Are you a digital hoarder? New research shows a third of Americans have files on their devices from at least a DECADE ago.
The poll of 2,000 Americans discovered 33% are holding onto files that are at least 10 years old.
Despite not needing them in ages, Americans can’t seem to let go of their old files. Over half (52%) of those studied have never deleted anything from any of their devices.
Conducted by OnePoll in conjunction with Western Digital, the study explored the digital storage habits of respondents and uncovered 41% say they actively avoid deleting pictures and videos from their digital devices.
Deleting isn’t something people want to do. Instead, 78% are just transferring them from one device to another.
Of those who transfer their digital storage from one device to another, one in 10 still don’t delete files off their old devices.
As a result of this type of digital hoarding, a fourth of Americans’ data storage is devoted to old, unnecessary files.
From gym selfies and the sheer amount of cat pictures one person has, to childhood and college photos, nearly a quarter (24%) would be embarrassed if someone were to go through the files stored on their digital devices.
The reality is, three in five have seriously considered taking the time to go through and clear out these files, but still can’t manage to pull the trigger.
Another top reason people can’t seem to let go of old files is because they consider them to be memories that they just can’t part with (35%).
Others find that the process of manually going through and deleting them to be a boring chore (32%), while many also feel guilty about permanently erasing them (26%).
However, nearly a quarter (24%) still say that keeping their digital devices full of old files stresses them out while a further 21% say digital hoarding has a negative impact on their overall life and well-being.
Over half laud cloud technology as being way more convenient than a physical device.
However, 28% don’t think their content is safe from deletion or prying eyes in the cloud.
“Over the past decade, there’s been a significant increase in the desire to capture and share every moment.
“With the staggering volume of photos, videos and documents created every second, there are challenges with storing and managing all these digital files, which we refer to as a state of ‘digital chaos.’ There are also growing concerns about privacy,” said David Ellis, vice president, product marketing, Western Digital.
“With our consumer solutions we strive to offer peace of mind that you’ve got control over your photos and videos so you can choose when and where your content is shared, accessed and stored.”
TOP 5 OBSTACLES TO DELETING UNUSED/OLD FILES
1. Possibility of needing these files in the future 39%
2. They are memories that can never be deleted 35%
3. It’s a chore or it’s boring 32%
4. Feel bad deleting old files 26%
5. Not having the time 25%