How do you actually locate the addresses?

Each year, the candidates - or their designated representatives such as agents or companies - are contacted in an effort to obtain the preferred mailing address. Some people prefer home addresses; others prefer places of business and some prefer contact through agents. The actual task of finding appropriate addresses falls to a worldwide staff of experienced researchers and veteran investigative reporters. We also use a number of professional directories and employ the services of some people who are experts at tracking people. This work is on-going in order to maintain the integrity of the information. In the final months before printing the book, we attempt to verify the addresses. We send our entire data base to the National Change of Address (which is maintained by the U.S. Postal Service) and compare our lists against their data base. When they spot a recent change, we update our address list accordingly. Because of these steps we feel reasonably certain that the book is offering our readers the preferred way to reach the listees.

What will you, or can you do about people who move or change addresses?

Well obviously we can't stop people from moving around. People do move, change jobs and change agents. There have been studies that indicate that some 20 percent of people in the U.S. alone change jobs or move each year. This is a fact of life we have to live with. One way is to have an on-going series of efforts to keep track of people. Mail is one way. Routinely, the U.S. Postal Service customarily forwards mail for up to six months after a person indicates they are changing addresses. Other ways are to read newspapers carefully and listen to radio and television. The media frequently report information on important people and a careful reading or listing often alerts us to the need to start checking on the accuracy of the address or looking for a new one. Of course, some people are nice enough to send us their new addresses. This is a real big help to say the least. In addition, we encourage users of this reference work to inform us if they find incorrect addresses. Lastly, the Internet offers an expansive amount of useful information.

How will people who use your book obtain this updated information?

We have a mid-year supplemental publication for this type of information. The V.I.P. ADDRESS BOOK UPDATE, an accompanying publication for the master volume, publishes updated and additional addresses on an annual, mid-year basis. It lets users know changes in the between each annual volume.

What happens if someone dies?

This is one of the biggest areas of apprehension for journalists and reporters. It is not so bad if you work for a daily newspaper since you can write a story reporting the fact the next day. Magazine editors have a bigger problem and most of them will relate stories of how they were once embarrassed by the death of someone who was prominently featured in an article after the magazine had gone to press. A book - which is updated every year - faces the same problem. The UPDATE helps a great deal, but some people are still overlooked. When the people you list are from around the world, the problem is compounded. But there is one thing you can be assured of. If you make a mistake and someone spots it, they will probably quickly and publicly point out the error.

How are people selected for the book?

The determination of candidates for inclusion in this reference work was a five-year process and continues to this day. Committees of prominent and knowledgeable people discuss who should be included. The nine major areas we use are: Public Service; Adventure; Business, Religion and Education; Life and Leisure; Communications; Fine Arts; Sciences; Entertainment and Athletics. Public Service includes World Leaders, Government Officials (both U.S. and International), and members of the Law Enforcement, Legal and Judicial Fields. Adventure includes Military Leaders (both U.S. and International), Astronauts and Cosmonauts, Heroes and Explorers. Business, Religion and Education includes Financial and Labor Leaders as well as Businesspeople and Nobel Prize Winners in Economics and Peace. Life and Leisure includes Fashion Design, Modeling, Beauty and Health Care and Social and Political Activists. Communications encompasses Columnists, Commentators, Editors, Publishers, along with Editorial and Comic Book Cartoonists. Fine Arts includes Architects, Artists, Opera, Ballet and Dance Performers, Conductors, Concert Artists, Composers (both classical and popular), Writers, Photographers and Nobel Literature Laureates. Science covers Nobel Prize winners in Chemistry, Medicine and Physics, Engineers, Inventors, Earth and Space Scientists, Psychologists and Psychiatrists, Medical and Research Scientists. Entertainment includes stars of radio, stage and screen, musicians and musical groups, cinematographers, producers and directors. Athletics include all major spectator and participatory sports.

How do you decide between a home and a business address?

We send information mailers to the people regarding the accuracy and preference of the address. If they respond and tell us not to use the home address, we don't do so. If they don't respond, we have no way of knowing their preference. If this becomes a problem for someone, we can change the address in the UPDATE or when the next volume appears. The intent of the book is to let people tell their public how and where they should be reached, not irritate the listees. Also some of the postal service personnel - especially if they have been on a route for sometime - will screen letters with bad addresses and deliver the mail to the proper person. It's not their job, but being basically nice people they'll make adjustments if you have an error in the street or apartment number.

Who or what type of organization do you consider to be the primary market for the book?

Our primary market is libraries - whether they be corporate, government, college and university, school or public libraries. All library reference desks should have a copy - and I don't just mean in the main downtown branches. These are the places you normally turn to if you need information that is not readily at hand. In the case of corporate libraries, companies need information quickly or how to find people who can help them solve problems, speak at functions or even help them market their products. I really can't see any business - whether it's an airline company, a manufacturing plant, a bank or an insurance company - not having a copy on their shelves. It was the selection of this market which determined that the book would be a hard-bound version as opposed to paperback simply because the book would get used by many people. Another major market for the book is non-profit organizations. Many groups use our book to solicit donations for annual fund-raising activities. A creative fund raiser can use the addresses in many different ways. Other people who can use the book are those in the marketing, public relations, promotion and publicity fields. Another major user is journalists - particularly the investigative types that have to track down their own sources. I suppose people who want to build a celebrity client list - from stockbrokers to companies offering new products could also use the book - though this was not considered a large market segment when we were planning the book. Other major users are consumers, critics, researchers and marketing strategists. Finally, fans are a vast potential market.