UnNews:BlackBerry "essential tool for business deception"

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28 December 2006

THE OFFICE, Not The Beach, Honest, Thursday (UNN) — More than four out of five people admit to telling little white lies at least once a day, and 75 percent of people's preferred way of implementing speculative truth is voicemails, texts and e-mails sent from a BlackBerry. Using gadgets made people feel less guilty when telling a lie than doing it face to face

Nokia Ultravox voicechat prototype

"No, no, speak freely. I'm not bugging this meeting with my cellphone, of all things. Ha! Ha!"

Just more than 40 percent said they had lied to their family or partner — on such topics as buying new clothes or the cost of them (37 percent), how good someone looked in something (35 percent), how much they had eaten (35 percent), drunk (31 percent) or weighed (32 percent), whether they still loved them (19 percent) or what those hickey-like marks on their crotch were (a whopping 71 percent).

The workplace was a favourite setting for talking outside the box, with 67 percent of the 1,487 respondents using their BlackBerry to fake illness, say work had been completed when it hadn't or reassure their boss that someone else had locked up on the night three laptops went missing.

Worryingly for bosses, 18 percent of employees said they had lied to hide a big mistake. Worryingly for employees, bosses sometimes used their BlackBerries in tricky games of double deception, wherein they wilfully and with malice aforethought told their employees the actual truth, just to keep them guessing.

Many corporate boards expressed their horror at the survey findings. Said Steve Jobs, "I'm shocked — oh, my stock options? Thank you very much — shocked to find that board minute faking is going on in here!"

Mark Hurd at Hewlett-Packard, however, considered the BlackBerry an indispensable business tool and absolutely essential to correct board functioning. "We have detailed operational procedures and continuous ongoing investigative plans to make sure only absolutely verifiable false information is put into the record. And, realizing the importance of the case, my men are rounding up twice the usual number of suspects. Er, could you please speak into the flowerpot more clearly? Thank you."

Others were sceptical of the significance of the findings. "Oh, come on," said David Bermingham of the NatWest Three, "it's not like you can't tell we're wankers by the sheer fact we have a BlackBerry."

The survey found that while people were dishonest, most told lies with the best of intentions and for the sake of others' feelings. And money.

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