×

Announcing: Slashdot Deals - Explore geek apps, games, gadgets and more. (what is this?)

Thank you!

We are sorry to see you leave - Beta is different and we value the time you took to try it out. Before you decide to go, please take a look at some value-adds for Beta and learn more about it. Thank you for reading Slashdot, and for making the site better!

USPS Discriminates Against 'Atheist' Merchandise

Soulskill posted about a year and a half ago | from the heathens-don't-need-shoes dept.

United States 1121

fish waffle writes "Suspecting that their strongly branded 'Atheist' products may be treated differently by more religiously-oriented postal regions, Kickstarter success Atheist Shoes conducted an experiment. They sent 178 packages to 89 people in different parts of the U.S., each person receiving one package prominently branded as 'Atheist' merchandise, and one not. The results: packages with the atheist label were nearly 10 times more likely to be 'lost,' and took on average 3 days longer to show up when they did. Control experiments were also done in Europe and Germany — it's definitely a USPS problem."

Sorry! There are no comments related to the filter you selected.

Now I know... (1, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43288933)

what to label the feces I mail. 3 extra shitty days in transit.

Maybe... (5, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43288941)

Maybe they are simply falling prey to Acts of God.

Re:Maybe... (5, Insightful)

gl4ss (559668) | about a year and a half ago | (#43288951)

is it an act of god if it's an act by a god warrior?

(technically I suppose it is, since everything is if you're into that kind of thinking).

makes those losing the packages pretty lousy christians though. USPS should run a sting on them.

Re:Maybe... (3, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43288993)

Why would God make USPS look like they're doing it?
If it was God, this would happen everywhere.
Maybe God hates USPS.

Re:Maybe... (0, Flamebait)

jamesh (87723) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289331)

Maybe they are simply falling prey to Acts of God.

"Control experiments were done in Europe and Germany". In theory that removes the God factor, except maybe USPS is so crappy that only the will of God can get the parcels there on time, and then only the ones he cares about.

Either way I'd be suspicious about the testing methodology. Most athiests are worse than christians about preaching their beliefs at any cost.

Re:Maybe... (5, Funny)

AK Marc (707885) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289377)

"Control experiments were done in Europe and Germany". In theory that removes the God factor,

God only lives in the US now.

Much ado about nothing. (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43288943)

What the hell is an atheist product? Practically everything is an atheist product.

Re:Much ado about nothing. (5, Funny)

zAPPzAPP (1207370) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289021)

Something with good enough QA that you do not need to pray it keeps working.

Re:Much ado about nothing. (3, Informative)

jandersen (462034) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289029)

It's a brand, mostly shoes. Here's a link:

http://www.atheistberlin.com/ [atheistberlin.com]

Re:Much ado about nothing. (2)

Aranykai (1053846) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289105)

Its a brand of shoes for hipsters. You know, the ones wearing skinny jeans with the cuff rolled up and no socks? Tis a shame really, look like pretty well made shoes.

Re:Much ado about nothing. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43289283)

Urgh. So I'm conflicted about whether I should be more annoyed at hipsters or rabid godfags.

Thank $deity I'm sat in a country which, despite having an 'official' religion, sees god as something to be blamed rather than worshipped.

Re:Much ado about nothing. (5, Funny)

bfandreas (603438) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289255)

Most products are agnostic, really.
but these are shoes. they can go to either heaven or hell 'cause they've got soles.

Kudos to Red Dwarf.

correlation (-1, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43288953)

does not imply causation

Re:correlation (5, Insightful)

erroneus (253617) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289003)

Their experiment is not correllation/causation.

They have identified something which is painfully obvious. The samples in this experiment are large enough to prove that the atheist branding has affect on the delivery and that it only happens like this in the US.

This detail difference is a strong indicator as to the motivations behind what is going on. In short, "unprofessional behavior." With all the troubles the USPS is having, these professionals should be more concerned about delivering value in the service they provide. Instead, the political affiliations (religion is politics, don't kid yourself) of participants entrusted with delivery are affecting how well they do their jobs.

