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News :: Environment
Verizon Yellow Pages Slashed Over 10,000 Acres of Old Growth Forests, And Will Do It Again
04 Feb 2006
Modified: 07:51:25 PM
Verizon, in its quad-yearly attempt to squeeze even more money from local economies, published their 800 page volume of their cult classic, "The Yellow Pages," (along with "The White Pages," and delived STACKS and STACKS (without asking the public if this was okay first) to each doorstep in the city. Over 10,000,000,000 trees gave their lives for this book, which is comprised mainly of ads from local businesses--ads that will become obsolete once new editions of "The Yellow Pages" hit steps and stoops next month, forcing small (and dwindling) mom and pop stores to shell out more money to get prime real estate within the pages.

Over 60 million copies were distributed in Boston and the surrounding area, a number TEN TIMES the population. Of these 60 million, only some 50,000 found their way into the hearts and homes of Bostonians, myself being one. Of the remaining 59.5 million, one third was recycled (right into the blue-bin, unopened from the doorstep--however, since it was paper wraped in plastic it was rejected by the recycling plant and simply thrown out), approximately 1/3 were thrown out with regular unrecycled garbage, and the rest are still stacked up on peoples' stoops. And although half a million copies were brought inside, only three people used them (two called a cab, one ordered thai food), and the rest go unused because people have the internet and look stuff up there, even though the internet doesn't kill trees.

Gersh Shmerson, a local Cambridge resident and Verizon employee, and who has a stack of 18 "Yellow Pages" sitting on the stoop of his three family house said, "It's a shame the environment is dying, but advertising is very important. It's almost an artform. We at Verizon feel that Americans are not already bombarded with enough ads, so it is our civic duty to give, yes GIVE, them more." Shmerson refused to comment on the death of the trees but is anticipating the release of the next Yellow Pages edition.

While asked why this is such a waste of resources, VZ spokesperson Linda Berkon said "Well, it isn't toally a waste. And it's not like we are just taking money from the local economy and funneling back to our headquarters, we are giving back to the community, but we try to make it fun. One book has a cash prize of $1,000,000, you just have to scratch a card to see if you're the winner. We know these books just get tossed out and ignored, so the odds of us actually having to pay anyone the prize money are slim."

And finally, to take attention off of Verizon and their wrongdoing, Berkon suggested I go to the local post office, a quasi-government corporation who is currently displaying ads for eBay, a privately owned corporation, in their offices, and talk to them about the tons and tons of junk mail advertisments (printed also on paper made of tree guts and chemicals, to which they owe their bread and butter. Then she denied global warming because it is obviously made up and definitely science fiction.

And while yes, publishing and distributing such large volumes of crap is okay because of the first ammendment and stuff, blah blah blah, people---sorry i mean corporations...(or are corporations people?)--should be held responsible.

also, on an unrelated note: The Metro, which is the worlds largest newspaper, should give the MBTA money, or atleast hire people to clean up all the Metros that get discarded and left behind on MBTA property. While the paper is free, it is taking from our tax dollars and if there was no Metro we would all have health care and there wouldn't be any AIDS.

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Re: Verizon Yellow Pages Slashed Over 10,000 Acres of Old Growth Forests, And Will Do It Again
04 Feb 2006
yes, you know, my partner and i always growl when we see those books "hit the steps"- and i'm not suprised the spokesperson thinks global warming is "science fiction"- she'd better if she has any conscience what with how much her company is helpign to speed it up!

We've already written to them telling them we DO NOT want it, but its just keeps coming anyway!! I suppose one can use it for TP, or mush it up and lay it on screens with leaves and shit to make fancy yuppie stationary out of it, or use it for paper-mache puppets. . . . . wouldn't that be something!!

Hey! We could make paper-mache Tree Ghosts out of 'em, and bring them to the front door of the company!! Like, really BIG ones-- out of their stupid USELESS phone book(useless because half of teh businesses aren't even in there anyway, owing to the large premiums they charge to list. . .. )
Re: Verizon Yellow Pages Slashed Over 10,000 Acres of Old Growth Forests, And Will Do It Again
05 Feb 2006
trying to spread an urban legend, huh?

Re: Verizon Yellow Pages Slashed Over 10,000 Acres of Old Growth Forests, And Will Do It Again
06 Feb 2006
There is a stack of 10 of these things in the foyer to my apartment building. They've been there for weeks. We just use them as a door stop when we bring in groceries.
Re: Verizon Yellow Pages Slashed Over 10,000 Acres of Old Growth Forests, And Will Do It Again
06 Feb 2006
why dont you sue them for littering? take them to small claims court
Verizon Communications Cares About the Environment
07 Feb 2006
As longtime a Verizon Communications employee (and customer!), I am saddened to read such accusations concerning our local phonebooks. :( In fact, I think some of those figures you mentioned might've been fudged a wee bit. Personally, I felt I should write on my own of my own accord to set the record straight. I am speaking straight from my heart, not for my employer-- although they are often the same thing.

Can you hear me now? Good!

Verizon does not need to use "10,000,000,000" trees to make its phone books, as you claim it does. In fact, Verizon only uses about twenty trees a year. Yes, you read correctly: twenty trees a year. Twenty big California redwoods, grown right here in the USA. See, at Verizon we've learned to conserve resources and live in harmony with the environment.

We have found that just one redwood can provide up to two million phonebooks, believe it or not, through a new process called fuel-pollutant wet incineration. That's "FPWI" for short. You see, FPWI is an environmentally friendly method developed by the German government in World War II. Excess fuel derivatives are strained and separated into "permatoxic rings" or PRs, as I like to call them :) . The PRs are mixed in a big natural water-holding depression (like, say a lake or swamp) with large quantities of plastic and aluminum, and then the entire mixture is subjected to extremely high temperatures until it becomes a sort of liquid fire defoliant much like napalm.

Crack Verizon helicopter pilots then hoist this mixture and drop it from great heights onto the redwoods with fantastic accuracy, turning the whole region of forest into a gray charred mass that naturally burrows under the soil and continually explodes. The sheer amount of animal and plant matter that is consumed by the miles and miles of explosions, fire, and burrowing tar-like chemicals during FPWI storage and mass air deployment creates a high protein content that stretches each sheet of paper much further-- not to mention giving the paper a glutinous sheen that ups the white-fiber content, making the paper especially easy to read.

Can you hear me now? Great phonebooks on your doorstep every six months, from only twenty redwoods at a time.
Now that is thinking green, if you ask me personally.

Anyway, love the "site" and all the debate. I just wish you'd get all the facts straight, BIRD, before you go hurling accusations around.


Ron Daniels, Public Relations Content-Provider
Verizon Communications, Inc.
Sub-sector 54A JU9
Los Alamos, NM
Re: Verizon Yellow Pages Slashed Over 10,000 Acres of Old Growth Forests, And Will Do It Again
09 Feb 2006
There are more trees in Massachusetts than there are people.

There are more trees in Massachusetts today than there were 200 years ago.

Global warming causes colder temperatures.
Re: Verizon Yellow Pages Slashed Over 10,000 Acres of Old Growth Forests, And Will Do It Again
15 Feb 2006
There is some self inflicted wounds that Verizon will have to heal because of their effort to squezze as many ads as they can into their yellow pages. The type font used in their yellow pages is so small that a person with average sight will have difficulty reading all but the largest ads. The sad part is that all this expense and misuse of natural resources has produced a book that is virtually unreadable and unuseable.