In many blogs, I have commented on the issue the mailing industry faces with respect to the attacks on unsolicited marketing mail by environmentalists or privacy advocates. In particular, environmentalists argue that it would be better for the environment if everyone communicated electronically, instead of doing so in paper-based communications.
I am in the process of reviewing the increasingly robust research which suggests that electronic communication has substantial environmental hazards, in some cases, greater than physical mail-based communications. But the insight I want to share in this blog is that the boundary between physical and electronic communication is not clear, and is getting more muddied as time goes on. (more…)