When they are at home or in their groups, let them say and think whatever they want. Let them march and protest and hold up signs expressing themselves. But when they are out there delivering things? Now they are interfering with commerce. Sorry, hommies, but government doesn't play dat.

Re:correlation (4, Insightful)

Belial6 (794905) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289007)

Sorry, hommies, but government doesn't play dat.

I'm thinking that results of the experiment disagree with you.

Re:correlation (5, Interesting)

zAPPzAPP (1207370) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289035)

Now repeat the experiment with labels saying things like

'porn'
'lots of money inside'
'this package contains: newest iPhone'

I'm really interested in the outcome.

New theory: people love atheist products, so they get snatched more often by the postman.

Re:correlation (1)

Barsteward (969998) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289061)

"New theory: people love atheist products, so they get snatched more often by the postman."

Still shows a serious problem a UPS

Re:correlation (2, Insightful)

clarkkent09 (1104833) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289127)

Another theory: a shoe company has a brilliant marketing idea to get free publicity based on the fact that a lot of people don't understand the difference between what they have done (or claim to have done) and a serious scientific study.

Re:correlation (4, Insightful)

mwvdlee (775178) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289187)

I once did an internship for a company that shipped second hand business (=expensive) computer hardware on pallets.
Depending on which delivery service they used (I won't name the company), the products were either wrapped in clear foil or more expensive black foil.
Apparently, if they didn't wrap it in black foil, the chances of the pallet being lost increased significantly.

More on topic; as somebody pointed out on that shoe-company site; postal services are supposed to look for suspiciously marked packages. A package heavily marked "Atheist" might be considered a be a bit suspicious, especially in the US where the issue of religion seems to be a bit more polarized anyway. Screaming a (non-)religious opinion where non it expected does generally make one stand out from the crowd.

They should have included packages marked "Muslim", "Christian", "Neo-nazi" and "Non-religious", but I doubt the shoe-company would have ended up with the same amount of free advertising.

Re:correlation (2)

N1AK (864906) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289223)

More on topic; as somebody pointed out on that shoe-company site; postal services are supposed to look for suspiciously marked packages. A package heavily marked "Atheist" might be considered a be a bit suspicious,

And what, throw anything more 'suspicious' looking away 10 times as often as they normal? Sounds like a pretty stupid idea even if that was what they were trying to do.

Re:correlation (0)

mwvdlee (775178) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289339)

It's not meant as justification in any way. Note that one unmarked package was also lost; regardless of markings on the packages, the USPS is already unacceptably bad.

The question is whether the delivery is any different depending on markings. The assumption that this difference is caused by anti-atheist sentiments is based on biased research.

If you want to prove that apples are magnetic, you don't just drop an apple over a metal plate and claim magnetism attracted the apple to the plate. You try to disprove other possibilities.
In this case, they merely tested different packaging. Now try using tape with different text. Different color, different font. Try using staples instead of tape. Print the markings on the box directly or use stickers for the markings instead of tape, etc.

Re:correlation (1, Troll)

Simon Brooke (45012) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289271)

A package heavily marked "Atheist" might be considered a be a bit suspicious, especially in the US where the issue of religion seems to be a bit more polarized anyway.

So explain to me: what exactly is the difference between the USA, and Afghanistan under the Taleban?

Re:correlation (2, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43289299)

Better pizza.

Re:correlation (1)

mwvdlee (775178) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289373)

I'll explain right after you explain to me why Afghanistan under Taliban regime should be considered average with regards religious polarization.

If your only defense is to compare with extremes, you've already lost the argument.

Re:correlation (4, Insightful)

zAPPzAPP (1207370) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289291)

I noticed the same comment and it struck me as incredibly stupid.

USA post offices look for abnormal packages. Most drugs are sent in unusual packages so they are opened searched and resealed. If the tape said "GOD'S LAST STAND!" or "HAIL MARY!" you would have seen the same problem. One of those would have made for a better control.

