I recently registered to participate in Blog Action Day, October 15th, 2007, Topic: The Environment
At the time that I registered a few weeks ago, there were just over 6,000 participants registered to blog about the Environment. The number is now currently well over 14,000 and still growing!
Thousands of Voices
It’s a really great concept… The idea behind Blog Action Day is that there will be thousands of people blogging about the same topic, all on the same day. You can basically blog about whatever you want in relation to the Environment as it relates to your blog and your readers.
In my case, I wanted to write about the benefits of electronic media (specifically the areas of web design) on the Environment…
The Benefits of Web Design on the Environment
I have never been one for paper clutter… I hate having a paper trail. Don’t get me wrong – I like keeping records, but I prefer electronic records. For example, I send out proposals, contracts and invoices to my clients as PDF files attached to emails, rather than via fax or snail mail. If my client wants to print it out, that’s no problem – but as far as I’m concerned… I just don’t want the clutter. It takes up valuable space in my relatively small office. And to look at the bigger picture – it doesn’t require trees.
As far as Web Design, well, think about it… the internet is the perfect place to help promote you business, cause, ideas, etc. all in electronic format. You can reach an unlimited audience without any effect on the environment. Well, I should correct that – you can reach an unlimited audience with a very positive effect on the environment.
A company is no longer required to spend large amounts of money printing out brochures, sell sheets and catalogs. They can place all of their information and products on the internet instead. Think about how many mini-catalogs you get in the mail – often times from companies you never signed up with. What usually happens to those catalogs? They typically either sit in a bin full of old catalogs that you did nothing more than take a quick glance at… or they go straight in the trash. At least that’s what happens in my house. What a waste, as far as I’m concerned… wasted paper (trees), wasted ink, wasted money. That same company will spend more money on an updated catalog just a few months later, to reflect new prices, products, etc…. just for it to end up in your junk mail pile that’s going to sit on the kitchen counter for a week. More wasted printing costs, more wasted paper.
What’s the alternative? An e-commerce driven web site. Yes, there is still cost on the end of the company as far as having to design and maintain the web site (similar to the cost for a graphic designer to design the print catalog). But with the web, you don’t have the additional print costs. Every time a product changes, just make a quick change online and bam, your set! No need to re-work an entire printed piece and run a new set of prints.
The same thing applies to general information about a company. What if you printed 5,000 brochures to send out about your company. Then you get a new Toll Free phone number, or move, or offer new services. What happens to any leftover brochures? Trash. Waste. This same company could update their web site in a matter of a few minutes to reflect the new contact information. If they were depending solely on print media, it would require updating the files for the brochure, and making another print run – more used trees.
Obviously I’m biased, since I am a web designer, but that’s just how I see it…