August ‘Stamp Talks’ episode to uncover NFTs, relation to philately

Canadian collector Lisa Tam will lead the next Stamp Talks presentation with a focus on non-fungible tokens, the unique blockchain-based tokens better known as NFTs, which entered the mainstream in 2017 before rising to global prominence a few years later.

The presentation – hosted by the Royal Philatelic Society of Canada (RPSC) and entitled “NFTs: What are these New-Fangled Things?” – will take place on Aug. 14 at 7 p.m. (ET). Following an introduction to NFTs, Tam will explore the NFT stamp market while offering recommendations and advice for collectors interested in the new philatelic offshoot.

Austria became the first government or a government entity to launch a non-fungible token when its national postal service, Österreichische Post, issued 150,000 “crypto-collectible” stamps on June 11, 2019. It’s backed by the Ethereum blockchain, a decentralized open-source platform that generates digital “Ether” tokens, a form of NFT or cryptographic token.

Unlike cryptocurrencies such as Bitcoin, which is fungible (or interchangeable) because each Bitcoin carries the same monetary value, an NFT represents something unique—each with a different “value,” so to speak, which Ethereum can confirm.

These NFTs are commonly used to regulate and verify digital scarcity in crypto-gaming or crypto-collecting, in which “value” – or level of uniqueness in the case of the crypto stamp – can be used to regulate scarcity or rarity.

Austria issued 150,000 ‘crypto-collectible’ stamps on June 11, 2019, marking the first time a government or a government entity launched a non-fungible token.


Tam, a casual collector who began her hobby a few years ago, has been exploring the idea of “philately for good,” which she described as “using stamps to promote good works as a way to draw more attention to the hobby.”

Tam enjoys collecting cancel-on-stamp (or stamp-on-stamp) issues plus novelties such as non-paper stamps. She also collects pictorial cancels from Canadian post offices on hand-drawn cachets, which she then shares online.

Outside of philately, Tam “loves” Star Trek, studies tai chi chuan and has a background in web and marketing.

To register for the NFT-focused presentation via Zoom, click here.

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