Whether you are a fan of bewigged calligraphy or not, it seems that paper is enjoying a bit of a renaissance: Euromonitor reports that sales of paper stationary grew 9.4% between 2010 and 2015.
But Lawyers aren’t the only ones reluctant to give up on paper in today’s digital age. Even today’s young generation of “digital natives” prefer books to reading on an electronic device.
There is something immensely satisfying about putting pen to paper, taking notes manually, or simply doodling as you listen to a presentation or long meeting.
A 2004 paper by Applied Cognitive Psychology concluded that the cognitive effort engaged by notetaking is greater than that of learning and comprehension – suggesting it demands more of one than either of these two activities alone and supporting the assumption that both of these activities are engaged when notetaking.
Other studies have shown that writing things down helps us to remember and also with the later recall of that information.
Aside from the “tactile delight” of writing by hand, it is – simply – more meaningful.
And it seems that the greater meaning to be found in your scribbles is true for both for us, as writers, and for the recipients of our endeavours.
A new study by the University of California and e-signature program eSign Live has uncovered some interesting discrepancies between our approval rates for types of electronic documents.
While 75% of us prefer digital bills, and a huge 97% of us prefer digital bank statements, the numbers are reversed when it comes to sending greeting cards. Here, 72% of us would prefer to send a traditional paper greeting card than an email or digital card.
Sending a paper card has a permanence and a meaningfulness that an ecard lacks. Taking the time to choose the card, handwrite the note and mail it is an act of love; and the card can be displayed and treasured by its recipient.
Both in terms of our own memories and those of our family and friends, putting pen to paper is simply more meaningful.