Thursday, April 14, 2005

Curse of the Junk Mail

Each day I open my snail mail box and in comes a flood of mail. Almost all the time it is Junk Mail (JM). Credit card offers, pizza coupons, PC deals, hair growth products, hair removal products... The list goes on. If you happen to be away for a couple of days your entire mail box gets "junked out".

There is much concern about junk in your email box. Why is there no concern about junk in your snail mail box?

According to a report from Berkeley, U.S. produces 35% of the world’s new printed information each year and 40% of the world's card and letter postal volume. About half of all postal mail in the United States is junk mail.

It is estimated that about 100 million trees are cut each year to create this menace. All in the name of better business and a stronger economy. Reputable companies like Dell, AOL, Chase are all in on this. The irony is in the fact that these companies claim themselves to be environmentally responsible.

When it comes to JM, it is a bad thing to have a conscience. Each time you see it, you end up exasperated. Worrying about all those precious trees and what not. So I try and recycle all this junk very religiously. If you happen to live in a state where environment is a back burner, recycling is easier said than done.

Recycling is great. Stopping JM altogether would be even better. Hmm.... I wondered. What would Napoleon Dynamite say ? The answer came back, "See for your self" :)

A few googles later, I found out about DMA (Direct Marketing Association). Apparently I could opt out of JM all together. My tree hugging heart skipped a beat. Off I went filling the request forms. I even contacted some of the JM proliferating companies individually, and requested my name be taken off their JM list.

It felt good.

Days went by. JM kept happening. I waited patiently and hoped that things would improve. Then I started noticing a difference. The mails were no longer addressed to me. Instead it was to a
Current Resident
Good neighbor
Valued Customer
Car Enthusiast
Frequent Flyer
Single And Looking

My name apparently was off the list and with that the companies were no longer liable. But JM kept happening. The Postal service had absolutely no problem delivering the JM. I am pretty sure my name is neither Hairy & Scary; nor is it Balding & Boring. Why Lord why ?

Let me guess...All that really matters is revenue.To the postal department. To the big companies. To everybody!

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