Monday, August 19, 2013

Should Facebook be blocked?

This is a question I have been asking myself for a long time now. If I knew that I couldn’t access it, I know I wouldn’t have the temptation to open it during office hours. I agree that it sometimes gives us a refreshing moment of break from work. For example, the other day I was kind of bogged down with work – somewhere in between, there was something I didn’t know, which made me stressful. Taking a break from it, I was talking to three friends in a group chat, which definitely gave me the freedom and the space to share my problem, thus relieving myself. But often, such break can stretch to an hour or more. And when it does, it doesn’t quite seem right.

Acting on this impulse and conviction, I blocked it. I tried thrice in fact. And each time, I got a call from staff asking me if it has been blocked. If I blocked a site other than FB, I am sure they won’t notice it at once, or their response won’t be that quick. They will not immediately telephone me to find out what happened. Of course I unblocked it immediately. I am sure there are other people who are debating on the same thought. I asked a few friends and their suggestion was that, it should not be blocked. They argued that it won’t disturb the work or the output of the staff because if they are given a specific task, they will have to finish it on the deadline. But my point is that, there are so many works that we have to carry out on day to day basis, that do not have a specific deadline. And when we have the choice to browse Facebook, or work, we have the tendency to choose the easier one, and thus compromise our work. Even in the case of a task that has to meet a specific deadline, we could choose not to dedicate as much time as it may require, and thus compromise its quality. I don’t really favour the idea of banning, (because it gives people more temptation to revel), but there has to be a way to find a balance in this case. Should all offices in Bhutan block it during office hours? We could do a survey and find out how much time we devote in browsing it and see how much it disturbs us in giving our best to the work we are assigned.


Raj Kumar said...

I disagree on blocking and banning. Your argument for blocking is not convincing to me.
I have the following questions:
1. How can you be sure that people who are not browsing Facebook are being productive and working?
2. Do you think people who goes to bank or else where (god knows) for 1 hour and never returning are far more better than ones staying in office with facebook opened and at-least picking up the phone and attending visitors.
3. Why do you think people now (at the moment) have all the time to be on Facebook or even internet? Many do not have much work anyways :-)
4. How many of us in all offices actually need Internet all day ? Writing Notesheets, compilation and writing papers and documents do not require Internet in actual sense--so why do we need internet connection at all to get some of our work done---how much of official correspondence happen through Email? So banning specific website like Facebook or otherwise do not seem correct and right to me--sorry I am not in favour of any bans and blockage.

My suggestions instead of banning:
1. Define every one's job description clearly--Clear terms of reference/job responsibilities (including bosses)
2. Hold each one accountable for the responsibility and make sure tasks are done and results delivered, make strict compliance unless there are special reasons. As long as the work results are delivered and deadlines met, let them use fb and browse any sites responsibly.
3. Use Internet and emails for official correspondence within offices and also share/discuss on issues and events.
When the world and businesses are making best use of facebook and other social media to their advantages, why would we ban and breed grumpy employees.......I would use it to take advantage of the techonology with accountability and responsibility. Just my personal thoughts :-)

Rekha Monger said...

My Facebook page used to be open from 9-5 in office when it was not blocked yet my work output used to be same as it is now.

Now that its blocked, I get to access only during lunch break and I'm OK with that as well. So it doesn't make much difference to me.

Kuenza L said...

Wow wrote with such overflowing energy that I feel you must be right. Dempata, I am not really with the idea that banning is good. I am floating the question to see what people think, and suggesting that maybe it is better to block it during office hours, just so that we don't feel it glaring at our face to be used.

And thank you Rekha for your comment. For those who are not very determined, having an access may mean disturbance.

Yeesi7 said...

Hmm. The idea of banning the Facebook doesn't sound like a good idea until and unless, Bhutan comes up with a new social networking site just like Facebook. And that is what China did. Facebook is banned in China but they have come up with a site similar to fb :D

Kuenza L said...

Thanks for sharing your view Yeesi. I appreciate that you take time to go through my blog. Maybe, even for Bhutan, it is better to have an alternative to FB -- which is Bhutan's own. The way data travel in the Internet era scares me.