Bellingham Herald Review FAQ

Q: Why do you print and distribute this product?

A: Advertisers want to reach customers near their stores and potential customers want to find out about bargains and deals.

Advertisers reach potential customers by placing ads in the pages of Bellingham Herald or by printing inserts that we put in The Bellingham Herald or deliver separately to non-subscribers.

If you do not want the free, weekly newspaper delivered to your home, you can opt out by going to bellinghamheraldreview.com or by calling 360-676-2660. We just need your name, address and phone number to stop delivery.

Q: Do all households receive this product? Can I opt-out?

A: The Bellingham Herald Review is generally delivered to every household that don’t subscribe to The Bellingham Herald in ZIP codes that advertisers want to reach. (They reach the remaining consumers by putting the same insert into the newspaper.)

Yes, you can opt out. If you want to opt out of the Bellingham Herald Review, you can let us know at bellinghamheraldreview.com or call customer service at 360-676-2660. We need your name, address and phone number or e-mail to follow up on your request.

Q: I'm concerned about these stacking up at a vacant house nearby.

A: We watch for this and stop delivery when we believe a house is vacant.

You can report a vacant house at bellinghamheraldreview.com or call customer service at 360-676-2660. Our delivery agents will check out the house, confirm it is vacant, stop delivery and remove inserts that have piled up because no one lives there.

Q: Is it possible for the bagged inserts to be washed into the storm sewer system and out into the ocean?

A: Generally, no. Modern storm sewer systems have multiple redundant systems designed to keep solid matter out of the stormwater drainage system. Even if one of the bagged inserts were to go down a storm drain, there are catch basins, filters, sumps and retention ponds – in some multiple combination – designed to trap and hold solid matter so that only liquid runoff gets to the ocean.

Q: Are these recyclable?

A: Yes, they are. Newspapers, of course, are eminently recyclable. The plastic bags, which are made from recycled products, may be returned to The Bellingham Herald’s front desk. We also manufacture the newspaper in an environmentally responsible way. The newsprint itself contains significant portions of recycled fiber. And, we used soy-based inks in our printing. We also carefully manage the return of unsold papers so they are recycled. Waste is monitored at the printing plant and newsprint, printing plates and waste ink are recycled.

Q: A neighbor told me such distribution violates anti-littering ordinances. Is that true?

A: Numerous state and federal courts, and the U.S. Supreme Court, have found that distribution of such circulars and unsolicited newspapers is protected by the First Amendment.

Litter is by definition waste, intentionally discarded as refuse, and of little to no value.

The Bellingham Herald Review contains Whatcom County news and puzzles, plus advertisements that help consumers save money or obtain bargains. The weekly publication includes several inserts delivered with the Sunday newspaper and often contain coupons worth $200 to $300. The mid-week circulars often have $20 to $50 in coupons or discounts. Many coupons have real cash value and advertisers and the newspaper audit their storage and transportation from the printer through the newspaper’s packaging center to the consumer.

Our advertising customers track coupon redemption and tell us that the product is being used by consumers. This commerce helps fuel the local economy.

That said, we recognize that what is of value to one consumer, may not be to another. That’s why you can opt out at any time if you no longer wish to receive the free Bellingham Herald Review.

Q: Who does the delivery? Is it by your regular carriers? How do you monitor delivery quality?

A: This is a new business being created by our vendor. It will eventually provide jobs for 20 to 30 people. Those jobs add to the local economy.

Routes are monitored each week after delivery. As with any new business there is a start-up period where people are learning new routes, etc. We want to get delivery right, and calls to our customer service number or issues sent to our web site help to build a database that allows us to monitor and improve delivery.

Q: So, is carrier delivery a common way to deliver circulars and unsolicited newspapers?

A: Yes. This is probably the most common means of delivery for unsolicited weekly newspapers and circulars throughout the United States. In the Puget Sound region, for instance, Sound Publishing uses carriers to distribute 22 different unsolicited newspapers each week to more than 500,000 households on an opt-out basis.