Angry Bird Playing Costs Employers $1.5 Billion

Angry Birds costs employersMore like angry bosses?

Finding ways of injecting a little humanity into the workplace may be the current rage, as the digital revolution has ushered in a 24/7 work schedule for some. Employers may be hesitant to go so far as to install nap rooms in the office, but the merits of allowing workers to catch a short nap have long been made plain -- a 1995 NASA study that found a 26-minute nap improved performance 34 percent and alertness 54 percent.

Such constructive work/life balance offerings are one thing. But endless "Angry Birds" playing, however, is quite another. Struck by prior studies that investigated the workplace time (and therefore money) suck that is the annual ritual of the NCAA college basketball tournament, Alexis Madrigal, a senior editor at The Atlantic, did the same calculation for the mobile phone video game, Angry Birds.

The process derives from a formula invented by the Chicago consulting firm, Challenger, Gray & Christmas. According to the calculations, Gray says, $1.516 billion is lost each year in wages over the wing-enhanced pillaging of worker productivity.

In doing his math, Madrigal, who is currently a visiting scholar at the University of California, Berkeley, made use of the stat that Americans cumulatively devote 200 million minutes a day to those avian avengers. That figure came from a survey conducted by the market research firm, Ask Your Target Market. The data is based on interviews with a representative pool of 500 American workers.

There may be some good news to the game playing. As an article on the website The Star Online points out, half the 500 people polled by AYTM said the game helped them to unwind and relax, and even improved their mood and gave them joy. Such a reaction is even bolstered by a 2009 study conducted by Leonard Reinecke of the University of Hamburg published in CyberPsychology and Behaviour, which found that "individuals with higher levels of work-related fatigue reported stronger recovery experience during gameplay."

Are You Addicted To Angry Birds?
Angry Birds Addiction Infographic | AYTM
Infographic by: AYTM Market Research

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Oh yeah, and I love those mad birds. I go for three stars. Perfection for nothing. lol

November 13 2012 at 1:44 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Not sure how true this article is, But im sure most employees with higher paying salaries are more demanding leaving less time to play with upset birds all day. But if the birds are the center of attention. use Mobile Spy and Sniper Spy to track their productivity. This will help narrow down the numbers.

November 13 2012 at 1:43 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Angry birds rocks! I never play it at work.

September 27 2011 at 5:43 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Angry Birds isnt even very fun to play.... I just dont understand how people get "addicted" to such a shoddy game.

September 20 2011 at 9:11 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Fools and foolishness.

September 19 2011 at 12:56 AM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

Just another gimmick.

September 18 2011 at 11:59 PM Report abuse +1 rate up rate down Reply

I'm an addict.

September 18 2011 at 10:03 PM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply

Start paying these employees on a piece-work basis and Angry Bird with be flown the coop.

September 18 2011 at 9:30 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

How does Angry Birds "require participation from multiple players"? I play it by myself.

September 18 2011 at 8:20 PM Report abuse rate up rate down Reply

So the calculation assumes that all playing took place during work hours? Did no one catch that? And not just during work hours, but during a time when a boss was paying for an employee to do something else?

Hey, it's called "free time." Google it. Not everyone works for someone else, and surprisingly few people work 24 hours a day. Some people work on commission. Some people have specific goals at work and if those goals are met, how they spend their time is their own business. It's not valid to assume that every hour spent doing something comes out of the employers' paychecks. By that calculation, sleeping costs employers umpteen kadrillion dollars per year!

September 18 2011 at 8:14 PM Report abuse -2 rate up rate down Reply

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