Electronic Monitoring Vs. Health Concerns

Essay by Anonymous UserUniversity, Master'sB, February 1997

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Is privacy and electronic monitoring in the work place an issue that is becoming a problem? More and more employees are being monitored today then ever before and the companies that do it aren't letting off. While electronic monitoring in the work place may be the cause of increased stress levels and tension, the benefits far exceed the harm that it may cause.

Employees don't realize how often electronic monitoring happens in their work place. An estimated twenty million Americans are subjected to monitoring in their work place, commonly in the form of phone monitoring, E-mail searches, and searching through the files on their hard drive (Paranoid 435). A poll by MacWorld states that over twenty-one percent of all employees are monitored at work, and the larger the company, the higher the percentage (Privacy 445). Unaware of this electronic monitoring, most employees often are not working at their peak performance due to this type of scrutiny.

The majority of Americans believe that electronic monitoring should not be allowed. Supreme Court Justice Louis D. Brandeis states that of all of the freedoms that Americans enjoy, privacy 'is the right most valued by civilized men (Privacy 441).' A poll taken by Yankelovich Clancy Shulman for Time, states that ninety-five percent of Americans believe that electronic monitoring should not be allowed (Privacy 444). Harriet Ternipsede, who is a travel agent, gave a lengthy testimonial on how electronic monitoring at her job caused her undue stress and several health problems including muscle aches, mental confusion, weakened eyesight, severe sleep disturbance, nausea, and exhaustion. Ternipsede was later diagnosed with Chronic Fatigue Immune Dysfunction Syndrome (Electronic 446). A study done by the University of Wisconsin found that eighty-seven percent of employees subjected to electronic monitoring suffered from higher stress levels and increased tension while only sixty-seven...