Beach Email

Kids putting the final touches on a grand sandcastle while their dad hunches over a blackberry thumbs on the keys.

We take an annual family beach vacation every year. Two years ago my brother in law turned up with a Blackberry and was constantly checking email over the course of the week to the point of distraction. I’d seen a bit of this behavior in the workplace, but it was a bit disturbing to see a full fledged Crackberry addiction on a beach vacation.

The difference this year was my brother in law has actually kept his crackberry usage down a good bit, but I saw multiple people on the beach hunched over there phones pounding away. Their kids were boogey boarding, jumping in the surf, or building sand castles while they stared at a tiny screen. I’d never seen people on the beach pounding away on a Blackberry.

Personally I gave instructions to my tech lead who was covering while I was out to call me if any emergencies came up, but not to bother trying to get me via email because I wouldn’t be checking it. I didn’t get any calls. I follow the same policy when employees are out I’ll only contact for an actual emergency via a phone call.

I hope seeing the Crackberry’s at the beach will be the last time. Studies are starting to recognize the negative impacts on productivity around this kind of interruption driven existence.