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The stubborn persistence of paper in a digital world

People still like doing business face-to-face

Gillian Tett
Published Fri, Oct 21, 2022 · 11:00 AM

LAST week, like an estimated 19 million Americans, I performed an unpleasant modern ritual: I paid my taxes, just before the extended filing deadline of Oct 17.

It is an annual nationwide task that sparks regular debate among economists and politicians over which tax policy makes most sense. It also highlights a question we rarely articulate but which matters: just how much do we trust digital services? How far do we crave flesh-and-blood contact – or paper and ink?

The recent experience of H&R Block, a gigantic American tax adviser, is striking …

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