Friday, February 27, 2009

Credit Card Revenge Doesn't Work

photo by JJanetC

I found the photo above on flickr under the title "Credit Card Revenge". I don't know what she stuffed in those credit card reply offers. It almost looks like she blew them up like balloons. Whatever she did it looks like a lot of time and trouble. I'm sure it made her feel good and was great credit card therapy. In fact it made her feel so good that she posted a pic. But I'm sorry to tell JJanetC that her act of revenge doesn't hurt her opponent one bit. Not even a little. Nope not a scratch. Sorry they didn't even notice.

I know this for a fact because I am a former direct marketer. It doesn't inconvenience the company because they have to pay the postage, in fact they expect a bit a that. They also don't think "ooh, we made this person mad". And they don't take your name off their mailing list. The truth is they never even open this stuff anyway.

If you want to stop receiving credit card offers try a more effective approach. Visit This is a real website recommended by the FTC. works with Experian, Equifax and Transunion. If these companies sound familiar it is because they are the same companies that report your credit score. Likewise they are the companies that credit card companies purchase mailing lists from. So the is a central site that takes your name off all three lists.

Visiting should take care of things for credit card offers but it won't stop other types of mail solicitations. You can also visit the Direct Marketing Association's opt-out page. Opting-out with the DMA will get you off the catalogue and other mail solicitations. By the way these companies also use the 3 credit reporting agencies to purchase mailing lists.

If you've used these options before but have again started to receive unwanted mail that's because your opt-out expires after 5 years. So you need to do it all again. But unlike our friend who took the photo, this process only takes minutes. She probably spent much more time gathering, stuffing, sealing and snapping photos.

And just for the record I have to tell you about those little postcards that are stuffed into magazines. You know the ones that fall out or are bound in so that the zine always flips to the same place. Yes, they are annoying. But to the people who fill them out with silly names, curse words, pornography, or religious quotes and then send them back to the company--you are also wasting your time. The company doesn't care. They don't even look at them. They've got better things to do with their time and I hope you do too.

This is an encore post that originally ran June 9, 2008.

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