If you've worked your way through the Guide to stamping out junk mail you know that stopping unsolicited advertisements is complicated and time-consuming. This manifesto argues that stopping junk mail could – and should – be easy and effective.

We'll start with an attack on opt-out schemes for unaddressed mail. In the UK we got two such schemes and they're both hopelessly ineffective. Worse, the two schemes combined cover at most half of all the unaddressed stuff that comes through your door – the other half is completely unregulated. This mess can be solved quite easily; like the rest of the civilised world we could have a sticker scheme.

Next, we'll have a look at the Mailing Preference Service, which is the Direct Marketing Association's opt-out scheme for addressed junk mail. It isn't a terrible scheme – or at the very least it's not as bad as the two opt-out schemes for unaddressed mail – but there are easy ways in which the service can be improved.

And finally we'll tackle those nasty opt-out boxes junk marketeers routinely hide in the small print. This is an aggressive form of marketing that should be banned.

Last updated: 
24th July 2015