CHOICE membership

Stop junk mail - name and shame


#1

Our ‘no junk mail’ sign still fails to deter real estate agents! Luton is the latest apparently illiterate offender, putting junk in our letter box yesterday - but it’s an almost daily deluge of desperate detritus from desperate domicile dealers.

Maybe a naming and shaming campaign might help to deter these junksters; phone calls and invoices have so far been ineffective.


Hounded by nuisance callers?
#2

I like this idea! I thought we could start here in the Community, and while ignoring ‘no junk mail’ or ‘no advertising’ signs is not illegal, we can report the incidences to the Australasian Catalogue Association and perhaps collectively we can prompt some change in practices for offenders.


#3

We once had an unaddressed/unsolicited leaflet from our local MP dropped in our No Junk Mail letterbox which had a report about how his constituents were sick of getting junk mail. We still get his newsletter every month and we really don’t want it. It’s still junk mail as far as I’m concerned. Real estate sales people don’t take notice of the sign either. We started getting junk mail in our PO Box as well until we told the Post Office staff to stop it.


#4

Many moons ago, before I was employed at CHOICE, I had a colleague who ran her own monthly junk mail lottery.

She would collect all of her junk mail, and at the end of each month, she would select one of the senders at random, put the entire month’s worth of junk into a large envelope, and send it without stamps to the lucky recipient.

In those days, without a return address, the post office would simply charge the correct postage to the addressee. Not only did they get a package of junk, they had to pay for the privilege.


#5

love it! What a great revenge your former colleague came up with.


#6

Wouldn’t it still work today?

I’ve ‘heard tell’ a recipient can’t resist finding out what is in that brown paper wrapped parcel - especially when it is quite heavy - about the weight of a house brick, which will fit nicely through the flap of a post box … :wink:


#7

Oh yes, it still works. Where I live, Dominos Pizza is by far the worst offender. I did much the same thing as your friend a while back, filling a shoebox with folded newspaper and mailing it, at his cost, to their Marketing Manager in Sydney. I enclosed a stiff letter saying that I din’t appreciate getting his junk mail, and telling him that next time I’d enclose a brick in the parcel. (Haven’t done that yet, but I think I’m about to…)


#8

Fortunately the supermarkets no longer deliver their junk mail catalogues this far out of town, but I often see masses of them chucked off bridges, in drains etc when out on bike rides, so many others who the supermarkets expect should be receiving them, may do so only occasionally, or maybe never.
Now the most annoying ones are the 2 each month - from Barnaby and his state NP colleague. We have a special location for them at the letterbox (an old bar fridge near the front gate), where they accumulate for snails to eat.


#9

We have a no junk mail on our letterbox but when your junk mail is rolled up and tossed from the car to your front lawn what can you do. If I get junk mail I use it to wrap scraps up for my rubbish bin.


#10

I have had junk mail issues in Brisbane and after a lot of battles, I get no more.
First, I found out who the distributors of the mail were, and reported each delivery (I do have a sign on my letterbox). The distributors do warn the people who deliver.
By law in Qld, all junk mail must be put into a receptacle, so if you find mail on the street or dumped in piles, you can report that to the distributors also. People who drive along throwing junk mail onto properties can be reported too.
If you still have problems, you can contact the relevant Govt department and lay a complaint. The distibutors in Brisbane told me the delivery people can lose their job if the complaint is upheld.
If you are determined enough, you can get it stopped.


#11

Real estate agencies say that the ‘No junk mail’ posters do not apply to them as they are delivering a service. I put the junk mail aside and when i have sufficient I take junk to one of the realestate agents that has been offering its ‘service’, open the door and fling the junk into the office and onto the floor. A couple of times the people have protested but I just say that I am providing the same service as they provide to me.


#12

I’ve had the same problem here in Canberra with Real Estate Agents who are sure that they are so special that they don’t need to comply with the No Junk Mail sign. I post a message on Facebook, tagging them, and explaining what I think of such ignorant behaviour and referring to the regulations that apply. I still have the occasional junk from supermarkets or RE agents, but not many any more.


#13

We have that ‘door knocker’ sign that is legally enforceable. Seems odd we can’t have the same for junk mail. ‘No unsolicited flyers’? ‘No unsolicited vouchers’? ‘No religious solicitations’?


