No junk mail please

Finally I started to undertake some steps against unsolicited advertising and mailings. Down with the junk mail! It’s incredible how much unwanted mail we receive through our mailboxes and we don’t really have an influence on it. It annoys me. In our house there even is a waste bin placed directly below the mailboxes so the tenants can dispose their unwanted mail immediately. Does it have to be that way?

There are different types of paper junk mail. To cut it short I refer simply to two classic types: indirect and direct mailings.

How can I provide against or at least try to stop junk mail?

Basically, you can get rid of the majority of indirect advertising immediately by labeling your mailbox with a “no junk mail please” sticker, as companies are legally responsible to comply with this contradiction. (If you want to plunge deeper into the matter the web provides countless information.) Curbing direct mails is a little more difficult.

First, I collected all the mail and junk mail addressed to me for a while to get an overview of what I receive and how much it is. Many unnecessary mailings can be reduced slightly by being digitised, such as bank statements. Requested advertising, e. g. catalogues, you can often cancel directly online, similar to e-mail newsletters. Newspaper and magazine subscriptions are often also available in digital form, so the purchase of a tablet or eBook reader is worth to consider.

Another option in Germany and other EU countries is to put yourself on the so-called “Robinson List” (comparable to “Mail Preference Service” in the UK). You’ll then be deleted from the currently existing address lists of all advertising companies (who are members of the German Dialogue Marketing Association in my case). However, such an entry will only prevent from the reception of personally addressed direct mail and catalogs from companies that want to gain you as a new customer. Should you want to get rid of junk mail from a company of which you are or were a customer already, only one way remains: You have to send a written demand (preferably by registered mail with return receipt) asking the company to refrain from sending advertising mail in the future.

junk mail
A part of the junk mail I received

/ “No junk mail” sticker
/ Written revocation
/ Unsubscribe from catalogues, cancel subscriptions
/ Digitise mailings (e. g. bank statements, subscriptions)

When implementing the points mentioned above, you will notice that you already reduced the majority of unwanted advertising and other mailings. If the revocation doesn’t work via email, I’ll try to get rid of the last junk mail with a written letter.  I’d like to save the additional costs for a registered letter. It’s bad enough that you need to produce paper waste for this again. If this doesn’t work I will mark all the letters I receive with “delivery refused” in the future and send them back to the sender. I hope that this strategy will come to fruition because my mailbox is not a landfill.

I’m interested who feels the same way or what experiences you made regarding junk mail!

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