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Why Do I Get So Much Junk Mail?

Junk mail can pile up in a post office box.
Catalogs are colorful but can stack up.
Some direct marketing campaigns design their mailings to look official or important.
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  • Written By: Malcolm Tatum
  • Edited By: Bronwyn Harris
  • Last Modified Date: 24 October 2014
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Just about everyone deals with junk mail from time to time. The junk mail received can vary from unsolicited advertising from local stores to product and service offers from companies that you have never heard of before. While many will wonder how they came to be included on these mailing lists used by so many companies, the fact is that it is very difficult to not end up receiving junk mail on a regular basis. Here are some of the most common ways that people are added to mailing lists and thus receive junk mail.

In most cases, the consumer has to do nothing more than have a mailing address that is listed in the local telephone book. Telephone directories are regularly scanned and used to compile mailing lists, especially for use by local merchants. That is why you may receive circulars from local grocers as well as local charities soliciting donations. One way to cut down on junk mail generated from this source is to have your service provider remove your listing in the local phone book.

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In other instances, seemingly innocuous actions can result in the generation of junk mail to your door or post office box. For example, if you choose to enter a contest by mail, there is a good chance your information will be added to one or more mailing lists. Ordering a product by mail can also result in opening the door to a world of junk mail items coming your way. Even sending in a warranty card or setting up a subscription to a magazine is very likely to pave the way for more junk mail to come to your door.

To a degree, junk mail is probably one of the least invasive direct marketing approaches today. Many people are much more irritated by the modern day receipt of unwanted electronic junk mail, commonly known as spam. While junk mail received through the post office can easily be discarded unopened in the trash, a full inbox in an email program often takes more time to clear.

Still, there are ways to remove your name and address from mailing lists. Many direct marketing associations will honor a request to be removed from a mailing list. In addition, many vendors will also comply if you contact them directly and ask to be removed from future mailings.

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Discuss this Article

anon40752
Post 3

It seems when I unsubscribe to a web site it then allows a lot of other web sites to send spam.

mdt
Post 2

I actually stopped using one instant messaging product because it did not provide me with the ability to block those unwanted solicitations. Anyone who is having this problem, check out an alternate instant messaging product, since several do allow you to block this sort of thing.

tdwb7476
Post 1

I have even started receiving spam through instant messenger! My IM provider however allows me to mark incoming IMs as spam so they at least provide an immediate remedy...still, since anyone can sign up for a account it's a pretty easy way for spammers to create a nuisance!

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