#14

Our local real estate get past this by posting the junk in a stamped envelope addressed to 'The Resident…then our address.

A pest as one has to open the envelope to check it is not a notice about something important from someone else.

This is an example received yesterday…


#15

‘Name and Shame’ - and other revenge schemes - are all very well but maybe what we really need is the postal equivalent of the “Do Not Call” Register. No doubt political parties would still vote themselves an exemption but it would be an improvement.


#16

CHOICE staff, what would be the best way to start a campaign to make it illegal to ignore “no junk mail” signs?

I could see a system in which people could make a complaint if they received junk mail in disregard of the sign on their letterbox. The responsible company could receive a warning at first, and then be issued with fairly stiff fines if complaints continued.

I love the idea of sending back items at the advertiser’s expense, but I can’t see Australia Post agreeing to this. They actually distribute junk mail now and have deals with advertisers.


#17

@kushami, we’ve heard some consumers have had success starting their own campaigns using sites like change.org. We’re also listening to consumer concerns on issues like this one.


#18

I have a no junk mail…including advertising, catalogues etc. I am getting huge rolls of them stuffing my letterbox full. I complained to the Australasian Catalogue Association…STILL getting them. I complained to Salmat, who distributes them, they dont care, they try to put me through to distribution, then come back and say “no answer, they must have left”. It is more than just inconvenience because when I am away (in hospital) the postman cant get any mail in and overfull letterbox anounces to all that no one home. Any suggestions choice?


#19

My suggestion of a postal equivalent of the “Do Not Call” Register goes further than merely having a sign on your letterbox.

Like the DNC Register, you would actually register your postal address (using a web site) not to receive junk - and reputable companies would use that Register to filter their list of targets. So your address would be completely excluded at the outset of any advertising campaign.

The people who do the actual walking would hate it though. More distance to cover in order to earn the same number of dollars.


#20

If in Qld it is illegal to place Advertising Material in a box or at premises where a “No Junk Mail” sign is in place. This is covered in the “The Waste Reduction and Recycling Act 2011”.

The relevant section of the Act"
Part 2 Material that may become waste

105 What is advertising material

    (1)

        Advertising material means any of the following, if it includes any form of advertising for a commercial purpose—

        (a)a circular, a flyer, promotional matter, information or a letter;

        (b)a newspaper, magazine or other publication distributed without charge to intended readers.

    (2)In this section—

        flyer means a single sheet of printed material circulated to announce an event, promote a cause or advertise a product.

106 What is unsolicited advertising material for premises

    (1)Advertising material is unsolicited advertising material for premises if it is not addressed by name to an owner or occupier of the premises or to a person who is otherwise lawfully at the premises from time to time.

    Examples of unsolicited advertising material—

        advertising material addressed only as ‘To the householder’ or ‘To the occupier’

    (2)However, the following are not unsolicited advertising material for premises—

        (a)a newspaper delivered to the premises, unless the owner or occupier of the premises has advised the publisher or distributor of the newspaper that the owner or occupier does not wish to receive the newspaper;

        (b)material folded or inserted into a newspaper delivered to the premises if under this subsection the newspaper is not unsolicited advertising material for the premises.

107 Unlawful delivery provision

    (1)A person must not deliver to premises any unsolicited advertising material for the premises if—

        (a)on an exterior receptacle or other place for receiving mail for the premises, or on a boundary fence or gate adjoining the footpath or other public access point for the premises, there is a legible sign or marking; and

        (b)the sign or marking states ‘No Advertising Material’, ‘No Junk Mail’, ‘Australia Post Mail Only’ or words to similar effect or otherwise contains any words in English indicating, expressly or by implication, that unsolicited advertising material for the premises is not to be delivered to the premises; and

        (c)the sign or marking is clearly visible to a person delivering the advertising material to the premises.

    (2)This section does not apply to the giving of unsolicited advertising material for premises personally to a person at the premises.

    (3)To remove any doubt, it is declared that this section does not apply to the delivery to premises of a newspaper unless, having regard to section 106(2), the newspaper is unsolicited advertising material for the premises.

