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Sales, Swaps, Auction & Approvals/Approvals Disc. : Some statistics about approval sales

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Jansimon
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23 Sep 2016
08:30:10am

Approvals
After a rather successful week of approval sales, I thought it might be interesting to have a look at how those sales happen over time.
75% is within one week of putting the approval book online. More than 50% even within one day.
80.6% of the sales is from books that have been online for 30 days or less
95.6% comes from books that have been on the site for less than 100 days.

In other words, the books that are online for more than 3 months only contribute for 4% of your total sales. Yes, there will be accidental sales, but it is hardly worth it. Better take them off and replace them for new ones as most buyers only look at the latest offerings.


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Soundcrest
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23 Sep 2016
09:07:12am

Auctions - Approvals
re: Some statistics about approval sales

I agree 100% but the problem is the rules and regs of approval books. It is a known fact, at least for my sales, that I can put a book up a few months later that contains the same stamps as a book that I mark inactive, with additional stamps AND the stamps from the book that I just marked inactive will sell. These are not sales to new people on SOR, these are sales to my regular buyers who for some reason missed the "launch weekend" and do not go to the books then. Because you need 100 stamps to a book, if I can restock the book or think I can restock the book in the next 6 months or so, I don't it down. Then of course there is the ongoing discussion of what to do with the remaining stamps should you take it down. Sure you can make packets out of the nickle and dime stuff, and do auctions on the 50 cent to 1.00 CV stamps but what about those stamps that are more expensive? You can't move them to ebay as stores require a minimum of $1 on an item. The other selling venues are time consuming to put inventory in. For me, I'll keep the books up and add to them when possible. Only if I know full well that the country was a dud in a book will I end the book early.

Greg

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ernieinjax
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23 Sep 2016
09:14:39am
re: Some statistics about approval sales

I was waiting for Jan-Simon's most recent offerings. On the way in this morning I took a look at his books on my phone and in less than ONE DAY most all of the ones that I'd be interested in were GONE!

You gotta be quick around here if its a desirable area!

-Ernie

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Jansimon
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23 Sep 2016
09:21:52am

Approvals
re: Some statistics about approval sales

Ernie, you'll get your chance. You know when to look Happy
I often run into the same problem, perhaps even more so because most approvals are posted in the evening North American time, which is in the middle of the night for me. When I check the new books during breakfast on my phone, most of the time I also find that the one I'd be interested in have already been taken...

Jan-Simon


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philatelia
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APS 156650 25++ years!
23 Sep 2016
10:26:34am
re: Some statistics about approval sales

Quote:

"but the problem is the rules and regs of approval books"



Greg - specifically which rules and regs are a problem for you?
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Soundcrest
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23 Sep 2016
11:34:17am

Auctions - Approvals
re: Some statistics about approval sales

The problem arises for me in the combinations. To my way of thinking a book of say 20 different countries and calling it British Africa or a jumble of countries from South & Central America and calling it Latin America I is not permissible. That being said I could not combine my books of (remaining stamps in parenthesis) Haiti (21), Guatemala(16) Dominican Republic(55) and Brazil (34) into one. But I knew this from the onset so I created books with only part of the stock that I had, leaving room to run the books again. Had I put everything I had in a book, then I'd be stuck with books with no way to refill them unless I obtained another collection. I have books that are sitting in the 70+ percent sold, with no other inventory to add, so I keep my eye out for collections to purchase to restock the book. Keeping the books up that are in that state, yes sales are almost zilch, but any sale is more than no sale if I take it down and hold it out to wait for more inventory.

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philatelia
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23 Sep 2016
11:42:06am
re: Some statistics about approval sales

A book of Haiti, Guatemala etc - all Latin countries would be permissible in my opinion. Yes, technically, part are Caribbean, but they are all Latin American.

The rules about categories was created to prevent mishmash floor-sweepings books. The example you mentioned - a book of Latin America would be OK under a strict interpretation of the rules, but really doesn't follow the spirit of the rules that require a SUBSTANTIAL offering from any area.

