Thursday, August 16, 2012

Paper overload

Are you drowning in a a sea of paper?  I am.

As fast as I scan papers I get more to replace them. Major contributors to this avalanche are genealogy presenters who pass out paper handouts. It's not that I don't appreciate the handouts - I do. I agree that presenters should dispense some sort of handout to the people who turn up to hear them but they don't have to be in hard copy.

When I have the inclination I scan my latest bundle of handouts, save them as .pdf documents and consign the hardcopy handouts to the recycle bin. I then file my digital copies of the handouts according to my Fling it in the folder system.

My plea to presenters is to offer an alternative to hard copy handouts. PLEASE.


Unknown said...

This post along with the “Fling it in the Folder System” post are just what I need. My basic genealogy data (persons and their 'events') is in pretty good order in my research wiki. Unfortunately, it is the rest of my “stuff” that needs a system from which I can retrieve the “stuff” when needed. I will read and re-read your “fling it” system post along with the “Guide to Organizing...” ebook that Judy Webster mentioned in a comment on the other post. Perhaps, I might be able to find/bring some order into the seeming chaos. Thanks! Keep up the good work.

Judy Webster said...

In recent years I've conducted a survey (of sorts) at some of my genealogy presentations. About 90% of attendees asked for handouts on paper. Although I like to save trees, my hosts (public libraries and family history societies) want to keep their customers happy, so if they want paper handouts, I am reluctant to argue.

GeniAus said...

Judy, I am not advocating doing away with paper altogether as I know most people still prefer this. I think it would be great if presenters could offer an alternative especially if they have prepared a word-processed handout. They could offer to email it to attendees or publish it online somewhere or share it publicly as a Google doc.

Cassmob (Pauleen) said...

I agree we're drowning in paper Jill but not just from handouts (perhaps I don't get to as many talks?). One consideration perhaps with handing out electronic versions is that you never know what people will do with them...claim as their own, edit then pass on etc.


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