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Excessive

Junk Mail and Deforestation

ABSTACT INTRO
Knowledgeable combatants against social injustices around the
world, use rhetoric to create curiosity and attachment to an idea or
movement. Visual stimulation is very affective in this as well however if
you watch a video about Bsing rhetoric that effective informs people
about the problem. Effectiveness falls under 3 categories vocabulary,
tone, and style of writing to B How can Spreading effective literature
aoub If we stop and think about the techniques of written about .
shedding light on how people and/or organizations combat the problem
using different forms of literature.
END ABSTRACT INTRO
Knowledgeable combatants against social injustices around the
world, use rhetoric to create curiosity and attachment to an idea or
movement. The individuals that are dedicated to stopping, preventing,
or slowing the acts of various injustices around the world use
keywords, phrases, and rhetoric to educate the public of the problem.
As the first two weeks passed I thought of many different social justice
problems such as the absurd incarceration rate and over crowed jails
due to minor drug offenses, which is, tied with the war on drugs,
homelessness in Santa Barbara, and feeding the poor. All of these
topics interest me and need to be address but I wanted to think outside
of the box and choose a topic that is rarely addressed and sincerely

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bugs me! Every time I receive a piece of mail, I get a stack of
unwanted junk mail. You may be asking yourself, How is junk mail a
social injustice? After reading this paper youll have a better
understanding as to how this intrusive form of advertising has a
devastating impact on the environment. The next time you recycle the
junk mail that accumulates in your mailbox, youll have a disturbing
feeling of the wasteful nature attached to them. According to
greendimes.com, a website devoted to stopping this wasteful social
injustice, its estimated that 100 million trees are cut down each year
to create 4.5 million tons of junk mail. Upon further research on this
topic, I began to realize the organizations that combat this problem are
solely focused on deforestation. In essence, junk mail has a direct
correlation to deforestation. Greendimes.com offers mind-blowing
statistics but lacks the financial backing to truly stop this problem.
However I did find one organization that lightly discusses the problems
of junk mail but is fully devoted to slowing and potentially stopping the
exponential rate of deforestation by creating recycled paper for many
uses. Frank Locantore who has over ten years experience-combating
deforestation by selling recycled paper directs the Green America
Better Paper Project, which is located in Denver, Colorado. His efforts
to slow and hopefully stop deforestation have been backed by many
prestigious organizations such as National Wildlife Federation, Canopy,
and Rainforest Action Network. The Better Paper Project uses

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consumer education such as carefully placed logos and an
effective website to educate consumers of the dangers of
deforestation however they could .
So when did junk mail start contributing to the rapid destruction
of our number one oxygen source? According to Greendimes, the first
recorded piece of mail sent to multiple recipients with advertisement
purposes caused a negative reaction than a positive one, and that was
in 1864 (2014). Considering the population of the United States was
roughly 31 million in 1864 and the current number is around ten and a
half times that (318.9 million) the notion that junk mail is a realistic
practice for the 21 century is foolish. Its not just a domestic problem
either. 30% of all the mail delivered around the world, (2014) is
considered junk mail. However, the statistics for the junk mail we
receive here in the stats is mind blowing. American households
receive a total of 104.7 billion pieces of junk mail a year (2014).
Thats 848 per home. It takes more than 100,000,000 trees, (2014)
to produce all that ad mail. That would be the equivalent of clear
cutting the entire rocky mountain national park every four months
(2014). Instead of measuring this based off of speculative ideas, lets
look at the real damage this is causing. Two of the forests suffering
from this devastating impact are the Canadian Boreal Forest and
Indonesias tropical forests. Canadas lush Boreal Forest is being logged
at a rate of 2 acres a minute, 24 hours a day to produce junk mail and

