The Roots and Reasons of Our Tech Hoarding Problem

The Roots and Reasons of Our Tech Hoarding Problem

Jason Yang
Feb 11, 2013

As Valentine's Day nears, it gives us pause to take stock of all that we love...all of the tech we love, that is. Of course it's easy to love the shiny and new, but there's always going to be old devices and accessories that prove difficult to part ways with. We explore why we just can't seem to let go of our old tech, even if it means our stuff just sits rotting away in a storage closet somewhere taking up space.

So why do we have so much trouble parting with old technology we've accumulated over the years? Whether it's an old television set or computer monitor, random cable, or camera, we always seem to store things away, shoving things into our ever-bulging closets. So why do we have so much trouble letting go?

Maybe it's because like keeping a set of "skinny clothes", we're holding onto these items imagining the chance maybe someday we'll find ourselves needing their use again. So we find ourselves hanging onto every little adapter or cable or bolt and bracket that we've ever come across.

Sometime it's because we spent so much damn money on a particular tech device or accessory, even though it's now worthless, we just can't bear to toss it out with the trash or let it go for pennies on the dollar. That old $4,000 rear projection screen TV that would cost $500 to repair? That $1,500 23" Apple Cinema Display with the acrylic case that's starting to crack and requires a brick of an adapter for its ADC connection type while you can get just about any old 23" monitor for $200. That $3,000 video camera that your smartphone outperforms and is always in your pocket. It's insane how much money we've sunk into tech and now we should just get rid of it like it didn't cost us a fortune before and is now worthless to us?

Or perhaps we're just lazy. Maybe there's personal content on a smart phone or hard drive that we just need to clear out before we get rid of it. We could be just waiting to take a picture of it before listing it on Craigslist. Or maybe we promised it to our nephew but we keep forgetting to bring it with us whenever we see him. It might be that yard sale you keep talking about having and keep holding on to things for.

And then there's sentimental value. How can we possibly let go of something we worked extra hours over the summer to afford? It was so beautiful that we went out and got it and we've kept it in such great condition over all these years and it still looks so pretty, just sitting there lonely and forlorn. There's no resale value but we can't bear to just toss it out with the trash.

Whether it's hoarding or love or obsession or whatever reason you can justify to yourself, share with us your old loves, and tell us why you just can't let go.

Confessions of a Tech Hoarder: Love It or Leave It
Using Social Networking to Recycle, Sell, & Donate Tech
Our Favorite Ways To Reuse & Recycle Old Tech
Time to Declutter: Smart Things To Do with Old Cables & Chargers
Responsible Ways To Recycle Your Old Tech
Declutter For a Good Cause: Recycle/Donate Your Old Tech
When Re-Gifting Is Good: Where to Recycle and Donate Tech
What To Do With Your Old iPhone? (Or Other Smartphone)

(Images: Shutterstock/majcot, Shutterstock/magicinfoto, Shutterstock/Ioannis Pantzi)

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