Printed matter is a term to describe printed material produced by printers or publishers, such as books, magazines, booklets, brochures and other publicity materials and in some cases, newspapers. Because much of this material is mailed, it is also a category of mail, accepted for delivery by a postal administration, that is not considered to be first-class mail and therefore qualifies for a special reduced printed matter postal rate. Depending on the specific postal regulations of the country, it is usually non-personal correspondence and printed in multiple quantities. Most postal authorities do not permit additional services, like registration or express services, to be added to items mailed as printed matter.
In the Postal Convention between the United States of America and the Republic of Mexico, proclaimed on June 20, 1862, terms were specified relating to the rates for printed matter between the two countries. The rate was one cent for every ounce or fraction of an ounce.
As of June 2007, the USPS has a printed matter classification known as "Bound Printed Matter", BPM, defined as, advertising, promotional, directory, or editorial material that is securely bound and at least 90% is imprinted by a process other than handwriting or typewriting and is only available for user with an imprint permit.
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- "Postal Convention Between the United States of America and the Republic of Mexico; December 11, 1861". The Avalon Project. Yale Law School. Retrieved 2007-06-20.
- "Postage Payment for Bound Printed Matter Limited to Permit Imprint". USPS. 2008-09-11. Retrieved 2008-11-27.
- Postal Explorer > IMM Issue 37 - International Mail Manual > 2 Conditions for Mailing > 260 Direct Sacks of Printed Matter to One Addressee (M–bags)
- Airmail M-Bags