I have my doubts about the drug thing. Why would people send their drugs in packages that look suspicious? Of course, if the post office only searches suspicious packages, all the drugs they'll find will be in suspicious packages, so mabye they feel like they are on the right track...

Now just because it is stupid, does not mean it can't be a real post office guideline.

Re:correlation (1)

hattig (47930) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289301)

So it could come down to the parcels being marked as suspicious, going to the suspicious parcels department (leading to a 3 day delay), where one guy now has a nice line in selling second hand shoes in the bar after work (leading to higher incidence of "lost" packages).

Re:correlation (2, Insightful)

LordLucless (582312) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289073)

The samples in this experiment are large enough to prove that the atheist branding has affect on the delivery

Large samples? 1 non-branded and 9 branded articles went missing. That's not a huge number of cases to examine. The "3 days longer" statistic seems to be massively skewed by a single non-representative parcel that took 37 days later than its counterpart. And even if their statistics were correct, all they have demonstrated is that branded parcels took longer than unbranded - they should have also sent parcels with "God is great" on them, or some such if they wanted to demonstrate the nature of the bradning was decisive.

Re:correlation (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43289159)

they should have also sent parcels with "God is great" on them, or some such if they wanted to demonstrate the nature of the bradning was decisive.

Add parcels with "Allahu Akbar" on them. Add flour to taste.

Re:correlation (4, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43289337)

Large samples? 1 non-branded and 9 branded articles went missing. That's not a huge number of cases to examine. The "3 days longer" statistic seems to be massively skewed by a single non-representative parcel that took 37 days later than its counterpart

I would suggest that you take a relevant course in statistics. It is pretty obvious that you are rambling and reasoning without any understanding of the topic.

And even if their statistics were correct

The linked report clearly states the statistical methods they used and the results. If you want to criticize, just point out the incorrect statistical test and why it is not suitable in this situation, or why their conclusions are wrong. If you can't do that, you have no basis saying that their statistics are incorrect.

all they have demonstrated is that branded parcels took longer than unbranded

No. They have demonstrated that Atheist branded parcels took longer than unbranded parcels.

Re:correlation (4, Informative)

fearofcarpet (654438) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289099)

This detail difference is a strong indicator as to the motivations behind what is going on. In short, "unprofessional behavior." With all the troubles the USPS is having, these professionals should be more concerned about delivering value in the service they provide. Instead, the political affiliations (religion is politics, don't kid yourself) of participants entrusted with delivery are affecting how well they do their jobs.

Unless the "lost" packages are the result of "concerned citizens" swiping them off of porches/out of mailboxes and tossing them in the trash (or into the book-burning-mobile). I grew up in a "religiously oriented" part of the US and had so many Darwin fish vandalized or removed from my pickup that I eventually switched to sticker on the inside of the rear window. After that I just got nasty notes and middle fingers from other drivers.

Control test was flawed ... (0)

drnb (2434720) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289133)

They have identified something which is painfully obvious. The samples in this experiment are large enough to prove that the atheist branding has affect on the delivery and that it only happens like this in the US.

While the assumption is quite plausible, they did not "prove" anything. The control test was flawed. All packages shipped from Berlin but the US destined packages go through different handling in Germany, international vs domestic. Something could have happened in international handling in Germany. Unlikely but not ruled out. A better designed experiment is needed.

Re:correlation (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43289171)

More examples indicating it is time to close the Post Office

Re:correlation (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43289195)

Sorry, but you can't say "this is not correlation/causation" just because you have an axe to grind. This is a correlation measurement, with an interpretation implying causation, and the samples are too small to justify the conclusion.

I love how atheists throw scientific method out of the window when it comes to their assumption that there is no God, but here we have a complete masquerade of science ("control experiment"? please) and the only purpose it serves is as confirmation bias for the intolerant.

Re:correlation (1)

Spy Handler (822350) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289217)

Is it Atheist brand like they claim, or is it just the effect of displaying the content of the box? After all, a plain brown box is less likely to be stolen than one that says it has pricey new shoes in it.

