Online gender divide: women waste less time online than men

18 Dec 2012

While the internet in the workplace has led to greater efficiencies and capabilities, it has also led to a greater propensity for workers to waste time. Although half of all employees admit to using social media at work, it’s the men who are wasting the most time online.

Safetica Ireland, the provider of employee monitoring software, commissioned a survey from Amárach Research, carried out among more than 500 Irish employees to find out what kind of things they did online at work while not working.

These included visiting social media sites (44pc), news websites (41pc), online shopping websites (37pc), video and music websites (22pc), funny image sites (10pc), gamers websites (8pc) and adult content websites (4pc).

Some 25pc of the respondents don’t have internet access in their office while 12pc refuse to access non-work related websites during office hours.

The survey found that nearly 50pc of employees admit to using social media, such as Facebook and Twitter, during work and reading news websites.

More than a third do their online shopping at work and almost a quarter watch online videos or listen to online music.

The demographic breakdown shows that younger males lead in bad habits in all categories, except reading news, where the older males are first. Females waste much less time online in all categories, except when it comes to shopping or viewing funny pictures (of cats, most likely), they were only a few percentage points behind men, but still behind.


Another interesting find is that the higher social classes got as much as twice higher scores in most categories, except in accessing adult websites and not having any internet access.

So while those better off prefer chatting with friends, staying on top of global news and shopping while they should be working, the working-class men (as no females answered they visit adult sites) brighten their day by looking at adult sites.

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years