It is difficult to write rules to prevent this. The adherence to categories has put a stop to unorganized worldwide books, but hasn't stopped all the "thin" offerings. Personally, I think the categories rules are just about the only way to have any control over the problem. Can you think of a better method that hasn't been considered?

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lemaven
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23 Sep 2016
11:58:46am

Approvals
re: Some statistics about approval sales

Very timely and interesting. Thanks for posting Jan-Simon, I was actually going to ask if anyone had stats with a larger sample size than my few excursions into Approvals. Wonder if the same would apply to Auctions?

My modus operandi on Approvals has evolved to "put up for a couple weeks, take down for a couple weeks, put up at stupidly low prices, send them all to Stevo Big Grin and repeat..." Certainly keeping them hanging around "forever" seems useless to sellers and buyers.

Also thanks to Greg for his query. I had about 30-40 stamps from each of Chile, Guatemala, etc and wanted to put them up as "Latin America" but didn't think that was allowed. But I think Theresa has opened the door on that. Still not sure why a "floor sweepings" category wouldn't be allowed. No-one has to look or buy so sellers might not find it useful, but sometimes some of us right want to just browse through a "shoebox of stamps" looking for something that catches our fancy, n'est pa?

Dave.

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Soundcrest
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23 Sep 2016
12:09:23pm

Auctions - Approvals
re: Some statistics about approval sales

Dave I think the problem with the "floor sweepings" is that it leads to stores which here on SOR is against the law. Someone mentioned awhile back to have something different set up for higher priced stamps besides auctions and approval books. If that was to be done (and I support it) you could in theory open up a store like book for British Commonwealth Better stamps and as long as you had 100 stamps say in the 1-10 dollar price range it would be OK. British Commonwealth covers a lot of ground.

I don't mind putting up books with partial stock. The issue has been and always will be what to do about a book over 3-4 weeks old. I have been scratching my head over that for months and have not come up with a workable solution so the books stay out there! I have found that packets at auction works for the low priced stuff that you can start at 50 cents. Bundle $20 worth of sets and singles together and start it at $4.00? No interest, and thats at 20% CV. These are the stamps that have to go elsewhere - an elsewhere that is time consuming at this point

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Brechinite
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Neddie Seagoon from The Telegoons
23 Sep 2016
03:38:23pm

Auctions - Approvals
re: Some statistics about approval sales

My personal opinion is that this rule for Approvals needs clarification.

Quote:

" 6. The books are expected to be made available as a resource until such time as they are substantially depleted. "



Is substantial, 51% or 89% ??

We all know that on average the majority of sales from a book happens within the first week and very little sells after the first month.

Should we allow books to be closed after 5 weeks, no matter what the percentage of sales are?

Since joining stamporama I have been deliberately listing approvals and auctions in particular statistically/timely/priced/content controlled batches.
My first conclusion as far as approvals were concerned is that the highest percentage of sales happen within the first 24 hours and leaving books with a 33% and higher percentage of sales for more than 2 weeks is just allowing the book to gather dust. ( Who looks through a book with 60% sold? The majority appear not to)

It is said that members do not want members to have Stores. Bad News! You have them! They are Approval Books that have been listed for more than 4-5 Weeks!!

For those members that wonder what to do with stuff that doesn't sell, fill a couple of old stockbooks and put them into your local Auction House, you may be surprised what you get for them. OK you have to pay commission and wait a while for your money but at least they are not filling up your room and gathering dust.

Approvals and Auctions are open to market forces. If the price is right and it is what customers want the items will sell. If not they will not sell. The seller then has the problem of disposal of the unwanted items.
A word of caution, phased price reductions (like the 20% in the Auctions) encourage buyers to wait until the price is reduced. Fine for the Buyers bad news for the Sellers.

Having now gathered enough statistics, hopefully I shall be better placed to satisfy the needs of members/buyers.

