The RVC posters are our most visible presence on campus, and we probably put up more posters on campus than any other club. We are also very thorough about our posters, and we handle them in a systematic manner to reduce the amount of time spent in handling them.
If it isn't obvious already, our posters are irreverent. We consider just about any topic to be fair game, and we don't mind if our posters have a little "bite" to them. However, we try not to be too sanctimonious, and when we want to point out the benefits of vegetarianism or the drawbacks of meat consumption, we do so in such an exaggerated and comical way that only the most grouchy will really raise any objections to them. In general, people don't mind if they are the butts of silly jokes as a group, but if you directly attack them, then they'll take it personally.
We try to make the posters attention-getting and funny. What is funny to one person isn't necessarily funny to another, and the best thing to do is to understand this early and ignore complaints unless they start pouring in fast and furious. In that case, it might be worthwhile to see if any of the detractors have a point, but even if they do, there's usually no point to a lot of public self-flagellation.
We keep a archive of old posters both for historical purposes and as a source for new (or recycled) ideas. Many of our poster ideas come from magazine images, etc., so it helps to read a wide of magazines, newspapers, etc.
There are a set of minimum requirements for a poster at Rice, and we also try to have a set of requirements beyond that. In order for a poster to be a valid, legal, officially-protected Rice poster, it must contain
In our quest to make life easier on the poster people, we have systematically walked around campus and noted where all of our posters are to be placed. We then developed "routes" whereby a single person could walk around part of the campus and hang up posters, so the task of getting the posters up around campus requires a fair number of people, but it's not a burden to most of them. More importantly, having a large number of people do a little work each provides for a safety margin, in that something happening to one person won't cause large sections of the campus to be without posters. The list of locations is basically a text file which has been run through "enscript" on a Unix machine. To learn more about enscript, type "man enscript", and you'll see the options. We basically use a line like
The options are 2-columns rotated (-2r), Gaudy mode banner (-G), save to a postscript file called temp.ps (-ptemp.ps), use the specified font (-fCourier-Bold9), and use the original file named where.to.put.veggie.club.fliers. The original file is just a plain text file which can be edited in emacs. Sometimes, to break columns, we have inserted a form-feed character (a control-L). In order to do this in emacs, hit control-Q, which means "type literal", and then hit control-L. The control-L will be inserted into the file where there cursor was. Once you have run enscript, you may want to view the output, and to do this, typeenscript -2r -G -ptemp.ps -fCourier-Bold9 where.to.put.veggie.club.fliers
Finally, to print the output, typeghostview temp.ps
where "name" is the name of the printer, which can be obtained either by looking at the label physically attached to the printer, or by running the "lprloc" command.lpr -Pname temp.ps
The poster coordinators are responsible for distributing the posters to the various poster-hangers (college reps and others) and, it's also a good idea to perform periodic "policing". Sometimes, people will get busy for periods of time and forget to hang up posters. Sometimes, they will hang up posters but they'll get torn down for whatever reason. Taking a walk around parts of campus and seeing if the posters are up is a good way to see if everything is running smoothly. Sometimes, if a person is busy, sending them a note asking if they need help is the simplest way for them to gracefully hand over their poster-hanging duties for a few weeks. It's always best to assume that the person is doing a good job and that the posters are not there for other reasons before coming to other conclusions. Very often, if posters are in high-traffic areas, they will be torn down by people who don't agree with the club for whatever reasons. In other cases, the cleaning staff will periodically remove all of the posters from windows, etc., and there's not much that can be done about that. If we find that posters are being systematically ripped down, we can try to find out who is doing it and get Rice to do something about it. Since we're a campus organization and we follow the requirements for valid posters, we are entitled to some degree of protection. We usually lose about one-quarter to one-third our posters within a week of hanging them, and this is to be expected. There's not much value in making a fuss about it unless it gets significantly worse.
We use a distinctive orange paper called "astrobright orange" for our posters, and since we always stick to the same color, many people automatically assume that any orange poster on campus is from the RVC. So, unless there's a real reason to switch, we suggest that you stick to the orange paper. We buy it at Office Depot on Kirby near West Alabama, which has good prices on reams of paper. For copying, we do one of two things. If the poster has a lot of black background or if it has images, we take it to Kinko's in the village. For images, we ask them to copy it in "photo mode", which produces much better results than regular copying. Otherwise, if the poster is mostly text or simple graphics, etc., you can use a cheaper place, such as Ditto's Copies near 59 and Shepherd.
Whenever you spend money on buying paper or making copies, try to save the receipts, and take money out of the donations jar at the end of the dinner. RVC doesn't really do a lot of accounting, since we basically eat whatever we get in donations, but it's still a good idea to hold on to the receipts somewhere if they are ever needed.