CAUSS Guidelines

CAUSS - Citizens Against Ugly Street Spam

CAUSS Guidelines for Sign Sharks:

Our mission is to put an end to the notion that littering our communities with commercial advertising signs is an acceptable method of promoting business. We are dedicated to eradicating our streets of this unsightly litter and assisting the code enforcement officers in enforcing the ordinances. Our message to the street spammers is: "Your signs will not be tolerated in our neighborhoods."

The displaying of street spam on our easements, utility poles or anywhere in our cities is abuse of our environment. It is important for us to understand that we are here to eliminate abuse, not to exchange one abuse for another. We are performing a community service and need the support of the citizens and the officials. For these reasons, we have developed some simple guidelines:

• DO NOT LITTER. If you choose to remove the phone number or URL from the signs, please dispose of the scraps and do not leave them lying on the ground. If you remove a sign from the ground or utility pole, dispose of the sign and the nails. We do not wish to replace one type of litter with another.

• DO NOT HARASS. There is no problem in calling the spammer to advise him/her that we have removed their signs, but please keep it civil. Name-calling, profanity, threats and the like are simply lowering ourselves to their level. A suggested email or phone script would go something like this: "Hello, I just wanted to let you know that we have removed XX of your illegal signs today. Please visit us at to learn more about why your signs are unacceptable. Have a nice day".

• DO NOT BLOCK TRAFFIC. Please try not to block traffic while cutting/removing signs. Pull into the closest parking lot, or up on the easement instead of stopping in a traffic lane. If you see a sign in a congested area that is difficult to find a place to park, try coming back for it late at night when the traffic has died down. When parking off the street, use caution so not to allow your vehicle to be blocked in.

• DO NOT BECOME INVOLVED IN A CONFRONTATION. The spammer will more than likely become irrational when observing you removing his/her signs. Try not having eye to eye contact, walk away if they approach you. If they persist, call 911 and ask for a police officer be dispatched immediately, that you're being threatened.

• DO NOT ENGAGE IN FLAME WARS ON FORUMS. The street spammers have adopted a strategy of posting anti-CAUSS threads on news groups, in the hopes of luring us into a flame war. Most of what they post is twisted out of context, or downright lies. While it is perfectly fine to post polite rebuttals, it is undignified and self destructive to resort to name calling and insults. Let's not lower ourselves to their level.

Let's continue to eliminate this problem in a responsible and civilized manner. We should always strive to maintain the moral and legal high ground.