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other paper products (2014). 1,100 miles ways, in the humid
rainforests of Indonesia, the effects of deforestation are rampant
causing 8% of global carbon emissions. The manufacture of junk mail
releases more greenhouse gas emissions per year than the emissions
released by 9,372,000 average passenger cars. The CO2 emissions
from 41 pounds of advertising mail received annually by the average
US consumer is about 47.6 kilograms (105), which has a large footprint
on the environment (Greendimes, 2014). Does this large footprint on
the environment benefit anyone? Are there people out there that find
junk mail useful?
Yes, there are people that use junk mail on a daily basis. Based
off of the junk mail that I started collecting at the beginning of this
semester, 8 out of 10 pieces of junk are in the form of a coupon or
advertisement. It could be argued that certain junk mail is produced to
privilege customers with discounts to get them in to the store. This
method helps people a dime here and there and may add up in certain
households. For the most part though, 44% of junk mail is discarded
without being opened or read, equaling 4 million tons of paper waste
per year, with just 32% recovered for recycling, and to add more fuel
to the fire, the Ohio Office of Compliance has state that 250,000
homes could be heated for a single days junk mail (2014). For the
families that are coupon kings and queens, they should be able to sign

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up for these forms of discounts and receive them electronically to
conserve paper. The Better Paper Project would approve this idea.
Frank Locantore is the director of operations for the Better Paper
Project. This organization focuses on the massive impact on the
environment caused by deforestation. This is closely linked with junk
mail considering its estimated that 100 million trees are cut down
each year to create the 4.5 million tons of junk mail in the United
States alone (2014). Locantores normal work day doesnt involve
combating junk mail first hand. However the Better Paper Project does
create different forms of rhetoric to educate individuals about the
problems of deforestation. Their website, http://betterpaper.ning.com/,
gives specific instructions on how to slow the influx of junk mail filling
your inbox. Locantore believes that junk mail is a problem however
there are bigger problems to solve (Locantore, 2015).
Franks day consists of many different responsibilities such as
meetings with publishers and magazine staff, time spent on the
phone, and some days that are a mish-mash of phone calls with
colleagues, researching, creating incentives for publishers to buy
recycled paper, countering bogus myths and on and on (Locantore,
2015). These bogus myths are difficult to control considering different
lobbying firms wage a war against the better paper project. Big
business has their protocol and tries to continue the use of paper
obtained by unsustainable means. Its the Better Paper Projects

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mission to educate the public on the means of sustainable paper
options. On the Better Paper Project of Americas website, the mission
statement is clearly stated on the About section.
The Better Paper Project empowers the magazine industry to go
green. For over ten years, we've helped magazine publishers choose
sustainable papers (recycled and certified) and give them a leg up in
the green economy through our special promotions and other benefits.
Explore our partners who help us protect forests, climate and
communities.
Join now to start enjoying the economic and environmental rewards of
participating in the Better Paper Project.
Contact us with questions or for more information.

The website, which is a key writing artifact connected to the


Better Paper Project needs to have a clear layout to allow the audience
to navigate and educate themselves about the problem at hand. It was
easy to go to the About section and learn all about the mission
statement for the group. In the short synopsis about the group, the
Better Paper Project strengthens their ethos by creating a hyperlink to
explore [their] partners who help [them] protect the forest, climate
and communities (2015). As stated in Crafting Messages for
Electronic Media, communicating with personal style and an authentic
voice, (20___) this allows the Better Paper Project to hit home when
talking about saving our forests. This strengthens the logos and pathos
appeal. Their websites, as well as numerous links such as these three
writing artifacts provided by Mr. Locantore video and transcription of

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recycled papermaking, EPN global common vision, and a specific focus
on the deforestation of Indonesia stregtehtn the emotional appeal
and reinforcing logical understanding that we need forests to survive
on this planet!

The online medium is highly effective considering changes to stats are


made easily as well as updates to educate people about the problem is
not labor intensive.
Conclusion

Considering our class is on the study of writing I gauged my


questions accordingly. I defined many terms as they pertain to our
class for him such as genera and conventions.

