Friday, September 28, 2018

Watching TV while at work? Why not!

Call it one of the perks of being a reporter-type person who has worked in newsroom-type environments – nobody thinks it odd to have the television or radio tuned in to a broadcast of some news-worthy event.
Allowing workplace to be informed about Kavanaugh

I recall back in 1989, when I was a reporter based at the Thompson Center state government building for the now-defunct City News Bureau, I had a radio tuned in (to WBBM-AM, I believe) for the entirety of the confirmation hearings to determine whether Clarence Thomas was fit to serve a life-time appointment to the Supreme Court of the United States.

MEANING I HEARD the live broadcast that included all the tidbits that got written up and caused many of us to snicker – although not enough of us so as to thwart Thomas from getting the post.

I thought back to this when I learned there is a Chicago company that is not only willing to let employees listen to the hearings taking place now for whether Brett Kavanaugh is worthy of being Thomas’ colleague on the Supreme Court, they’re willing to make their employees comfortable.

Avant, an online lender, opened the board room of its downtown headquarters to the company’s workers. The Chicago Tribune reported they organized a current event-type discussion, giving workers the chance to express their thoughts on the issue.

To accommodate such a desire, they arranged for a video stream of the broadcast into the board room so their workers could watch the happenings in real-time.

THAT IS, IF the workers don’t want to be holed up at their desks, watching the same video stream on their work computers.

Now I’m sure there are some people reading this who are about to engage in a rant telling me I’m an idiot – those workers ought to be doing their jobs. Nobody pays them to watch the news.

Although I have to admit to thinking there’s something incredibly honest about a company willing to concede that many of their workers are going to be focusing their attention on their computers to learn the latest about Kavanaugh’s chances of actually getting the Supreme Court appointment that is part of President Donald Trump’s desire to remake the high court in his own image.
Work got done despite Thomas hearings

Either that, or they figure they’d rather have their employees using the computers to watch the livestream of the Kavanaugh hearings, instead of playing video poker or whatever other type of time-wasting event they’d be engaged in.

NOW IT’S ALWAYS possible that some people are going to be tuning in out of some desire to hear titillating details. The Kavanaugh case has devolved into one of a man who back when he was a teenager and a college kid couldn’t exactly keep his hormones under control.

Which will turn into an ongoing argument amongst us over exactly what constitutes attempted rape. What is appropriate behavior between the genders?

It might be a very worthwhile use of time for many of us to engage in such a discussion. Perhaps we’d be better off if more entities were to permit such activity so as to encourage such frank talk.

Although I’m sure there will be those who will merely be amused by the more absurd things that got said. Just as the reason I will never forget the Thomas “pubic hair” line was because it was so overly ridiculous to think anyone could seriously believe that – or would be absurd enough to think such a line would be humorous.

BESIDES, IT IS possible for people to train themselves to focus on more than one thing at a time. I know in my case, I can write copy and listen to conversations simultaneously. Which is means that I can listen to a TV broadcast and write.

I may not see the images, but I can get the substance.
Managed to write college paper while watching Super Bowl

Which actually is how, back when I was in college, I managed to write a paper of great significance (it was the totality of my grade for a course I took) while listening to the Super Bowl broadcast from the lone year the Chicago Bears ever won that sporting event.

And as for spending days listening to Anita Hill try to take down Clarence Thomas, I managed to get my work done as well.


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