Junk Mail

Questions on how we spend our money and our time - consumer goods and services, home and vehicle, leisure and recreational activities
Post Reply
LuigiLikesPizza
Posts: 336
Joined: Tue Jan 05, 2016 7:54 am

Junk Mail

Post by LuigiLikesPizza » Wed Aug 08, 2018 9:46 am

What steps would you take if you are trying to drastically cut down on the amount of junk mail you receive? trying to keep my physical mail box from overflowing.

Thanks

Silk McCue
Posts: 1127
Joined: Thu Feb 25, 2016 7:11 pm

Re: Junk Mail

Post by Silk McCue » Wed Aug 08, 2018 10:01 am

This Federal Trade Commission site provides you with guidance on how to reduce unsolicited mail.

Stopping Unsolicited Mail, Phone Calls, and Email

Cheers

RickBoglehead
Posts: 795
Joined: Wed Feb 14, 2018 9:10 am

Re: Junk Mail

Post by RickBoglehead » Wed Aug 08, 2018 12:33 pm

Any identified company that sends mail to your name at your address can be contacted, by you, and you can request removal from their mailing list. If you don't recognize the company, ask them if they rented your name from someone else, and then contact that company and make the removal request.

Sign up for $2 for 10 years with the DMA's Mail Preference Service. https://dmachoice.thedma.org/register.php Company members of the DMA use this list to not mail to people that don't want mail.

Or, sign up for free to DMA's Deceased List.

Keep in mind - a good marketer doesn't want to waste money sending mail to those that don't want it. But, the more you cut mail, the higher rates go, because bulk postage pays for all other mail services.

mega317
Posts: 2554
Joined: Tue Apr 19, 2016 10:55 am

Re: Junk Mail

Post by mega317 » Wed Aug 08, 2018 1:04 pm

There was a recent thread on this.
viewtopic.php?t=232311

oh and another
viewtopic.php?t=234614

IIRC the general sense I got was there are lots of things you can try, none of which will help dramatically.

My favorite suggestion was stuffing those postage-paid return envelopes with junk. I don't know if it accomplishes anything but seems cathartic. Sadly I haven't had the chance do to that since reading about it.

Texgal17
Posts: 72
Joined: Sun Aug 13, 2017 12:51 pm
Location: Texas

Re: Junk Mail

Post by Texgal17 » Wed Aug 08, 2018 4:01 pm


I just used the link for the DMA.org list to update my deceased mothers info to remove her name from mailing lists.
When I forwarded her mail to my address I assumed I would only get her first class mail forwarded. Nope! I started getting all her junk mail with my address! She was on every catalog and solicitation for donations mailing list apparently..... So now I get it all..... ugh! Well hopefully by registering her as deceased to their site that will help reduce the flow....
Thanks for the link!!

User avatar
FrugalInvestor
Posts: 4886
Joined: Fri Nov 07, 2008 12:20 am

Re: Junk Mail

Post by FrugalInvestor » Wed Aug 08, 2018 4:27 pm

Silk McCue wrote:
Wed Aug 08, 2018 10:01 am
This Federal Trade Commission site provides you with guidance on how to reduce unsolicited mail.

Stopping Unsolicited Mail, Phone Calls, and Email

Cheers
We have taken these steps and it has helped. We also call whenever we receive a catalog or other mail that we don't want and ask that we be removed from the sender's mailing list. We receive about 25% the volume of mail that we once did. The junk we now receive is addressed to 'resident.'
IGNORE the noise! | Our life is frittered away by detail... simplify, simplify. - Henry David Thoreau

User avatar
BolderBoy
Posts: 4048
Joined: Wed Apr 07, 2010 12:16 pm
Location: Colorado

Re: Junk Mail

Post by BolderBoy » Thu Aug 09, 2018 10:22 am

Texgal17 wrote:
Wed Aug 08, 2018 4:01 pm

I just used the link for the DMA.org list to update my deceased mothers info to remove her name from mailing lists.
When I forwarded her mail to my address I assumed I would only get her first class mail forwarded. Nope! I started getting all her junk mail with my address! She was on every catalog and solicitation for donations mailing list apparently..... So now I get it all..... ugh! Well hopefully by registering her as deceased to their site that will help reduce the flow....
Thanks for the link!!
+1. My experience exactly as well. Thanks for the link! Unfortunately it now means I won't receive the nickles that some of the money begging orgs send along.
"Never underestimate one's capacity to overestimate one's abilities" - The Dunning-Kruger Effect

nova1968
Posts: 227
Joined: Wed May 18, 2016 12:00 pm

Re: Junk Mail

Post by nova1968 » Thu Aug 09, 2018 11:19 am

Whats so hard about throwing the junk mail in the trash.? The other day someone put a flier on my windshield, any advice on how to stop this from happening?

