It is estimated that globally there are now more cell phones than tooth brushes. While that estimation seems a little high, it is certainly hard to argue that hand held device, particularly cell phones, have fully infiltrated our society. Even more amazing is the speed at which we went from wall phones, to pagers, to nearly every person above the age of 12 having a cell phone with them at all times. As a result, many businesses and organizations are finding ways to migrate as many of our daily transactions, events and activities as possible on to our little 8X5 inch screens as possible.

Unlike the days of the Yellow Pages where you had to search alphabetically for the goods and services you needed, today you can instantly purchase almost anything using your cell phone. The fact that you always have your cell phone with you means, most companies can conduct business with you at all hours, from wherever you happen to be. “At the rate our society is going it is likely that we will ultimately eliminate the need for paper and writing utensils entirety.” Says Micheal Bayott of the Institute for Cultural Inscription.

In June of 2000 the government enacted the e-Sign Act (The Electronic Signatures in Global and National Commerce Act (E-Sign Act), which validates the use of electronic signatures and records to satisfy any statute, regulation, or rule of law requiring that such information be provided in writing, if the consumer has affirmatively consented to such use and has not withdrawn such consent.

The law basically says that electronic signatures are to be considered 100% valid and shall not be rejected solely on the basis that it is electronic. Businesses looking for ways to streamline operations and increase revenue are taking advantage of the new legislation to create faster operational models where business can be transacted instantaneously from anywhere in the world.

In addition to accelerating the pace of business it is also believed the e-commerce also produces a more secure audit trail. Instead of relying on witnesses and notaries to validate the parties to a transaction, electronic transactions utilize digital finger prints such as IP addresses to authenticate signors to a greater degree.

While there are many people who remain loyal to good old pens and paper, it’s only a matter of time before paper documents become extinct and unacceptable