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Just like all you freebies lovers out there, I love finding freebies when I open my mailbox. What I don't like is finding piles of unwanted junk mail. All of those credit card offers and catalogs are not just a nuisance, they are an environmental problem. There is also a huge risk of identity theft from those credit card offers getting into the hands of scammers.

Fortunately, you can greatly reduce the amount of junk mail you receive. Larry West, our Guide to Environmental Issues, tells you how to stop receiving junk mail, or at least greatly reduce the amount you receive.


April 26, 2007 at 11:36 pm
(1) Ramsey Fahel says:

Do Not Mail Opt-Out Law would be fair to everyone.

The proposed recent “Do not mail” is an Opt-Out law. Only those not desiring advertising mail need opt-out. Anyone desiring advertising mail can do nothing – and continue to receive it. Why deny those wishing to avoid advertising mail the power to do so?

I do not consider handling unwanted advertising placed against my will on my personal property to be a civic obligation!

The US Supreme Court said in the Rowan case in 1970, ““In today’s [1970] complex society we are inescapably captive audiences for many purposes, but a sufficient measure of individual autonomy must survive to permit every householder to exercise control over unwanted mail. To make the householder the exclusive and final judge of what will cross his threshold undoubtedly has the effect of impeding the flow of ideas, information, and arguments that, ideally, he should receive and consider. Today’s merchandising methods, the plethora of mass mailings subsidized by low postal rates, and the growth of the sale of large mailing lists as an industry in itself have changed the mailman from a carrier of primarily private communications, as he was in a more leisurely day, and have made him an adjunct of the mass mailer who sends unsolicited and often unwanted mail into every home. It places no strain on the doctrine of judicial notice to observe that whether measured by pieces or pounds, Everyman’s mail today is made up overwhelmingly of material he did not seek from persons he does not know. And all too often it is matter he finds offensive.”

Furthermore, the Supreme Court said, “the mailer’s right to communicate is circumscribed only by an affirmative act of the addressee giving notice that he wishes no further mailings from that mailer.

To hold less would tend to license a form of trespass and would make hardly more sense than to say that a radio or television viewer may not twist the dial to cut off an offensive or boring communication and thus bar its entering his home. Nothing in the Constitution compels us to listen to or view any unwanted communication, whatever its merit; we see no basis for according the printed word or pictures a different or more preferred status because they are sent by mail.”

We need a nationwide “Do Not Mail” law to create a one-stop, convenient place for homeowners to give senders the aforementioned affirmative notice that we do not want certain kinds of mail sent to our homes.


Ramsey A Fahel

April 30, 2007 at 6:12 pm
(2) Del says:

I am very grateful for this information and I have signed up to stop junk mail and mail from mortgage, credit card, and insurance companies. Thank you very much for providing this link.

May 6, 2008 at 12:09 am
(3) K. Wayne says:

How can junk mail be totally stopped if the United States Post Office is encouraging companies to do so per a recent news article. Seems without junk mail the USPS would lose a lot of revenues needed to keep it going. Sad.

November 8, 2008 at 12:07 am
(4) Maxym says:

Thanks for the post.

You can also sign do not mail petition (like Do Not Call National Petition)

I did some search online and this is the best resource so far available online (correct me if I am wrong). I have done this 5 months ago and my mailbox is literally empty ( I have paperless billing and also opted out from various mail lists) I check my mail twice a month now. It is beautiful.

I even took the letter from samples provided and wrote it to a local Chinese restaurant that keeps putting fliers in my door. They stopped too in the whole subdivision.


I even opted out from the yellow book. What do I need it for, since the internet is right here.

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