CFM300
Posts: 1373
Joined: Sat Oct 27, 2007 5:13 am

Re: Junk Mail

Post by CFM300 » Thu Aug 09, 2018 11:47 am

nova1968 wrote:
Thu Aug 09, 2018 11:19 am
Whats so hard about throwing the junk mail in the trash.?
My mailbox is small and becomes full after just a few days because of all the junk I receive. I cannot increase the size of the box because it's part of a central cluster over which I have no control.

Second, I receive a lot of advertisements that are multi-page (like newspaper magazines). These contain additional, loose, postcard-like advertisements inside. Sometimes actual mail, including checks, ends up inside those junk mailings. It's time consuming to sort through everything carefully to make sure I'm not inadvertently tossing out something of value.

likegarden
Posts: 2687
Joined: Mon Feb 26, 2007 5:33 pm

Re: Junk Mail

Post by likegarden » Thu Aug 09, 2018 3:57 pm

We manage our junk mail, luckily are not on any huge distribution. But newspapers several days a week are also full of unwanted advertisements; throw them out too.

123
Posts: 3713
Joined: Fri Oct 12, 2012 3:55 pm

Re: Junk Mail

Post by 123 » Thu Aug 09, 2018 4:09 pm

mega317 wrote:
Wed Aug 08, 2018 1:04 pm
My favorite suggestion was stuffing those postage-paid return envelopes with junk. I don't know if it accomplishes anything but seems cathartic. Sadly I haven't had the chance do to that since reading about it.
It is very cathartic. I have returend such postage-paid return envelopes with tea bags in them (ala Boston tea party). Using used (and dried) tea bags feels even better because it's cheaper and it also gets rid of trash. When I had a part-time job while in school that involved opening mail for a business I always remember when another mail clerk opened an envelope and it was full of cigarette butts and used lipsticks, she let out quite a scream.
The closest helping hand is at the end of your own arm.

User avatar
siamond
Posts: 4186
Joined: Mon May 28, 2012 5:50 am

Re: Junk Mail

Post by siamond » Thu Aug 09, 2018 5:20 pm

nova1968 wrote:
Thu Aug 09, 2018 11:19 am
Whats so hard about throwing the junk mail in the trash.? The other day someone put a flier on my windshield, any advice on how to stop this from happening?
It is only mildly annoying to throw it away, but it is extremely frustrating to see the wasted resources (and money) used to print and deliver (and hopefully recycle) said junk...

User avatar
unclescrooge
Posts: 2468
Joined: Thu Jun 07, 2012 7:00 pm

Re: Junk Mail

Post by unclescrooge » Thu Aug 09, 2018 7:44 pm

nova1968 wrote:
Thu Aug 09, 2018 11:19 am
Whats so hard about throwing the junk mail in the trash.?
It wastes time. Some people value their time more than others.

User avatar
abuss368
Posts: 12841
Joined: Mon Aug 03, 2009 2:33 pm
Location: Where the water is warm, the drinks are cold, and I don't know the names of the players!

Re: Junk Mail

Post by abuss368 » Thu Aug 09, 2018 7:49 pm

What if you marked “return to sender” and mailed back?
John C. Bogle: "You simply do not need to put your money into 8 different mutual funds!" | | Disclosure: Three Fund Portfolio + U.S. & International REITs

Invisi8
Posts: 13
Joined: Sat Sep 23, 2017 3:40 pm

Re: Junk Mail

Post by Invisi8 » Thu Aug 09, 2018 8:40 pm

I've had good luck with https://www.catalogchoice.org/
Quick and easy.

Also, went through other steps of FTC and DMA, but for the ones that slipped through, CatalogChoice specifically speared them.

User avatar
Sasquatch
Posts: 237
Joined: Mon Apr 09, 2018 12:44 pm

Re: Junk Mail

Post by Sasquatch » Thu Aug 09, 2018 9:13 pm

nova1968 wrote:
Thu Aug 09, 2018 11:19 am
The other day someone put a flier on my windshield, any advice on how to stop this from happening?
I once worked for a business with a very large parking lot. I call he number on the flyer and tell the person to send someone over to pick up all the flyers on the ground. Otherwise, I will call the police and file a littering complaint. Surprisingly, it works pretty well.

