Saturday, August 18, 2007

Indonesian Personalized Prisma Stamps

Indonesia also produced personalized stamps. The stamps can be used as the advertisement of a company. It can also be a part of a family memorabilia. I have made stamps with a picture of me and my three little boys in front of the globe, with the official stamps picturing two hands are doing a shake hand in front of the Indonesian flag. I used these stamps to send letters to friends abroad. It should be conveying my message from Indonesia offering peace and collaboration to make a better world together.

When I went to Seoul, I bring a couple of stamps as I did not bring a picture of my family. A friend asked to have it as a token. So it could also serve as a souvenir.

Prisma stamp is also used to promote the last book of Harry Potter. Launched at the same day as the book launching, July 21st 2007, it has four series of stamps. Only one of them depicting Harry Potter, and this one is sold out already. We can still have it as a complete set of four series, but it is still too expensive for me. I’m not really a fan of Harry Potter so I just take photos from a man who came to buy a set for his friend. I'll write more about it in another article.

Picture 1: my own collection
Picture 2: poster, courtesy of PT Pos Indonesia

Thursday, August 2, 2007

Indonesia Celebrates the Centenary of Scout Movement.

Began in 1907 from the Brownsea Island UK, the scout movement started by Lord Robert Baden-Powell spread to the world. This youth movement was first starting in a boys’ camp on the 1st August 1907. A century afterward, 40.000 scouts from more than 150 countries all over the world come and join together in the 21st World Scout Jamboree held from July 27 to August 8 at the Hylands Park, Chelmsford, UK. Some representatives of these participants are joining Scouting Sunrise in the Brownsea Island to commemorate the centennial birthday of the first camp.

Indonesia is also taking part in this international activity. A contributor from, Berthold D.H.Sinaulan is joining the Scouting Sunrise in Brownsea Island. Indonesian time is earlier than the time table in UK. As the representatives of the international scouts celebrating the sunrise, Indonesian philatelists are already enjoying their centenary of scout movement stamp series. Indonesia is joining the list of 86 countries listed as planning to celebrate this centenary of Scout Movement through the special issue of postage stamps.

Issued as special stamps, together with booklet and the first day cover it shows the logo of Scouting 2007 Centenary stated the commemoration theme “One World One Promise” ( English version and Bahasa Indonesia version: Satu Dunia Satu Janji). It is also shows an Indonesian boy scout in typically Indonesian scout clothing. In the First Day Cover it shows a shadow of a scout doing a semaphore. It seems to me that this shadow is a shadow of a girl scout.

In Indonesia this youth movement is called Pramuka (Praja Muda Karana). It has a long history of movement even before the Indonesian independence. Started as a branch of the Netherlands Scout Movement in 1912 it was started as the Nederlands Padvinders Organisatie (NPO), then after the World War I (1916) it became the Nederland Indische Padvinders Vereeniging (Netherlands Indies Scout Movement). In this same year Javaanse Padvinders Organisatie was born. The youth movement seemed to be growing together with the growth of nationalism. A lot of separate organizations were born, and some of it became the seed of the national political party. After the independence there was a need to unite all these youth movement and to establish a basic of Indonesian spirit in scouting. The Presidential Decree to unite all this organizations in one national organization was issued on May 20, 1961. The inauguration of the national organization was on August 14, 1961. It is the start of today’s Gerakan Pramuka (Pramuka Movement) in Indonesia.

Gerakan Pramuka in Indonesia serves both boys and girls. The Indonesian youth who join this movement are aimed to be trained physically and mentally to be able to involve in various positive activities in the community.

Collecting stamps is also a way of enriching the knowledge of these youths. This hobby is also growing as the scouts joined together in jamboree. Meeting new friends and keeping in touch with these new friends made stamps collecting an interesting activity for some scouts. There is a special badge for those qualified in stamp collecting. It made the remark in the national postal publication. We can trace the national and international scouting activities through Indonesian stamps.

Through the daily report for Berthold Sinaulan reported the situation in the World Scout Jamboree that celebrates the centenary of scout movement. Indonesian delegation of about 350 pramuka joins together with their fellow scouts from all around the world. In the Indonesian Day, July 29, they performed traditional music angklung, traditional dance from Papua, and Jember Fashion Carnival. It was really enjoyable that the audience gave standing ovation to their performance. The angklung performers were asked to play more songs for the international jamboree participants in their way back to their camp after the performance for the Indonesian Day.

Indonesian scouts were praised by Eduardo Missoni, the General Secretary of World Organization of Scout Movement (WOSM), for their active support in onsite helping for the tsunami victims in Aceh and Nias. He is also appreciated the intensive news submitted to the official website of WOSM on the incident that help gained supporting hands from all over the world. The helping aid is continued to activities of trauma healing and rebuilding the environment and libraries.

