I'm not sure anyone has addressed this yet but it has occurred to me that we may all be wondering what the protocols should be.

Here's an informative article that addresses the issue.

Stay Safe

Dave

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Comment by David Stafford on March 21, 2020 at 4:59pm

For the record, I'm spritzing all my outgoing mail art with 190 Proof Everclear and then drinking two shots for extra safety.

Comment by Sabrina S on March 19, 2020 at 2:53pm

Don't forget what our wise Richard Baudet told us:

Comment by Bradford on March 19, 2020 at 1:01pm

Article on CBS News basically says (re: mail/packages) "Don't worry about it":

 

Can the coronavirus spread through the mail?

Reports of postal workers testing positive for the novel coronavirus have raised concerns that the pathogen could live on letters and packages, potentially exposing people to infection just from opening their mail or Amazon packages. The U.S Postal Service's response: Don't worry about it. 

"There is currently no evidence that COVID-19 can spread through the mail," the postal service said last weekend, alluding to the disease caused by the virus and citing the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the World Health Organization as its sources of information. 

The federal agency, which employs about 500,000 people, is heeding recommendations from the CDC and public health departments, it added. 

"The likelihood of an infected person contaminating commercial goods is low and the risk of catching the virus that causes COVID-19 from a package that has been moved, traveled and exposed to different conditions and temperature is also low," according to WHO. 

"In general, because of poor survivability of these coronaviruses on surfaces, there is likely very low risk of spread from products or packaging that are shipped over a period of days or weeks at ambient temperatures," according to the CDC. "Currently there is no evidence to support transmission of COVID-19 associated with imported goods."

One postal worker in Raleigh, Virginia, two USPS employees in White Plains, New York, and a worker at a USPS package-sorting facility outside of Seattle have reportedly tested positive for the coronavirus. USPS also said it is aware of an employee in New Orleans who may have contracted COVID-19. 

But the "incident is not mail-related, and it has not been confirmed by the local public-health department," a spokesperson for the USPS' Dallas and Louisiana districts said Saturday in a statement. 

That incident involved a USPS facility that employs letter carriers and clerks, and that has a retail counter and service window for customers, along with a P.O. box section where people can get their mail. "At this time, we believe the risk is low for both our employees and customers as a result of this unconfirmed case," the USPS said.

Fear of getting the coronavirus had residents at one senior living community in Oak Park, Illinois, reportedly avoiding their mail last week because the mail carrier refused to be questioned and take a temperature check. 

"The Postal Service recognizes that some customers have expressed concerns about accepting mail, and a few have asked for unusual measures for deliveries. Our operational protocol does not require any Postal Service employee to follow requests outside of normal delivery methods," the service told the Chicago Tribune.

he virus has led other companies that handle lots of packages to try to ease customer concerns. Amazon notes that Prime Now, Amazon Fresh and Whole Foods Market delivery customers can pick "unattended delivery" during checkout if they'd rather not come into contact with others. 

And to protect customers and workers, FedEx has temporarily suspended the need for a signature for most deliveries in the U.S. The shipping giant also regularly disinfects the equipment used to make deliveries, according to FedEx President Raj Subramaniam.

UPS drivers are now validating and recording the name of the recipient of the package in lieu of getting a signature, the shipper said in a statement on Monday. 

Reiterating that the CDC and WHO view the likelihood of the a coronavirus contaminating cardboard or other shipping containers as low, UPS added in an email to CBS on Wednesday: "If there is a concern, disinfecting the shipment or using protective apparel when unwrapping the container will reduce the risk of exposure."

Comment by Borderline Grafix on March 16, 2020 at 10:43pm

I am using 70 per cent isopropyl alcohol on my hands and washing my hands with soap and H2O otherwise. Better to be prepared, but I think following the advice of scientists familiar with infectious diseases is the best path forward.

Comment by Bradford on March 15, 2020 at 8:18pm

The TATE Modern is open, but a favorite that I've yet to visit is not:

Intuit: The Center for Intuitive and Outsider Art

COVID-19 Update
To best protect Intuit guests, volunteers, staff and collaborators, the museum will be closed March 15 through March 31.

www.art.org

Comment by Valentine Mark Herman on March 15, 2020 at 6:59pm

We make the Mail Art (usually without gloves).

We (usually) lick the stamps.

We seal (and lick?) the envelope.

Then the mail service gets in the virus-spreading act.

So, I suppose, we all play a part in spreading the virus.

But I strongly believe, things should -- nay, must -- continue as normal as possible.

Comment by Katerina Nikoltsou (MomKat) on March 15, 2020 at 10:04am

But as flights are being cancelled ....and postal workers, workers in general, are staying home...where will my mail art be "stored"...or lost? Of course, perhaps cargo is still being sent overseas, but then how about all the people who man-handle all that mail? I am having creative "time" making mail art, but not sure if I will send it this coming week (I might find the Greek post office closed tomorrow?).

Continue to be mail-art-creative:

'Tis the best of times:

"...In 1593 and 1594, when the theaters were closed because of plague, Shakespeare wrote and published his best! It is unknown when exactly Shakespeare wrote Romeo and Juliet. ...But the play's stylistic similarities with A Midsummer Night's Dream and other plays conventionally dated around 1594–95, place its composition sometime between 1591 and 1595. 
Comment by Nancy Bell Scott on March 14, 2020 at 10:52pm

Link to excellent article re: coronavirus based on science + math + history:  https://medium.com/@tomaspueyo/coronavirus-act-today-or-people-will...

Just catching up here now after 2 days of trying to stock up on groceries etc. Thank you, Dave (and Ilya), for your thoughtful + educational posts. I started to wonder about the virus via mail art only yesterday. It has never been possible to wait even a day to open a mail art, but maybe i'll have to start to learn.

Like Carmela I'll continue to send m-a unless symptoms show up in my house or it becomes obvious that mail in general is a danger -- while assuming everyone takes the precautions for opening they believe and find out are best.

Hoping you all weather this thing in fine shape,

nancy

Comment by Carmela Rizzuto on March 14, 2020 at 9:43pm

Hi David--I will send mail art until I get symptoms, or think that I have been exposed to the covid-19 virus. My only precaution is that I use a damp sponge to moisten glue flaps on envelopes. No science to back this up--just being paranoid which is easy to do ; )

Comment by Ptrzia (TICTAC) on March 14, 2020 at 3:25pm

hi Sabrina..as long as I let my mother win when we play cards I am fine! :-)) I know what you mean, though. anyways..we are ok within our limitations compared to others, we also have nice neighbours we talk to from the windows..it is a small dead-en street and chatty. Germany is quite affected too, my son lives and works in Munich, he tells me off if I worry. but life is not easy anywhere.and my heart goes to who is suffering alone, unfortunately having no family able to visit. thank you for the clarification, all is so mixed up I battle between theories that often come from scientists.  thank you for your wishes, likewise all the best to you too...and everyone else reading us.

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