Fan23
Posts: 41
Joined: Tue Dec 12, 2017 1:47 pm

Re: Junk Mail

Post by Fan23 » Thu Aug 09, 2018 11:00 pm

I don't like receiving all this junk mail because it sticks up out of my mailbox and lets people know when I'm away from home for a few days.

JBTX
Posts: 4043
Joined: Wed Jul 26, 2017 12:46 pm

Re: Junk Mail

Post by JBTX » Fri Aug 10, 2018 7:26 am

Invisi8 wrote:
Thu Aug 09, 2018 8:40 pm
I've had good luck with https://www.catalogchoice.org/
Quick and easy.

Also, went through other steps of FTC and DMA, but for the ones that slipped through, CatalogChoice specifically speared them.
This is what we did and it has worked very well. Mostly the only junk we get now is some of the local flyers. That isn't too bad.

bill88
Posts: 91
Joined: Thu Feb 21, 2013 10:22 am
Location: Virginia

Re: Junk Mail

Post by bill88 » Sat Aug 11, 2018 1:13 am

Writing "RTS" on the mail, arrow to return address, and crossing off the zip code of YOUR address works pretty well. But, fyi, lots of mail is from rental lists. Good luck tracking that down, if the people you talk to even know. It's like talking to Verizon. Well, not that bad, but...

The thing is, direct mail (junk mail) works, or they'd stop doing it. It costs a ton of money, and the rates go up every year.

My guess is if mailers could figure out which people wanted to buy their stuff, they'd mail just to them. Right?

I do get that unwanted mail clogs up your mailbox.

But there's a flip side — jobs for all the people that produce this stuff.
Designers, graphic artists, typographers, writers, editors, marketers, managers, paper mill employees, postal workers, lettershop employees all earn a living producing your junk mail.

Think about it…by accepting this mail, you're contributing to a growing economy, and helping your fellow citizens put food on the table! :-)

And when you toss it in the trash, you're helping even more, by providing jobs for the folks who pick up your trash each week, and for recyclers, too. And then there are all the workers on tree farms — planting, logging, sawmills, getting all those trees to paper.

And, as someone mentioned earlier, you're also helping to subsidize first class mail rates for everyone!

Just trying to 'accent the positive', as you mutter curses while wading thru all that junk in your mailbox. :-)))
Bill | | (Formerly bill99)

scrabbler1
Posts: 2219
Joined: Fri Nov 20, 2009 2:39 pm

Re: Junk Mail

Post by scrabbler1 » Sat Aug 11, 2018 7:10 am

Much of my junk mail came from a few senders, mostly banks sending me pre-approved credit cards. I would shred papers within junk mail which contained sensitive info such as my name and address, so all of that junk mail over time wore out my shredders, costing me money to buy new ones.

A few phone calls to those banks stopped that junk mail. I still get some junk mail, but not nearly as much. A lot of junk mail comes with legit mail such as bills in the form of inserts and other advertising. Can't really avoid it, but that stuff doesn't have my name and address printed on it so it doesn't wear out the shredder.

mega317
Posts: 2554
Joined: Tue Apr 19, 2016 10:55 am

Re: Junk Mail

Post by mega317 » Sat Aug 11, 2018 12:27 pm

bill88 wrote:
Sat Aug 11, 2018 1:13 am
But there's a flip side — jobs for all the people that produce this stuff.
Probably soul crushing work for the people directly involved

User avatar
mickeyd
Posts: 4612
Joined: Fri Feb 23, 2007 3:19 pm
Location: Deep in the Heart of South Texas

Re: Junk Mail

Post by mickeyd » Sat Aug 11, 2018 2:11 pm

Without junk mail I'd never get a chance to fill up my recycling bin.
Part-Owner of Texas | | “The CMH-the Cost Matters Hypothesis -is all that is needed to explain why indexing must and will work… Yes, it is that simple.” John C. Bogle

User avatar
GoldStar
Posts: 532
Joined: Wed May 23, 2018 10:59 am

Re: Junk Mail

Post by GoldStar » Sat Aug 11, 2018 7:06 pm

I got a bigger mail box and stop by my recycling bin on the way back into the house after getting the mail.

