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Jul 14, 2010 WorldShifting commented on My Just-In-Time Contribution to Councilman Mike O'Brien's Phone Book Collection.
The phone book industry survives on profiting from waste. If advertisers were aware of how few people actually look at their ads, they'd probably save their hard-earned dollars on hiring someone to make them a decent looking website. Advertisers pay about $100 a month for tiny ads. And industry lobbyists weep and wring their hands that any restriction on phone book dunping will kill Mom and Pop's business. Thank God we still have altruistic passions running strong in the corporate sector.
Jun 25, 2010 WorldShifting commented on Dump Your Phone Books at City Hall!.

With an Opt-In program, it would be the job of the phone book companies to inform you of your options. They have no problem getting 4 pounds of paper to every doorstep in the city - they can manage to distribute doorhangers or send postcards bulk mail. Comcast does it to people all over the city on a weekly basis. The phone book companies have every financial incentive to get people to opt-in. It's their job, not ours, to figure out their accurate distribution routes.
Jun 25, 2010 WorldShifting commented on Seattle Might Get Aggressive About Phone Books.
Great idea! I'm putting out the word to all my contacts now to save their phone books, and once I get a nice little (or enormous) stack of books, they're off to City Council for their day of reckoning. Thanks for the heads up on this. I'm really glad we have a City Council that actually cares about the environment and has the guts to take action, especially on a no-brainer like this one.
Jun 24, 2010 WorldShifting commented on Seattle Might Get Aggressive About Phone Books.
What's the problem with Opt-Out? IT"S NOT MY FUCKING CHORE to spend the 10-15 minutes it takes to inform all three phone book distributors in my area that I no longer care to be dumped on. It's THEIR job to find out who wants their product. Let those who benefit from the books, i.e., those who actually use them, ASK for them. It's worth their time to ask to have something they want delivered to their front door for free. It's not my job to clean up after an out of control waste-for-profit industry.

I'd like to see some reputable stats on actual phone book usage in Seattle. The Yellow Pages Association (the trade organization for the $30-plus billion a year directory industry) claims that half of all adults in the U.S. reference a phone book once a week. What?! Where did they do their sampling? A phone booth in a Daytona Beach jail? Sampled out of the bank account of the industry trade organization that commissioned the studies? Where are all these adults with their handy, well-thumbed yellow pages directories? How come virtually none of us know these people? Surely they're not all holed up in a barn in Enumclaw somewhere referencing and cross-referencing their indispensible copies of Dex, Verizon and SuperYellowPages. If actual usage rates were known, advertisers would be pulling out in droves.

Oh, and BTW, for you phone book industry hacks who are being paid to monitor the Seattle press around this scary clean up ordinance, you see that the public overwhelmingly hates your garbage. Only to the minority who still use phone books are you creating anything of value. You're screwing the advertisers you claim to care passionately about because you're lying to them about the numbers of people you reach.

Opt-out is a joke. Take care of your own damn mess and quit dumping on our city. It's YOUR job to find out where your product is wanted, it's not the job of the majority to do your reconnaissance work for you.

Jun 15, 2010 WorldShifting commented on Time to Hang Up the Phone Book.
That's fine if the yellow pages are working for people. They can keep getting the phone books. The point is to stop delivering them where they aren't wanted. "You people!" What kind of planet do you want to live on? Global warming's a hoax, right?
Jun 15, 2010 WorldShifting commented on Time to Hang Up the Phone Book.
#15 poster is on some phone book company's payroll. Lame try on the waste spin:

"An opt-in approach would make it much harder for millions of local, small businesses to market themselves to the community and would hurt the publishers who employ thousands of people. I think that's called "waste".

Those small businesses pay a lot of money to advertise in the various yellow pages directories, and they aren't getting the exposure they're being told they're getting. That's the reason the industry doesn't want Opt-In. Opt-In would reflect the real numbers of who's still using the phone books. A lame Opt-Out that puts the responsibility on every single resident to get ahold of the phone directory companies themselves means that all the people who could care less about waste won't take the time to call or go online to opt-out. They'll just keep throwing the books in the garbage as they come. People who use the books will ask for them, because they have value to them. If people don't care enough to make a one-time request to keep getting a product delivered to their front door for the rest of their lives, they aren't using that product.

I wonder if poster #15 would also argue that it is wasteful to cut back on jobs producing DDT and asbestos? It is wasteful to cut jobs that make waste. Good point.
Jun 15, 2010 WorldShifting joined My Stranger Face
Jun 15, 2010 WorldShifting commented on Time to Hang Up the Phone Book.
The phone directory industry is going to try to play the "You're hurting Mom and Pop businesses!" card when facing any restrictions on their current carpet-bombing delivery practices. Pure crap. Mom and Pop are paying the directory companies their hard-earned dollars for advertising they aren't getting. If the most current edition of the yellow pages goes directly into the recycling or garbage, what did Mom and Pop get? The bill for paper production, printing, and delivery.

The bottom line is that the $31 billion phone directory industry is in large part a waste-for-profit machine. They fear Opt-In because they know that a large percentage of households don't want their product. And as for the industry-generated stat of 75% of adults using a phone book each year?! Where was this study conducted? A nursing home in Pheonix? NO WAY do 75% of Seattleites still use this antiquated means of getting information.