Why Japan is Obsessed With Fax Devices and Online Faxing

The Japanese have divorced their walkmans, are still in love with their antique fax devices, and are also flirting around with online fax services.

The Japanese love handwriting letters and notes as well, which is such a boro boro* technique.
Then they fax these little handwritten notes. They don’t type the notes using a keyboard – they write them by hand; they don’t email these notes – they send them through their ancient fax device. Some Japaneses use their pen mouse to write those lovely handwritten notes on their computer and send these to the recipient’s fax device by using an online faxing service.

So why do the Japs love to write and fax when email can be simpler and faster?

According to Yataro Suzuki, who heads a talent agency and has nothing to do with making Suzuki cars, handwriting brings out feelings and passions much better than keyboarding on a computer. He, and many other warm-hearted Japanese, find emailing a very cold practice.

So, if handwriting brings out passions, does it mean that the Japanese have figured out a substitute for Viagra? Chau Chau**. But that’s another story.

So what else is happening with faxing in Japan, which has the fastest broadband speeds in the world?
The Internet Fax Research Institute recently conducted a survey and reported that 87.5% of Japanese businessmen opine that faxing is essential to business. These businessmen still prefer handwriting their faxes on plain paper or with a pen mouse.

So, what is this Japanese fixation about handwriting and faxing?

Well, it’s all about Japanese culture. In Japan, employers and business owners judge people’s personalities based on their handwriting. The other reason is that Japan is in hot, crazy love with hard copies. The Japanese love holding documents – and they cannot hold emails. But they’re okay with an email to fax. Many documents in Japan require seals, not signatures – and this is why the Japanese want to hold their documents.

There’s one more reason why Japan loves faxing. Over 20% of Japan’s population is over 65 years of age. These folks have grown up in the fax era. In fact, when business owners do not get a fax from any customer over 65, they call up to ask if all is well. These golden oldies loathe emailing, and so they fax.
The silver lining, as per the Internet fax Research Institute, is that more and more Japanese companies have started using e-fax (email to fax) because it is cheaper, efficient and environmental-friendly.

This explains the mystery about the Japanese and their faxing.

*Old and worn out
** Wrong
*** Oh I see!

Source: http://www.bbc.co.uk/news/magazine-19045837

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