June 8, 2008 8:00 AM   Subscribe

you've got new postcrossed mail You have heard of geocaching. You have heard of Bookcrossing. Here comes Postcrossing. The main idea is that: if you send a postcard, you'll receive at least one back, from a random Postcrosser from somewhere in the world.

The goal of postcrossing is to allow people to receive postcards from all over the world, for free. Well, for the price of the stamp you put on the postcards you need to send if you wish to get one from someone you never met.

You can have up to 5 postcards traveling at any single time. Every time one of the postcards you sent is registered, you can request another address.

I bought my first postcrossed postcard in Brussels' touristy district today and will mail it somewhere in Finland tomorrow.
posted by Baud (19 comments total) 12 users marked this as a favorite
Someone alert jessamyn!
posted by Meatbomb at 8:37 AM on June 8, 2008

i was about to say, "jessamyn west, please call your office"
posted by rmd1023 at 9:12 AM on June 8, 2008

I've been buying used copies of the Griffin and Sabine books and have been longing for some postcards from mysterious lands. Thanks for the, um, post.
posted by Staggering Jack at 9:55 AM on June 8, 2008

I was too late, but what crossed my mind was, "Hmmm, maybe rmd1023 should tell Meatbomb to alert jess."
posted by Dizzy at 9:56 AM on June 8, 2008

Not to be a wet blanket, but I wonder what the carbon footprint is to mail an international postcard.
posted by stbalbach at 10:04 AM on June 8, 2008

I remember this from the last time it was popular when it was called umm, chain letters.
posted by stevil at 10:04 AM on June 8, 2008

Not to be a wet blanket, but I wonder what the carbon footprint is to mail an international postcard.

Wet blankets are good things... they put out the fires fuelled by zealous postcard exchanging. And we all know FIRES CONTRIBUTE TO GLOBAL WARMING.

Unless they aren't wet enough, then they become part of the problem. It also depends on the size of the postcard-exchanging fuelled fires.
posted by WalterMitty at 10:33 AM on June 8, 2008 [1 favorite]

I came in here because my wife would probably love this and....whoa, Griffin and Sabine. My wife used to love them! I didn't know there were more! She might just have a very merry xmas.
posted by DU at 10:56 AM on June 8, 2008

Hey, cool...I was thinking of posting this (heh) just a few days ago, but you've done a much better job than I would have. It should become quite a popular site, I think, and it seems to be a purely amateur thing.
posted by UbuRoivas at 11:15 AM on June 8, 2008

Not to be a wet blanket, but I wonder what the carbon footprint is to mail an international postcard.

Not to be a wet blanket, but it's a reasonably safe bet that just about everything you're wearing, plus more than half the goods in your house were made in China.
posted by UbuRoivas at 11:22 AM on June 8, 2008 [2 favorites]

Hey, I signed up, and I think it is a great idea. Maybe I will end up crossing postcards with another Mefite!

I am waiting on some stickers in the mail before I can send them out in the big Sticker Swap.

I'm such a mail whore.
posted by misha at 2:02 PM on June 8, 2008

I got a card from Uganda offering money.
posted by semmi at 2:52 PM on June 8, 2008 [1 favorite]

Sounds like a great vicious scheme of Big Post to increase profits. Way to go viral hoes.
posted by Laotic at 3:13 PM on June 8, 2008

Laotic: they might be shills, of course, but the people behind the website don't seem much like corporate whores.

More significantly, around 90% of mail volume remains business-generated (bills, statements etc), and mail - in Australia, at least - is actually a loss maker. The profits come from things like warehousing, logistics, retail sales & transactions such as banking & bill payments. These other business streams actually subsidise the ability of people to send small bits of paper to each other for next to nothing, so there's no reason why "Big Post" would really want to increase personal mail volumes.
posted by UbuRoivas at 5:36 PM on June 8, 2008

So far I have sent out 104 postcards. I have always liked writing letters and sending postcards so this is pretty cool. Heck, I used to have a pen pal I got from the old TV show Big Blue Marble.
posted by govtdrone at 6:08 PM on June 8, 2008 [1 favorite]

There's also dawdlr if you wish to send tweets (sort of) via postcards.
posted by lahersedor at 4:41 AM on June 9, 2008 [1 favorite]

I signed up and just got my first address. I'll try to send it out today. Yay! Snail mail!
posted by arcticwoman at 9:07 AM on June 9, 2008

Are there any other similar projects? Bookcrossing, Postcrossing, Geocaching. Anything else like that? And, yes, offline version of twitter is neat :)
posted by laacz at 4:22 PM on June 9, 2008

PostcardX has been doing something very similar for years. I get the bonus of not having your address public, but the limit on postcards in transit seems like something just right for bigger exchanges (books, etc) , whereas it's a dampener on serendipity here...

Dawdlr is a really lovely concept, also.
posted by carbide at 5:21 PM on June 9, 2008

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