Join Early Retirement Today
Reply
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread Display Modes
Work is Prison
Old 03-17-2014, 09:35 PM   #1
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Feb 2010
Posts: 396
Work is Prison

My goal is to retire within 1 to 3 years. The conditions of my work continue to deteriorate, but I earn enough in my current job that a cost-benefit analysis would suggest for me to tough it out. I count the days...

The latest decision by megacorp to mistreat their employees, is to block access to personal email on work computers. Now, mind you, I don't abuse the privilege. The work day and the work computer belong to the employer, not me, I understand that. But this is just another example of how this particular employer has no concern or consideration for the work-life balance of its employees. I have two advanced degrees and yet I, and others in my work place, are treated like factory line workers without any form of union representation. And, when I say this, I in no way intend to disparage factory line workers, I am pro-labor, and respect hard work contributed by any individual.

My real question, however, is how can I continue, in a cost effective manner, to retain access to personal email during work hours? As of now, I do not have a smart phone, but rather a "feature" phone. I can access Gmail through this feature phone, but it is SUPER slow and cumbersome.

I use Verizon as my cell provider. I recently switched to their pre-pay plan. If I get a pre-pay plan with a smartphone through Verizon, will I then be able to quickly access my personal email account during work hours? Is this the only possible work-around or am I missing something?

I am really looking forward to FIRE!!!
__________________

__________________
nico08 is offline   Reply With Quote
Join the #1 Early Retirement and Financial Independence Forum Today - It's Totally Free!

Are you planning to be financially independent as early as possible so you can live life on your own terms? Discuss successful investing strategies, asset allocation models, tax strategies and other related topics in our online forum community. Our members range from young folks just starting their journey to financial independence, military retirees and even multimillionaires. No matter where you fit in you'll find that Early-Retirement.org is a great community to join. Best of all it's totally FREE!

You are currently viewing our boards as a guest so you have limited access to our community. Please take the time to register and you will gain a lot of great new features including; the ability to participate in discussions, network with our members, see fewer ads, upload photographs, create a retirement blog, send private messages and so much, much more!

Old 03-17-2014, 09:57 PM   #2
Administrator
W2R's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2007
Location: New Orleans
Posts: 38,824
Your Verizon work-around sounds like it would work. I have an iPhone with Verizon and I can read my e-mail on it. I don't have the pre-paid plan.

When I retired in 2009, I did not have a smart phone either. My workplace never, EVER allowed us to access external e-mail in any way. My daughter and brother knew my work e-mail address, and could send an occasional mail there if anything important came up. Other than boredom the lack of personal e-mail really wan't a problem at all.

Honestly, if that is the worst of your problems at work, you're doing ok! If you don't want to pay for a smart phone, I think you could get used to the situation just as it is. Just hang in there.
__________________

__________________
Already we are boldly launched upon the deep; but soon we shall be lost in its unshored, harbourless immensities.

- - H. Melville, 1851
W2R is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-17-2014, 10:07 PM   #3
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
easysurfer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 7,883
This reminds me back in the day when dial up modems in households were the norm, but megacorp has rules against using w*rk internet for personal stuff. That is kinda how cyber Monday started.

Anyhow. at one time I had place a post it not reminding myself..."Only work related stuff" by my monitor.

Though the rule didn't stop me from sometimes taking a long lunch to go to a library and check my email.

When w*rk has such strict rules, many times the rule end up counter productive.
__________________
Have you ever seen a headstone with these words
"If only I had spent more time at work" ... from "Busy Man" sung by Billy Ray Cyrus
easysurfer is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-17-2014, 10:15 PM   #4
Recycles dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Jan 2014
Posts: 246
My work allows it, but I still use a Samsung G2 to read my personal email. For various reasons, I don't like to mix work and personal.
__________________
ggbutcher is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-17-2014, 10:51 PM   #5
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
growing_older's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2007
Posts: 2,608
A workplace with such strict no personal email rules, also sounds like the kind of place that would log and monitor all employee computer use. I wouldn't want my personal email slurped up by the giant data collection they might be doing.

Do they observer a similar strict no work outside of work hours? No work email from home and no weekend calls from your boss? That might be an okay trade.
__________________
growing_older is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2014, 02:18 AM   #6
Recycles dryer sheets
comicbookgujy's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2013
Posts: 178
Get a $35 virgin mobile plan and check your email from a $29.99 smart phone. That's what I'm doing.

