Magazines

I have to say that I was disappointed that I could not find any magazines for Stamp Collectors when I visited United States for the first and (so far) only time in February 2013.

Maybe I expected to be at a counter at a drug store, sipping a milk shake and reading a monthly magazine that I had chosen from the countless on offer.

It is maybe a question of different culture. High Street and Shopping Mall newsagents are very much evident…chains like WH Smith (Britain) and Easons (Ireland) sell at least three monthly magazines.

I am a casual buyer of “Stanley Gibbons Stamp Monthly”. As the name implies it is very much the house magazine and publicity arm of the Gibbons Empire. Frankly the articles are not overly interesting but the magazine features a monthly supplement to the Stanley Gibbons catalogue and this unfortunately gives it an edge over “Stamp Magazine” which I have not bought in more than fifteen years. It is more independent than “GSM” and has better articles.

The third magazine is “Stamp and Coin Mart” and seems more downmarket than its rivals. The unique selling point is that it recognises a certain cross-over between Stamps and Coins. Again I have not bought a copy in over fifteen years but as I recall it used to have a feature on Phonecards.

Older readers might recall a short-lived “Stamp Weekly” in the early 1970s.

The three survivors are similar in format. The articles are in the middle of the magazine and there are several pages of full-page, half-page and classified advertising in the front and back of the magazines. Auction Houses, Stamp Shops and Mail Order Traders all have their regular spots.

The culture in USA might be different. Certainly at Atlanta airport, the bookshops and magazine stores were small and did not seem to carry a wide range of magazines. Likewise the moderately sized “college” town in East Texas.

Of course, there are countless references to American kids selling subscriptions to magazines in TV Shows I have seen over more than fifty years.

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About John

Dia Duit! Hello. My name is John. I am retired. I live in Ireland. I am on a five year mission to visit every city, town, village and place of historic and scenic interest in Ireland.
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