While checking out NEWScan, a site that shows the front pages of fourteen major US newspapers all on one page, I came across an interesting story on the front page of the Los Angeles Times on paperless mail.
The article highlights Steven Stark and his experience with using a paperless mail service. From the article:
Millions of Americans receive online versions of their bills and bank statements. But Stark is one of tens of thousands who have decided they don’t need any physical mail, be it love letters or advertising come-ons.
Instead of plodding down to the mailbox, they open their Web browsers. Rather than stuff file cabinets with paper, they keep their mail online.
Earth Class Mail assigned him a post office box in Los Angeles. For $11.95 a month, the company opens all of his mail — letters, bills, catalogs and all — then scans and uploads it to the Web so he can read his correspondence online. Stark doesn’t have to give the post office his new address every time he moves. He can go on vacation to Palm Springs or Las Vegas and not miss any important mail. By checking a box on his computer screen, Stark can tell the company to shred, recycle or forward the mail to him. He can have the company send packages to his house or pick them up at the nearest Earth Class Mail Center. “It’s just more convenient,” he said.
From the Earth Class Mail website:
No matter where our customers are, they simply log in to their secure Earth Class Mail account to view scanned images of their mail envelopes. They then decide which items to have opened and securely scanned so they can read the contents online, and which items should be recycled, shredded, archived, or forward-shipped to them wherever they’re located – all with a few clicks of a mouse.
I’m not sure this is going to catch on as fast as email, but I can see it being more popular among younger folks who have very different views of privacy in an increasingly online world. Thoughts?