A better test would be to have, as the control, boxes that say "Nike Air Jordans" (or whatever the closest competitor) and see if Atheist shoes get lost more than the Nikes.

Re:correlation (2)

Zumbs (1241138) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289287)

According to TFA, the only difference was the packing tape. It was either white with no info or with Atheist - Atheist - Atheist written all over.

Re:correlation (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43289179)

But randomized experiments imply causation.

That's awesome (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43288955)

Good to see that there are still good people in the United States willing to stand up for God.

Re:That's awesome (2, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43288971)

Yeah omnipotent beings can't do that on their own. Well, they could if hey existed.

Re:That's awesome (4, Funny)

hawkinspeter (831501) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289027)

I'm sure there's a passage in the bible somewhere about delaying the goods in transit belonging to the non-believers. Probably in Levictus, alongside the bit about giving them bad haircuts if you're a barber.

Re:That's awesome (0)

Molochi (555357) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289169)

Good god fearing people in the US know that barbers are all Satanists. That why they ban barber poles.

Re:That's awesome (3, Funny)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43289319)

Just like Hitler, they went for the Poles first.

That, plus one more thing (-1, Flamebait)

roman_mir (125474) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289333)

The only reason that USPS has the monopoly on first class mail in USA (nobody is allowed to compete on that with them) is supposedly to provide a subsidy so that all the people in USA are covered. This shows that even that meagre reason for this monopoly doesn't stand to the scrutiny if your packages are discriminated against by the government.

USPS is government, it's a government protected monopoly and it discriminates against people. This is government discrimination. This is the real type of discrimination. You think UPS or DHL or Fedex discriminate against customers this way? Yet DHL, UPS, Fedex are regulated under law, which makes them liable to lawsuits, to 'provide equal access' and all that nonsense, while in reality they want to provide the best customer service in order to win against competition.

USPS doesn't care about competition, they are a government protected monopoly, they are a perfect organisation to maintain various types of discrimination.

There shouldn't be any government protected monopolies, private sectors deals with people's needs, whether they are atheists or Muslims or whatever. Government will lose your package if you are an atheist, and I don't want to get into what they will do to you if you are a Muslim.

Re:That's awesome (1, Funny)

Arancaytar (966377) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289047)

Yeah, for a god who is apparently such a petty asshole he wants people's mail to be lost if they don't believe in him, but is too fucking lazy to do it himself.

Sorry if I sound dumb (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43288965)

But I ask what I guess everybody who isn't from the US is thinking.

What the hell is an "atheist shoe"?

Re:Sorry if I sound dumb (0, Troll)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43288987)

Yup, you sound fucking stupid, because if you clicked on link or googled you'd see that they're a German shoe brand. Fuck, you can even tell from the summary that it's a shoe brand.

Re:Sorry if I sound dumb (1)

Redmancometh (2676319) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289049)

Well you took the fucking stupid crown.

Re:Sorry if I sound dumb (1)

zAPPzAPP (1207370) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289051)

All I can see is a plain white shoe.

What feature identifies it as 'atheist'?

Re:Sorry if I sound dumb (2, Funny)

Idimmu Xul (204345) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289067)

shoes cant believe in god silly, they have no soul

Re:Sorry if I sound dumb (3, Funny)

WWJohnBrowningDo (2792397) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289173)

If your shoes have no sole you need to return them ASAP for a refund.

Re:Sorry if I sound dumb (1)

Zumbs (1241138) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289295)

Follow the shoe!

Re:Sorry if I sound dumb (2)

Redmancometh (2676319) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289121)

A bunch of "rebels" who wanted to be "controversial." Who then started a company.

Re:Sorry if I sound dumb (1)

hairyfeet (841228) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289309)

Nice to see I'm not the only one to think that, I'll put this right next to "Ubuntu Satanic Edition" (no shit, look it up, complete with pentagrams and death metal) on the "We named this just to be "controversial" and "edgy" because that is what our focus group said it was" pile.

