We already know that paper newsletters have more impact than emailed newsletters. When compared to an electronic version, the paper newsletter is four to five times more likely to be read. That’s mainly because email has a relatively poor open rate and even worse read rate.
But now here’s a more compelling reason why paper pulls readers better than electronic. In an interview with Brian Bolduc published in the Wall Street Journal, March 10-11, 2012, Physicist Michio Kaku, says that because of “the Caveman Principle,” the paperless office is unlikely to happen any time soon.
What techies don’t understand, Mr. Kaku explains to interviewer Bolduc, is the fact that ‘“our personalities haven’t changed for 100,000 years, since modern humans emerged from Africa.” The scientist likes high tech, “but the caveman likes high touch.”’
We use more paper than ever today. ‘”People don’t feel comfortable with all the electrons on their PC screens,”’ he tells Bolduc. “With the flip of a switch, those electrons disappear, worrying our inner caveman. “We want a hard copy.”’
Other than this, the future, according to Mr. Kaku, will be pretty high tech. You will blink to go online, for instance, where you will read material posted to a screen on a type of device you wear like contact lenses. ‘”That’s going to change everything.’ Students will look up the answers to tests while taking them. Actors will cheat from their scripts while performing on stage. Foreigners will translate their conversations with natives instantly. Job-seekers will identify ‘who to suck up to at any cocktail party’ surreptitiously.” Insurance agents will look up policy wording and refer to regulations as they speak to clients.
Of course with all the additional access you’ll have to information online in the future, the experience of reading an old-fashioned paper publication could be quite refreshing to your “inner caveman.”
The book, “Physics of the Future,” by Michio Kaku has received excellent reviews. You might want to check it out.