.

Should Scott (as an example) issue a non-simplified catalogue for the whole world 1941-1970 (British Empire 1953-70), how many volumes would be required?
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Edited by Bobby De La Rue - 02/06/2023 5:25 pm
Pillar Of The Community
United States
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Posted 02/06/2023   5:29 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add revcollector to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
At the point when you as a collector decide it does. There really is no other option.
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United States
56 Posts
Posted 02/06/2023   5:49 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Thinkstamp to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Timm, it seems to me there has been, even in 19th cent., some issues that could be called 'stickers'. For example, all the 'reprints' of El Salvador and some other countries that need money more than a sound stamp issuing policy.

floortrader, wouldn't that be wonderful...catalogs limited to a time period. If I buy a 'set' of catalogs most of what I am paying for is info on stamps beyond my date range. I thought similar to your idea or a looseleaf format with stamp information on one page and price data on next page. All I would need to buy to keep up is the price data or updates to show additions or deletions to the catalog listing. Not very profitable for the publisher though.
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Posted 02/06/2023   6:39 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add Cjd to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
Yvert has the semi-modernes on sale right now, 20% off.

https://www.yvert.com/A-238864-pack...-2-1941-1960

Two volumes, 1941-1960, split alphabetically A-L and M-Z, totaling 1068 pages. For comparison, the Classiques is 1404 pages covering 1840-1940.

The Classiques is on a five-year release cycle, last released in 2020. The semi-modernes are older, so perhaps we're coming up on a new release? I don't know.
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Posted 02/06/2023   6:58 pm  Show Profile Bookmark this reply Add patg23 to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
"I don't see how the catalogs could police stamp issues."

I guess we could look to Scott not so long ago as to Cuba, China, North Korea, the so called "Sand Dune" countries, and others not coming to mind right now.
They've modified policies since.
I think if you look at Scott catalogs of the time, there were disclaimers saying why.

Pat
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Posted 02/06/2023   7:20 pm  Show Profile Check KGV Collector's eBay Listings Bookmark this reply Add KGV Collector to your friends list  Get a Link to this Reply
The only stamps I am interested in are from 2015 to now!
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