“Outbox vs. USPS: How the Post Office Killed Digital Mail”

An article in Inside Sources:

They wanted to allow consumers to digitize all of their postal mail so that individuals could get rid of junk mail, keep important things organized and never have to go out to their mailbox again. They set out to “redefine a long cherished but broken medium of communication: postal mail.” Customers would opt-in for $5 a month with “Outbox” to have their mail redirected, opened, scanned and available online or through a phone app.  Consumers could then click on a particular scanned letter and ask that it be physically delivered, or that certain types of letters not be opened (e.g., bills etc.).

…When Evan and Will got called in to meet with the Postmaster General they were joined by the USPS’s General Counsel and Chief of Digital Strategy. But instead, Evan recounts that US Postmaster General Patrick Donahoe “looked at us” and said “we have a misunderstanding. ‘You disrupt my service and we will never work with you.’” Further, “‘You mentioned making the service better for our customers; but the American citizens aren’t our customers—about 400 junk mailers are our customers.  Your service hurts our ability to serve those customers.”’

Hat tip to @owenbarder.


10 thoughts on ““Outbox vs. USPS: How the Post Office Killed Digital Mail”

  1. The Feds are providing a billion dollar subsidy (if that) so that the USPS can deliver first class and standard mail to every mailbox in the country–six days a week. They make money on bulk mail.

  2. So the Federal Government is providing a billion dollar subsidy to the postal service so that it can service its best clients, the junk mail industry? That is an odd one.