About 4 months ago, a copy of the Toronto Sun newspaper started turning up at my door. I hadn’t ordered it, nobody had offered me a free trial, it just started arriving every day. The Sun isn’t my cup of tea (the Globe and Mail would suit me better, that is if I still cared about a daily newspaper at all), so it was only a few days before I was tired of skimming it and then throwing it out, so it started to just go straight to the bin.
After a month of this, I phoned the Sun to ask them to stop sending it. It confused them that I wasn’t a subscriber but I was canceling their service all the same.
After another month, I called again to the same (i.e. nil) effect. They said it would for certain be cancelled this time, might take a couple of days to stop.
After a third month, I called the Sun a third time, and also called the Toronto Star, from whom I do subscribe to my weekend papers, and told them to try to get the message to the delivery agent who they apparently both use, since on weekends they come wrapped together.
And still the Sun arrives every morning, as reliably as its namesake.
I suppose I shall have to take it upon myself to camp out in the morning mist on my front stoop to accost the delivery agent and personally set him or her straight. I started for a while laying out the rolled up newspapers at the end of the driveway where they would doubtless see them piled up, but it gets really depressing seeing how much paper is being senselessly wasted.
I was speaking to a colleague yesterday who told me that she has the same problem with the National Post. We wondered if we were simply two of a huge swath of non-subscribers who are counted in the newspaper industry’s inflated distribution numbers to justify their anachronistic continued existence.