Thursday, March 8, 2007

Junk Mail Reduction: a New Business Opp

This winter I read about, a new enterprise that will help you reduce your volume of junk mail. Note that their domain is ".com" - they are not a non-profit, they are a business. Increased environmental concerns are spawning all kinds of new business opportunities, contrary to the old, false argument that if we raise environmental standards it will be bad for business. Green Dimes is $36 a year, or a dime a day. There are all kind of personal and communal benefits to decreasing junk mail. Those catalogs clutter up your house, weigh down your recycling, and require vast amounts of natural resources to print and ship, all the while emitting carbon pollution. They are immensely duplicative. If you're a frequent shopper, it seems like they send you a new version of their catalog every few days. I am vigilant about it, but when I place an order online, there is no way to avoid the deluge of mail that follows. Often catalogs arrive from related companies - clearly once a company snags a real buyer, they sell your name.
It is possible to remove your address from mailing lists yourself, but it's quite time consuming. Paying a modest amount to have the GreenDimes professionals take on the project is a great use of money - the kind of "domestic outsourcing" I really value. Plus they plant complimentary trees in your honor through my favorite offset source: Trees for the Future. I have not used GreenDimes myself, but gave an annual membership as a gift to a very appreciative recipient.
And yes, if you have a favorite catalog, you can exempt it from the purge. And if you like receiving catalogs from a company, but just not so many, did you know you can talk to their Customer Service and pick the frequency of mailings? Cool, huh.


Anonymous said...

Hello, thanks for letting people know about GreenDimes! GreenDimes is happy to help folks reduce their junk mail by getting them off direct mail lists and unsolicited offers, and opting them out of the catalogs they no longer want (while keeping the catalogs they do want!). AND GreenDimes plants a tree for every member every month.

Right now you have the chance to do even more good by signing up by MARCH 22nd - GreenDimes is giving new members 25 BONUS TREES. Already a member?
Then refer a friend using your GreenDimes Friends tab and we'll give both of you 25 bonus trees. Learn more at

Thanks again,
Kendra at GreenDimes

Anonymous said...

Kendra from GreenDimes here again- I wanted to clarify the last part of your post... while we are very busy working on making sure your catalog needs are met- we currently are not able to offer management over the frequency of your mailings. We are working on it though, so make sure to check the website for updates. We are always working to improve our service and make sure our members requests are met.

Betsy Teutsch said...

Yes, if you want to work out an arrangement of how frequently to receive a catalogue, you have to talk to them directly. I told Sierra Trading Post to cool it! Now I just get a seasonal women's print catalogue. Seemed like I was getting one every few days, some for ridiculous things like fly fishing equipment!

Anonymous said...

Direct Marketing Assoc., Mail Preference Service, P.O. Box 282, Carmel, NY 10512 has been working on the junk mail problem for years, kind of a "Do Not Mail" system similar to "Do Not Call". They charge $1.00.
Informed Consumer