I still believe that rule 6 should be amended to specify what is meant by "Substantially" and that Books may be withdrawn after 5 weeks.
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ernieinjax
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23 Sep 2016
03:47:24pm
re: Some statistics about approval sales

Quote:

"It is said that members do not want members to have Stores. Bad News! You have them! They are Approval Books that have been listed for more than 4-5 Weeks!!"




true.

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Jansimon
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23 Sep 2016
06:00:38pm

Approvals
re: Some statistics about approval sales

The percentages have changed since I posted the original message. This is because a buyer has been going through all the books with a dust comb, as we say here. Even books that have been online for 9 months have seen sales now but I immediately must add that this is exceptional.
Most of the time it is like has been said above.

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cardstamp
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23 Sep 2016
06:09:23pm

Approvals
re: Some statistics about approval sales

In my case - I have about a dozen or so regular buyers and they usually grab from the books I put up within the first 2 days - some actually get to them within the first 2 hours. After that I get a few stragglers. Today I did get someone new who - who was a few days late to the party. I used to wait 4 months and then mark the remaining book down by 50%. That did not work too well - so I stopped doing that since it was not worth the time to reduce the prices page by page in each book. I have tried taking the remainders and making lots to auction off - I have had some sell - but it really is also time consuming to do that. I now have a stack of old approval books about 2 feet high sitting on a shelf in my office - that have the remainders. If I come across more material from the same country - I can bring some of them back but usually I am just stuck with them. I am thinking of taking down books earlier than the 4 month period now - because once a book has been picked thru - no one seems interested in looking at it anymore. My main concern is that except for the regular buyers - it is very rare now to get anyone new looking at the books.. Steve

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BenFranklin1902
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Tom in Exton, PA
23 Sep 2016
07:51:04pm
re: Some statistics about approval sales

My experience is limited but I put up three books of old US covers over a period of time. As said, I found that the sales were immediate, all the good stuff I planted in them to add interest got stripped out the first day or so.

I did find when I added a new book a month later, the first two books got some additional sales as people went looking for enough items to justify a transaction.

Then nothing! I had hoped that there was a continuous flow of new people coming onto the site who would see the books for the first time, but nope. Even when I then reduced everything to half price, I got no interest.

My sales averaged about 25% overall. I was disappointed.

I do think the way the approval books work is the way of the future. I can look at them all without paying return postage. I was at a stamp club meeting this week where the Executive Director of the APS admitted that their approval circuit books were no longer money makers for the APS due to the higher cost of their labor to administer.

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Soundcrest
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24 Sep 2016
08:39:15am

Auctions - Approvals
re: Some statistics about approval sales

Last night I started a book that was more or less an old one as it had sold less than 20% of its stamps, but I suspected that perhaps some of my regulars may have missed it. Sure enough it is over 50% sold this morning. In addition I had an old book that I was considering taking down sell over $50 worth of stamps to put it on the bubble: I don;t have enough to add to it to make it 100 stamps. I MIGHT get a pass as almost everything in the book is sets. You just never know

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Brechinite
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Neddie Seagoon from The Telegoons
24 Sep 2016
10:18:55am

Auctions - Approvals
re: Some statistics about approval sales

It is my opinion that the "100" Rule should be for the number of stamps, so that eg. 25 sets of 4 stamps should automatically qualify as a book. GB frequently does sets of 10 so 10 sets would make your "100".

We do allow that rule to be ignored if you put up less than 100 Covers so therefore the 100 rule should be changed.

That way members would not have to "seek permission" from a moderator. (They have enough to do.)

On another subject brought up on this thread. I still feel we need a clear and decisive ruling on what is considered as "substantially" in rule 6.

Soundcrest is correct. If you take down a book that has had little sales for sometime and put it back up you do get more sales. I had to do this in the past when a stockbook containing my approval books fell on the floor, the stamps fell out and got all mixed up. (I did get approval from the moderator at the time.) I made up one book from two and sold over 50% yet both books had languished with no sales for a few weeks. That is why rule 6 should be changed from "substantially" to 51% and/or 5 weeks at the Sellers discretion. (Some sellers may want to leave their books longer.)

