I Opted Out Of AT&T’s Yellow Pages And Still Got Hassled

Sometime in the past twelve months, I found the opt-out site to tell AT&T that I don’t want to receive their yellow pages phonebook. I immediately filled in my information, feeling rather good about myself, primarily for ridding myself of one more piece of trash that gets left on my doorstep, but also feeling a bit more green, as I was theoretically saving trees by not getting a huge stack of dead ones delivered. The opt-out website makes a big deal out of how much better and earth-friendly the YP.com apps are, and all that jazz.

You can imagine my surprise last week when I received a phone call ON MY CELLPHONE. It was AT&T letting me know that they had recently delivered phonebooks to my area, and wanting to confirm that I indeed, had NOT received one. First off, if you call my personal cellphone and it’s not just to say hi or tell me that something is ready for me to pick up, you’ve hassled me, and you’re now on my bad list. Especially if you’re a business. So, while a bit perturbed that they had actually called me, I was partially impressed that they wanted to make absolute certain they had honored my original request.

This was until I came home that afternoon to find the door hanger below on my doorknob:

AT&T Door Hanger

There are several things that make this a huge fail in my book:

1. I specifically went out of my way to request that AT&T not leave dead trees on my doorstep. That also includes leaving dead trees on my doorknob to confirm that there were no dead trees left on my doorstep. Yes, I realize that a door hanger is significantly less dead tree than a whole phonebook, but a dead tree is a dead tree, and I have to throw them both away, so they’re equally a hassle.

2. If you’re going to call me to confirm that you didn’t accidentally give me a phonebook, why on earth would you ALSO leave me a door hanger confirming that (with a number on the door hanger to call in case I needed one)? You’ve now hassled me TWICE in response to me asking you not to hassle me once.

3. As an AT&T customer (we have U-verse for our Internet) I’m now slightly annoyed that they’re wasting money. Instead of paying for a single print of the phonebook and one person’s wages to deliver it, they’ve now wasted the printing costs of this door hanger (cardstock paper, multiple colors, two-sided), along with the costs to have one person deliver the door hanger and another person use a computer and a phone line to physically call me.

I realize this is a great example of a first-world problem and all that. I do. But still. Also, I really really really hate door hangers.

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