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Paper vs. Parchment
#1
This is silly and pendantic, but I think it's very interesting to think about. This especially came to mind after I spent $30 on a pack of nice vellum.

I've noticed the amount of characters who pin up parchment posters, write notes on parchments, have notebooks full of the stuff and whatnot. It's clear it has regular paper. It's also clear that parchment looks cool and sounds more rustic/vintage/antiquated.

In reality, parchment is actually... very expensive. It's very durable and still used today for formal documents and high-end invitations. It's sister to vellum. Unless it's vegan, it's made from cured, stretch animal hide (lambskin, if I remember right).

Considering WoW, the sheer amount of books readily available to people says that basic paper is accessible and widely produced. Now, a Paladin's libram may very well be some blessed parchment, and inscriptions and schematics are, understandably due to their content's value and material in question's durability, varying grades of parchment.

IRL, before the process of making paper was dragged over to Europe, many towns only had one book due to them being written on precious parchment, usually the Bible. Also, parchment can be recycled; you can scrape the ink off and write on it.

When people tack posters up in parchment, it's much like sitting down a welcome mat made from precious furs. While durable, you want to keep it out of the elements. And, since it's made from animal skin, temperature control keeps it from going brittle.

Consider your beloved parchment next time, my friends.
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#2
Well, while this particular operation is used to create the parchment in both modern times and in the past, there is nothing in the WoW lore that specifically cites that this process is applied to the parchment that is widely used today. With the abundance of wildlife and the ethereal energies that power the rich world of Azeroth, it is completely plausible for the population to have been able to master the art of mass-produced parchment.

Take, for example, the industrial prowess of phlogiston. Obviously phlogiston harkens back to the now defunct theory of scientist Becher in his theory of why materials reach combustion in the way that they do. We have been able to debunk this theory with our current understanding of science, and have proved no such substance exists.

However....in the WoW world, this type of thing does exist. It would allow to create glorious marvels of technology and allow for advanced harvesting techniques that could kick start industrialization like never before. Because of this advanced infrastructure, it could be very possible that an otherwise expensive material like parchment could be made into a mass-produced cheap substance as it is used in game.

And besides. Parchment just fits in better with the mideval fantasy aesthetic that Blizzard has worked so hard to work for. To take it away would be like asking for a knight to remove his armor, or for the intensification laser on a gnomish death ray gun to be shrunk by a few millimeters.
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