The Washington Post reports Verizon's plan for making delivery of white pages optional in the Washington area. The yellow pages will remain:
SuperMedia plans to continue to distribute government and business white pages. And the change will not affect the yellow pages.
The Yellow Pages Association, which represents 400 companies nationwide, says that more consumers use the yellow pages - 65 percent - than any other source when searching for local business information.
"There's still a lot of value and high usage," said Amy Healy, the association's vice president of public policy and sustainability.
According to the Post article, only two percent of subscribers request the white pages in states where books are sent by request. But why stop there? Even more paper would be saved by applying the same rule to the proliferating yellow books. The proportion of yellow to white seems to be growing steadily.
Several phone books in one community points to a thriving local economy and demonstrates high advertiser demand and high consumer usage. Competition in the industry assures that publishers deliver useful, robust and feature-rich products.
and how not to get them
In January 2008 the Yellow Pages Association together with the Association of Directory Publishers adopted Joint Environmental Guidelines recommending that all member directory publishers adopt flexible directory distribution policies that allow end users to opt-out from receiving a future distribution of a print directory. For specific delivery requests, consumers should call the directory publisher at the number listed in the front of the directory. . . .
But as the site also points out, many deliveries are made in bulk to apartment buildings and businesses. The last time that happened in my building, most of the stack went unclaimed.