I seized upon it because I personally find, and many people in my creative writing class find, that ideas flow better on paper than on screen. I have anecdotal evidence, so was interested in backing it up with a bit of theory. We always gravitate towards whatever bits of research prove our prejudices, don't we?
But whatdya know, this is another example of a distorted news story getting passed on and passed on like an urban legend. As van Nimwegen points out angrily in a rebuttal on Boing-Boing :
I have indeed done research at Utrecht University, it did involve computer interfaces, and my doctoral thesis was indeed called "The paradox of the guided user: assistance can be counter-effective. (But) Never, ever in my life have I investigated the use of paper and pens/pencil, nor did I ever mention any of these. NOT ONCE, leave alone that I have done experiments with them!(A much better account of what van Nimwegan was actually investigating can be found on the BBC website.)
Journalists badly need to acquire the skill of clicking round to compare sources and getting at what the news really is!
Hmmm, it's curious how this post started out as being about one thing (paths to creativity) and ended up by being about something totally other (shoddy journalistic research).