“GoPaperless Solutions marketing messages urge consumers to switch to electronic services with the implication that this is more environmentally responsible than print and paper,” the release states in explaining their complaint against the digital document company.
“In addition, the company’s “Green Commitment” makes several claims about the environmental impacts of paper without considering the environmental impacts of switching to electronic communications, and without verifiable studies which are specific to their business.”
We find it pretty hard to believe that a company like GoPaperless is this out of touch with pressure from the FTC on greenwashing claims – especially in light of the number of big name companies backing away from green claims.
In addition to the FTC ruling last year, there is growing consumer mistrust of greenwashing claims, as digital users are savvy enough to understand that electronic devices have carbon footprints of their own, and simply saving trees is not a recipe for environmental responsibility.
It’s easy to slap a label on your digital services and call them green. It’s far harder to understand the sustainability issue and the environmental impact of digital technology. The good news is we have an organization like Two Sides North America, plus an increasingly aware consumer base, to help spot, report and combat these #greenwashing tactics.