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BenFranklin1902
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Tom in Exton, PA
24 Sep 2016
11:09:15am
re: Some statistics about approval sales

Agreed! Reintroducing things, like the unsold items from several books combined do get people interested.

Back when I was on eBay, I had many things I was selling that had been through the system two or three times. Every so often, eBay would have a free listing day and I'd dump the unsold contents from my Turbo Lister back onto the market. Guess what? A lot of it not only sold, but generated bidding wars! So ya never know.

I also agree that books, especially for smaller countries or specialty areas shouldn't have to have 100 items. When I did my books I had two covers per page, which came to 50 items in my 24 page books. I see someone else managed to do 3 covers per page so I may do that if I put books up in the future.


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Soundcrest
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24 Sep 2016
11:27:44am

Auctions - Approvals
re: Some statistics about approval sales

Absolutely relists work on ebay. It is the main reason I use Auctiva. I recycle the listings every 6 months and what does not sell I now put up for auction here, with pretty good results. For SOR, I think that because there are new members joining every week, they probably are not going to go through every book but will jump on the new ones especially once they realize that to not do so, more than half the book can be sold the first weekend. While on the one hand Ian is correct that 100 stamps in 25 sets should count, I wonder if people will go through even new books of only 25 sets.

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Brechinite
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Neddie Seagoon from The Telegoons
24 Sep 2016
11:49:51am

Auctions - Approvals
re: Some statistics about approval sales

Soundcrest:- People will look at the books with 25 sets of 4. As I have said before people will buy if the item is what they want and it is at the right price.

BenFranklin1902:- Selling is like Comedy. "Timing" is everything.

Maybe what we need is a seperate "system" for the better "quality", "higher priced" items that rapphy has mentioned on several ocassions!

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Soundcrest
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24 Sep 2016
11:59:40am

Auctions - Approvals
re: Some statistics about approval sales

Ian I agree about a higher priced option. Logically you would think that it wouldn't work when I at least look at my auction results. Stamps cataloging over $5 rarely sell even when the opening bid is $1, but of course it is for the most part a different set of buyers, auctions and approvals. Very little overlap. The higher end platform would need a completely different set of rules though as it will be very difficult to put 100 stamps, sets and singles, with a higher catalog value all from the same country into one book. Either smaller books, or more leniency in number of countries in a book. A time limit for the books existence may be something to consider as well. The time limit would close the door somewhat on the store setup logic of keeping a book up for a year and adding to it when necessary. What the heck, since we are being creative we could even have a layaway plan for our regulars if they want to buy an expensive stamp (the way one of my buyers pays for items it almost is a layaway plan, but he always pays so I have no complaints!)

Greg

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michael78651
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SOR Auctioneer
24 Sep 2016
02:18:37pm
re: Some statistics about approval sales

Quote:

"It is said that members do not want members to have Stores."



That idea does not hold true with all members. There are many who are in favor of permitting stores. This was last discussed two or three years ago. The approval books were the compromise.

When the now defunct BidStart began its slide to oblivion, permitting stores was seriously considered as a way of bringing the BidStart sellers over here as many of the sellers were also very active in the Discussions in the BidStart Forum. That idea obviously did not pass muster, but it did spark ideas that led to the approval books.

Adding stores now would probably mean the end to the approval books. That would make things easier to police, although it is Theresa who moderates the approval books, not me. Stores would require monitoring, but more so in the manner as the auctions.

How well the idea of a new sales platform would be accepted I do not know. Many hold the view that the larger the sales platforms on Stamporama, the less activity outside of those areas as people join just to buy and sell and not participate. We already have a large number of buyers and sellers who do not read anything on this site, and then scream when they are told that they are not in compliance with the rules that they didn't read. "I didn't know," is a common refrain.

I do think it is a good idea to discuss things like this now and then to keep ideas alive, and for everyone to see what the various opinions are. Just remember that there is never any guarantee that an idea will be implemented.
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cdj1122
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Silence in the face of adversity is the father of complicity and collusion, the first cousins of conspiracy..
24 Sep 2016
03:29:42pm
re: Some statistics about approval sales

Very interesting comments. Since I only fantasize about putting up approvals or auction lots, I appreciate learning the problems sellers face.
I like the approval setup although when first suggested I may have smirked a bit.

