Mail privacy is important too.
Your privacy rights.
Your home is your castle. As an American, you have a fourth Amendment right to privacy – so how come advertisers are allowed to invade your home with unsolicited junk mail?
Fortunately, many legal precedents may be on the side of a “right not to receive junk mail.”
“For centuries, your homes and residences have been considered a special sanctuary free from intrusion by strangers, monarchs or other unwanted guests,” according to USJunkMail.com. The organization has reviewed over a dozen laws and regulations in its research on the subject.
In fact, a Supreme Court case may mean you have a right to tell advertisers not to bother you in your home. In the case of Rowan vs. the US Postal Department, publishers, mailing list brokers, and others contested a federal law that gave individuals the right to have their names removed from mailing lists. The case was won – unanimously. Chief Justice Burger found that “every householder” had a right to “exercise control over unwanted mail.” Even in 1970, Burger noted that most people’s mail was mostly “unwanted,” and sometimes even “offensive.”
Burger said that a mailer’s right to communicate “must stop at the mailbox of an unreceptive addressee.” Read more about the case and other relevant laws here.
So in a country where we have the right not to be bothered by junk mail in our homes, how can it be that it is currently “almost impossible to eliminate all junk mail,” according to PrivacyRights.org?Clearly, something has to change – we need new laws, updated for the twenty-first century, to protect our rights and make it easier to stop the junk.
Although you probably can’t stop all your junk mail, you can reduce how much you get. Find out more here.