The core programs in this centenary commemoration jamboree are the Gift for Peace and Scouting Sunrise. In the Gift for Peace scouts all over the world are going to contribute advancing peace, solving problems without violence, as well as encouraging greater solidarity. In Indonesia this program has already started with its main focus on the activities for street children.

Indonesian delegation was also prepared to take the issues on global warming and climate changes in their activity topic in the jamboree.

This delegation is also surprising other international representatives with the hot news of Harry Potter on the Indonesian stamps. These prisma stamps which are personalized stamps produced by PT Pos Indonesia were launched in July 21, 2007. These stamps take the attention of a lot of Harry Potter fans in Indonesia and now it is shown up in the magic atmosphere of global peace in UK.

Hopefully the 21st World Scout Jamboree will enhance the spirit to seek for a more peaceful world in the heart of the youth gathers there. And from the seeds of these representatives we do hope to gain our national spirit in building a better world.

Thursday, April 26, 2007

Indonesia and China Issue Joint Postage Stamp

Move designed to help mutual understanding

Maria Margaretta Vivijanti (retty67)

Published 2007-04-18 12:19 (KST)

On April 13, Indonesia's postal service issued an Indonesia-China stamp series commemorating the 50th anniversary of diplomatic relations between the Republic of Indonesia and the People's Republic of China (PRC).

This issuance is important not only because of the record of the suspension of relations between the countries but also because of the significance of promoting Indonesian stamps to philatelists outside the country.

Competition with electronic means of communicating in this modern era might conceivably be to the detriment of marketing the stamps. E-mail and the instant message (IM) world have largely taken over the function of stamps as enablers of "snail mail." But don’t forget the saying that "Stamp collecting is the hobby of kings and the king of hobbies"! Stamp collectors are still a target market.

These joint issuances use the Balinese Barong Dance and the Chinese Dragon Dance as design motifs. The Indonesian collector pack consists of a full sheet of se-tenant pairs, one souvenir sheet, one regular First Day Cover, one First Day Cover with Souvenir Sheet and a couple of the Chinese-issue stamps. Besides the collector pack there is also a Special First Day Cover in which both the Indonesian and Chinese stamps are canceled by each postal authority on the first day of issuance.

This is not the first joint stamps series issued by Indonesia, the first having come out last year in collaboration with Slovakia.

Here at home, PT Pos Indonesia, the postal administration of Indonesia, launched its first stamps illustrating Chinese culture on Valentine's Day this year, four days before the Chinese Lunar New Year. Known as the Imlek series, it was soon sought after by collectors not only from Indonesia but also from abroad. Being released by a country with a Moslem majority, the stamps do not reflect the ruling symbol of the Chinese Lunar New Year.

In the 1860s, philately was concerned mainly with canceled stamps. Yet, within the decade stamp dealing became an established business, supplying philatelic markets with mint stamps. Later on, with an increasing number of thematic collectors, the popularity of mint issues increased. Thematic or topical collectors based their collections on a specific theme and therefore preferred not having their stamps obscured by postmarks ("killer cancellations"-ed.). Traditional collectors, on the other hand, preferred canceled issues as evidence of some special moment or occasion.

PT Pos Indonesia has tried to attract both groups and should glean more attention from philatelists worldwide. It might be even better if it tried to attract more young Indonesian philatelists as well. The Indonesian economic situation has been responsible for a decrease in the number of active young philatelists.

Introducing the young to this kind of avocation should be seen as a good deed. As a collector myself I gained a lot of experience. Starting as a traditional hobbyist in primary school, I had to engage in correspondence as my source of international stamps. It pushed me to learn English and then French in acquiring international friends and taught me how to write a good letter!

Locally, I had experience of Balinese culture before getting a chance to visit Bali through the pen friends I made there. The beautiful themes on the stamps also drew me toward the arts. I also learned how to manage my pocket money to buy stamps. Then I learned about empathy as a friend of my old postman, who, on his old bike and with a ready smile, delivered all my mail, even if the name or address was badly misspelled.

Later on, I also learned about Indonesian history through canceled stamps and old postcards. In my thematic collection on sports, I admire the Korean Olympiad series (PDF) together with my Hodori doll.

Having this kind of joint issue will also help Indonesian youth learn more about and have compassion with another culture and can really help to promote world peace.

I do hope that Indonesians will be going back to the international philatelic exhibitions and that more youngsters will have the chance to become "king" of their own collections.

©2007 OhmyNews