Re:Sorry if I sound dumb (1)

Joce640k (829181) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289289)

All I can see is a plain white shoe.

What feature identifies it as 'atheist'?

That'd be the soles...(!)

No, really. It's the soles. Go to their web site and look for yourself.

Re:Sorry if I sound dumb (1)

hawkinspeter (831501) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289045)

It's one that doesn't have a sole?

More testing required (5, Funny)

moderators_are_w*nke (571920) | about a year and a half ago | (#43288981)

Need to post some boxes that say 'contains god' and see if it gets there quicker than the control.

Re:More testing required (5, Interesting)

White Flame (1074973) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289019)

As well if the word "Islam" has a greater or lesser effect than "Atheist".

Re:More testing required (1)

Barsteward (969998) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289077)

"As well if the word "Islam" has a greater or lesser effect than "Atheist"."

it would still show a problem with bigoted christian postmen/women if it was the same result

Re:More testing required (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43289107)

The next phase will be a double blind test. That way the USPS employees won't know which packages are clearly mar... oh wait.

About as scientific as Wakefield study (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43288983)

A true study would have equal numbers marked and unmarked. Also, did they change their origination point? If not, that could also skew the data.

If I had a dollar every time an atheist cried like a little bitch.....

Re:About as scientific as Wakefield study (5, Informative)

Nyder (754090) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289011)

A true study would have equal numbers marked and unmarked. Also, did they change their origination point? If not, that could also skew the data.

If I had a dollar every time an atheist cried like a little bitch.....

I guess not reading the article makes you ask stupid questions.

Equal number of marked & unmarked packages. both sent out at the same time. both sent to the same address. They did this with 89 different people.

Re:About as scientific as Wakefield study (1)

davester666 (731373) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289081)

Hah, you fell for the troll.

Everybody knows that nobody reads the summary. We barely make it through the first couple of words of the title before posting.

How else can you get the frist post?

Re:About as scientific as Wakefield study (1)

Artea (2527062) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289031)

*All Packages left Berlin Via Deutsch Post at the same time on 21.11.12 and were transported to the USA, where they were handed over to the care of USPS for final delivery

FTFA (which all the text is on a bloody image, I had to type that shit. You can thank me below.)

Re:About as scientific as Wakefield study (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43289071)

Thankyou, thankyou, thankyou, thankyou.

Re:About as scientific as Wakefield study (1)

drnb (2434720) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289199)

*All Packages left Berlin Via Deutsch Post at the same time on 21.11.12 and were transported to the USA, where they were handed over to the care of USPS for final delivery

So international/transatlantic handling of Deutsch Post is also a possible culprit? They should have shipped from USA to eliminate the international (as in not within EU economic zone) variable. That said, its still quite plausible the problem is on the US side, but if your going to claim to be scientific then actually be scientific.

Re:About as scientific as Wakefield study (1)

Joce640k (829181) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289313)

So international/transatlantic handling of Deutsch Post is also a possible culprit? They should have shipped from USA to eliminate the international (as in not within EU economic zone) variable..

Which part of "the only difference was what was written on the box" is confusing you?

Re:About as scientific as Wakefield study (4, Interesting)

mwvdlee (775178) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289097)

RTFA

each person receiving one package prominently branded as 'Atheist' merchandise, and one not

So equal numbers marked and unmarked. Can't get more equal than 1:1 ratio. (actually this was in the summary, so RTFS).

They all left Berlin

The "origination point" was outside the US. Packages that did not go through the US were not delayed or lost. Wherever in the US the problem is, the problem is at the USPS. Whether some locations in the US may or may not treat marked "atheist" mail better or worse does not make the general issue any better.

If I had a piece of earwax every time some religious person tried to make up excuses for his fellow religious men, I'd have more dollars worth or earwax than you would have.

FWIW, one of the 89 unmarked packages was lost too, so USPS is doing a bad job either way.

