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Citation Software Inc.
 Specialists in variable-data publishing since 1986

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Citation Software releases system for creating Business Reply Mail artwork

For immediate release

WESTBOROUGH, MA, May 21, 2001 — Citation Software Inc. has released its new on-line mailpiece-design service, This service lets you use your Web browser to create the artwork for a Business Reply envelope, postcard or label and download the artwork immediately in PDF format. International Business Reply envelopes/postcards and Courtesy Reply envelopes/postcards can also be created.

( is referred to as a "mailpiece-design" service because the U.S. Postal Service refers to envelopes, postcards, and labels as "mailpieces.")

How it works

A user accesses the service by pointing his Web browser to After entering a few pieces of information (e.g., mailing address, dimensions of the mailpiece, Business Reply Permit Number), the user clicks a button — and in just a few seconds the system automatically creates a PDF file containing a mailpiece that is customized according to the user's specifications. The mailpiece is laid out according to the U.S. Postal Service's rules, and it contains all the printed elements required by the U.S. Postal Service — including the bar codes.

The user pays on line with a credit card.

The user downloads the PDF file to his computer, uses the Adobe Acrobat software, Adobe Acrobat Reader software (free from Adobe Systems Incorporated), or similar software to open it, and prints the mailpiece.

Free tryout

First-time users will want to take advantage of ReplyMailOnLine's "Free tryout" feature. This feature allows the user to go through the entire process of creating the artwork for a mailpiece without paying any money. At the end of the free-tryout process, the user will get a PDF file, just like he or she would get if payment had been made. (The PDF file generated during the "Free tryout" procedure will contain a watermark.)

Why Is Needed?

Traditionally, creating Business Reply, Courtesy Reply, and International Business Reply mailpieces (known collectively as "Reply mailpieces") has been a labor-intensive and error-prone process. That's because the U.S.Postal Service has established a complicated set of rules that dictate how Reply mailpieces must be formatted. For example: there are rules that specify the minimum and maximum length and height of each type of Reply mailpiece, the ratio of the length to the height, the size and style of the fonts (typefaces) that are used for the various text elements, the placement of the text elements and graphic elements relative to each other, and many other things.

For most people, it would take at least a couple of hours to create a Reply mailpiece with illustration software such as Adobe Illustrator or CorelDRAW. Furthermore, even with careful attention to detail, it is easy to make mistakes — and mistakes on a Reply Mailpiece can be costly. (In some situations, the Postal Service charges extra money to process improperly formatted Reply mailpieces. In other situations, the Postal Service might refuse to allow improperly formatted Reply mailpieces to be used; the consequences can be expensive if thousands of improperly formatted mailpieces have already been printed.)

Because the service is inexpensive, easy to use, and readily available (anyone with a Web browser and an Internet connection can use it at any time of the day or night), it will be a boon to direct-marketing companies, fund-raising groups, government agencies, printing companies, the U.S. Postal Service, small-business owners, and other individuals and organizations who need to create Reply mailpieces.

Pricing users can choose from two payment plans:
  1. Pay-As-You-Go Plan — Pay $2.00 US per mailpiece to create standard-sized Business Reply envelopes & postcards and standard-sized Courtesy Reply envelopes & postcards that have printer's marks (crop marks, etc.).

    The Pay-As-You-Go Plan is appropriate for users who (1) don't create a lot of mailpieces, and (2) don't require much flexibility in terms of formatting.

  2. Subscription Plan — Pay $25.00 US per year to create an unlimited number of mailpieces. The Subscription Plan makes available some extra features that aren't part of the Pay-As-You-Go Plan. Here are some of these extra features:

    • In addition to Business Reply mailpieces and Courtesy Reply mailpieces, Subscription Plan user can create International Business Reply mailpieces.
    • In addition to choosing from a list of standard-sized mailpieces, a Subscription Plan user can specify custom dimensions for a mailpiece.
    • For Business Reply mailpieces, a Subscription Plan user can create labels as well as envelopes & postcards.
    • A Subscription Plan user can choose from two different font styles.
    • A Subscription Plan user has the option of instructing to put blank lines or labeled lines for a return address in the upper-left corner of a Business Reply mailpiece or Courtesy Reply mailpiece.
    • A Subscription Plan user can specify whether he wants printers' marks on the mailpiece, or whether he just wants the mailpiece itself. ("Printer's marks" are crop marks and mailpiece specifications.)

    The Subscription Plan is appropriate for users who (1) create a lot of mailpieces and/or (2) need to have options in terms of formatting.

About Citation Software

Citation Software Inc. is a provider of products and services related to electronic-publishing technology, particularly variable-data-printing/publishing technology, on-demand-printing/publishing technology, and PDF-based workflow systems. Based in Massachusetts, the company sells "off-the-shelf" software products to end users; licenses software-development kits to programmers; and offers consulting, development, and integration services.

Citation Software's product portfolio includes solutions for variable-data printing/publishing, page imposition, PDF viewing, dynamic creation & modification of PDF files, dynamic PDF form-filling, address standardization & enhancement, print-stream transformation, and more.

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