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Angry Birds may be the cause of $1.5 billion in productivity loss

Posted: , by Michael H.

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Angry Birds may be the cause of $1.5 billion in productivity loss
We know that this time of year tends to see a bit of a lull in news, so some pretty ridiculous stories come out, but this one is going a little far. The Atlantic's Alexis Madrigal put together some number about the potential impact of Angry Birds on productivity in the workplace. Luckily, Madrigal does readily admit that the numbers are far from scientific.

Angry Birds may be the cause of $1.5 billion in productivity loss
Madrigal estimates that if 5% of all hours spent playing Angry Birds occurs while people are at work, that could translate to $1.5 billion in lost productivity. The assumption is based on statistics that say Angry Birds is played about 868 million hours per year, and a fairly arbitrary average wage for workers of $35 per hour. Of course, even aside from the shakey math used in this, we have other reservations about stories like this. 

We've all seen statistics about how much productivity is lost because people use Facebook at work, or do other personal things. But, the story that rarely makes the rounds is that these breaks usually make people more productive, not less. Anyone who expects a human to work straight through an 8 hour day without breaks has no concept of how concentration works. People need small breaks throughout the day to reset their willpower and concentration, and these micro-breaks of checking Facebook or playing Angry Birds offers just that. So, Angry Birds may be a crazy time suck, but those few minutes usually lead to far better quality of work, and no real loss of productivity.

source: The Atlantic

21 Comments
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posted on 14 Sep 2011, 16:58 5

1. ledbetterp3 (Posts: 466; Member since: 31 Aug 2011)


Lol...

posted on 14 Sep 2011, 17:05

2. gamerzr (unregistered)


Game was really good two years ago now its overrated. When you see mid aged peoople playing the game that tells you something.

posted on 14 Sep 2011, 17:08 1

3. jaytai0106 (Posts: 1284; Member since: 30 Mar 2011)


I only play Angry Bird in the bathroom now... Who plays that at work :P maybe work's bathroom?? Haha. So overrated...

posted on 14 Sep 2011, 20:30 1

14. jajajaj (unregistered)


how the f**k do you play it at the bathroom? Disgusting ass mfers... I'm guessing while taking a deuce? Why do people take 15-20 minute poops? Increase your fiber intake people, it will help you poop quicker.

posted on 14 Sep 2011, 20:55 1

17. poopvagina (Posts: 4; Member since: 14 Sep 2011)


I like peace when I'm in the b-room.

posted on 14 Sep 2011, 17:26 1

4. WTF. (unregistered)


$35 is not the average wage of the smart phone user, unless all smart phone users are well paid business executives and not just your average joe- which most are.

posted on 14 Sep 2011, 20:54 1

16. remixfa (Posts: 13909; Member since: 19 Dec 2008)


i cant wait to see an hourly wage that high.. lol just another year of college :) :)

posted on 14 Sep 2011, 17:49

5. xq10xa (Posts: 130; Member since: 07 Dec 2010)


Angry birds productivity loss aint got nothing on marijuana productivity loss.

posted on 14 Sep 2011, 17:49

6. monstermash123 (unregistered)


I WISH I got paid $35 a month. You know how many people on unemployment have iPhones? Women will pay for their smartphone before an abortion, believe that. Also, if they aren't playing Angry Birds, they're playing something else. It's a flash game, not a franchise.

posted on 14 Sep 2011, 18:44

10. Merk the Moose (unregistered)


You on government assistance at all, friend?

Cause you talk like a leech.

Just sayin'...

posted on 14 Sep 2011, 18:35

7. bolaG (Posts: 468; Member since: 15 Aug 2011)


Right? Where the heck do they get $35 an hour? I think 15% of people that have smartphones make that lol.

posted on 14 Sep 2011, 18:41

8. Merk the Moose (unregistered)


Didn't seem like there was any loss in productivity at the strip club out in Vegas last week, so I guess it ain't that way for everyone...

Just sayin'...

posted on 14 Sep 2011, 18:42

9. gallitoking (Posts: 4690; Member since: 17 May 2011)


cant wait for a response form Rovio.... btw Michaell..... how about Cut the Rope... I loose sleep feeding Om Nom...

posted on 14 Sep 2011, 19:16

11. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2674; Member since: 26 May 2011)


I know! It's times like these that I don't like being on Android. I want the extra Cut the Rope levels, and CtR Experiments!

posted on 14 Sep 2011, 19:45

13. gallitoking (Posts: 4690; Member since: 17 May 2011)


me and my daughter play it on the ipad2 and we love it.. is nice having those extra levels of fun

posted on 14 Sep 2011, 19:44

12. joey18 (Posts: 520; Member since: 20 Jul 2010)


Angry birds is boring beforbe i play alot but now make me sick

posted on 14 Sep 2011, 20:53 1

15. poopvagina (Posts: 4; Member since: 14 Sep 2011)


This cannot be possible....

posted on 14 Sep 2011, 21:19 1

18. aztaxia12295 (Posts: 266; Member since: 22 Nov 2009)


angry birds is THEE most overrated game. play crush the castle, you'll be as content as angry birds.

posted on 15 Sep 2011, 12:40

21. MichaelHeller (Posts: 2674; Member since: 26 May 2011)


It may be an overrated game, but you can't deny the reach of it. Even if no one ever played the game again it would go down in history alongside Pac-Man and Tetris because EVERYONE is playing. The quality of the game doesn't matter, it's the cultural impact that it's had.

posted on 14 Sep 2011, 21:37 1

19. Stuntman (Posts: 720; Member since: 01 Aug 2011)


Maybe instead, people waste their time reading articles like this and then commenting on them.

posted on 14 Sep 2011, 22:54

20. ledbetterp3 (Posts: 466; Member since: 31 Aug 2011)


There are games that are more addicting to me, but angry birds is pretty addicting, im only in highschool, but I have been caught playing angry birds in class lol, and when my teacher told me to hand over what i was playing with(my ipod touch) i just handed over my phone and continued playing...

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