Having a phone book land on my doorstep is like receiving 1,000 pieces of junk mail at the same time. A tremendous waste of paper and resources. I try to be green. But I wonder how many trees were taken out of doing their job of producing oxygen for the Earth so I could get a book I put directly in the recycling bin. I often talk about recycling in my blogs and I honestly canít tell if the city is happy or not about phone book day in my town. They collect the recycling and if they sell these books back to the paper mill I guess they may like phone book day. Even if you are a saver of the phone books, when you get a new one you throw out the old one. So either way, there is a phone book going in the front door and an old or new one going out the back. This happens at least three times a year in my neighborhood. That said, I personally get at least three sets a year from the various telcos. I freely admit I use the online versions of the Yellow Pages for various services. They have reviews as well as everything the books have plus maps. These sources are much better for information than the vestiges of the pre-Internet era, behemoth books. How green can it be to send half a tree to every household in my neighborhood? I donít think they have any sort of list as I have watched the weighted-down van pull up to the corner then two guys jump out and drop off a bag of three of these books at every house on my block. I donít see a list in their hands so I am assuming they just drop them all off.
As a side note, I am on a corner and often get a set of books dropped off at the front door and side door. I searched Google and found a news story with phone numbers to stop the distribution and a petition to do the same. But if the delivery people are not carrying a list of the phone companyís customers and hitting my front and side door, how would this stop them? Donít get me wrong. I am sure many people use their phone books, especially those without Internet access, but are they really reading this blog? So can someone out there give me some suggestions to not only stop me from getting these phone books but a central location where anybody can opt out of this phone book ďspammingĒ at my door?
I work for Yellowbook. You have always been able to opt out of our phone books by calling 1-800 YB-YELLOW. You may not use phone books, but the majority of folks still use them. Many of our advertisers track their phone calls through the use of Remote Call Forwarding numbers in Southwestern Pa. Guess what? The numbers of calls hasn't changed in 6-7 years! We provide caller ID reports to these customers every year, and the results have been about the same.
Folks like you write articles/blogs from your own personal usage situation, and don't offer any real-world evidence. It's easy to make the statement the "everyone looks up phone number on the Internet," because you do. 85% of Americans have referenced the print yellow pages over the past year.
Yellowbook is making an effort to be more green. We are making opting out of receiving a print directory easier. Soy inks, smaller directories and 75% recycled content is pretty darned good in my book. Remember their sparky...trees ARE are RENEWABLE resource. There are more trees in the U.S. than any other time before it was inhabited by Europeans!
Don't forget, we are helping your local economy run, because there is no other product available that connects local buyers and sellers at the point of need than the yellow pages. Since there is a mixture of print and online users, we have to produce both.
Books are being printed and produced in greater quantities than ever! The Internet should have killed books a long time ago. Why not ask publishers to quit printing them? There are exponentially more books printed in a year than phone books.
Also, the amount of junk mail I receive each month equals or surpasses the quantity of paper that it takes to create a phone directory. That is useless information that is unsolicited. You should petition it to be banned completely. It will never happen, because there is too much money in it for the US Postal Service.
In summary, we produce ONE phone directory each year as opposed to a daily onslaught of useless direct mail. The phone directory is an infinitely useful tool to communities. It is a communication tool, just as a computer. The online yellow pages such as Yellowbook.com are another useful way to find local business information. However, the Internet Yellow Pages still do not provide the complete breadth of information of a printed directory. Until that day arrives, print is still king. It is still virtually impossible to find truly local business on Google, Yahoo, etc. Many of them do not have a web presence, nor do they need one. They need to be found in a phone directory. The next time you need a tree service from within a 10 mile radius of your home at 2 a.m. and your electric is out, you won't be using your computer to find the local tree service or your power company.
Phone books aren't spam, they are the best compilation of your local businesses that you will ever find in any form.
Hey no need to take your 20th century angst out on me
12/02/2008 01:42 PM
And there are national do not call lists and now there are companies that specialize in getting removed from junk mail catalogs and credit card offers.
I get a white pages directory and a yellow pages directory from the Real Yellow Pages, Embarq, Verizon and AT and T. If you read my above blog to the end you will see I state, "many people I am sure use their phone books" I also found this site which I am going to try. http://www.ypdnd.com/
I don't like the fact that the individual publishers get to call me. And I am not sure how this will prevent them from delivering to my house because they don't even look at the numbers or they would not be delivering to my front and back doors. And your statements about phone books produced versus regular books you may want to look into that. I will concede though that there are way more newspapers periodicals and catalogs produced than phone books.
I am not sure if you have used google and Yahoo local or even your own website. but it provides me with a far more local directory than your printed books. It even shows me how far a restaurant or plumbing service is from my home. And if you had to live by online rules there would not be an opt out list it would be an opt in list. You would only be able to send directories to those people who ask for it. And would be held liable for your subcontractors that distribute your books that if they distributed them to the wrong households even though they were under contract not to. Those households could then take them and you to court.
Well said. I am an online user, and look up most of my numbers online, but there are those times when I truly need a phone book, so I can see a list of all the local restaurants in the area, or all the local churches.
It is much easier to see the list in paper form, than on the internet.
I receive multiple phone books every year. Like you I prefer to use the internet. Any books I receive go straight into the recycling bin. A complete waste of time for me. I don't understand why phone book companies spend the time and money to deliver them to people who don't want them. Why deliver them at all? Offer them for free at locations around town. Anyone who wants one could pick one up and even recycle their old one at the same time. Thank you for writing this about this nuisance.
I have a phone book that is 5 years old that we never use. Since the internet, I get all my information from them, including all my shopping. But you have to realize some people don't have internet access. Call the companies that deliver the phone books and tell them that you want off their list. The books are now put up by several companies so you might have to call them all.
They do not feel they are spamming you, but doing you a service. People get paid for this job, though. They often hire economically disabled for this job. Another option is to take them to recycling center. But they're sort of like junk mail. You keep getting it all the time. I recycle that, too.