At the November 2019 meeting of NZPF the following Guidelines, used for assessing websites at the 16th New Zealand National Philatelic Literature Exhibition , were adopted pending any future guidelines prepared by FIP.


  • how well is the story identified & told?
  • how well is the material presented, is there a distinct literary style and a high degree of clarity
  • is navigation between pages easy?
  • is technology applied well in respect to the content?
  • are graphics used well and to the overall benefit of the site?
  • overall, is the site user-friendly. i.e. are the communication skills high?
  • overall significance – global importance to philately
  • how useful is the site as a reference, or a speciality guide, or for teaching & training?
  • degree of original discoveries, research, analysis
  • is the site comprehensive for the subject, both in terms of depth and scope?
  • if the site were no longer available, would it be missed?
TECHNICAL MATTERS – Editorial aspect and “housekeeping” functions.

How well is work constructed?

  • search capability and speed, ease of opening & navigating files, overall structure able to be easily accessed on mobile phone, ipad, and PC?
  • is the identification and email address of the webmaster easy to find?
  • is there a clear title page, pagination, list of contents, use of footnotes
  • can one tell who sponsors the site?
  • are the links with other sites kept up to date, and do they actually work?
  • is there suitable attribution if material has been used from elsewhere?
  • are the dates of posting or updating the information present and easily located?
  • -are illustrations and tables and captions and text consistent in layout

Note: plain, stand-alone documents in digital format

[e.g. pdf or doc formats] cannot be considered as digital entries).

PRESENTATION – Publishing aspect and overall aesthetic appeal
  • clutter due to advertising from the host service?
  • excessive graphics which slow loading time excessively?
  • use of colour in illustrations and various blocks of text?
  • font size and style enable ease of reading?
  • overall “first impressions.”
The raisons d’être of Philatelic Websites:
My web site These are simple sites, often with little structure or even content. Perhaps a step towards a more advanced site, or an exhibit of what the owner holds by way of philatelic material. Not really a “literature” site.
Philatelic Society web sites serve as a membership service and perhaps a way of attracting new members. Can range from just a few pages describing the society’s benefits and services, through to additionally recording substantial amounts of material, e.g.
Commercial web sites these sites have been established for business reasons. They range from simple sales or auction listings through to extensive catalogues, and sometimes with general information about philatelic matters not directly related to their core business, e.g.
General resource webs sites sites which provide lists of bookmarks, or compilations of information useful to the entire philatelic community, e.g.
Single subject web sites these may well be the most common types of web sites today. They are often the work of a single or small group of enthusiasts, and most closely fit with the concept of “research” in philatelic literature. They may well provide research articles, philatelic references, links with dealers, down-loadable images, details of relevant societies, and much more, e.g. Scouts on Stamps site
Exhibition web sites this information is often ephemeral, and in three phases: pre-exhibition advertising and information, more detailed information immediately prior to and during the exhibition, and finally the final report and listing of awards, e.g.
Official web sites these are usually postal administrations whose concern is to provide a public service, or more commonly a mechanism to link with customers, e.g.


Digital entries, other than web sites: most commonly, they are publications which either might have been published in book form, but the costs were too great, or else they are covering a subject which is still developing and a digital record of what is known at a point in time is more flexible than a published book. Evaluating these entries involves considering a mix of the philatelic literature criteria, and the website criteria.