Association for Postal Commerce
"Representing those who use or support the use of mail for Business Communication and Commerce"
"You will be able to enjoy only those postal rights you believe are worth defending."
TAKING ON THE LIES HEAD ON.
Those who would seek to undermine the economic viability of your business try to convince legislators and the general public that their side of story is gospel. They do this by using the same general media that is used to spread the news of what's going in our world.
Sometimes these attacks on mail take the guise of a news story published in your local newspaper or broadcast on your local TV station's news broadcast. In many instances, those who write and prepare these pieces for publication know about the topic only to the extent that the arguments and "evidence" have been presented to them. In other words, when our industry chooses to do nothing to form a good public perception of our business practices, we allow others to spread the kind of untruths that can damage our businesses not only within the public eye but materially.
Here, though, is the kind of letter that can be used to respond to any article or broadcast that seeks to characterize advertising mail as "junk mail" or seeks to win support for "do-not-mail" restrictions or the urging of consumers to "opt out."
My business and job depends on a health Postal Service and the mail. Recently your company did a story that disparaged the mail and my business by referring to the mail as "junk" and suggesting that laws, or consumer choices, to restrict mail or support do-not-mail would be beneficial.
I object to this attack on my business and my job. Let me share some facts with you:
The term "junk mail" was created more than 50 years. It was first used and promoted by newspapers who did not want the Postal Service to deliver mail on the basis of street address. It competed with the monopoly newspapers had, back then, on the household delivery of advertising.
You suggest mail is unwanted or intrudes on privacy. Unlike all other forms of advertising, consumers can look at mail at their convenience. According to the United States Postal Service, consumers report they read 78% of the ad mail they receive.
You suggest mail hurts forests or the environment. Virtually all paper today comes from tree farms and recycled materials.
You suggest mail volumes are filling landfills or causing an environmental problem. This is unfounded. According to the EPA, 38.7% of all mail was recovered in 2006. This figure is rising as local governments expand recycling programs. The percentage of ad mail as a portion of the municipal solid waste stream is minuscule. Less than 5/10,000%.
You suggest Americans get too much mail. Mail volume supports the Postal Service just as ad revenue keeps you in business. Are you taking efforts to curb your media use, your solicitation of advertising dollars, and the success of your business? The United States Postal Service and our business depend on mail volume. We believe in free speech. Do you?
When you attack the mail and the businesses that use it, you are attacking a competitive media business that survives on the postage dollars spent by users. Without mail volume the Postal Service would have to raise rates for all users and consumers, would be forced to cut service and close local Post Offices.
Without the mail, my business and my customers would be out of business.
Please practice respectful journalism and reporting. Take the term "junk" out of your reporting when you are talking about my business and the United States Postal Service.
Very truly yours,
Never Let An Untruth About Your Mail Go Unanswered!!