Are you sitting at your desk with your Facebook tab open, tagging your friends in the latest memes whilst surfing the web for the latest Bachie updates? Welcome to wasting company time in the digital age, where cyberloafing is the new gossiping at the water cooler.
"Cyberloafing" is the act of using the Internet for personal purposes at work, including keeping up-to-date with your socials or browsing the latest arrivals from your favourite brand. In the world of 9-5, cyberloafing is the latest form of counter-productiveness and stealing a business' most precious resource: time.
While you might not think too much about the occasional dog video during business hours, a study published in CyberPsychology suggests otherwise. According to the survey, cyberloafing has been connected with 'dark personality traits' in employees. If you're keeping up the with the latest Kardashian's Insta post under your boss' nose, you have been henceforth charged with being socially exploitative, manipulative, self-absorbed and even narcissistic (to varying degrees). Individuals with these existing traits of self-entitlement and gaining at the expense of others are far more likely to be the cyberloafs of the proverbial bread shelf, thinking that they can waste their employer's time and get away with it.
The survey also pinpoints your co-workers with higher levels of deviant traits as more dangerous cyberloafs because they feel less remorse and guilt. Is the computer next to you seemingly always filled with non-work related screens? According to the survey, that person is more likely to have psychopathic tendencies. Apparently cyberloafs are the evil geniuses of our generation.
With cyberloafing inducing consequences from worker distraction to computer viruses, the future may become more like Big Brother with closer employee surveillance and online monitoring. If you value your independence and privacy at the office, maybe save that shopping cart until after your daily grind.