1. Take me through your "normal" work day with the Better Paper Project.
There is no normal work day. Some days are spent on the phone a lot. Others
are full of meetings with publishers and magazine staff. Then there are the days

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that are a mish-mash of phone calls with colleagues, researching, creating
incentives for publishers to buy recycled paper, countering bogus myths, and on
and on. All in the service to our mission to solve social and environmental
problems through economic actions.
2. What is your roll in this organization?
I direct the Green America Better Paper Project
3. In our class we discuss the importance of genera and conventions. My
interpretation of your genera would be global warming/protecting the
environment. Conventions are the means that make up your genera (i.e.
genera = horror movie / conventions of horror movies are suspenseful
music, dark lighting, popping out ect.). How would you define your genera
and conventions?
Genera: social and environmental responsibility
Conventions: economic strategies combined with consumer education and
organizing, supply chain collaborations, and life-cycle assessments.
4. Who is your audience?
Magazine publishers are the primary audience. Their supply chain is our
secondary audience. The tertiary audience is consumers.
5. What is the best way to inform people of how wasteful junk mail is / what
is your message?
I dont talk about junk mail.
6. If there was one piece of information/statistic you could share with
everyone about how terribly wasteful junk mail is, what would it be?
N/A
7. Do you believe junk mail is intrusive on personal privacy?
Not particularly relative to all other info about us that we likely submit ourselves
on FB and other social media, junk mail isnt really intrusive.
8. I notice there a couple different organizations that focus on the
eradication of junk mail (41 Pounds, Greendimes, Better Paper Project)
Why not join together to fight the same cause?
That is an important question. Though I dont deal with junk mail, I have been
part of efforts that bring organizations together to work together. Perhaps 41

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pounds and Greendimes are all ready working together. If not, they could follow
the model we created at the Environmental Paper Network.
9. We believe that junk mail is wasteful to precious resources - such as
trees and water just to name a few. We stand for something and have an
argument against companies exploiting these resources using junk mail,
how does the Better Paper Project use ethos, pathos, and logos in their
stance against these corporations?
Since weve established that we dont work on junk mail issues, I would answer
in this way. We try to use words that people understand and that resonate with
them. For example, genera and convention are horrible words that have no
meaning to the public (I know you werent asking the public to explain them,
however, why not understand your audience a bit and use words that dont
require you to explain?).
We demonstrate our ethos by clearly defining our mission, the strategies we
employ, and the experience and expertise that we have on the issues. We also
build alliances and collaborations with other organizations and/or people that can
help augment our standing or fill in a gap where we may not have deep
expertise. We demonstrate the solutions that exist and have already proved to be
effective. Having the science of what is fact is important to support the message.
Our pathos depends on the audience we are speaking to. If it is the general
public we think about what people see and experience in their lives. We ask
ourselves, what do they care about? Can pictures be used to create an
immediate image and story? For the magazine staff and supply chain audience
they rarely care about the environment. If they do care about the environment,
then we use the same tactics all ready mentioned. But, even in those cases we
still have to talk to them about what they really care about: costs and revenue.
They mainly want to spend less than what they are currently spending and they
want to increase their revenue. If we can speak to them on that level, then they
are more likely to listen.
Finally, logic rarely has anything to do when profit motives are involved. In my
experience it would be ethos, pathos, and force" or pressure as the troika.
The pressure tactics are basically a way to damage their financial bottom line or
brand so that they will be more receptive to the greater social and environmental
good that would come from changing their practices. Such tactics only come after
ethos and pathos fail. (It was just last year that National Geographic began using
recycled paper after years of ethos-ing and pathos-ing them. We had to
threaten to run a public campaign of embarrassment before they switched.)

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Dirk suggests learning about genres and how they function is
more important that mastering one particular genre (2010,
p.2)

Introduces a new paragraph singular focus of the paragraph idea


anchor for the paragraph

On average, I receive around two pounds of junk mail per day.

Intrusive nature, stats, tie in with better paper project and thesis

P1 - If junk mail is necessary use BPP paper


What is the BBP and who runs it?

P2 Introduce Frank Locantore


What are his ties with the org

P3 How does Locantore and BPP use writing artifacts to spread


awareness
ETHOS, PATHOS, LOGOS

Conclusion

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Wrap up BPP awareness techniques, tie back in with junk mail
and how

wasteful it is

Working is an idea but may be general, provides usufeul info but isnt
an argument or debateable
Thesis can be argued and backed up