Halleluiah! The time has finally come! Yesterday, the Yellow Pages, the
booster, doorstop, step ladder phone directory that a whole of people don’t or rarely use anymore, launched a new, user-friendly website, Yellowpagesoptout.com, that lets users to opt-out of Yellow Pages delivery. Or, as Gizmodo puts it: “At last, you can send the Yellow Pages to Hell.”
The launch of the website, developed by the Yellow Pages Association and the Association of Directory Publishers, has come at a time when frustration with unwanted phone book delivery is at an all-time high — with Seattle along with Maryland and Virginia, becoming hotbeds of anti-phone book activity. This is all coming about 10 years too late, but hey, I’ll take it.
I’ve taken a look around the website, which apparently existed before in a clunkier form, and it looks easy enough to complete the process. Just enter your ZIP code and then take a couple of minutes to fill out a registration form. Gizmodo recommends creating a special e-mail address (the one they recommend is brilliant but not fit for MNN eyes) or using a temporary e-mail account to avoid potential spam. When I entered my own ZIP code, I was shocked to learn that I'm eligible to receive not two, not five, but 10 directories. I suppose I should learn Spanish and make a friend on Long Island before it's too late.
In addition to opting-out, the website offers a Yellow Pages Association Sustainability Report, a Yellow Pages Recycling Guide, and a Did You Know? section that lists a bunch of eco-information (the directory is made from recycled paper and uses nontoxic inks, etc.) while downplaying the fact that phone books have long been a landfill-clogging nuisance that seven out of 10 adults never or rarely use.
So will the Yellow Pages Association’s much needed but unnecessarily self-congratulatory (it's also a touch defensive) opt-out website actually make the barrage of unwanted phone books showing up on your doorstep stop? That has yet to be seen. MNN Lifestyle blogger/anti-phone book crusader Siel has put up quite the fight halting phone book delivery at her home in the past, remarking that “… I went through the trouble of calling every phone directory maker or filling out all the web forms to opt out, I continued to get the directories dropped off — which in the end demoralized me from continuing this crusade.”
Have your past experiences at attempting to opt-out of phone book delivery been “cumbersome, time-consuming, and not always effective” like Siel’s have? Do you have faith that the new Yellow Pages opt-out website will actually work? Or do you think that phone books will mysteriously somehow find their way to your doorstep like a lost puppy?
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