Commentary No. 41 - 17 December, 2002
Our Third anniversary
Three years ago, we issued our first commentary on this website. That was in December 1999, just before the turn-of-the-century. We had great plans then and we still do. It's been a wonderful three years. We remember well the first time we received 10 hits in one day. We were ready to break out the champagne. Fortunately, the hits kept coming and increased steadily to the present level of about 100 per day. Early in the game we signed up for the web page counter called "Top 100" and watched our name as it shifted back and forth over time between 18th and 28th place.
The counter was fascinating. It provided all kinds of statistics that helped us get to know our viewers. We wondered where they were located, what questions they asked their search engines to find us and how many saved our address as a "favorite". Some people hit our site once and then quickly disappeared. Others stayed on for an hour or longer and looked at hundreds of pages.
Our two main objectives were first, to provide information about buying and selling Canadian stamps at auction and second, to make it easier for our viewers to get in touch with the auction houses. Our website attempted to answer a number of questions: What were the names of the top Canadian stamp auctioneers? How could they be contacted? And what were the dates of their upcoming sales? Then, once the auctions had taken place, our viewers might want to see the highlights of the sales and the prices that were being paid for the investment-quality material.
With this latter question in mind, we created our ten-year pricing records and gradually expanded their scope to cover an ever-increasing number of Canadian stamps. With rare exception, our data only records prices for the VF-XF material. From this database, we were able to identify new record prices as they arose each year. We are happy to report that 2002 looks to be the best year of all, with 66 new record prices for the year to date.
A number of new features were added during the three-year period, such as our analysis of new catalogues whenever they are issued (Scotts, Unitrade, Darnell and van Dam), "What's new", "New Canadian Varieties","New Record Prices", "Canada's Rarest Stamp" and "All About Auctions".
As we work on our site we learn. We learn not only about Canadian stamps, but also about stamps in general. This is a great bonus for us and one that we do our best to pass on to you our viewers. Much of what we learn comes from reading the auction catalogues. These are produced by individuals located in the major auction houses who have great knowledge. This knowledge is very helpful as it allows collectors to identify the varieties that are so valuable. Most of our commentaries are based on information that comes from these catalogues. We enjoy the process of research and then writing about the stamps that our viewers find so interesting.
We like to hear from you, our viewers, so send us your questions, your comments and your suggestions. As we begin our fourth year on this website, we want to assure you we are interested in your thoughts and viewpoints. In fact our day is made whenever we receive a note from one of you. So don't hesitate, please let us know how we are doing and what we can do better. Your suggestions will not be ignored
©2002, Canadian Stamp Auctions Ltd., Montréal, Québec, Canada