Most Americans check work email over the holidays

John Moe Nov 24, 2010

A new survey by Harris Interactive is getting a lot of attention because it appears to point out just how electronically tethered we are.

Ars Technica breaks down the numbers:

Many of us–42 percent, to be exact–feel that we have to stay up-to-date on work over the holidays in order to ease our own workloads. Fifty-nine percent will check their e-mail at least once on their holidays off, while 28 percent will check multiple times. If you’re a man, you’re more likely to check than your female counterparts, and the same goes if you live in the southern part of the US versus the north. A full 10 percent of those surveyed admitted that they checked their e-mail during “inappropriate” times, such as when they were with friends or family, or even during holiday meals. However, there’s another small group (5 percent of those surveyed) who said they used e-mail as a way to avoid awkward family commitments or situations–we can certainly relate to that.

Personally, I LOVE checking work email because I miss those people so desperately in those lonely hours when we’re apart. I also think those numbers can be mitigated somewhat by how people keep in touch more broadly nowadays. My work email and personal email show up together on my iPhone so when I check to see messages from friends and family, y’all show up too. And once you know you have a message it’s kind of hard to avoid looking at it, right? Anyway, overall: yes, sad.

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