Every day people search for information to opt out of Market Value Place

Opt out of Market Value Place by e-mailing your request to Jenny Jurdana at the Enterprise Record –  jjurdana@chicoer.com 

Every now and then I notice a bunch of searches for “opt-out” information for  “Market Value Place”. I get these searches almost daily, but every now and then there’s  a jump in the action.  My husband theorizes this happens whenever a bunch of new addresses are added to the list, or people who have just moved here start getting it.

MVP is a big wad of newsprint ads published by the Chico Enterprise Record, made up to look like a newspaper, and stuffed into your mailbox every Wednesday. They guarantee their advertisers “total market saturation” by sending MVP to every address in town that does not subscribe to the Enterprise Record.  That way, their advertisers get, well, just about everybody in town.

People have complained to me that this wad of crap takes up their whole mailbox, at the expense of their real mail. They hate it for the same reasons I do – for one thing, there’s never any businesses in there I would use. For another, it’s a disgusting waste of dead trees. And, here’s the thing –  it’s illegal to send this stuff out without including any address or contact information for opting off the mailing list.  

I say they get “just about everybody in town” – they don’t get me anymore, that’s for sure. Years back I decided I’d had enough junk mail. First, I just looked for a “postage paid” return envelope, and if there was one, I’d tear any forms in half, scrawl “don’t send me this stuff anymore”,  stuff it into the postage paid envelope and return it. That worked for a while, but then they stopped including postage paid envelopes, and referred the recipient to a website or phone number. 

There were a few of these ad-rags circulating at that time – some of them just over-sized envelopes stuffed with “coupons”. They never had a return address, but some had a phone number to call if you wanted to advertise with them. I called a couple of these people – the first guy, located in Chico,  apologized and took me off his list! Just like that! But the next guy, from Paradise, called me nasty names and hung up. So,  I started calling the businesses in his little rag – that got me a letter from a Sacramento lawyer!  I called the lawyer and told them to stuff it in their mailbox – I wasn’t doing anything illegal and they knew it. They were just trying to squeeze me. Every business I contacted apologized and thanked me for telling them how I felt about their advertising. I was nice – I told them junk ads were impressing me the wrong way, and they appreciated my “candor.” They were obviously calling this guy, and he got really pissed and tried to threaten me off. I never heard from his Sacramento suits again. 

It wasn’t just me – people loved that episode of Seinfeld where Kramer decommissioned his mailbox so the post office couldn’t stuff junk in it. I’ve been contacted by really angry people, people who were frustrated enough to do stupid stuff. It was turning into a movement, and it finally came to a head. When I finally got the Chico postmaster into the conversation, he told me there was a law that said they had to include “opt out” information, and if they didn’t, I should turn it over to him. And whattya know, I started finding the “opt out” info on junk I received, and I started sending letters to various junk mailers, and slowly but surely, I got my mailbox back.

But MVP kept on coming. No opt out info, there wasn’t even any obvious publishing information. One day I noticed an ad for the Enterprise Record, and I put two and two together. I called the circulation department one morning, and the woman on the phone admitted they printed the thing. I told her I wanted off the list – she laughed out loud and hung up on me. When I called back she hung up again.

I finally decided to go to ER editor David Little about it at some point, but he was not cooperative. I started asking the city of Chico Sustainability Task Force, led then by council woman Ann Schwab, then mayor, but they were also uncooperative. One member, BT Chapman, now on the Airport Commission, warned the group they didn’t want to offend the newspaper! 

So, I started telling people to e-mail ER editor David Little, mayor Ann Schwab, and others. Little finally got my name taken off the mailing list and gave me Jurdana’s e-mail address to hand around – but he wouldn’t publish the information in the MVP.

Folks, that’s the law. 

David Little breaks the law every Wednesday. He shows the rest of us how much respect he has for the common citizen and their puny little rules. 

