Stanford Environmental Law Society
Historian of science Edward Tenner begins his book with a typical example of what he sees as the irony of modern life in a technological society. With the advent of electronic mail and inter-office networking, one would expect that the amount of paper used in offices would markedly decline, but in fact, notes Tenner, paper recycling bins are more full than ever before. People do indeed communicate through e-mail, but since they mistrust the permanence of electronic transmissions, they also back them up with an ever increasing amount of paper communication. In his typically amusing way, Tenner notes that when the office supply stores Office Max and Staples opened up in his hometown of Princeton, their most sought after products were not computers or software, but five-thousand-sheet cases of paper for photocopiers, laser printers, and fax machines.
Jay D. Wexler,
Review of Why Things Bite Back: Technology and the Revenge of Unintended Consequences by Edward Tenner
Stanford Environmental Law Journal
Available at: https://scholarship.law.bu.edu/faculty_scholarship/2010