I love junk mail, truly I do. I read catalogues from beginning to end. I love the bright, shiny, happy, better me they promise if only I'd buy their goods. One of the first things I did when I moved into this house was remove the "No Junk Mail" sticker from the letter box.
I sign up for paper and email catalogues whenever I can. I love getting the mail. It's all a sham of course, and we know it, but it's so easy to buy into and a girl can dream. But the dream's promise is hollow.
This stuff is so pervasive I maintain a HUGE collection of it at work as a document of our community in the 20th and 21st Centuries.
So, in order to tackle my own consumerism, I'm cutting back on the advertising that comes into my home.
It is no trivial thing for me to be doing this. It cuts to so many aspects of my life that are important, like a fantasy self-image, love of a bargain, love of research (I need all the information all the time to make informed choices) and collection building, both at home and at work. Hell, this is cultural - brand knowledge is cultural knowledge in our community. Think about the brand names we use as nouns - Kleenex, Hoover, Esky, Tampax.
1. Registration on the Federal Government managed 'Do not Call register'. OK, so I never buy from cold-callers so it doesn't affect my consumerism, but it will, hopefully, make me less anxious of answering the telephone and able to better enjoy my time at home.
2. Request for a "No Advertising Material" sticker from the The Australian Catalogue Association and asked them to put me on their register of banned addresses.
3. Registration with the Australian Direct Marketing Authority "Do Not Call, Do Not Mail" list. My name will be ciruclated to list brokers who will take my name off their list.
4. As catalogues come in, I am requesting removal from mailing lists.
A bonus benefit will be a very small reduction in carbon emissions. No transport, no plastic wrappers, fewer catalogues. Of course it's only small if one person does it, but I've registered the parents for all of these as well - so that's 3 of us this week.
Image from here.