R.H. Donnelley Opts Out of Chicago Residential White Pages

The current distribution of the AT&T’s Real Yellow Pages produced by Dex (R.H. Donnelley) will no longer include the Chicago Metro Residential White Pages.

According to the release:

“Local residential listings are already included in the Chicago Neighborhood directories that we deliver in August, on DexKnows.com(TM) and on YELLOWPAGES.COM, so we felt it was better for consumers if we discontinued delivery of a standalone Chicago Metro Residential White Pages directory,” said David Kelly, director of marketing, Dex. “However, people who still wish to receive the Chicago Metro Residential White Pages can contact us and we will happily supply them with a complimentary copy.”

While this strategy has been in practice with Canada’s Yellow Pages Group in select major cities, this is the first such instance where a major U.S. publisher has opted not to deliver a residential White Pages edition while offering consumers and businesses the option of requesting a copy. With a high focus on the environmental impact of directories, this is an interesting move given no formal opt-in movement has been instituted in the Chicago market. It will be interesting to see if this is a leading trend with publishers as a self-imposed means of addressing public concern.

Update: It’s worth clarifying that R.H. Donnelley has not eliminated residential White Pages. It is eliminating (except by request) the stand-alone metro-wide residential White Pages book, while continuing to deliver business and residential listings via community directories. R.H. Donnelley publishes 13 such community books in the Chicago metro area and their combined coverage exactly matches the metro book, according to a company spokesperson. So while this approach seems like an opt-in plan, technically it is not, since an opt-in plan would give consumers the clear choice between receiving or not receiving residential listings.

This Post Has 3 Comments

  1. Henry Chou

    I think that this is a trend that will only continue due to the public’s increasing concern on environmental issues along with their growing awareness of online sources of this information. In fact, four states have already introduced legislation that requires phone-book companies to allow consumers to decline delivery. For consumers with a computer and internet access, online directories such as WhitePages.com are actually a much faster and better way to look up contact information on people. You can search nationwide as well as perform reverse searches. Using WhitePages.com, you also have a much higher chance of finding who you are looking for as we have 80% coverage of the US population.

    Thanks,
    Henry Chou
    Director of Strategy
    WhitePages.com

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