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I’m usually a pretty nice guy, but Tony Lester Auctions has managed to turn me into opposite.Sit back and hold tight, because I’m about to share a grim true story from the online world.

Published on October 18th 2014 | Read more.... | 13 Comments

If you are a stamp catalog publisher, the most stupid thing you can do is…

For the past two weeks I’ve been browsing the brand new Michel North Africa 2014 catalog. As always with new Michel catalogs, it’s pretty excellent piece of work. But this time everything isn’t so rosy as Michel has done something that every stamp collector and stamp dealer fears the most: it’s re-numbered/re-catalogued the stamps of an entire country.

Published on October 16th 2014 | Read more.... | 7 Comments

Greek tragedy in perf thirteen and one quarter

This story began a good number of years ago when I noted that some Greek definitive stamps from the 1990s had different perforations, yet the catalogs failed to mention nothing about the difference. Since then I’ve been checking just about every modern Greek definitive stamp I receive in detail, and boy, have I found out the hard way that something is seriously amiss with catalog listings.

Published on October 8th 2014 | Read more.... | 3 Comments

Unlisted perforation varieties on classic Montenegro stamps

Carrying on with topic of Montenegro stamps, here’s a bit of an mystery. Both Michel and Scott state that the 1910 stamps commemorating 50th anniversary of the reign of King Nicholas have perforation of 12½. But I’ve found a good number of copies (of several values) that are something different.

Published on October 1st 2014 | Read more.... | No Comments

Montenegro 1896 Cetanje monestry forgery by Fournier

Moving on with topic of stamp forgeries, I recently acquired a small accumulation of classic stamps of Montenegro. As I knew the stamps of Montenegro had been heavily forged at the early days of philately, I was prepared to come up with at least one or two forged specimens. And I was not disappointed.

Published on September 16th 2014 | Read more.... | 5 Comments

Automated stamp recognition

I was recently reading a research paper about automated stamp image recognition, when it hit me that this is one of those situations where smart IT-guys (like yours truly, LOL) are often building tools that might not necessarily serve the hobby. If software automatically identifies a stamp in second or two (and even faster), what is there for the collector to do? Take a picture of a stamp, let the program identify it, and then place the stamp into an album? Ask me, but that’s not how you become or enjoy being a stamp collector.

Published on September 11th 2014 | Read more.... | 6 Comments

A modern Soviet forgery

I was working with my Russian and Soviet collections last weekend, and upon sorting through a small accumulation of postally used Soviet definitives, I came upon a specimen which appeared a bit odd. Upon closer inspection, I found out that just about everything on this specimen was wrong.

Published on August 29th 2014 | Read more.... | 7 Comments

Guatemala Primavera 1960 color changeling

Few years back I wrote about perforation varieties of Guatemalan Spring Fair 1960 stamp, and with this entry I’ll introduce another bizarre specimen for this stamp.

Published on August 22nd 2014 | Read more.... | 4 Comments

Is it OK to give negative feedback?

Over the summer I’ve been feeling random stings on my heart when filing public reports about the quality of stamps sent for my exchange. I don’t know if it’s part of the Finnish behavior or something more widespread, but I find it very hard to to give (verbal) negative feedback even when I know it’s justified and should be done.

Published on August 9th 2014 | Read more.... | 17 Comments

SCB Summer Camp: Filling spaces project

I’m keeping a short ’summer break’ from actual blogging and focus on working my collection and my stamp exchanges for the next month or two. Two frequently asked questions relating to my exchange are “Can you tell me what specific stamps do You need from country X” and “Do you have these…”. Well, this ’summer project’ is all about it. Instead of listing everything I have/need (both which would be a lifelong task), I’ve decided to to narrow the focus in one small (but very dear) niche: European definitive stamps.

Published on June 24th 2014 | Read more.... | 8 Comments

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All original content and images of this blog is under copyright protection; any kind of reproduction of full contents without permission of the owner is hereby denied. All Rights Reserved © Keijo Kortelainen, 2009-2014. All photos of stamps in this blog are enlargements or reductions of original stamps from private collection of author of the blog (unless otherwise stated). The designs of stamps and postmarks are copyright of issuing postal authorities and their designers. The comments / discussion on this blog are copyright of their retrospective authors, and represent the opinion of their authors. Catalog numbers (Scott, Michel, SG etc) are the copyrighted property of their publishers. | See our privacy policy