Get rid of junk mail

Long before spam, junk mail was – and continues to be – a huge waste of resources. Most people just throw it away, some recycle it, and a few think it’s the height of cleverness to send it back to the company. Personally, I think the best solution is to cut it off at the source. You have to do a little bit of legwork, but the end result is virtually *no* credit card offers, flyers, and unwanted catalogs. I think it’s well worth it – maybe you do too.

Note: When you fill out one of the US Post Office’s change of address forms, they immediately sell your new address, so be sure to head to the DMA right away to get your new address removed too.

  • Direct Marketing Association – Start here by letting them know you don’t want any junk and it will start to slow down
     
  • Catalog Choice – choose which catalogs you actually do want, and the rest will stop coming
     
  • OPTOUT – Call 888 5 OPTOUT (888-567-8688) to tell the credit reporting agencies to stop sharing your financial info – this will cut down on the credit card offers you receive (not to mention maintain your financial privacy)

If you continue to receive garbage, look for contact information (phone, address, website) and let the company know directly that you don’t want their stuff.

2 thoughts on “Get rid of junk mail

  1. Will says:

    Great post, LKL! Junk mail is an outdated practice that cannot help us meet the challenges of 21st century. Many junk mailers require only a 0.25% response rate to continue mailing. Is a system in which 99.75% of the product is complete waste something that can be called sustainable?

    According to the US Postal Service, 30% of all the mail delivered in the world is US junk mail. That’s insane! Why are we receiving nearly a third of the world’s mail when we don’t want it and never asked for it?

    A couple extra things worth noting:

    –A memo sent by the DMA last Fall instructed their members to ignore requests through 3rd parties such as Catalog Choice. Some junk mailers are indeed ignoring these requests. This is a good indication that the DMA is not really interested in giving people control of a relationship they don’t want and never asked for.

    –DMA Choice only covers junk mailers who are members of the DMA. Also, it’s somewhat designed to be hard to use, and the DMA would rather no one ever know about it. Popular demand is egging them on a bit, but what they really don’t want is…..

    — A national Do Not Mail Registry as successful as the Do Not Call Registry. ForestEthics has a petition at donotmail.org that calls for a accessible, enforceable, comprehensive, and effective solution for people who want the choice to stop receiving junk mail. It’s debatable whether or not the DMA wants accessible, comprehensive, or effective. And as I mentioned above, DMA would rather they not really have to honor any requests they don’t want to.

    All added up, and we need something that works, and that isn’t a half-measure to designed to let incredible amounts of waste continue with our names on them.

    Deforestation accounts for 20% of all global carbon emissions. We need a solution that matches the scale of the problem.

    Sign the petition at donotmail.org .

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