Wepa printing leaves me weeping

Kyle Wilkinson, Columnist

Wepa printing? More like make-me-wanna-weep printing. You know, those new printer stations around campus? The ones that have “Print Faster” plastered above each kiosk? Yeah, they irritate me.

Every time I see one of the kiosks, I think of the printer-smashing scene from the movie “Office Space” (1999).

I came into the school library this past summer to print out some paperwork. I figured it would just be a quick login on a school computer, some quick typing, a few clicks and bam, job is sent and I walk a few steps to the printer to grab my paperwork. Piece of cake and I’m out of the library in less than five minutes.

I guess I didn’t realize that there weren’t any “regular” printers in the library when I walked in. I was unaware that our tech fees paid for new Wepa printers. I was upset that my Connection Card wasn’t set up yet and that I needed a six-digit PIN to secure my account. 

Those five minutes turned into 20. I was nearly late for an appointment because of it.

Fast forward to September and the first week of classes. I, and everyone else on campus, received an email from the Student Tech Fee Council about the “new student printing solution to campus called Wepa.” 

They’ve caused more of a problem than a solution. 

For starters, I now have to remember another set of PIN numbers. I forgot my original PIN and had to log in on my computer to reset my account so I could type in a different set of numbers to use in the future.

If available I can log into a computer with my CWU login, send it to a printer and be done with it. But some printers are not located near available computers. Now I have to clog my phone with yet another app and make sure to have my Connection Card handy. Just another obstacle in my way to printing.

The email also pointed out that there would be “no more standing in long lines at the SURC or [Brooks] Library or trying to get into a computer lab before a class starts because the best feature to this system is that you will be able to print to the Wepa Printer Cloud App from anywhere and from any device.” 

Not only that, but our printing fees have decreased since last year. We are now given $10 to start each quarter and I feel like I am more limited on how much and what I can print. 

Just last week I waited for five minutes at a Wepa kiosk in Bouillon Hall for someone to finish typing in their information. I had less than two minutes to print and rush off to my next class in another building. If I had been able to send my paperwork to a printer from a computer, I wouldn’t have had to wait for someone to finish typing things in and I could have simply picked up my paperwork on my way out the door. 

I think these Wepa printers have created more trouble than ways to fix past issues. I now have to wait in lines for people to finish printing. I have to remember more passwords. I have to track down new printer kiosks in different halls, the library, the SURC and 1891 Bistro. I strongly dislike this new system and wish I had been asked for student input before the Student Tech Fee Council decided to spend my fees on this.