US Stamps

APS committee approves virtual exhibition standards

Mar 9, 2021, 10 AM

By Michael Baadke

The American Philatelic Society’s committee on philatelic exhibits has published rules for online-only exhibiting competitions.

The Committee on Accreditation of National Exhibitions and Judging (CANEJ) has also established a Grand Championship Series separate from the long-established World Series of Philately.

“The APS has announced the Grand Championship Series for the virtual exhibitions’ Grand Award winners,” according to a March 5 online post signed by APS executive director Scott English, in which the new exhibition standards are described.

Grand-award winners from virtual exhibitions are not eligible for the society’s annual Champion of Champions competition. However, all standards and guidelines for evaluation of exhibits at World Series of Philately shows as outlined in the current APS Manual of Philatelic Judging and Exhibiting and guidelines for shows remain applicable.

“To qualify, sponsoring organizations will need to have at least 100 frames of material, a jury of at least 3 APS-certified judges, and observe the 10-exhibit limit per judge,” according to the March 5 announcement. “A sample prospectus and guidelines are available for sponsors interested in hosting a virtual competitive exhibit. With these new guidelines, the APS encourages new entries into national exhibiting.”

The APS posted the sample prospectus for a virtual exhibition on the society’s website.

The guidelines for the show committee of a Grand Champion Series virtual exhibition are also posted on the APS website.

These guidelines note that while virtual exhibiting and in-person exhibiting are intended to remain separate for judging and Champion of Champion purposes, the Committee on Accreditation of National Exhibitions and Judging expects to re-evaluate its standards and guidelines as virtual exhibiting evolves.

The Champion of Champions competition selects one winner each year from among the grand-award winners in what is known as the World Series of Philately, a circuit of exhibitions that take place at nationally recognized shows attended by the public.

These in-person competitions have been put on hold because of the COVID-19 pandemic. The last exhibiting competition in the World Series of Philately took place in March 2020 at the March Party show held by the Garfield-Perry Stamp Club of Northeast Ohio.

The virtual exhibition proposal was submitted by Peter McCann, a former president of the APS and current member of the APS board of directors.

“CANEJ Chairwoman Elizabeth Hisey shepherded it through the Committee,” according to the announcement. “After a thoughtful discussion, CANEJ approved the guidelines and will be collecting data for future improvements.”

“This is a great opportunity for APS affiliates to host a virtual exhibition,” English said. “Virtual exhibitions draw international participation and provide an excellent way to promote specialty societies.”

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