Re:About as scientific as Wakefield study (1)

bfandreas (603438) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289279)

They didn't send out enough packages to be able to conclude anything other than the USPS giving a really shitty and unrelyable service. We'd need a couple of thousands more to conclude anything else. Also you'd have to factor in if the USPS had a really bad day.

moral luxury (2)

ewertz (1191025) | about a year and a half ago | (#43288989)

Jesus didn't wear shoes -- why should you?

Re:moral luxury (5, Funny)

Adambomb (118938) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289327)

Cast off the shoe, Follow the gourd!

Re:moral luxury (1)

martin-boundary (547041) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289371)

Non sequitur! A lot of criminals don't wear shoes, why should law abiding citizens dress like criminals?

What would Jesus do? (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43288991)

Be a jerk, apparently. Except in the Bible where he was an alright dude.

Religious nuts (-1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43288999)

... are religious nuts, no matter where, just the name of their religion changes.

Jehovah! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43289001)

Jehovah! Jehovah! Jehovah!

ALBATROSS.

Re:Jehovah! (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43289069)

Shut up! You're only making it worse!

Re:Jehovah! (1)

Joce640k (829181) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289321)

Worse? How could it be any worse...?

"it's definitely a USPS problem."? (5, Interesting)

Kyd_A (243948) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289009)

Sounds more like a USA problem than a USPS problem, this being an outlier of religious beliefs among wealthy nations [pewglobal.org] . Atheist Shoes needed to send packages via FedEx and UPS in the same way to actually test this, and apparently didn't.

Re:"it's definitely a USPS problem."? (1)

antifoidulus (807088) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289053)

Even then that might not necessarily prove anything(it might not even prove that the problem is in the US). They didn't post any tracking data(if they had any), so it's incredibly difficult to pinpoint exactly where the holdup was. For instance the hold-up could have been customs(Either on the German side or the US side), and shipping with a different carrier might mean that it goes through a different customs office which could skew the data. An interesting experiment, but their lack of rigor does not really lend a whole lot of creedance to their conclusion(and explicitly fingering USPS is certainly not warranted given the evidence they have presented).

Atheist Shoes? (5, Funny)

largoyle (1211804) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289023)

Does that mean ... they have no sole?

Re:Atheist Shoes? (1)

eksith (2776419) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289143)

Yes. But their will is still their own and I hear it's very comfortable and bouncy.

Re:Atheist Shoes? (3, Funny)

prefec2 (875483) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289297)

No they are made out of atheists. The crazy bible belt people got it all wrong.

Well.. (0)

philmarcracken (1412453) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289037)

..Not everyone is atheist. Least of all in the United States.. I always thought such people were a minority there.

'Surely the majority will look favorably on this brandname.' Way to rock the boat. What do you mean phil, should the minority just roll over and take this discrimination? No.. but i don't think this is the way to go about it. Baiting religious folk into these pitfalls seems quite petty to me. You could have chosen any of a hundred names for your product.

There was a yoyo craze when i was in primary school, everybody had to have a 'brain' yoyo.

Would you choose that name during a zombie apocalypse? I didn't think so.

Re:Well.. (1)

cyborg_zx (893396) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289063)

'Surely the majority will look favorably on this brandname.' Way to rock the boat.

Ah, you would be one of those that don't really "get" the whole Enlightenment foundations of the US.

Re:Well.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43289227)

Noone is baiting anyone here.

Tracking devices... (5, Interesting)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43289043)

It would be really interesting to do this experiment with tracking devices that logged their GPS locations periodically over 3G, and had multiple week-long battery life. The 'lost' packages could be tracked and it could be determined where they ended up. Mail fraud is a federal crime, but if it became a big national story with media shining light on the person(s) who were caught doing it, then it would likely result in some change, people going to prison, and the system improving to better serve the recipients of packages.

Just mark them.. (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43289079)

"Divine Punishment". I bet the USPS drones would get off on delivering packages like that.

Re:Just mark them.. (1)

crutchy (1949900) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289267)

or "Anthrax Corporation"

Europe and Germany? (3, Interesting)

phizi0n (1237812) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289115)

Is Germany suddenly no longer part of Europe?

