Latest Bogus Report Blames Facebook For Productivity Loss

from the yeah,-try-again dept

We've pointed out in the past how often we see totally bogus reports about productivity losses due to "personal surfing" at work. These reports are always based on research done by companies that sell internet filters, and yet the press almost never bothers to point out this fairly obvious conflict of interest. The latest twist on all of this is for one internet filtering company (who shall remain nameless, since they don't deserve free advertising for pulling this stunt) to now tie productivity losses to Facebook. All the filter company does is estimate how much time people spend on Facebook, and then claim that all that time is lost productivity. Of course, this ignores all of the real evidence from actual studies that show things like people who spend time personal surfing at work usually more than make it up either by being more productive when they're working, or by working from home at other times. Then there was the study that showed that those who do some personal surfing at work tend to see "better time management, stress reduction, improvement of skill sets and helping to achieve a balance between work and personal life." We wouldn't want to encourage that at all among employees, now would we? Since these filtering firms just won't stop these bogus studies, does someone want to calculate just how much money has been wasted by these firms performing such ridiculous studies?


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  1.  
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    GoblinJuice, Aug 20th, 2007 @ 8:32am

    Facebook and

    pr0n. =D

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  2.  
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    Matt, Aug 20th, 2007 @ 9:19am

    If you take a look at the article, the chairman of the company that sponsored the research did say:

    "banning Facebook from work computers was not necessarily the best way to combat time wasting, as the site encouraged socializing, which in turn made people happier to work longer hours."

    I agree that the point of the research is to sell more software, but to be fair, the chairman of the company that sponsored the research is quoted making the same claims that you do. Wouldn't it be fair of you to point that fact out in your article?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  3.  
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    Buzz, Aug 20th, 2007 @ 9:36am

    ...

    Is that interview real?

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  4.  
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    Mike (profile), Aug 20th, 2007 @ 9:45am

    Re: ...

    Is that interview real?

    No. It's spam and it's been deleted. Some guy comes and posts that same bogus interview to every Techdirt post that mentions Facebook. He also has bogus interviews about YouTube. We've been able to block many of them, but sometimes they still get through.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  5.  
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    Buzz, Aug 20th, 2007 @ 9:52am

    I didn't think so.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  6.  
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    Trish, Aug 20th, 2007 @ 9:55am

    facebook

    At one time productivity was down because people had solitaire on their systems... then came Free cell and all hell broke loose.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  7.  
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    Anonymous Coward, Aug 20th, 2007 @ 10:03am

    Funny thing, I'm nearly positive that companies DON'T want happier employees that are more productive. Or by sheer luck I could just get crappy jobs over and over again.

    Looking at my latest one, I was told a lot of things such as being able to request time off and discussing work practices.

    In actuality, I nearly got 'sent home' for insubordination (would of loved to that day, it was busy as hell) for daring to do a task in a different way than my supervisor told me to, when my way was faster (and again, really busy day).

    I request time off for someone's 21st birthday three weeks in advance, instead have to pull a double shift because at the last minute they give the day off to someone else (who didn't request it, just asked for it two days before).

    Then there are all the times I've been told to finish someone else's job (nearly daily) before finishing mine, then get yelled at for working overtime.

    Oh and this is with me making 1/3rd less than other employees. Every attempt to request a raise is slapped down. Three seperate employees, and one of the more relaxed supervisors all wonder why I haven't walked out.

    Oh how I wish I didn't have bills.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  8.  
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    Ajax 4Hire, Aug 20th, 2007 @ 10:11am

    Techdirt cause my productivity to go down...

    Spending too much time on Techdirt.com
    My productivity is shot and I

    oh, sorry boss is here, gotta get back to work.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  9.  
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    Yeah, Aug 20th, 2007 @ 11:59am

    i agree with ajax lol this site definately kills my productivity!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  10.  
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    tks, Aug 20th, 2007 @ 1:08pm

    reading Anonymous Coward's posts always kill my productivity.

    although, after reading his posts, it makes me realize how much better he's got it than myself.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  11.  
    identicon
    Svante T. H. J., Aug 21st, 2007 @ 12:24am

    Nice move

    Nice move on not publishing the company's name. It's about time that small companies learn that "Bad publicity is better than none" is not tolerated by everybody.

    Thank you Mike

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  12.  
    identicon
    Con von Hoffman, Aug 21st, 2007 @ 8:22am

    Aaargh!

    Thanks for getting the story right. You wouldn't believe how many MSM stories just fell for it.

    Good work.

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  13.  
    identicon
    Bob L., Aug 21st, 2007 @ 12:12pm

    Something will always be a drain

    Trish has it right..
    "At one time productivity was down because people had solitaire on their systems... then came Free cell and all hell broke loose."

    There is always something that will drain productivity... At least that is the perception.

    roblaw

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]

  14.  
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    Mr. Clock, Aug 21st, 2007 @ 9:48pm

    People will always procrastinate

    Take the internet away completly and people will still find ways of not working. I read books, talk to people, use the toilet excessivly, make coffee and wait to get it the whole time, hell I even talk to my boss for extraordinarily long times. Its not the internet that is killing productivity its the employee that was hired and he/she will do it no matter what!

     

    reply to this | link to this | view in thread ]


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