The Water Cooler – Junk Mail from the U.S.P.S.

February 22, 2013 12:00 pm · 29 comments

The “Water Cooler” is a feature on where we ask you a question or provide a topic, and you talk about it!

The “Water Cooler” will be up Monday-Friday in the noon hour.

Give us a percentage. About how much of your mail from the U.S. Postal Service is junk mail? Ads, coupons, etc.?

Talk about it….

Domestic CEO February 22, 2013 at 12:21 PM

I would say 60% is garbaaaage!

Miss Diagnosis February 22, 2013 at 12:27 PM

This sounds like a Seinfeld episode. Kramer is tired of Pottery Barn catalogs. Lesson learned: dont mess with the USPS

Incognito February 22, 2013 at 12:27 PM

I’m guessing it’s 50/50, until the holidays arrive and then it escalates to probably 70 percent junk.

I’ve started calling Tuesday “junk mail day” since there usually isn’t anything important, just junk on that day.

JunkMailHater February 22, 2013 at 12:42 PM

Im pretty lucky because I dont get hardly any anymore. Several years ago I went and signed up on that website where you could stop junk mail and it worked.

Also, I dont know if this is true or not but someone said that when a company sends out junk mail they dont pay for the postage unless its sent back. The advice I got was to to open the junk mail and return their mail in the prepaid envelope. I had several places stop mailing me after that. Which was awesome

Parsnip February 22, 2013 at 12:45 PM

Practically everything. I’m online with correspondence, bills, etc. I write one check a month to a gardener.

Any other “paper mail” I take to USPS. So I get to pay Allied Waste to recycle trash from people and companies I’m not interested in.

dilligafman February 22, 2013 at 12:48 PM

easily 50%

waverunner February 22, 2013 at 12:53 PM

Maybe 1% because I “opted out” years ago and it has worked.

Marty McFly February 22, 2013 at 12:59 PM

has to be at least 90%

Steve February 22, 2013 at 1:01 PM

I’d say a solid 75% of our daily mail goes right into the recycle bin.

old concord February 22, 2013 at 1:13 PM

We get about 20% junk. I don’t know if my wife has been to the site your talking about. I know I haven’t. I heard the more junk I get the more our rates stay low. I just throw most away but do fine some usefull.=)

Dragon February 22, 2013 at 1:39 PM

About 50%. I’ve tried opting out of the weekly grocery store ads, but I still get everything. Very annoying.

Anon777 February 22, 2013 at 1:52 PM

At least 80% is garbage and 10% of delivered mail is usually not mine, it’s for another house on my street and sometimes somewhere across town. It’s really annoying that USPS will walk up to my door to deliver junk, but if I happen to have no delivery that day, they will not walk up to take my outgoing mail.

Rebel February 22, 2013 at 1:53 PM

A solid 75% is junk mail. what a waste of paper!

Kirkwood February 22, 2013 at 1:56 PM

old concord is right – Advertising pays the bills at USPS not private mail. Without junque mail there would be no mail delivery at all.

95% February 22, 2013 at 2:26 PM

BUT…I’m guessing it is the junk mail $ that supports the post office.

I hate junk mail, but if it keeps the USPS running, and prevents me from having to pay more, I guess it’s better to allow it.

Chuckie the Troll February 22, 2013 at 2:57 PM

Our mail is 90% junk, and 10% important. The trouble comes in when your important item gets stuffed into the junk. So I have to go through the junk just to make sure I don’t throw out anything important. But ya know…the junk mail helps the Postal Service pay the bills.

Mr. John February 22, 2013 at 3:05 PM

66% in terms of # of items, 85% in terms of bulk.

Clayton Chick February 22, 2013 at 3:13 PM

Just checked my box and it was 100% junk mail!

Triple Canopy February 22, 2013 at 3:16 PM

Junk mail keeps people employed… the lumberjack, paper mill worker, the trucker, the graphic artist, the ink maker, the lay-up/copy editor, and the mail carrier, the sanitation worker.

On second thought… alot of those are union workers ….. I would support putting them out of work for the sake of saving paper and the environment. Just think of the children!!!

Shulla February 22, 2013 at 3:27 PM

75-80%. Deforestation v.s. higher rates….pick your poison.

Creating jobs by making trash! February 22, 2013 at 4:46 PM

What a great idea!
The tax payers are paying for all that useless junk mail to be sorted and delivered, then it goes right into the recycling bin. Maybe I should put my recycling bin out by my mailbox so the postal worker can just throw it in. What a waste of tax payer dollars! It’s basically creating “jobs” by making trash!
90 % of my mail is junk mail. I use the Internet to pay my bills. Email to write my letters.

nippy February 22, 2013 at 5:02 PM


Cowellian February 22, 2013 at 5:18 PM

About half, but it goes straight to the trash. It also subsidizes regular mail.

Triple Canopy February 22, 2013 at 5:32 PM

@21… Yes. It illustrates how most folks don’t think about the entire process of who and what is involved. Most will only focus on the end result while more “systems” thinkers take a more comprehensive view of the situation.

Let’s use gun control as an example. The left-wing gun control lobby thinks that restricting guns will result in less gun violence. That’s the end result which, in theory, appears to make sense. However, Chicago has very restrictive gun control measures yet they had over 500 gun-related deaths in 2012.

From a systems analysis, what is the law based on? A restriction on the second amendment. Does the end result in justifying the means? No, as Chicago has illustrated it is an utter failure. The more fundamental problem to gun-related violence is the degradation of societal and cultural norms and morals.


Junk in the Trunk February 22, 2013 at 6:01 PM

I shred everything so it irritates the crud out of me when they “pre-print” my name on the innards of the junk mail. I think I get at least 40% in junk mail.

ConcordMike February 22, 2013 at 6:08 PM

30 to 40%. But a percentage is not an accurate analytical figure, because each of us get different amounts of mail. My wife gets a lot of donation requests which increases our delivery. Ours is mostly the grocery ads, realtors, Astound, Cummerford Air Conditioning… and some odds and ends.
My brother-in-law retired from USPS and he said without the junk mail, the postal service wouldn’t survive.

CatWoman February 22, 2013 at 6:30 PM

TC is right on this…..through and through

Iggey February 22, 2013 at 8:22 PM

Yes! Junk mail does create revenue for the P.O. And I try to do my part, all those postage paid if mailed in the U.S. envelopes I put back in the mail, generally with nothing in the envelope.
Oh sometimes I put scrap paper it the envelope, just to keep the P.O afloat.

moo February 25, 2013 at 1:10 PM

@iggey thanks ! its people like you thatare the reason my mom and dad have jobs 🙂

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