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The Real Thing

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

A first day cover is like the birth certificate for a stamp: It's an envelope or card postmarked 
with the date the stamp first went on sale -- called the "First Day of Issue.

In most countries, they're produced and sold by the postal agency. In the U-S, there's also a 
strong network of collectors who service these first day covers, or F-D-C's. In fact, the biggest 
group of F-D-C collectors is in the U-S. 

Most of these "F-D-C's" don't go through the mail...but Chinese collector Fan Ming makes sure his 
DO. Buying them from a postal agency or a dealer isn't a challenge, he says.

"It's very easy to get it from any time after the issue date
RUNS :04

He gets his first day covers from all over the world...with help from other collectors.

"You must have a friend in country and he must have free time on the issue day and make it for 
RUNS :09

He meets these friends on the Internet. 

One reason other F-D-C collectors don't send their covers through the mail is the chance they'll 
be lost or damaged. Fan Ming sends his by registered mail, so they're never lost...and if they're

"I don't care the condition where I receive. It's not very important for me, but if the condition
is well, it's better."
RUNS :07

Everywhere in stamp collecting, that's almost always true.

I'm Lloyd de Vries of The Virtual Stamp Club. For more on stamps and stamp collecting, and to 
see examples of Fan Ming's real posted first day covers, visit virtual-stamp-club-dot-com.

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