The Council of Postal Collectors has convened. Many of the hobby leaders are involved.
I want to be perfectly clear. I wish them success. However, I am skeptical. Hear me out though.
In the 1980s, we had the Council Of Philatelic Organizations (COPO). In the early 2000s, we had Summit on the Future of Philately. Both of these earlier organizations had a similar charter: How has philately changed and what can we do to foster and increase interest in the hobby? Some will disagree with me. However, in my opinion, these earlier attempts to draw interest in the hobby had little, if any, effect. I mean no disrespect to anyone. However, I do not see any significant evidence that the hobby has changed for the better based on efforts they made.
We now have a new organization that is (in my mind) a repeat of other similar organizations from an earlier time. Those earlier organizations did not have much of an impact on the hobby. Why should I believe that this latest attempt is going to be more successful than the last few attempts?
What I did not see covered in the press was someone saying, “These earlier organizations did not have much of an impact on the hobby. How will we be different than them?” If they talked about this during their initial meeting, it was not mentioned in the philatelic press. Someone did question what their one year and five year plan was. That is a start to get the ball rolling. To me, I need more. Exactly what is the plan? What does success look like? How will we achieve that success? Maybe those questions cannot be fully answered in the first meeting. But the organization needs a plan, and soon, on how to accomplish its goals.
Increasing interest in the hobby is an ongoing dilemma. No one has come up with that ingenious “Ah hah!” idea. Will this new organization succeed? I hope so. Forgive me if I am feeling a little déjà vu though. I feel like I have seen this movie before and I know the outcome already.