In an uprising reminiscent of backlash against those oft-despised doorstops otherwise known as the Yellow Pages, residents of one Chicago neighborhood are fighting for the right to not be bombarded on a weekly basis with coupon circulars. Despite opting out, the residents claim in a lawsuit that the coupon packages keep showing up, like some sort of plague of paper zombies.
About two dozen residents of the Logan Square neighborhood have filed a lawsuit against the distributors of the circulars, the Chicago Tribune and Valassis Communications, reports, fittingly, the Chicago Tribune. According to the lawsuit, residents keep trying to opt out of the coupon deliveries, but yet there they are, piling up on doorsteps week after week.
The plaintiffs want the coupon barrage to stop, and also are seeking $50,000 in punitive damages for each resident included in the lawsuit.
“Our neighborhood gets flooded with these damn papers every week,” said the Logan Square attorney representing the residents. “It’s ridiculous it had to come to this, but we need to get their attention to stop the distribution of this thing to people who don’t want it.”
The lawsuit claims that sometimes more circulars will show up in a week than there are even units in an apartment building. Extra scrap paper for anyone who has a paper shredder but not enough documents to feed it, perhaps?
In all seriousness, however, some residents feel that the plethora of paper blowing about makes it look like the properties are abandoned, or someone is out of town. One plaintiff claims he was burglarized while out of town and blamed that in part because of how many coupon mailers had piled up on his doorstep.
The Tribune issued a statement saying residents can simply opt ouf of receiving the mailers. Which doesn’t explain why the residents are claiming they’ve tried to opt out and can’t, but anyway:
“While we do not typically comment on lawsuits filed, we are aware of the pending litigation regarding the delivery of weekly ShopLocal packages to select Chicago properties,” Maggie Wartik, a Chicago Tribune spokeswoman, said in a statement Monday. “We understand the frustration felt by some who wish to opt out, and we are revisiting that process in order to improve the customer experience. If a resident wishes to stop delivery, please call 1-800-TRIBUNE or email firstname.lastname@example.org.”
Logan Square residents sue Tribune, partner over coupon circulars [Chicago Tribune]