My company blocked personal email site 3 years ago. That doesn't bother me. When I worked for JPMorgan almost 20 years ago, they blocked almost every website!
__________________
comicbookgujy is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2014, 05:34 AM   #7
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Mar 2009
Posts: 1,433
I carry a separate laptop for my personal business while at work or travelling for work. Two different worlds in preparation for ER.
__________________
Retired in 2016. Living off dividends / interest and a mini pension. Freedom.
foxfirev5 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2014, 07:27 AM   #8
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
target2019's Avatar
 
Join Date: Dec 2008
Posts: 3,705
For 7-8 years I've had No access to personal email. I switched to an android phone on Verizon wireless about 2 years ago. If you use Gmail and other Google features, then you want an android phone.

I'm glad I got a Samsung phone with slightly larger screen, as it is easier for me to read and work with.
__________________
target2019 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2014, 07:54 AM   #9
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Nov 2009
Posts: 3,855
Back in my working days, my old company began strengthening its SmartFilter to block access to more and more websites. I lost access to my home email around 2000 but i did not upset me. They had the right to do that. Over the next 8 years before I ERed, a few more websites I frequented I also lost access to. But the ones I could access I continued to go to so that would at least lessen the total of websites I needed to go to when I got home.

One clever coworker was able to do a remote connection from his office PC to his home PC and was able to access all of his preferred websites including his home email. I don't think the company ever found out about it.
__________________
Retired in late 2008 at age 45. Cashed in company stock, bought a lot of shares in a big bond fund and am living nicely off its dividends. IRA, SS, and a pension await me at age 60 and later. No kids, no debts.

"I want my money working for me instead of me working for my money!"
scrabbler1 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2014, 08:26 AM   #10
Moderator Emeritus
Bestwifeever's Avatar
 
Join Date: Sep 2007
Posts: 16,372
There probably were people abusing the office internet for personal use that resulted in the ban. I agree with others about not wanting my personal email being made available to the employer. They are much easier to monitor than personal phone calls used to be, which were also frowned on at almost every place I worked.

Unless people are in positions that require them to use their home internet and personal phones for work-related communication outside business hours but can't do the opposite at work, there doesn't seem to be a work-life balance issue in such prohibitions IMO.
__________________
Bestwifeever is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2014, 08:56 AM   #11
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
robnplunder's Avatar
 
Join Date: Nov 2013
Location: Bay Area
Posts: 2,124
Should not be a problem using e-mail with pre-paid Verizon.
__________________
Pura Vida
robnplunder is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2014, 09:06 AM   #12
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Midpack's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Chicagoland
Posts: 11,962
Quote:
Originally Posted by Bestwifeever View Post
There probably were people abusing the office internet for personal use that resulted in the ban. I agree with others about not wanting my personal email being made available to the employer. They are much easier to monitor than personal phone calls used to be, which were also frowned on at almost every place I worked.

Unless people are in positions that require them to use their home internet and personal phones for work-related communication outside business hours but can't do the opposite at work, there doesn't seem to be a work-life balance issue in such prohibitions IMO.
+1. Managers get really tired of having to waste their time trying to administer internet privileges to individual employees. And MegaCorps don't want their managers to waste time, they have better things to do, so MegaCorps just do company wide bans. Sometimes what's practical and what employees would like don't mesh - that's life.
__________________
No one agrees with other people's opinions; they merely agree with their own opinions -- expressed by somebody else. Sydney Tremayne
Retired Jun 2011 at age 57

Target AA: 60% equity funds / 35% bond funds / 5% cash
Target WR: Approx 2.5% Approx 20% SI (secure income, SS only)
Midpack is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2014, 09:16 AM   #13
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
easysurfer's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jun 2008
Posts: 7,883
At my Megacorp, initially there was a ban on personal use, but eventually, rules were changed to reasonable use. Of course, nothing naughty and reasonable amount of time (like maybe a quick check on email, etc).

Use was definitely monitored so in the end I opted to rarely use the computer or personal internet use. But that time I had DSL at home anyhow so found other ways to piddle around get things done during the day.
__________________
Have you ever seen a headstone with these words
"If only I had spent more time at work" ... from "Busy Man" sung by Billy Ray Cyrus
easysurfer is online now   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2014, 09:20 AM   #14
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
 
Join Date: Jul 2012
Location: Mississippi
Posts: 1,878
That's fairly standard practice. For security, email is one the main pathways for malware infection. Most also block facebook and social media ( time wasting ) sites.
__________________
rbmrtn is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2014, 09:41 AM   #15
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
 
Join Date: Jul 2006
Posts: 11,015
Quote:
Originally Posted by rbmrtn View Post
That's fairly standard practice. For security, email is one the main pathways for malware infection. Most also block facebook and social media ( time wasting ) sites.
Exactly. This is quite within the employer's rights. Just get a basic smartphone. Sounds like you can afford it. If you work in an environment where it is OK to have your phone on, you are fortunate.
__________________
Meadbh is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2014, 09:47 AM   #16
Moderator
MichaelB's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Rocky Inlets
Posts: 24,408
While gainfully employed I always practiced safe email and safe browsing (an impermeable barrier between personal and work activities to shield and protect against unintended consequences) and urge all others to do the same.

