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Facebook: Blocking and Tackling

2007 July 29
by John Wallbillich

UK’s Telegraph reports that 70% of London firms surveyed are restricting employee access to social networking websites like Facebook.

Megafirm Allen & Overy had earlier followed this trend but then lifted the ban after employee complaints. According to this report, A&O initially blocked access when its “IT chiefs took the decision to block access to the website due to concerns that staff downloading videos from the site would compromise the performance of A&O’s IT systems.”

(Sounds a bit like a classic generic IT rationale. As if Facebook’s the only place a solicitor can download a video…)

A better concern would be whether lawyers are really expanding their professional networks on sites like Facebook–and are they billing their time doing it? Some are already complaining of “social network exhaustion.”

Some technology drives business results; other risks driving us to distraction. Or is it flying?

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