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Going off the Grid

Going off the Grid


By George Morin

There was an interesting article in the NY Times recently about a study from the University of California Irvine that looked at being disconnected

The study, “A Pace Not Dictated by Electrons: An Empirical Study of Work Without Email,” looked at 13 workers in a typical office setting and asked them to discontinue e-mail for five days. The results were that during the e-mail hiatus, these people spent longer periods of time focusing on a single task at work and shifted between computer windows much less than those who were slaves to their in-box.

I’ve often wondered whether or not we could ever completely disconnect from not just our inboxes, but from all of the various forms of communications that we use as part of the profession (Facebook, Twitter, Skype, etc.).  As an industry that is entirely dependent on being connected to both clients and journalists, many of us would suffer from a case of ‘Outlook Anxiety’ after just a half hour of not looking at our e-mail (this includes mobile devices, folks – no cheating!).

Given the length of today’s news cycle, I’d say no, but let me know what you think.  Could you go ‘off the grid for 5 days and still be an effective PR person?

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