As a columnist, I get inundated with story pitches from PR firms, vendors and pundits. Most of them I just pass by, because they are not relevant to the things I write about, are not interesting, or have a bizarre point of view.
So when Angela Cuzzo of MRB Public Relations, who does work for Cabinet NG, pitched me on a story idea, I set it aside. Well, first I laughed, then I set it aside. Because Angela was making the case that with the rising infestation of bedbugs, accounting firms that have not yet converted to electronic document management systems should do so for health reasons. She even quoted a recent article by Laura Petrecca of USA Today, who says, “Most cubicle dwellers and corner office executives are blissfully unaware of bug problems. And many wrongly think infestations take place only in the homes of unclean folks or in college dorms. But bedbugs can survive in a multitude of eek-evoking settings, such as offices, movie theaters and libraries.”
Bedbugs, Cuzzo said in all seriousness, can infest your file cabinets. But I remained skeptical and did not respond. For which I humbly apologize.
Turns out she is on to something. The Wall Street Journal has been covering a bedbug infestation at Google’s headquarters in New York, noting that infestations have also hit the offices of Time Warner, sever retaill stores, the Brookly District Attorney’s Office and the Empire State Building. And bedbugs do, in fact, like to infest in paper files.
I am a believer in document management systems, and believe that every accounting firm should have already done away with as much paper as possible. And if the threat of bedbugs helps to prod a few firms in that direction, so much the better.