About a year ago I got a testy e-mail from Little, asking me to stop telling people to e-mail him. He claimed he didn’t have anything to do with the MVP, why were people picking on him. He is an idiot. I told him, I’ve put Jurdana’s e-mail in my newer blogs.  People are reading old blogs, there’s nothing I can do about that, I’m not taking down my old blogs. I used to have a blog with his newspaper, but I used the ‘F’ word and he took my blog away. Well, I can do what I want on my word press blog Dave, and you can stuff it in your mailbox!

 

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2 thoughts on “Every day people search for information to opt out of Market Value Place

  1. GEEZ! Calm down, Juanita… LOL. I hate the junk mail that wants yo to donate to charity, They always have moms name on the envelope and she would take it to her bedroom. One day I went to the mail in the afternoon and saw a letter in it… After I got the mail. MOM had put money it for a charity and snuck it to the mailbox. Then there are the telamarketers. I filled out no-call information for our names and numbers and sent them to the state, Then when they call, I say we are on the no-call list. They tell me it doesn’t apply to non-profit organizations… The they keep talking about the charity. Why in the heck if I tell them we are on a no-call list would they think I want to hear what they have to say? I think it is a shame that these charities pray on older people with a limited income. They know that older people are softer and more compassionate I suppose. They think these organizations really red their money and don’t realize how much of their money goes for salaries and mailings instead of helping.

    Ond day I was filling our information about a job online and clicked on the next button. I was asked to fill out something about wanting to go to school. I closed the website. YES, I already put down my phone number… Even though I x’d out, within 3 minuted the phone rang from someone who got the number from the website. Not only them, but for two weeks I continued to get calls from several telamarketers about student loans and online courses. GEEZ!!!

    I loved your post! I am normally a calm person, but you stirred me up.

    • Thanks, you so proved my point – people do get upset about junk mail. And should get mad, it’s a ridiculous practice – let’s just bring back Potlatch!

      Your mom is not alone – you know how they target the elderly. With my Grandma it was George Bush Sr and the Republican Party. Every time she’d send in a donation it would trigger a new mailer. They started coming a few times a month, she was putting $5 checks in the envelopes and sending them along without realizing how often. My mom found out when she started helping Gram with her check book – “Mom, what are all these $5 checks for George Bush?” My grandma wasn’t “senile” but her eyesight was slipping and she was having trouble figuring her checkbook. She was really embarrassed, then mad. She wrote a nasty letter to the President, put a shine on his pants, I’ll tell you what.

      Market Value Place (and, excuse me, what a DUMB NAME!) makes people so mad because it’s a big, full size sheet newspaper, about three pages, with all these smaller ads and coupons wrapped up in it, a wad that is stuffed into mailboxes once a week, regardless of bills and other important mail. The post office is at fault – this is how they pay their bills. They’ve so overextended themselves on their pensions – the post office has a policy that all pensions must be pre-funded, which might sound like good sound fiscal policy, until you find out, their pensions are 70 percent of their highest year’s pay, and they pay nothing, we pay the whole thing. This is where all the money goes – to management salaries, benefits and outrageous pensions. They don’t have any money to keep post offices open (they just closed the post office in the next town over, Redding, over 80,000 people), they don’t have money to pay lower level salaries because upper level management takes all the money (the USPMG makes some crazy salary, over a million dollars in total compensation). This is why our mail service is terrible. The post office, after so many years of being the only federal agency that paid for itself, is in the red to the tune of hundreds of millions of dollars. They get bailed out by the legislature almost every year.

      so they turn to garbage mail, tons of it every year. This stuff costs pennies to send, but we pay 50 cents every time we want to mail a bill or send a birthday card to Aunt Tilly.

      Well, thanks for letting me get that out! Now I’ll try to think about something nice. I just looked out the kitchen window and there’s two little artichokes poking up out of my artichoke patch. Tonight I will steam them with some yams and put one of my father-in-law’s steaks on the grill. It’s always nice to have something to look forward to. Can’t stay pissed off all day, thank goodness!

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