Internet in the workplace

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Thread: Internet in the workplace

  1. #1
    Senior Member
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    Question Internet in the workplace

    Well, I haven't been involved in any Cosmos discussions lately and I like these debates, so I thought I'd just start one that I was thinking about last night a bit. Anyways, it's about Internet in the workplace and whether it is a benefit to the workers and the workplace or whether it is a tool that is over-valued and creates a lot of wasted time.

    OK, well, firstly, I'm not too sure where I stand on this issue. Everytime I think about whether the Internet is helpful or is just a time waster, I often believe one side, but then think about very valid points for the other side and I'm left without a decisive belief. I am hoping some of you can post what you believe and hopefully I'll be able to get a clear opinion in my head.

    I'll say some points for both sides and maybe at the end I'll be leaning towards one side, right now I'm thinking that it is a benefit to the workplace, but I'm not too sure...will have to look up some sites and get some research/surveys/etc.

    - Internet is a great resource of information
    Well, I'm sure we all know that the Internet is a great resource and has stacks on information on just about anything that you can think of. If there is ever a situation at work where you need to find out how to do something, how to solve a problem or what a command is for some program, I'm positive you will find your answer with some smart browing...yes, I know we are all thinking google. Also, apart from just going on the Internet to search for problems and solutions, you can also browse the Internet and use it to enhance your knowledge. Sure, there are manuals, documentations, courses, etc. that aren't on the Internet about products/applications/programming languages, etc, but on the net you can also find great texts and great communities (such as AO) where you can learn and all of this you can do from your office chair. Also, you might find some great people who have knowledge on what you want to learn and you might get some great pointers from them. There really isn't a limit or boundary where the Internet resource ends - it is HUGE. You could never consume all the information on the Internet, it's just not possible. It's a resource that everyone can have access to and it's a resource which just keeps growing and growing.

    - Wondering off in cyberspace
    Now, with this great resource in our hands, how can we be sure we will only use it for good and not evil. Well, what I'm saying is, when we find what we need or when we havn't got much work to do, will we be tempted to just wonder off into cyberspace browsing all these sites that we find interesting? I mean I'm sure you all know how easy it is to just browse around for hours on end pointlessly surfing thru cyberspace. As stated in the point above, the Internet is a huge resource of information. However, it's also a huge resource for other things that are not related to work. I mean think about it, you can do almost anything on the Internet. You can play games, listen to radio stations, read news/sport, talk to people and many more. So where is the balance? When do we really take a step back and look at how we used the Internet and whether we used 90% for work-related stuff and 10% for others, not vice versa. I mean the time you spend wondering off in the many pages that the Internet offers, you could have been reading a manual or learning from some co-workers about something you didn't know. I'm not saying that the 8 hours (or how many ever) you spend at work you should be working non-stop, that would just stress people out - and I'm sure some of you might be very busy and actually do work throughout the entire working day, however, most people probably aren't. OK, let's say that you do work for about 6 hours of your day and somewhere in the day you have 2 hours where you don't really have work. In this 2 hours, you might be off browsing the Internet and getting lost in the ever-expanding world of cyberspace, however, what would you do without the Internet? Maybe you could have spent a few of them wasted hours learning and enhancing your knowledge by, as stated above, reading manuals or learning some things of some co-workers. I mean you may say, 2 hours isn't much. However, if you add up 2 hours over the many times that this occurs, you will have a lot of time in which you could have enhanced your skills at whatever you could have been studying/learning/observing, etc.

    - Conclusion
    Well, I am really not sure whether the Internet at work is a time-waster for most people. All I can say is that I am glad that we have the Internet, as I believe it has solved some problems, such as removing barriers of communication and basically it has brought another form of medium in which people can do almost anything. So, I am going to say that the Internet may indeed be a resource that people take advantage of at work and waste a generous amount of their time onm, however, I believe a good worker will know the balance and will know that they have a job to do and that their employee is paying them to do their work and they should do that work. So, when that work is done, I think that you can browse the Internet for your enjoyment for a while, I'm not saying, hey, if you only needed to do 10 minutes of work today, you can browse for the next 7 hours and 50 minutes, there is a limit and if that's the case, you should identify that and think of what you can do, such as maybe read the news online for a few minutes if you want and then go see if you can help anyone else or learn something new in the company/organization - enhance you skills, enhance your knowledge so that oneday, if your employer fires you, you have more experience and a better chance to get another job (that's just one benefit).

    So yes, that's it. In short, I will say that I think the Internet is a good resource. It is a HUGE resource and we do need to control how we use it at work so that we do not mis-use it and spend too much time on it, resulting in lost job productivity. We have to remember what we are there (at work) for.

    Anyways, I've got a few links/pdf files listed below which might help you in making your decision. If you don't care much on the issue, check out the links and documents anyways, they are very interesting.

    This is from vault.com - it's got many various survery there, check em out if you like:
    http://www.vault.com/surveys/interne.../index2000.jsp

    This is one survery that this topic especially relates too, check out how close it is:
    http://www.vault.com/surveys/interne...image=employer

    Greg

    NOTE: The attached is a ACROBAT (pdf) file about Internet Usage and the Workplace - If you are interested in this, give it a read, it has some good info. Or even a quick browse if you don't won't to look at the whole think - it is interesting what people have to say and what they believe about this.
    \"Do you know what people are most afraid of?
    What they don\'t understand.
    When we don\'t understand, we turn to our assumptions.\"
    -- William Forrester

  2. #2
    AO Antique pwaring's Avatar
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    I can't see anyone objecting, so long as you get your job done by the end of the day. It's only a problem if you're wasting money by utilising bandwidth that's required for another purpose or that costs money e.g. a dial-up account.

    I use the net all the time at work, and my employer doesn't care, especially as it's usually during my lunch hour anyway. So long as I get my job done it doesn't make any difference. It's kind of a part-payment for my services, although this would obviously not apply in all cases.
    Paul Waring - Web site design and development.

  3. #3
    The Lizard King SarinMage's Avatar
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    as long as you get your job done its fine, but i think too many people DONT get their job done, (in my experience almost ALL the people ive worked wih have wasted too much time on the 'net, and dont aget there jobs done.)

  4. #4
    AntiOnline Senior Member souleman's Avatar
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    I know it is, because that is what I do all day
    \"Ignorance is bliss....
    but only for your enemy\"
    -- souleman

  5. #5
    Priapistic Monk KorpDeath's Avatar
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    Um. Yes it is.

    Although necessary, it can lead to laziness.
    Mankind have a great aversion to intellectual labor; but even supposing knowledge to be easily attainable, more people would be content to be ignorant than would take even a little trouble to acquire it.
    - Samuel Johnson

  6. #6
    Senior Member
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    if people want to waste time they don't need the internet to do it. when people don't get their work done it shows. The good part about people goofing off on the net is, thier still at their desk, so you dont have to go looking under bathroom stall doors to find them, wasting your time as well.
    the people i work with do not waste too much time on the net, and we do most of our work on the internet so it would be easy enough to do. IMO most people have a good work ethic and the internet dosn't change that. it allows us to get more done with less effort.
    Bukhari:V3B48N826 “The Prophet said, ‘Isn’t the witness of a woman equal to half of that of a man?’ The women said, ‘Yes.’ He said, ‘This is because of the deficiency of a woman’s mind.’”

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