User avatar
Alexa9
Posts: 1571
Joined: Tue Aug 30, 2016 9:41 am

Re: Junk Mail

Post by Alexa9 » Sat Aug 11, 2018 8:21 pm

bill88 wrote:
Sat Aug 11, 2018 1:13 am

Think about it…by accepting this mail, you're contributing to a growing economy, and helping your fellow citizens put food on the table! :-)
Zen and the art of junk mail. I think it really is a huge waste of resources. Those workers could be doing something better with their lives and a tremendous waste of paper and landfill space even if it does employ people. I even prefer junk email ads that I can at least block. The worst of all however is spam callers. I have to keep my phone on silent.

CFIT
Posts: 51
Joined: Mon Apr 07, 2014 7:57 pm

Re: Junk Mail

Post by CFIT » Sun Aug 12, 2018 4:53 pm

I used to be bothered by junk mail. Now I welcome it as it means more money to the Post Office, an institution that is struggling under punitive legislation regarding funding retirement for its workers. Same with all the adds that come in newspapers. I used to hate that but with papers struggling to stay in business I'm happy for them to come filled with junk ads.

Trism
Posts: 122
Joined: Mon Jul 18, 2016 6:34 pm

Re: Junk Mail

Post by Trism » Mon Aug 13, 2018 12:34 am

Abolish and dissolve the USPS.

In the rare case something is important and must be physically sent it can be delivered overnight by a private carrier.

User avatar
CardinalRule
Posts: 145
Joined: Sun Jan 15, 2017 11:01 am
Location: United States

Re: Junk Mail

Post by CardinalRule » Mon Aug 13, 2018 12:57 am

For our household, by far the most common source of bulk mail is the non-profit world. We have given pretty regularly over the years to about 8 charities engaged in poverty fighting, medical research, environmental protection, and animal welfare, and these groups have apparently shared our address with dozens more. :(

My wife used to receive lots of offers of credit, but the FTC opt-out seems to have cut that back somewhat.

Cigarman
Posts: 290
Joined: Fri Jul 12, 2013 5:12 am

Re: Junk Mail

Post by Cigarman » Mon Aug 13, 2018 5:28 am

mega317 wrote:
Sat Aug 11, 2018 12:27 pm
bill88 wrote:
Sat Aug 11, 2018 1:13 am
But there's a flip side — jobs for all the people that produce this stuff.
Probably soul crushing work for the people directly involved
I am directly involved in the production and distribution of direct mail. I checked my soul, it is not crushed.....lol.

The people I interact with do an honest's day's work and for my customer's it is truly the only way to reach nearly everyone in their market. Email lists, at best, can only generate up to about 25-30% market saturation. Customer's who use direct mail include Churches, Realtors, Retail and Commercial businesses. In fact, the USPS has rebranded "bulk mail" to "marketing mail". (Most mail goes this way).

It can be a pain at times. It is, however, no more a waste of resources than watering the lawn, using a gas mower instead of a push mower or driving and picking up one's kids from school when bus service is available.

I toss most of it in my recycle bin.

mouses
Posts: 3724
Joined: Sat Oct 24, 2015 12:24 am

Re: Junk Mail

Post by mouses » Mon Aug 13, 2018 5:38 am

Cigarman wrote:
Mon Aug 13, 2018 5:28 am
mega317 wrote:
Sat Aug 11, 2018 12:27 pm
bill88 wrote:
Sat Aug 11, 2018 1:13 am
But there's a flip side — jobs for all the people that produce this stuff.
Probably soul crushing work for the people directly involved
I am directly involved in the production and distribution of direct mail. I checked my soul, it is not crushed.....lol.

The people I interact with do an honest's day's work and for my customer's it is truly the only way to reach nearly everyone in their market. Email lists, at best, can only generate up to about 25-30% market saturation. Customer's who use direct mail include Churches, Realtors, Retail and Commercial businesses. In fact, the USPS has rebranded "bulk mail" to "marketing mail". (Most mail goes this way).

It can be a pain at times. It is, however, no more a waste of resources than watering the lawn, using a gas mower instead of a push mower or driving and picking up one's kids from school when bus service is available.

I toss most of it in my recycle bin.
Nice attempt to justify annoying many people and trashing the environment. Handle spam phone calls as well, do you?

I've gotten rid of most junk mail by being quite aggressive about contacting the spammers. With Kohl's it required a letter to the CEO, same thing with the trash newspaper delivered to our area. The only thing I haven't been able to stop is the RedPlum bunch of flyers (RedPlum is now called RetailMeNot.)

Post Reply