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Our new stamps

Before January, we have to turn in all our old stamps and trade them for these >>

Yes, that’s a QR code. Well, no – apparently “QR Code” is trademarked, but it’s the same idea. According to the Royal Mail, each stamp will be unique and the idea is you scan it with the Post Office app and you can connect your letter to an audio or video file online or what have you.

Naturally, it’s making everyone’s spidey sense tingle like mad. I can’t work out any way they can use it for nefarious purposes, though.

Well, not really. These are two stamps from a single book. I overlaid them and they are close but not exact. See here.

The green is one stamp, the purple is the other and the dark gray is where they both agree. Presumably a totally different book of stamps would have more differences.

So in theory, if you sent a poison pen letter and they raided your house and found a similar stamp…eh, it’s a reach.

Honestly, it’s probably just some boomer civil servant’s notion of STAMPS OF THE FU-TURE!

The QR reader in my phone tells me it’s a long string of numbers and letters, but I couldn’t find a way to copy and paste them into anything to compare. If I get curious enough, I might do proper scans of some books of stamps and overlay them to see if I can find a pattern.

Can anyone intuit the formula for how many unique combinations there are in a matrix of 16 x 48 binary dots?


Comment from Uncle Al
Time: October 24, 2022, 5:38 pm

1.84467440737096 x 10**19

Comment from Uncle Al
Time: October 24, 2022, 5:57 pm

On second thought, my earlier answer is too high. It’s wrong. Lemme think here…

Comment from QuasiModo
Time: October 24, 2022, 9:22 pm

It might be an anti-counterfeiting measure and/or it might be a unique identifier for every stamp to make it valuable for collecting or it might be to track you.

You buy it in the post office or whatever, then they know who bought all those 10 stamps…they track where the stamp goes and who winds up with it so they can track your associations. There’s all kinds of no good they could get up to with it. They can also link your cell phone with it when you scan the QR code and follow your every move.

Quick SWeasy, burn those damn stamps…the Men In Black are gonna show up on your doorstep if you use them :+)

Comment from Allen
Time: October 24, 2022, 9:53 pm

I think, N=(16×48)! which is a lot raised to the power of even more.

Comment from Uncle Badger
Time: October 24, 2022, 10:09 pm

It’d be really quite nice if, instead of buggering about with the sort of stuff that drove poor Philip K. Dick crazy, they concentrated a bit more on delivering letters on time.

Oh, and didn’t charge so much that they’ve destroyed the Christmas card and seaside postcard businesses.

Comment from Bloke in California
Time: October 24, 2022, 10:41 pm

2^16 * 2^48 = 2^64 which is roughly 16*10^18. So Uncle Al is right.

However that 2d barcode isn’t 16*48, it’s 14*46 because the outsides are only used to verify which way up it is. So the answer is 2^60, roughly 10^18 which means Uncle Al’s 2nd comment is right too! 🙂

And seconded Uncle B’s comment.

Comment from Durnedyankee
Time: October 24, 2022, 11:14 pm

Well, whatever it is, it’s NOT for YOUR benefit.
Additional cost to create it, costs to “track” it using hardware and software, and justified how?

Heh, another government boondoggle, even if it’s not designed to help them watch your every move. Just because you can gather all kinds of questionably useful data doesn’t mean you should. Probably some highly paid consulting group who will sell consulting services for implementation convinced some group of government Naifs it will eliminate the terrorist threat of postcard bombs.

I’m with Uncle B, just deliver the damn mail in a reasonable time frame and stop peeking through the mail slot.

Great portrait of Her Majesty though.

Comment from Jeff Weimer
Time: October 25, 2022, 12:04 am

Unique code to track how stamps are used, with granular fidelity.

Wait, aren’t they supposed to change the cameo, now? Because, well. you know.

Comment from Subotai Bahadur
Time: October 25, 2022, 12:15 am


I concur with QuasiModo and then some. This is very much not a good thing, and especially with the coming hard times and Leftist [and thereby totalitarian] domination of governments pretty much everywhere. And note that I specifically include the United States in that list.

I submit that you and Uncle B should be preparing for hard times that may require moving hastily. I don’t know you well enough to make any recommendations, and in any case there are risks everywhere. But this would trigger an Orwellian nocturnal emission.

Subotai Bahadur

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: October 25, 2022, 6:40 am

Yes, the cameo will be changing. Apparently the royal portrait is already done. Not sure if they’ll wait until after the coronation, though.

Thing is, they don’t scan them at point of purchase, so how would they know who got which stamps? Or if I borrowed a stamp? If you never scan them with the app, I don’t think there’s much they can do to trace you.

Now, if they made it so you had to scan them…

Comment from quetzlovercoatl
Time: October 25, 2022, 8:38 am

“Thing is, they don’t scan them at point of purchase, so how would they know who got which stamps? Or if I borrowed a stamp? If you never scan them with the app, I don’t think there’s much they can do to trace you.”

This is the first section of the famous fence used to capture wild hogs. You’ll get used to just buying the QR stamps. Eventually, they’ll only sell them by the book, which will have a barcode on the back that will tell them what QR codes are in the book. Then they’ll go card only, no cash, and they’ll be able to put a book of QR codes with your bank account.

That would be the point where the last section of fence comes down and the hogs run around frantically looking for a way out – which doesn’t exist anymore.

Sorry but I’m thoroughly black-pilled, I believe absolutely nothing my government does is for my welfare no matter how it’s sold.

Comment from LesterIII
Time: October 25, 2022, 6:39 pm

I absolutely agree with the points brought by *quetzlovercoatl* .
It is the absolute methodology of trap-building: make it not seem to be a trap. For the wary prey, clues do exist. I believe that in this case, they are glaring.

I have run into too many establishments here in the US that make it difficult to use cash. I respect their choice, but if they refuse to accept cash, I no longer patronize them. I realize I have a digital footprint, but that doesn’t mean I have to self-inflict my ensnaring. At one point I had an acquaintance that owned 3+ cell phones, at least one of which was jaunting around the country not on his person, being used to send texts, make calls, and check a central email address in their name.

Fükk da Gubbmint.

Comment from S. Weasel
Time: October 25, 2022, 8:29 pm

To some extent, I can take comfort the incompetence of our postal service. It’s got so bad, they’ve recently mounted a series of rolling strikes and nobody noticed. If we had to live without them, we could.

Comment from Durnedyankee
Time: October 25, 2022, 10:47 pm

You say that, but how would you mail out Dicks with no postal service!

Comment from OldFert
Time: October 26, 2022, 2:56 am

My trust has lessened somewhat also.
Mrs Fert and I often use cash when we can. Still use a card, even at the same establishments periodically, but there’s enough cash use to make tracking at least a little difficult.

But then again, suppose the bill serial numbers are recorded by the ATM when dispensed…

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