Re:Europe and Germany? (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43289189)

Germany is still part of Europe but as Berlin is also part of Germany the control was a Deutsche Post vs International Post (where multiple carriers are involved).

Another possibility (1, Interesting)

jklovanc (1603149) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289129)

This is only one sample and not repeated, therefore not proof.

What I would like to see is the distribution of the missing parcels. I would check the tracking on the missing packages and see if they were on the same truck. If they were on the same truck did that truck have an accident?

I don't believe it. (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43289131)

They don't provide any actual data or proof on the site. I find it hard to believe that out of 189 packages, that enough were lost in total that branded ones could be "ten times" more likely to be lost than unbranded, because that would mean a minimum of 11/189 packages were lost, and the USPS has never had anywhere near a 5% loss rate in my experience. That would literally make it unusable as a package delivery service for any retailer.

Atheists in America love to act like they're repressed, even in cases when they're not. I never understood this. This "study" has been a huge marketing boom for a company I have never heard of. Call me cynical, but this story is fishy as all hell. I've been trying to find any kind of formal study about lost packages and the USPS but haven't had much luck with casual Google searches. I did however find a LOT of anecdotal data from Amazon and eBay seller forums that indicates it seems to be less than 1%.

Re:I don't believe it. (1, Insightful)

Spy Handler (822350) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289177)

I would believe it if it were done by an impartial third party with a good reputation for professional survey taking, such as J.D. Power & Associates.

Oh this one was done by Atheist Shoes themselves? Nevermind.

Re:I don't believe it. (3, Informative)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43289219)

If you read the article, they did lose 11 packages, which is why they conducted the study in the first place.

Re:I don't believe it. (5, Informative)

radio4fan (304271) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289317)

because that would mean a minimum of 11/189 packages were lost

That is what the article says.

...and the USPS has never had anywhere near a 5% loss rate in my experience

/facepalm

Maybe because your experience doesn't include shipping packages with prominent 'Atheist' branding?

I did however find a LOT of anecdotal data from Amazon and eBay seller forums that indicates it seems to be less than 1%.

Yeesssss... And less than 1% of non-Atheist branded packages were lost.

Atheists in America love to act like they're repressed, even in cases when they're not. I never understood this.

Yes, you certainly seem to be hard of understanding.

Re:I don't believe it. (1)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43289353)

>and the USPS has never had anywhere near a 5% loss rate in my experience.
That's kinda the point of this whole thing. If true, the numbers are far too high to be statistical noise and indicate a trend.

"10 times more likely to be lost" (0, Insightful)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43289213)

From a sample of 89 packages.

Either USPS loses the majority of the packages it handles, or the sample size is waaaay too small to draw that kind of conclusion. But hey, nice rational atheists would never resort to half baked sensationalist nonsense to promote their world view, would they.

Re:"10 times more likely to be lost" (0)

Joce640k (829181) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289351)

You know how I can tell you didn't bother clicking the link before posting...?

Re:"10 times more likely to be lost" (0)

Anonymous Coward | about a year and a half ago | (#43289367)

Or USPS workers actively sabotage things that don't agree with their religion.

A pointed reminder (1)

runeghost (2509522) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289261)

of the strength of America's fundamentalist undercurrent.

Cover up or black out any old labels and markings (4, Interesting)

Smidge204 (605297) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289355)

Anyone who's ever actually sent a package through USPS should know that they explicitly recommend you destroy or cover any non-USPS related markings or labels, explaining that it may lead to delays or failure to deliver.

=Smidge=

Quote from the Terms of Service, USPS: (0)

walter_f (889353) | about a year and a half ago | (#43289361)

"Note that we are not prepared to render equal services to the religious and the infidels.
However, the fees we will charge to the religious and the infidels are exactly equal, though.

May at least one of the gods officially approved by USPS be with you, if not all of them.

Regards,
Services Justification Service Dept.,
United States Postal Service."

Load More Comments
Slashdot Login

Need an Account?

Forgot your password?