So I have a question: What is it that some dislike about "stores" ?
Are there a few pros and cons that can be explained easily ?

As for all the almost sold books, would it be possible to allow the books to be combined after some reasonable time period and labeled in some way as recombined books ?

MOVED FROM Club ANNOUNCEMENTS??? Rule six.

" ... Who looks through a book with 60% sold? The majority appear not to) ..."

At times, ....Me.
Although usually fruitless, I sometimes will go through a sellers old books just before I settle up to see if there is anything I missed, since I would be about to pay the postage for them anyway.
In fact, I few minutes ago I found something interesting in one of Greg's 60% sold books and took it. As the end of the month grows closer and accumulated sales need to be paid for I do that often. I will look through old books of a particular (Both auction lots as well as approval books.) I've already gone over and find a few items that I'd not take and pay postage on alone, but as a fill in they are okay..
But actually your numbers are right on and I think that books should be dropped or at least refurbished when they reach 30% left. Five weeks or two months will certainly thin out books that look like they have been "robbed, raped and pillaged" and deserve a gentle coup de grâce.

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Brechinite
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Neddie Seagoon from The Telegoons
24 Sep 2016
03:48:04pm

Auctions - Approvals
re: Some statistics about approval sales

Micheal78651:- thanks for your insight and historical notes.

My own opinion is that the members are quite correct in not allowing/wanting stores.

Stamporama is unique compared to other sites with the Approvals. All the approvals need is a slight clarification/qualification to the rules. ie adjusting the "100" rule to allow e.g. a 3to4 stamp set to count as 3to4 stamps in the total of "100". Secondly to allow sellers to withdraw books from the approvals after 5-6 weeks, no matter how full/empty they are (if insufficient have sold within 5-6 weeks then the chances of any more selling will be miniscule so it would be unfair to put a completion percentage on as well as a time limit).

A higher priced option could be like the current Auction layout but with a new name, new listing time limits and a minimum selling price. You may be able to put a limit to the numbers an individual member may list on a weekly/monthly basis.


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Brechinite
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Neddie Seagoon from The Telegoons
24 Sep 2016
04:08:45pm

Auctions - Approvals
re: Some statistics about approval sales

Charlie:- What appears to happen with "Stores" is that you normally find a number of sellers put in many, many, many low priced common items and leave them listed for decades. That just leaves data, data and more data, to be stored on the server, for forever and a day.
Our Approval books do, as near enough, the same job, common stamps at low prices.

Some sites with stores actually list them like an auction. One stamp from Bill, the next in the list from Bert, the next from Sharon etc etc. Just imagine how many common low priced stamps you have to trawl through in that list. You think our auctions can be "bad" some of these sites with stores are a hundred times worse than ours.
Sellers can just keep adding to their list on a daily basis. You end up with a store(s) of thousands of low priced common stamps. ( listing 20 stamps a day for a year and you have one store of 7,300 stamps approx)

So as far as stores are concerned:-

Quote:

" Nay! Nay! and thrice Nay!.....Frankie Howard"



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Soundcrest
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24 Sep 2016
04:35:04pm

