Many employees watch pornography at work and it has become a problem for many employers.
What does one do with Simpson from accounts or De Villiers from distribution who spends a large portion of their working day gawking at what look like underage Asian beauties or graphic and kinky images of what's what?
"This is a major problem for employers," says Ilse Terblanche, a Cape Town psychologist. "Not only does it impact greatly on the general atmosphere at work, but the time spent watching these sites is also time people are being paid to work."
"People watch pornography at work for a number of reasons. One of them could be boredom. Another factor is that people at work do not run the risk of being caught by their spouse, who might be horrified to see just what their partner is watching. Furthermore, spending hours on the internet at home could become very expensive, so people prefer running up their employer's phone bill."
"Men especially react more strongly to powerful visual stimulation, which is why more men watch pornography than women do. It certainly doesn't mean that women never watch, though, and there will certainly also be some of them who do so at work."
"Employers can easily check up the sites that employees have visited at work by clicking the History button."
"Whether or not watching pornography at work is grounds for dismissal, depends on the contracts signed by employees," according to Marelize van Wyk, former Finance Manager of 24.com. "Some companies stipulate in their contracts with employees that pornography may not be watched at work, and if someone transgresses after signing this, they may be dismissed summarily.
"Under other circumstances, unless there has been fraudulent behaviour as in the case of the UNISA employees, normal disciplinary procedures will apply. But the bottom line is that people who are spending time on porn sites at work, are not doing the work they are paid to do.
"Many large companies block access to certain types of website, so that employees cannot actually get into them. This does seem to sort out the problem as far as pornography is concerned."
But pornography is not the only problem as far as the internet is concerned. Many people spend hours online writing e-mails to friends, visiting other websites or doing endless online shopping.
(Susan Erasmus, Health24, updated November 2009)