Why do you print and distribute this product?
Advertisers want to reach customers near their stores, and potential customers want to find out about bargains and deals, especially in these times.
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The advertiser reaches potential customers by purchasing advertising within the pages of The Herald, or by printing inserts that we put in The Herald or deliver separately to non-subscribers.
If a potential customer is not a newspaper subscriber and does not want the inserts delivered to their home, they can opt out by filling out the form at this link or by calling 877-421-6397. We just need a name and address in order to stop delivery.
Do all households receive this product? Can I opt-out?
These products are generally delivered to every non-subscriber household in an area that an advertiser wants to reach. (They reach the remaining consumers by putting the same insert into the newspaper.)
If a household wants to opt out of the product, they can do so by filling out the form at this link or by calling 877-421-6397. We just need a name and address in order to stop delivery.
I'm concerned about these stacking up at a vacant house nearby.
We don't want them there either. It's wasteful, expensive and inefficient for both us and our advertising customers to deliver this product to a vacant house.
You can report a vacant house via the same email or phone number above. Our delivery agents will check out the house, confirm it is vacant, stop delivery, and remove inserts that have piled up because no one lives there.
We’re also watching for this, and stop delivery sometimes on our own when we believe a house is vacant.
Is it possible for the bagged inserts to be washed into the storm sewer system?
Generally, no. Modern storm sewer systems have multiple redundant systems designed to keep solid matter out of the stormwater drainage system. Even if one of the bagged inserts were to go down a storm drain, there are catch basins, filters, sumps, and retention ponds – in some multiple combination – designed to trap and hold solid matter so that only liquid runs off.
Are these things recyclable?
Yes they are. Newspapers, of course, are eminently recyclable. The plastic bags may be returned to grocery stores that recycle their own plastic bags. We also manufacture the newspaper with a lot of environmentally friendly materials. The newsprint itself contains significant portions of recycled fiber. And we used soy-based inks in our printing. We also carefully manage the return of single-copy papers so that we can recycle those. And we monitor waste in our plant and recycle both newsprint, printing plates and waste ink.
A neighbor told me such distribution violates anti-littering ordinances. Is that true?
Numerous state and federal courts, and the US Supreme Court, have found that distribution of such circulars and unsolicited newspapers have First Amendment protection.
Litter is by definition waste, intentionally discarded as refuse, and of little to no value.
In addition to the news content provided in most of our nonsubscriber packages, the circulars we distribute are a valuable way to save money or obtain bargains for many consumers. Our advertising customers track coupon redemption and tell us that the product is being used by consumers. This commerce helps fuel the local economy.
That said, we recognize that what is of value to one consumer, may not be to another. That’s why we offer opt-out option to any household that doesn’t wish to receive them.
I see that some folks don't really like this product. Does that bother you?
It does to the extent that we are striving to serve the community by supporting high-quality local journalism and helping other businesses succeed. It hurts a bit that some people don’t see it that way.
They have a right to ask that we not deliver the product to them, and we respect that and will honor the request.
But we also believe that people who want and use the product have a right to receive it and that we have a right to print and deliver it.
Who does the delivery? Is it your regular carriers? How do you monitor delivery quality?
This is a business being done by our distributors that provides work for over 100 people. Those jobs add to the local economy.
Routes are monitored each week after delivery. As with any new business there is a start-up period where people are learning new routes, etc. But the distributor uses routes lists to help carriers deliver to the right houses -- and skip those that don’t want delivery or are regular newspaper subscribers.
We want to get delivery right, and calls to our customer service number or issues sent to our e-mail address build a database that allows us to monitor and improve delivery.
So, is this a common way to deliver circulars and unsolicited newspapers?
Yes. This is probably the most common means of delivery for unsolicited weekly newspapers and circulars throughout the United States.