Ann All, a blogger for a very mediocre tech site (I’m being generous here), wrote a post today titled “Lack of Facebook Access Makes You Want to Quit? Grow up Punks.” In it she cites a study which found 39% of 18-24 year olds ‘would consider leaving their jobs if a Facebook ban was imposed,’ and uses it as evidence that this younger generation is obviously lazy, spoiled, and too reliant on social media.
In a complete non sequitur delightfully devoid of logical thought, she even goes so far as to suggest that the new generation’s professed environmental responsibility (another study found 33% of young people would be willing to forego a portion of their salary to work for an environmentally conscious company) is disingenuous because “those who’d quit a job over Facebook just want to be able to do what they want, at any time.” Bravo Ann, very succinct argument.
I usually ignore things like this but extent of her ignorance was simply too much for me to bear, so I sent Ann an email:
Subject: Pesky Reality Getting in the way of a Good Story
I normally wouldn’t bother responding to your post, but the degree to which you miss the point coupled with the fact that you write for a technology blog that people actually read is very disturbing.
The issue has absolutely nothing to do with Facebook itself. Very few (if any) companies only block Facebook for the obvious reason that there are a number of viable alternatives to it. Furthermore, not many companies block any kind of because they are smart enough to realize that there are plenty of other ways for people to waste time while at work. Just as there is a MySpace to Facebook, there are alternatives like text messaging and (gasp) even talking around the good old water cooler to online social networks.
Blocking Facebook accomplishes nothing except inconvenience productive employees and force unproductive employees to find other ways to waste time. A company who doesn’t realize this is horribly out of touch with reality and many members of younger generations are astute enough to realize that.
You’re either one of the ‘out of touch with reality’ bunch or a “journalist” looking for a sensational headline. I sincerely hope it’s the former