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My understanding is that 海 means "vast" here. Here is a story on the origin of the term -> “海报”探源

上海方言中又习惯于以“海”来形容“大”或“神气”,如称气量大、酒量大叫“海量”,大碗叫“海碗”,说大话叫“海话”、“海口”,称有气派、神气为“海会”(如形容某人衣着神气,会说“身浪穿得海会来”)。因此,当面对此类前所未见、又大又神气的新型戏报,上海人不由得发出感叹:海会得不得了的戏报!略而言之,就成“海报”
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