Tag Archives: Yellow pages

Town Prepares For 2020. Phone Book Distributors Race Backward To 1979.

It’s the holiday season. But alert — and peeved — “06880” Gil Ghitelman just found an unwelcome “gift” underneath his mailbox.

One shot from Imperial Avenue …

The Yellow Pages — or, in this case, Blue Pages — are baaaaaack.

“Any business that wastes its money foolishly advertising in this, whose time has long passed, doesn’t deserve my business,” Gil writes.

“And the town ought to fine the distributors.”

In fact, the town already addressed this issue. Two years ago — thanks to excellent work by resident Morgan Mermagen, RTM representatives Liz Milwe, Jeff Wieser and Matthew Mandell, and assistant town attorney Gail Kelly, all phone book distributors in Westport agreed to these conditions:

  • All plastic bags used during delivery will be made with 20% post-consumer recycled content. This will be noted on the bag.
  • A new opt-out notice — showing the website www.YellowPagesOptOut.com — will cover 30% of one side of the bag.
  • A letter to the town, announcing a pending distribution by any company, will be done 90 days prior to any event, and 30 days prior to a cut-off for being able to opt out of that (and future) distributions.
  • All books will continue to have a notice on the front cover about the opt-out, with the same URL.
  • Within 14 days after delivery, the distribution company will return through the route, picking up any unclaimed bags within view.
  • A report will be sent to the town each year, noting how many people have opted out.

I’m not sure whether the distributor of the current Yellow Blue Pages adhered to these regulations. Gil had already tossed the “gift” by the time I emailed them back to him.

(Click here for the full 2017 “06880” story on phone book distribution.)

… and the house next door. (Photos/Gil Ghitelman)

Yellow Pages, The Sequel: RTM Reps Help Westport Go Green

Yesterday, “06880” reported that Westporters can avoid the coming Yellow Book plague by opting out.

Today, there’s even better news on the driveway littering front.

RTM representatives Liz Milwe, Jeff Wieser and Matthew Mandell have worked for months to make opting out of phone book deliveries easier, more effective — and environmentally friendly.

Spurred by Westporter Morgan Mermagen’s 200-signature petition, the RTM members started work on a town ordinance. The Local Search Association — the national lobbying organization for companies like the Yellow Pages and Frontier — heard about the plan. They — and members of those businesses from around the country — came to Westport, to meet with the 3 RTM members.

But the talks reached an impasse.

So this spring, the RTM reps moved forward with their proposed ordinance.

The companies reached out again. Finally — with the help of assistant town attorney Gail Kelly, and following months of conference calls — a deal was struck.

There will be no ordinance. However, all phone book distributors in Westport have agreed to follow these parameters:

  • All plastic bags used during delivery will be made with 20% post-consumer recycled content. This will be noted on the bag.
  • A new opt-out notice — showing the website www.YellowPagesOptOut.com — will cover 30% of one side of the bag.
  • A letter to the town, announcing a pending distribution by any company, will be done 90 days prior to any event, and 30 days prior to a cut-off for being able to opt out of that (and future) distributions.
  • All books will continue to have a notice on the front cover about the opt-out, with the same URL.
  • Within 14 days after delivery, the distribution company will return through the route, picking up any unclaimed bags within view.
  • A report will be sent to the town each year, noting how many people have opted out.

“These are serious concessions made by companies trying to stay relevant in a changing time,” says Mandell. “Each side used all of its might to sway things, with First Amendment rights waved around more than once. In the end this is a fair solution.”

“The change in the bags is a success for the environment,” adds Milwe. “It will be a greater success if residents opt out and if they tell their friends to opt out. Let’s make it happen!”

The 3 RTM members will now work with the town and local groups to create a campaign to inform all residents about the opt-out.

For more information, contact Milwe (lizmilwe@gmail.com), Wieser (JWieser@hwhct.org) or Matthew Mandell (matthew@westportd1.com).

Bad News: Yellow Pages Will Be Tossed In Your Driveway Soon. Good News: You Can Opt Out!

The new edition of the Yellow Pages will be distributed hurled intrusively onto your driveway soon. The project — which wastes enormous amounts of fuel as drivers deliver a product that wastes enormous numbers of trees, and which no one uses these days anyway — begins around September 22.

If you’re one of the 100% of Westporters who believe the Yellow Pages — and if not them, their current distribution system — should go the way of the Flivver and the fax, you’re in luck.

According to the 1st selectman’s office, you can opt out of “future phone book deliveries” by visiting www.YellowPagesOptOut.com. If you opt out 60 days in advance of the delivery, you will not receive the current publication. (Today is July 27. I know, I know…)

Westport’s official town nuisance.

Supposedly, data submitted will never be used for marketing purposes, and will not be given to third parties.

You can also use those links to request directories.  As if.

If you have “concerns” about the Yellow Pages, email sbconcerns@teampdc.com. Provide your name, address, contact information and specific details about why you’re concerned.

Meanwhile, if you’ve got any strategies for stopping the even more intrusive — as in, every week — Minuteman, click “Comments” to share.

They’re Baaaack…

…and by that I mean those unwanted, unused and very unsightly “Yellow Pages” tossed indiscriminately on everyone’s property.

Yellow pages

As shown above, they often come in bunches — one for every phone? (Note: These aren’t even the “real” Yellow Pages. Just a cheesy copycat.)

An alert “06880” reader suggests the town file littering charges for every book thrown on the ground.

It’s worth considering. And once that’s done, our next target might be all those unwanted, unread and also very unsightly Connecticut Posts.

Forests Breathe Easier Today

An “06880” post last summer highlighted a perennial problem:  the “distribution” of phone books by dumping them at mailboxes.

There were 20 comments.  As you can imagine, Westporters do not love free (phone) books.

(Photo courtesy of Gizmodo)

Relief is at hand.  The Yellow Pages Association (!) has introduced a “Consumer Choice & Opt-Out Site.”  Ignore the extraneous and very defensive stuff (“directories make up the smallest portion of the waste stream when compared to other non-durable products”), and just decline delivery of yellow pages.

The white pages — no such luck.

The good news is:  With all the snow we’ve had, the phone books we never picked up will be buried till May.

The bad news:  When we finally try to throw them away, they’ll weigh 12 tons.

(To opt out of yellow pages delivery, click here.)