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More Madness In March

Say it one time out loud, and it still doesn't seem real. "George Mason is going to the final four." Say it a few times, and, it still sounds surreal but it is true.

March madness continues with one of the more surprising NCAA Basketball Tournaments in memory. Naturally, the country is riveted, and, though I have no figures to back this up, I am guessing productivity is plummeting. Most companies were antipating some issues with workers spending too much work time viewing games over the Web, and actively discouraging work-time viewing, according to last week's poll.The poll asked Systems Management Pipeline readers if their companies were taking any action to prevent users from viewing games online using corporate network resources. Though only 24 percent said their organizations was actually blocking CBS Sportsline's site during the tournament, another 41 percent said their companies are discouraging staffers from using it by reminding them that network resources are for business use through memos and other communications.

Still, more than one-third of companies are resigned to the fact that their networks - and their businesses - are going to take a tournament-related performance hit. Eighteen percent said their companies are doing nothing to discourage employees from being glued to their screens during the tourney. Another eighteen percent actually admitted that their CIOs are running the office pools.