There is nothing to be gained by doing personal email and browsing at work or while using the employer's resources. Much in the same way one uses a firewall to protect against virus and malware. it is in the best interest of the employee to avoid unnecessary employer exposure to their personal lives.

Now there is even no reason to do so, given the availability of mobile devices and connections. If cost is an issue one should be even more cautious and not do something that might compromise one's employment.
__________________
MichaelB is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2014, 09:54 AM   #17
Full time employment: Posting here.
 
Join Date: Apr 2006
Posts: 944
I got a Samsung Galaxy about 2 years ago - I would not be w/o it now. Very useful and great pics. I got it for $50 at Costco and pay $50 per month w/ 500 free minutes and unlimited texts/downloads. It was worth the cost for me -
I am in better contact with my kids and some friends with it as well
__________________
Freed at 49. You only live once - live it
Donzo is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2014, 10:03 AM   #18
Confused about dryer sheets
 
Join Date: Dec 2013
Location: Raleigh
Posts: 5
Have you tried using a personal VPN service? If the VPN is engaged before attempting to connect to your email account your privacy is protected from corporate network snooping. One downside is they may block the ports these services typically use. There are some ways around that, but it can get complicated. I included a web link to some reviews of these VPN services and their monthly expenses. Good luck.

Top 10 Best VPN Services
__________________
retirein15 is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2014, 10:04 AM   #19
Thinks s/he gets paid by the post
Ready's Avatar
 
Join Date: Mar 2013
Location: Southern California
Posts: 1,823
I remember complaining to IT about how slow our internet had become at work in spite of continually upgrading bandwidth. The IT manager produced a report showing the applications taking up the most bandwidth - streaming audio/video programs like Hulu were sucking the pipeline dry.

Taking up less content, but still actively being used - Facebook.

Then I would hear how overworked people are because we don't have sufficient levels of staffing for people to do their jobs, in spite of the fact that we had far more personnel for our size than similar companies in our industry.

So I may have to lean toward siding with the company on this one. You give people freedom and sometimes it gets abused.
__________________
Ready is offline   Reply With Quote
Old 03-18-2014, 10:53 AM   #20
Give me a museum and I'll fill it. (Picasso)
Give me a forum ...
Midpack's Avatar
 
Join Date: Jan 2008
Location: Chicagoland
Posts: 11,962
Quote:
Originally Posted by Ready View Post
I remember complaining to IT about how slow our internet had become at work in spite of continually upgrading bandwidth. The IT manager produced a report showing the applications taking up the most bandwidth - streaming audio/video programs like Hulu were sucking the pipeline dry.

Taking up less content, but still actively being used - Facebook.

Then I would hear how overworked people are because we don't have sufficient levels of staffing for people to do their jobs, in spite of the fact that we had far more personnel for our size than similar companies in our industry.

So I may have to lean toward siding with the company on this one. You give people freedom and sometimes it gets abused.
Streaming is the worst, but we also found some employees were on eBay or various Sports websites WAY too much - probably none would have been appropriate.
__________________

__________________
No one agrees with other people's opinions; they merely agree with their own opinions -- expressed by somebody else. Sydney Tremayne
Retired Jun 2011 at age 57

Target AA: 60% equity funds / 35% bond funds / 5% cash
Target WR: Approx 2.5% Approx 20% SI (secure income, SS only)
Midpack is online now   Reply With Quote
Reply


Currently Active Users Viewing This Thread: 1 (0 members and 1 guests)
 
Thread Tools Search this Thread
Search this Thread:

Advanced Search
Display Modes

Posting Rules
You may not post new threads
You may not post replies
You may not post attachments
You may not edit your posts

BB code is On
Smilies are On
[IMG] code is On
HTML code is Off
Trackbacks are Off
Pingbacks are Off
Refbacks are Off


Similar Threads
Thread Thread Starter Forum Replies Last Post
Doing his job, ends up sentenced to prison easysurfer FIRE Related Public Policy 7 07-15-2010 04:55 PM
Getting out of prison lirjo Hi, I am... 14 11-22-2009 12:45 PM
1 in 100 adults in prison in USA bright eyed Other topics 31 03-27-2008 09:26 AM
DISTURBING event at the prison LeatherneckPA Other topics 14 11-15-2007 11:32 AM
Military Prison Blues... mickeyd Other topics 1 06-02-2004 04:09 PM

 

 
All times are GMT -6. The time now is 01:10 PM.
 
Powered by vBulletin® Version 3.8.8 Beta 1
Copyright ©2000 - 2017, vBulletin Solutions, Inc.