[UPDATED] You’re not welcome in their homes, print newspapers

Letters to Romenesko
From JAY ARTHUR: My experience with the Wall Street Journal circulation department this week reminds me of a line from the Eagles’ 1970s era hit “Hotel California” … “We are programmed to receive. You can check out any time you like but you can never leave.”

On Monday out of the blue a copy of the Wall Street Journal was delivered to my apartment. I am not a subscriber, nor have I ever been one.

I emailed them right away through their web site … and got no response.

On Tuesday I received another copy. I emailed again. Late Tuesday afternoon (30 hours after my original email) I got a response saying my email had been forwarded to a delivery supervisor. Five hours later I got another email acknowledging they had no record of me being a subscriber.

On Wednesday, I received another copy. I emailed again.

Thursday morning I got another copy. Still no response from my Wednesday email. I emailed again.

Since I’m not a subscriber, you wouldn’t think it would take four days to unsubscribe. Do you think this is an issue because most papers have outsourced their circulation/delivery issues?

I emailed him Friday morning for an update. He wrote:

Today, for the fifth consecutive day, I received a copy of WSJ.

Update: Arthur tells me the head of the Journal’s customer service contacted him today and said she would contact the delivery manager and have the deliveries stopped.

Complaints about The Oregonian, too
From JOHN ETTINGER: I’m a former small city editor/publisher, now author. I live in Portland where The Oregonian, since it switched to 4 day home delivery, has mysteriously been delivering free newspapers all over town. I have been getting a free copy, even though I haven’t subscribed in a couple of years. People have even Tweeted pictures of papers piled up, begging the newspaper to stop delivery.

Do they claim these in their “paid” circulation? Again, I get it free, my neighbor gets it free etc.