Auctions - Approvals
re: Some statistics about approval sales

For my 2 cents should there be stores here it they should contain stamps that are selling for a dollar or more. Ebay went to this format and that is why the stamps that are in my "dead" approval books cannot ever go there (for the most part). Ebay didn't want to see stores that looked like Poppestamps (if you remember him on Bidstart) SOR fills a niche that I don't see anyone else filling, and that is the collector who is looking to fill gaps in their collection and in fact simply collect for the fun of collecting. I put up a book of used Poland almost all 5 cent stamps (different) and thought all I was doing was putting up a book that would be packets eventually. I was dead wrong. It sold fantastic. I truly do not think that in a store like format these same people would purchase the same stamps. It certainly would not be as easy as it is here. Yes, I have collectors buying from my books that buy some better stamps but thats because I try to appeal to a broad range of collectors in my books. I would think that having a maximum value to a stamp in a book, and then follow that up with stores that would overlap somewhat in the cheaper items perhaps in the 1-2 dollar range. I also would put a cap on the number of the same stamp that one could put in a store, perhaps 3 same as the approval books, but maybe an exception or two if we are talking about specific cancels, which would hold true in early US material. To be honest though, I don't know if the collector is here in SOR that would buy an expensive stamp. They may already be going elsewhere to do that (Ebay or Delcampe and maybe Hipstamp). Right now I am very happy with the approval books and the auctions and the results of them.
Back to the issue at hand - I suppose that marking books inactive and reactivating them with new material (once restocked) may work. I am guessing if the problem is that we are taking up too much space on the server, that Roy would have chimed in. If we are not, why change the rules?

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michael78651
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SOR Auctioneer
24 Sep 2016
10:12:02pm
re: Some statistics about approval sales

Quote:

"So I have a question: What is it that some dislike about "stores" ?
Are there a few pros and cons that can be explained easily ?"



The answer is simple as to those who do not want stores here. Adding stores, adding anything to the sales platform for that matter, is seen by opponents as an over-commercialization of Stamporama, and not in line with the original premise of the site.
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roy
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24 Sep 2016
10:19:41pm
re: Some statistics about approval sales

Quote:

"Adding stores ... is seen by opponents as an over-commercialization of Stamporama, and not in line with the original premise of the site."



Very well said.

Roy
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cdj1122
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25 Sep 2016
04:24:31am
re: Some statistics about approval sales

" ... Over commercialization. ..."
That seems like as good a reason as any and better than most. The congenial club atmosphere is SoR's best trait.
Maintaining an aura of monitored fair dealing is another.

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philatelia
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APS 156650 25++ years!
25 Sep 2016
10:51:58am
re: Some statistics about approval sales

Great comments, folks! I enjoy reading suggestions and thoughts about the sales platforms - the best projects evolve and improve through helpful collaboration.

Just a note - long sets and other large items count the same as a cover and qualify for the 24 item waiver to the 100 item rule. Ditto for small countries and specialties where 100 items is unrealistic. Simply message the moderator (me) to ask for a waiver if you're unsure if your material qualifies. The rule did not plan to block great material due to a shortage towards an arbitrary number - that was not their intended result. Please remember that the rules as written came about to ensure that books contained a decent amount of interesting material. A baseline rule is necessary in order to draw a line and allow enforcement. So - if you have 75 (for example) awesome items from a specific area - just message me a quick description of the material and I'll let you know if it qualifies.

What was the quote from Pirates? "The code is more of a guideline than a rule" LOL! Hey - we're a club not the IRS folks - there is wiggle room for good intentions and great stamps!

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BenFranklin1902
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Tom in Exton, PA
25 Sep 2016
11:07:24am
re: Some statistics about approval sales

Quote:

"" ... Over commercialization. ..."
That seems like as good a reason as any and better than most. The congenial club atmosphere is SoR's best trait. "



Agreed. Both of the model car forums I frequent actually forbid buying and selling just for that reason. It disturbs the congenial club atmosphere. There is a board I no longer frequent because of the commercialization there. Every other post is a sell ad, and many of the sellers are aggressive in pursuing that they get the upside of every deal. Then there are the feuds about the deals.

For SOR, I have said that the approval books are innovative and should stay. With a 100 stamp minimum at say a nickel a stamp, that's only a $5 potential. I can say nobody is getting rich off these, and many folks buy and sell there just to be congenial and spread around their duplicates. Same with the auctions where stuff starts (and often sells) for pennies, often below face value.

I don't believe we need "Stores". That function is already effectively handled on eBay. Creating that here is just appeasing folks who don't want to pay any fees for buying and selling.

And a point that hasn't come up in these discussions. At what point does the sales aspect of the site conflict with Roy's business, while using his resources for free?

