Thursday, June 02, 2011

Do You Trust The Post Office?

Public relations is all about credibility and transparency. I have said it in my blogs a hundred times. So why would the U.S. Post Office create a stamp with a photo of the Statue of Liberty that is really not the Statue of Liberty?

And the icing on the cake? No announcement by the federal government of what happened. No admission that the photo was a fake…until, a philatelic magazine, exposed it and made the issue public, according to The New York Times. Once it found out, did the U.S. Post Office opt to change the fake Lady Liberty for the real one? Not on a bet.

“We still love the stamp design and would have selected the photograph anyway,” Roy Betts, a post office spokesperson told the Times. He advised that the post office regrets the error and is “reexamining our processes to prevent the situation from happening again.”

So where does the image on the stamp hail from? The New York-New York Casino and Hotel in Las Vegas which has a model of the famous statue that is half the size of the real one positioned in its fake New York Harbor. In effect, our government is championing fakery and honoring Las Vegas instead of the New York symbol that has served as a beacon of freedom for many as they enter the United States.

The newspaper asked former mayor Ed Koch for his interpretation of the Post Office’s behavior: “It simply means the post office is doing a stupid thing.”

I couldn’t agree more. It’s a dumb move for an American institution facing fierce competition from email…and insolvency.

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