A plaque remaining from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem.

Above, a 1934 plaque from the Big Apple Night Club at West 135th Street and Seventh Avenue in Harlem. Discarded as trash in 2006.

Recent entries:
“Running is a mental sport and we are all insane” (4/28)
“Monday must be a man. It comes too quickly” (4/28)
“Monday is the perfect day to correct last week’s mistakes” (4/28)
“There’s no more difficult transition than Sunday to Monday” (4/28)
“What do you call a Mexican drowning in mayonnaise?"/"Sinko de Mayo.” (4/28)
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Entry from December 05, 2009
Dead Tree Edition

A “dead tree edition” is a paper copy (such as a newspaper, magazine or book), as opposed to an edition that’s online and doesn’t require paper. “Dead tree edition” has been cited in print since 1995.

Organizations that publish “dead tree editions” have been called the “dead tree media.”


Wikipedia: Hard copy
In information handling, a hard copy is a permanent reproduction, or copy in the form of a physical object, of any media suitable for direct use by a person (in particular paper), of displayed or transmitted data. Examples of hard copy include teleprinter pages, continuous printed tapes, facsimile pages, computer printouts, and radio photo prints.

Magnetic tapes, diskettes, and non printed punched paper tapes are not hard copies.

“Dead tree edition”
Dead tree edition is a term referring to a printed paper version of an article, as opposed to digital alternatives such as a web page. It is a mildly deprecating term for hard copy; variations include dead tree format and dead-tree-ware. “Dead tree” refers to trees being cut down for raw material for producing paper. The Guardian website on 29 November 2006 printed:

“Maybe this is more a multimedia victory for Jeff Randall himself: he did manage a dead-tree front page, web scoop, vodcast and major plug on the 10 O’clock news.”

A related saying among computer fans is “You can’t grep dead trees”, from the Unix command grep meaning to search the contents of text files. This means that an advantage of keeping documents in digital form rather than on paper is that they can be more easily searched for specific contents. An exception are texts stored as digital images (digital facsimile), as they cannot be easily searched, except by sophisticated means such as optical character recognition or examining the infrequently used image metadata. On the other hand, dead trees have tremendous data integrity in proper conditions.

Related terms include tree carcass for a book and tree-killer for a computer printer. These terms are all examples of dysphemism.

Word Spy
dead tree edition
(ded TREE i.dish.un) n. The paper version of an online newspaper, magazine or journal. Also: dead-tree edition.
(...)
Earliest Citation:
The Los Angeles Times is on Prodigy under the name TimesLink and, like its parent, is filled with lengthy stories on every imaginable topic. But this strong content is trapped inside one of the ugliest and most confusing user interfaces I’ve seen on an electronic paper. The opening screen sports 20 buttons, a clunky and juvenile Prodigy-style illustration and a garish ad. That said, there’s a lot here, including much material that goes beyond what’s in the dead-tree edition.
—Walter S. Mossberg, “Newspapers Go Online to Save the Industry,” The Wall Street Journal, March 23, 1995

Urban Dictionary
dead tree edition
The paper version of a journal or newspaper article
Hey, you got the dead tree edition of this ‘Quantum Tunnelling of a Boson through a Trapezoidal Potential Barrier’ paper?
Fuck Off!

by Mudit Jan 31, 2005

Posted by Barry Popik
New York CityMedia/Newspapers/Magazines/Internet • (0) Comments • Saturday, December 05, 2009 • Permalink