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michael78651
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SOR Auctioneer
25 Sep 2016
11:32:26am
re: Some statistics about approval sales

Quote:

"Creating that here is just appeasing folks who don't want to pay any fees for buying and selling."



Stamporama does not charge any fees for buying or selling in the auctions, approval books or classified ads.
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BenFranklin1902
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Tom in Exton, PA
25 Sep 2016
11:50:27am
re: Some statistics about approval sales

Quote:

"Stamporama does not charge any fees for buying or selling in the auctions, approval books or classified ads."



My point.

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rrraphy
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Retired Ap. Book Mod. Retired Pres Golden Gate Stamp Club, Retired consultant
27 Sep 2016
09:25:39am
re: Some statistics about approval sales

Hello, fellow SOR friends and collectors, I am finally back after a long long trip, and will catch up in time with all the posts.

This is the first one that caught my eye, and I thought I would interject a few words.
The 100 stamp rule repeatedly gets thrown as a reason not to post Approval Books, or a deterrent to become active in the Approval Book platform.
However the rule as written contains many exceptions and also gives the moderator flexibility to accept books that fall short.

Here is the exact rule as written in the Approval Book checkout:

Quote:

"#3 The book offers a SUBSTANTIAL selection with a MINIMUM of 100 items (mix of stamps, sets, S/S, FDC, etc.) in the chosen collectible area and no more than 3 copies of any individual item?
NOTE: The Moderator may grant an exception for some books (offering a combination of stamps, sets, S/S, covers, etc.), and for countries or topics where a limited stamp selection may make the minimum item requirement difficult to achieve. Exceptions to the "3 Copies Rule" can also be claimed for cancellation varieties, if notated. To get an exception for your book, you must contact the Moderator to obtain a waiver before you publish your book. Books consisting exclusively of covers, sheets, S/S, complete sets, etc., must meet a minimum of 24 items, and are subject to Moderator review.

Yes No

#4 The book offers stamps in WELL DEFINED, collectible topics that are clearly described in its TITLE and listed in the corresponding Approval Books Category?
NOTE: Please do NOT compile books with unrelated material, "floor sweepings", and do NOT combine unrelated countries or topics, etc.. Your book must fit one of our categories. Make sure the title contains enough information, such as year range, catalog number range, condition, topical subject, etc. to define precisely its content.

Yes No
If your answer to all these questions is YES, then you may publish your book.

If you are unsure of an answer, you may message the Approval Books Moderator for an opinion.

If the Moderator determines that your published book is not in compliance with these simple rules, your book may be deactivated until it is edited appropriately, or you submit a request for a waiver from one of more of the rules."



If the 100 stamp rule was cast in concrete, then we could have written a software piece to block the Books that don't meet the 100 count (which is already counted by it). NOT so. There are plenty of exceptions.
One thing that the software cannot do is count the stamps in sets or partial sets, or blocks.
You don't really expect the moderator to go counting manually what each book contains, so the 100 items are the target benchmark. But if you indicate that your book has sets, partial sets, blocks etc...IN THE TITLE, or contact the Moderator before issuing the book, the Moderator will find it easier to rule, or assist you in meeting the goal, even if your book falls short.

But read about all the other exceptions above in the rule.

THE KEY POINT IS THE INTENT OF SOR TO HAVE APPROVAL BOOKS THAT OFFER SUBSTANTIAL OFFERINGS OF MATERIAL ORGANIZED IN COLLECTIBLE CATEGORIES. AND THE TITLE SHOULD CLEARLY DESCRIBE THE CONTENT.


The 100 item goal was a compromise number, and most people will admit that is is not a very taxing goal, especially since it allows some limited duplication. If you cannot make the 100 items, there are the Auctions, or Trading platforms.
I personally find it too low (just a personal opinion), as I like to looks through well padded books as I attempt to fill in my collection blanks. It also helps build a purchasing total that is substantial enough to justify the postage fees.

Which is why I don't like looking at books that are fairly well depleted, and many others feel alike I think!..But that is another topic, which I will touch upon another time.

Good to be back!

rrr...

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