‘I feel constantly watched’: the employees working under surveillance

  • May 30, 2023
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Monitoring software has become more common since the pandemic – but are activity scores the best way to measure productivity?

Every 10 minutes, Mae’s computer snaps a shot of her screen, thanks to monitoring software her employer made her install on her laptop. A figure looms large over her workday: her activity score, a percentage calculated by the arbitrary measure of how much she types and moves her mouse.

It’s hovering at about 62% when we speak. “That’s quite good. If I’m on a Zoom call that counts as 0% [activity], even though I’m in a meeting,” she explains, adding that she watches videos and attends calls regularly as part of her role.

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