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Just Say No to Junk Mail

December 1, 2008


Your Name Here detail, originally uploaded by Peggy Dembicer.

J. and I are pretty lucky that we never get catalogs mailed to us so we never needed to worry about stopping them. What we and a lot of Americans still get is tons of credit card offers. Sometimes one of us will get two of the same offers?? I’m not sure if this is some sort of processing error or what. Regardless these offers are generating a lot of waste when they are shipped to us and then when we have to dispose of them. We do recycle (after shredding of course) but it’d be nice to not have to deal with this.

I did a little online research on opting out of credit card offers and was taken to the Federal Trade Commission website. They recommend going to the credit bureau site www.optoutprescreen.com to opt out of preapproved credit card offers for five years. The website allows you to opt out or opt in electronically or permanently opt out by sending documentation them through the mail. This process only stops offers that are generated from information sold by the credit bureaus so it will only reduce the number of offers you receive.

Another major source of your information is the Direct Marketing Association. You can opt of offers generated from their list here. As an added bonus you can also reduce the amount of junk email you receive.

The next step is to write each of the credit bureaus directly to inform them you don’t want your information sold for promotional purposes. This is a little more time consuming but sample letters are provided on the site as well as the mailing addresses for each of the companies. Even if it takes you 30 minutes and 3 stamps its worth it in the long run.

Finally one that most of us already know about the Do Not Call Registry which allows you to stop those annoying and ever present telemarketers. I haven’t had a problem with telemarketers calling my cell phone but J has and I imagine that this is becoming more of a problem as people decide to cut out landlines and simply use their cell phones.

4 Comments leave one →
  1. December 1, 2008 12:22 pm

    We’ve opted out of most of these. I even call places and opt out of their marketing, but it seems like there’s a never ended stream.

  2. December 1, 2008 12:23 pm

    Yes! Let’s get rid of junk mail!! 41pounds.org is a nonprofit service that stops your junk mail – including catalogs. 41pounds.org donates more than 1/3 of the fee to its nonprofit partners such as StopGlobalWarming.org, American Forests, Grist, Carbonfund.org, The Ocean Project and Habitat for Humanity chapters. It costs only $8.20 a year (2 cents a day). You can check it out at http://www.41pounds.org.

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