by Mike Masnick

State Senator Looks To Ban Solitaire

from the bad-news-all-around dept

It seems like a pretty straightforward issue. A state senator in North Carolina is claiming that he can save the state tons of cash by passing laws banning games like Solitaire and Minesweeper from government computers. While many may react by saying that state employees shouldn't be wasting time like that, the issue isn't quite that simple. It's not like banning these games will suddenly turn non-productive time into productive time. If state workers are looking for ways to slack off, they'll find them somewhere else easily enough. As plenty of studies have shown workers are feeling overburdened by new technologies that make their worklife creep into their personal life. Letting someone blow off a bit of steam by playing some solitaire shouldn't be a big issue. In fact, if they can do it quickly during down time it may be a "refresher" that lets them be more productive the rest of the time. Now, obviously, there are some who abuse the availability of the games, but those people should be found out for not completing their work -- not for playing games. All this will really do is make a bunch of state workers even more disgruntled -- and that can't be good for productivity.

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  • identicon
    Tim, 21 Mar 2005 @ 5:09am

    No Subject Given

    How many people actually use a Windoze standard game such as Minesweeper for real respite, anyway?

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

  • identicon
    Beck, 21 Mar 2005 @ 6:50am

    Computer Training

    When we install a new computer system, sometimes there are people who have never used a computer before, such as those who work on the manufacturing floor.

    We install the PCs a few weeks early and encourage those people to play solitaire so they can get used to using a computer, using a mouse, etc. It helps to allay the fear of the unknown when that new computer system is installed.

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

  • identicon
    promytius syl, 21 Mar 2005 @ 7:21am

    efficacy of thought

    This from 'representatives' that vote themselves over $20k in raises after midnight in a special session and refuse to raise the minimum wage of their electorate. But then given the sonambulist nature of the electorate, they are getting exactly what they voted for.
    Efficiency? Have you ever listened to a congressional session? They can't pronounce the word. We could save millions/billions a year by sending them all home permanently.

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

  • identicon
    Jared, 21 Mar 2005 @ 8:43am


    Interestingly enough, I don't know of any state government agency that has suggested saving money on administrative cuts. Wonder why that is? Lots of $$$ could be saved there instead of worrying about solitare.

    As a side note, how much did it cost to even talk about removing solitare?

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

    • identicon
      Foston, 21 Mar 2005 @ 12:58pm

      Re: Cuts

      exactly. All this is is posturing by some idiot hoping to make a name for himself. He should run for president.


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

      • identicon
        Your bill collector, 22 Mar 2005 @ 10:02am

        Thank you employer !

        I am thankful that my employer allows us to play solitaire WHILE working ... If I didn't have the ability to surf the web or play games while doing my woefully boring phone job, I wouldn't work here.

        Does this government 'tard not understand multi-tasking ?

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

        • identicon
          Filde, 4 May 2009 @ 4:10pm

          Re: Thank you employer !

          I agree to this article, (on techdirt, not on the "actual article) but not quite to you...
          See, multitasking is actually impossible. There have been plenty studies to prove it.
          Not that I don't agree, just a bit of correction.

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

  • icon
    drteknikal (profile), 21 Mar 2005 @ 9:04am

    ban interactive training and online manuals, too

    These games are simplistic, and intended to help novice users devlop their mouse skills and hand-eye coordination. I understand prohibiting them in a production environment, but this is trivial to do by policy, and doesn't require legislation.

    The legislation will also prevent the legitimate uses regardless of the context. We should extend this by making sure that no user is allowed to spend any time learning to use their system -- remove the interactive training and online documentation as well.

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

  • identicon
    Billy J. West Jr., 21 Mar 2005 @ 12:28pm

    This does not need to be Law.

    This is something that should be covered by local policy, not Law. Games have no business on an official workstation, and it's a trivial matter to have the IT department uninstall them or remotely set the permitions so the users can't run them. Of course, with Windows, a trivial matter still takes quite a bit of manpower to perform...

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

  • identicon
    Roy Costa, 13 Feb 2010 @ 9:56am

    Florida to Ban Online Training?

    In a move to placate its preferred training providor, Florida Department of Business and Professional Regulation will be evaluating whether to ban online food safety training, limiting the competition for training in food safety for its 500,000 food workers. This is a far more threatening move to the IT world then the ban on online games.

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

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