Fri. Sep 30th, 2022

Hey there everyone, Last week I made a couple of comments on the changes that have been taking place on campus over the summer, and I’m realizing I left one out that’s created quite a stir on campus….

Papercut. The most annoying little injury on the face [finger?] of the planet. Silly little cuts from shuffling pages or passing papers that bleed for too long and remain sore for longer. Naturally, they’ve built up a negative connotation. Now I also get to equate this word with my weekly number of pages that I’m allowed to print out while on campus, which has recently gained an equally unfortunate standing in my mind.

Does everyone remember last semester when your weekly printing limit was 300 pages? I would often look at that number and wonder how in the world anyone would ever use that many pages a week, every week, and thought it was a total waste. Now, it seems my unspoken thoughts were responded to in the form of PaperCut – the university’s new term for our weekly printing limit: 125 pages.

“That’s less than half!” you may exclaim. My reaction was more of an overly-exaggerated, hands-on-head, “Holy crow!”

The reason behind my (and many others’) alarm was because this seemed like a drastic cut. As stated before, I did believe 300 pages a week was completely excessive, but now I’m caught in a terrible web of really needing to monitor what I can print and when.

As an English major subjected to many classes using the new D2L system, many of my professors post .pdf files for students to print out and bring to class – moreso than using actual textbooks. When these classes meet multiple times a week, that adds up to a lot of printing. I personally ran out of pages by Wednesday of last week, and was therefore unprepared for several classes later on in the week due to not having a physical copy of the readings. From what I’ve observed, this has become a problem with many students of various majors, though many of the Quad staff (mostly English/Comm majors) have expressed frustration with the new, lower PaperCut.

Another department that’s been hit hard by the dramatically-lowered page cut is the theater program. Students working on theatrical productions throughout the semester are required to print out various copies of scripts, dramaturgical information and production notes. Oftentimes, the script alone for a show is over the current page limit, which requires students with printers to use the majority of their ink on non-academic writing, and those without to pay expensive rates at Staples or other office supply stores.

The benefit to PaperCut is that it does indeed save needless pages that students would use for personal, non-academic reasons. The lower number requires students to plan for the number of pages that they can allow for personal vs. academic printing per week, and D2L and E-Reserves provide a way for students to avoid buying extra texts for several selections per book. The PaperCut counter is also a new tool, which allows students to see how many pages they have left on their printing limit every week.

Though the decrease in pages was a definite benefit as a page-saving concept, most students were caught completely off-guard by the sharp drop in their printing limit. Hopefully students will be able to adjust to this new printing limit, but I know I’m going to save up the scraps of money I can for my own printer and ink from now on.

peace to you all,



…A brief addition from the Newsdesk:

When reading Tara’s editorial, I stopped at her mention of running out of paper by Wednesday. “Wednesday?”, I exclaimed. I was out of pages by 10a.m. Tuesday. As an English education major, I have some classes that don’t even assign textbooks, but rather note in the syllabus that “everything is available online.” My reaction? That’s awesome; one less book to buy. But then, I have a 60 page article for Tuesday, and a 65 page article for Thursday, and four other classes with articles responses and papers.

Here’s the deal, West Chester. I pay a tech fee. It’s 116 dollars and, according to your website, the purpose is to “provide equitable access to technology resources.” I am NOT being provided equitable access at 125 pages a week. If you want to refund that fee, I’d be more than happy to buy myself some ink for my printer, but I don’t think that should be necessary. Do you?


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