Alexandra Kain

Mailman Cuts Out Junk Mail, You Can Too!

by , 11/26/08

junk mail, mail carrier refuses junk mail, catalog, advertisement, waste reduction, junk mail elimination service, opt out service

A former North Carolina mailman was recently fined $3,000 and ordered to do 500 hours of community service for cutting out the junk mail. For over seven years, no one on Steven Padgett’s route received a single pizza flyer, ‘Current Resident’ catalog or sweepstakes entry – now that’s something to be thankful for. Unfortunately, this mailman couldn’t put an end to the production of junk mail, leaving much of it in his backyard or garage, but you can. 100 million trees are chopped, processed, glossed and stuffed into US mailboxes every year. Fight back with one of the many opt out services below!

junk mail, mail carrier refuses junk mail, catalog, advertisement, waste reduction, junk mail elimination service, opt out service

When I ordered a Dwell subscription last year I suspiciously started getting monthly Design Within Reach, Crate & Barrel, and CB2 catalogs. Catalog Choice is a free website that allows you to select catalogs by name to eliminate some while still keeping the ones you want. Opt Out Prescreen does the same for credit card offers. DMA Choice is a service provided by the Direct Marketing Association, the people sending you half of your junk in the first place. I must say, I’m very grateful for this site – not only can you stop mail in your name, but you can opt out of any ‘Current Resident’ mail to your address with one simple click. You can get rid of ValPak mailings directly on their website as well.

41 Pounds is highly effective service that, for a fee, claims to cut your junk mail by up to 95% for 5 years, including all names at your address. $15 of the $41 enrollment fee goes directly to the non-profit of your choice. You can also join the Forest Ethics campaign to implement a nationwide Do Not Mail list, similar to the successful government Do Not Call registry. Not in the US? Canadians can try the Red Dot Campaign, and Britons can get great tree-saving advice from Stop Junk Mail. Let us know if your country has a junk mail opt out service in a comment below.

Via LA Times

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2 Comments

  1. rachelw November 26, 2008 at 10:01 pm

    1) junk mail is pretty much what pays the salary for the mailman. it constitutes a huge percentage of the mail thats delivered. HUGE.
    2) in most cases, opting out from receiving that kind of junk mail doesn’t prevent it from being printed. it comes to the post office anyway, but then your mail carrier has to specifically remember to not deliver it to you in particular. then it gets thrown into a pile with other unimportant undeliverable mail and I have no idea where it goes from there. I hope the usps recycles.

    I’ma mail carrier. just figured I’d shed some light on this situation.

  2. sweetandtasty November 26, 2008 at 1:37 pm

    Mailman Steven Padgett’s intention was to save his time, not to save the planet. However, his action has led people to think how useless and un-green junk mail is. Junk mail should be banned altogether.

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