108 Secure delivery provision

    (1)A person who delivers to premises any unsolicited advertising material for the premises must ensure that the material is placed securely—

        (a)in a receptacle, slot or other place used for the delivery of mail to the premises; or

        (b)in a receptacle or slot that is used for the delivery of newspapers to the premise; or

        (c)under a door of the premises.

    (2)To remove any doubt, it is declared that this section does not apply to the delivery to premises of a newspaper unless, having regard to section 106(2), the newspaper is unsolicited advertising material for the premises.

109 Placing document on or in motor vehicle or on building or other fixed structure

    (1)A person must not place any document in or on a motor vehicle without the express consent of a person who is a registered operator, owner or driver of the vehicle.

    (2)A person must not attach any document to any building or other fixed structure without the express consent of the owner or occupier of the building or structure, or of a person acting for the owner or occupier.

    (3)For subsections (1) and (2), it does not matter whether or not the document is advertising material.

    (4)A person does not contravene subsection (1) or (2) if the person places a document in or on a motor vehicle, or attaches a document to a building or other fixed structure—

        (a)in the lawful performance of a function under an Act; or

        (b)if the action is reasonable in the circumstances.

        Example of reasonable actions—

                •leaving a note on a motor vehicle providing contact details after causing accidental damage to the motor vehicle

                •leaving a note on a motor vehicle to indicate that the place where the motor vehicle is parked is reserved for other purposes

    (5)In this section—

        document means any paper or other material on which there is writing or any drawing, figure, symbol or other expression.

110 Advice to chief executive about placing or attaching documents

    (1)This section applies if the chief executive believes on reasonable grounds that documents have been distributed by being placed in or on motor vehicles, or attached to buildings or other fixed structures, in contravention of section 109.

    (2)The chief executive may give a notice under this section to a person who is an adult if the chief executive reasonably believes the person—

        (a)authorised or arranged for the distribution of the documents; or

        (b)authorised or arranged for printing of the documents; or

        (c)placed or attached any of the documents.

    (3)A notice under subsection (2)(a) or (b) may require the person to advise the chief executive of the name and contact details of any person who placed or attached 1 or more of the documents.

    (4)A notice under subsection (2)(b) or (c) may require the person to advise the chief executive of the name and contact details of the person who authorised or arranged for distribution of the documents.

    (5)A person who is given a notice under this section must comply with the notice within 7 days after receiving the notice unless the person has a reasonable excuse.

    Maximum penalty—40 penalty units.

111 Advice to chief executive about delivering or distributing advertising material

    (1)This section applies if the chief executive believes on reasonable grounds that advertising material has been distributed in an area by being delivered to premises in contravention of the unlawful delivery provision or the secure delivery provision.

    (2)The chief executive may give a notice under this section to a person who is an adult if the chief executive reasonably believes the person—

        (a)authorised or arranged for the distribution of the advertising material; or

        (b)authorised or arranged for the printing of the advertising material; or

        (c)delivered any of the advertising material.

    (3)A notice under subsection (2)(a) or (b) may require the person to advise the chief executive of the name and contact details of any person who delivered any of the advertising material.

    (4)A notice under subsection (2)(b) or (c) may require the person to advise the chief executive of the name and contact details of the person who authorised or arranged for distribution of the advertising material.

    (5)A person who is given a notice under this section must comply with the notice within 7 days after receiving the notice unless the person has a reasonable excuse.

    Maximum penalty—40 penalty units.

112 Avoiding accumulations of waste

    (1)This section applies if a person (the responsible entity) authorises, or arranges for, the distribution of advertising material to premises in an area.

    (2)The responsible entity must take reasonable steps to ensure that the advertising material does not, having regard to the way in which it is delivered to premises, become waste.

    Maximum penalty—100 penalty units.

    Example of reasonable steps for subsection (2)—

        The advertising material is delivered in a way that is consistent with the Distribution Standards Board’s code of practice for the delivery of advertising material.

    (3)If, in the delivery of any of the advertising material to any premises, a person contravenes the unlawful delivery provision or the secure delivery provision, the responsible entity must, if directed by the chief executive to do so, collect the material from the premises within the period directed by the chief executive.

    Maximum penalty—100 penalty units.

    (4)This section does not apply to a newspaper unless, having regard to section 106(2), the newspaper is unsolicited advertising material for premises.

"

A penalty unit is $126.15 at the current time so 40 penalty units is $5,046.