On the Table: European BPX: Pros, Cons and sound off
A seperate exchange has been proposed which I do not oppose at all. Regardless, the only participants in THIS exchange are those who sign up for THIS exchange. I certainly see a plus to save on costly shipping to foreign countries added to the expense of printing and mounting, et al. My only con is going to strictly regional exchange is that the cultural part of the exchange may suffer from a more local participation. Talk amongst yourselves.
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I always like to present a solution to a problem. We could allow folks to mention they want to keep shipping costs down and I can take this into account when hitting the list.
I live in Europe, it is per se not a bad idea, but I agree with you Chris that a local exchange might be the poorer because of it..
From my experience the difference between shipping costs within Europe and overseas is not big - especially if one is not sending a framed 20x24 print
But I can imagine the cost problem could be real on the other side of the Atlantic as well... Let's hear from you guys as well.
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I have the same feeling, for a reasonable size, shipping does not cost so mo much as to be a significant factor, as compared to the cost of shooting, printing, (re) printing again (and again)...
Originally Posted by andreios
And I really like the idea of international exchanges.
I've kept myself away from exchanges, but it's because I'm not active enough at the moment (OTOH, THIS would make me active... I need to reassign my priorities!!)
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Chris, I'm perfectly happy shipping my submissions overseas. I don't mind the trouble of extra secure packaging and the not-all-that-much-more added expense. I think shipping (and receiving) world-wide is one of the defining characteristics of the print exchange format. Remove that aspect, and it becomes a much less meaningful, and much less interesting, exercise.
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The cost of sending a 250g package to Europe is £3.50, going further afield, the price rises to £4.50 (Oz & NZ, add another 20p) - When the groups are of three to four participants, that extra pound is not a huge amount.
If I want to participate in a print exchange within a limited geographical area, I have other groups I can join.
I'm not sure why the Cultural part of the exchanges would suffer at all, there's a rich, deep and diverse range of cultures and traditions in Europe.
Originally Posted by Christopher Walrath
That I would not have the random opportunity to receive a print from a far away and mysterious land for myself. Therein lies my rub. As I said, even if a seperate exchange were to spring forth, that would not keep ANYONE from signing up for this one, which I hope will continue to be the case. Don't get me wrong, I love the exchange as it is. Just passing along a voiced idea for discussion's sake.
We don't have that in North-America and many North-Americans never leave their continent. Even Canada and the USA look pretty similar. So I think that's where the Cultural part of the exchanges would suffer.
Originally Posted by Ian Grant
Although I'm in my first round BPX, I would prefer to keep it worldwide. One can also adjust the print size a bit if cost is a concern; send a smaller print if it has to go far. It's not about size. Personally I don't mind sending a print to the other end of the world. Hobbies cost money and I'm ok with that. But I can understand that it may be different for others so Chris' suggestion that people can discreetly indicate if they prefer to ship "locally" is fine with me.
I've not participated yet, though would like to some day. First I need to start printing, then to be able to do something worthy of sending to another.
I do, however, understand the concept behind your idea. On the other hand, I would like the opportunity to exchange internationally, though. I'm about to use a dirty word, but not the way it is usually meant on APUG. How about an... hybrid approach?
When joining an exchange, the individual could specify whether they prefer NOT to ship internationally (perhaps by specifying a region they will ship to). This would be a bit more work for the organizer(s), but could keep costs down for those who need to, yet remain inclusive of everyone. I see this is basically what you mentioned in post #2.
Alternately, we could have a thread where people could "trade" recipients. However, that could make it less blind; perhaps people could only state the countries/regions when effecting a "trade."
I respectfully disagree. Within the U.S.A. alone we can have some interesting differences - even within the same regions. I've often had to explain these differences to foreign students at my university (and I'm not referring to skin color). Unless we are talking merely architecture and landscape - but even then, we still have some wonderful differences. Then there are the "sub-cultures."
Originally Posted by spijker