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Households can opt out of White, Yellow Pages - Adams

Households can now stop getting phone books delivered, following government approval for a new opt-out system, ICT Minister and Environment Minister Amy Adams says.

If people opt out - via this website - they will stop receiving the the White and Yellow Pages from 2015 (there is no option to keep receiving one but not the other). Both directories are published by the Yellow Pages Group.

The opt out move follows a trial in Auckland whereby households had to opt in to keep receiving the White Pages.

The trial saw Auckland White Pages hardcopy distribution decimated from 494,000 to 21,000 copies for 2013. An opt-out approach should soften the blow elsewhere.

Neatly for Yellow, the opt-out process involves forking over your email address and phone number.

“In an increasingly digital age, it makes sense to offer people a choice about whether they still want to receive a printed phone book,” Ms Adams says.

“Given a choice, many New Zealanders appear comfortable with finding the information they need electronically, and do not require a printed directory.

“There are environmental benefits too.  If just 5 per cent of households opt out, that means there will be about 175,000 fewer books delivered every year.

“This could potentially save about 150 tonnes of paper a year just by households making the most of technology and doing things smarter.”

The decision by Yellow to offer households the ability to opt out of receiving a phone book follows consultation with the Government, and is in line with the Telecommunications Services Obligations for local residential services.

Telecom sold its directories busiess for $2.24 billion in 2007. 

The buyer, a private equity consortium consisting of CCMP Capital and Teachers' Private Capital, the private investment arm of the Ontario Teachers' Pension Plan, soon ran into trouble with the lightly leveraged deal, leading to several restructures of the Yellow Pages Group, and lenders temporarily taking control of the company.

Comments and questions

Another fine investment......the Brooklyn Bridge would have been a far better buy

Thanks for the 'heads up' ... I've now opted out!

Admirable to get rid of unwanted paper books, but at least it's recyclable, unlike the vast array of electonic devices we turn over once every two years. It would be great to see some genuine focus on this as it's a virtually unstoppable avalanche at present.

Anyone tried to delist from the Whites and Yellows? (not so easy)

I wish we had phone books at work. Some phone numbers in the book can't be found with online enquiry. Try finding Kohimarama Vet on line under White Pages but it is in the phone book There are other examples too where the book is better if you aren't sure of the full title.

That would be because the white pages/yellow pages search engine is still rubbish - and has been even since they started having an online presence.

Three seconds on google came up with the address, phone number and web page of the Kohimarama Vet though.

had mine delivered today, be easier to place it in the recycling if they didn't wrap a plastic bag around it...

"The trial saw Auckland White Pages hardcopy distribution decimated from 494,000 to 21,000 copies for 2013. An opt-out approach should soften the blow elsewhere."

If it was 'decimated', it would have been reduced by 10%. Definition of decimated is 'one in ten' in spite of popular usage to mean something else.

And 'soften the blow' for whom? Surely there is no 'blow' here? I just received my yellow pages and I am pissed. I have no use for this except as a door stop. Last year's are used to prop up my laptop on my desk.

Clearly a resource that is not needed any more in our society.

A viewpoint expressed heatedly by those that believe they represent the entire world viewpoint and have an admirable ignorance of facts.

Call tracking numbers in the book show the value to those who still advertise it with plenty of leads and enquiries originated from there. You might not use it anymore (and neither do I) but to make the assertion that it is an unneeded resource at all is well overstated

That would be the historical use of the word "decimated" that you are referring to, Anonymous. The modern, and most commonly used definition is "kill, destroy, or remove a large proportion of".

Not everyone has access to computers readily to allow searching online, and may not be able to afford directory, so I don't think this is a resource not needed for our society. Great that people can now opt out though, this is a great move.