That’s a part of my junk mail pile (neatly arranged) from the last few weeks. Finally, after much procrastination (as usual), I got to shredding the damned things yesterday. This time, I documented the rogue mail senders, so that I can systematically hate them according to how much junk they send me. Here are the results:
Chase was the undisputed winner in our little junk mail contest. With 27 letters - some pre-approved offers and some of those stupid $10 checks - in a span of about 3 weeks, the king of junk mail seemed to be hell-bent on ruining our cheap paper shredder.
Bank of America, Citibank, and Discover also sent some junk to our mailbox, but they don’t come anywhere close to Chase. However, Citibank and Discover still managed to aggravate the shredder by sending over-sized junk mails. Verizon didn’t really send *financial* junk, but I included it nevertheless since it ranked among the top 6 contenders. It should be noted that these junk mail numbers do not include pieces of mail that carried genuine financial information like transaction summaries, changes to account terms and conditions, etc.
Junk mails are not just trivial irritants, they are a burden on a lot of resources - precious paper, time, peace of mind, and shredding machines. Plus, there is that ever-increasing risk of identity theft. I just don’t understand these companies; on one hand they have started encouraging paperless billing for increased security and reduction in paper usage, and on the other hand they just keep dishing out these junk letters which ironically invalidate the very advantages of paperless billing.
I did try to stop this nonsense sometime back. I remember registering with OptOutPreescreen.com (if you want to get rid of those unsolicited *pre-approved* offers, this is the place to go…supposedly) a few years ago and observed a decline soon after that (perhaps it was just a coincidence), but things are gradually back to the earlier junk status.
Iâ€™ve submitted Opt-Out requests through this website and to the Direct Mail Association (DMA), but Iâ€™m still receiving offers.
Opting-Out will not end solicitations from all local merchants, religious and charitable associations, professional and alumni associations, politicians, and companies with which you conduct business. To eliminate mail from these groups - as well as mail addressed to “occupant” or “resident” - write directly to each source.
Ok, so I am getting all this spam from “companies with which you conduct business“. Seems like I will have to get on the phone with Chase regarding this.
Btw, for those who want to cut out all the crap, there is something else you should do in addition to registering with OptOutPrescreen.com; register with Direct Marketing Association’s “Mail Preference Service” (there is a $1 fee for this!). The website doesn’t appear professional and/or *pretty*, but it is a legit place to get rid of some pesky advertisements. However, even this does not guarantee a junk free life.
Although the typical consumer sees a great reduction in the unsolicited mail he or she receives not all commercial mail will stop. You will continue to receive mail from companies with which you already do business and from non-DMA member companies that do not use our service. In addition, you may continue to receive mail from local merchants, professional and alumni associations, political candidates and office holders, and mail addressed to “resident/occupant.”
So you could try all you want with those two stop-junk portals, but basically it seems like you will still need more than a few hours and more than a dozen phone calls to stop all that junk mail after all.
Need to rant about your junk mail troubles? Feel free to leave a comment.