54% of companies ban social networking sites

News reported on the Wired blog 'Epicenter' warns office workers to check their employment contract or workplace rules before logging into Twitter, Facebook, or any other social networking website.

According to Epicenter, a recent study commissioned by Robert Half Technology found that 54% of US companies have banned any use of social networking sites such as Twitter, Facebook, MySpace and LinkedIn whilst working on the job. The study, released October 9, also indicated that 19 percent of companies allow social networking only for business purposes, while 16 percent allow limited personal use.

Unsurprisingly, productivity is the core issue raised when it comes to blocking social networking sites. In July, Nucleus Research reported that companies who allowed employees to use social networking sites also had a drop of 1.5 percent in workplace productivity.

"Using social networking sites may divert employees' attention away from more pressing priorities, so it's understandable that some companies limit access," said Dave Willmer, executive director of Robert Half Technology, in a statement.

Nucleus also indicated employees who use social networking sites while working do so up to 2 hours a day. When asked if they are using these sites for business purposes, 87% admitted they weren't, and instead were using social networking for personal reasons.

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