Porch pirate left smug "thank you" note

Originally published at: https://boingboing.net/2019/12/16/porch-pirate-left-smug-thank.html


Why is porch theft such a thing in US, specifically? Why don’t they leave ‘we tried to deliver’ cards and give you the option of a redelivery or local collection, which seems to be much more the modus operandi over in Europe.

And re this:

> In the hopes that the thief returns,

When did ‘hopes’ become the singular noun? Was it at the same time ‘anyway’ morphed into its meaninglessly pluralised conjunction, and folk became a pluralised noun? How many hopes, exactly, were there that this thief might return? We need to be told!




My first guess was the note was part of the plan to be less suspicious.

Similar to if you hit someone’s car in the parking lot, getting out and leaving a note will give witnesses permission to move on and not be concerned. And since they can not read the note, you can write anything but the point is, anyone who cared has moved on because they think you are doing the right thing.

“Oh they grabbed a package off the porch, but taped a note to the door, they must know the person or something.”




How it is in europe is how it used to be in the US but everyone got sick of the hassle. Between going to pick it up at some time after the carrier is back at their main location, or the postal system now having to track when you would like it re-delivered, or re-deliver a few times, fail a few times, return to sender.

Just leave the thing on the porch.

Porch theft is not common in the US such that it still makes news, which is why you seem to hear about more than say regular burglaries.


Image is broken (in Firefox, Brave and Safari - so, pretty sure it’s not at my end).



Are Amazon* Lockers a thing in the USA?

I only give my home address as a delivery address if I’m sure a parcel will fit through my letterbox. Otherwise I’ll always have a parcel sent to a locker (about 1.5 km away) or a local shop which accepts deliveries.

I don’t really know the wider situation, but my perception is that having items delivered to one’s home is declining in the UK, though still common. Even then, it’s to designated places such as back yards, recycling bins, garages, etc., not places instantly visible to passers-by.

Leaving packages in full view, in publicly-accessible locations, does seem extraordinarily reckless.

*: Other retailers exist, apparently.

I’d say… four.


Oh, no. Absolutely not. But then again I’ve never seen an Amazon locker and assume those are more city/urban things (for those who don’t have porches?) :wink:
So maybe your perception of deliveries declining is urban-biased? Out here in the relative sticks (and yet still inside the M25 so not that ‘sticky’) delivery vans seem to be as prevalent as ever, if not more so.

Full disclosure: I have a porch, it is not visible from the road, and I’m cool with stuff being left there if I know it’s coming, and when. But I always try to ask if delivery can be by Royal Mail and not some courier with a zero-hours, self-employed staff operating model.

But I’ve noticed that Amazon drivers are now the worst (used to be some of the other couriers, but our local drivers seem to have figured out to to get just above the acceptable minimum). Amazon guys will always drop stuff at the door and fuck off, without even ringing the bell, FFS! And seeing as my porch is not my main entrance, a day or two can go by before I notice a porch-parcel.


There are a lot of places you can have amazon deliver and you can go pick it up.

I do some hobby buying and selling via amazon. I have probably had 300 or 400 packages left at my door(s) over the past 5 years. Exactly zero have been stolen. Several times I had to track a mis delivered package down but that is it.

Just anecdotal, but for me, in my area, it does not seem reckless at all.


One of my relatives - who was a little bit of a juvie in his youth - stole a car battery. Then he went back the next night and stole the new battery - left the old one with a note “thanks for the new car battery”. He got better.


Fair enough. :wink:

I’ve noticed that the local shops I mentioned always have stacks of parcels awaiting collection, and around this time of year my nearest Amazon Locker is often too full to accept further orders, so those options are certainly well-used!

Hmm. Urban-ish: small university town on the edge of the Lake District. My perception (which we’ve established to be flawed!) is that lockers are increasingly common in rural-ish market towns; typically wherever there’s an edge-of town supermarket.

My disclosure: my terraced Northern street doesn’t have external porches. :wink:

Me too, though my sorting office is much nearer than the couriers’ depots, and I’ve missed one delivery, I’m no more likely to be in for a redelivery!


shop retail, America! and bring all your shit home with you. then you just have to worry about your trunk getting jimmied open while you are at the mall. you’re welcome, and happy holidays!


Thanks for warning about this highly sophisticated scam. Safe to mention here, perhaps, but maybe best not to publicise its complex workings elsewhere in case others think they are clever enough to perpetrate it. :wink:

No we have the same issues in the UK. Admittedly most of the time the delivery drivers leave the packages with a neighbour or hidden behind a bin (I don’t have a porch). However there are occasions when they will just leave it on your doorstep in plain view of anyone walking past (Hermes are the worst for that).

I’ve only had one incident of package theft (one incident, two packages) and i got refunds from the retailers with minimum effort.


If you get a Ring doorbell cam, perhaps the police could let you know? /s




Blame The Night Before Christmas, in hopes that Saint Nicholas soon would be there.


Yes but they are not everywhere. Only in major cities and I am not sure about all of those even. I do like them when available.