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A Catalogue of Sins

The Stamp Collecting Report, I'm Lloyd de Vries.

The Bible for U-S stamp collectors is the Scott catalogue. Its numbering system is near 
universal. But the catalogue isn't cheap. A complete set is 6 volumes, plus there are 
additional specialized books. The list price is 80 dollars -- each.

So imagine the surprise when a collector received an e-mail offering the entire set of 
six on D-V-D for less than 30 dollars total.

It's a pirated version, of course. In fact, Scott Publishing stopped producing the 
catalogue in electronic form because the piracy was so rampant. So this enterprising 
individual may have scanned the thousands of pages for these disks.

May have. There's no guarantee that a buyer would get anything at all, or that the D-V-D 
would work, or was complete, or wouldn't infect the computer.

Some collectors complain about the high cost of the Scott catalogues, as if that's 
justification for piracy, but they don't realize they're not just paying for the ink and 
paper, but mostly for the research and work. It's no wonder that all those efforts to 
create free cataloguing systems on the Internet have failed: No one wanted to do all that 
work gratis.

Scott Publishing will go after this pirate, but he used one of those free e-mail accounts, 
and probably can't be traced. He'll undoubtedly take what money he can, and disappear.

And shame on those who buy these disks, knowing that they're pirated versions. That's a 
form of theft, too.

I'm Lloyd de Vries of The Virtual Stamp Club. For more on stamps and stamps collecting, 
visit virtual-stamp-club-dot-com.

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