back to article How much does El Reg cost the global economy?

Our recent shock revelation that Xmas boozing costs the UK economy a cool £790m due to shattered, post-piss-up employees crashing out under their desks or puking their guts up in mission-critical strategy meetings attracted the following provocative comment: How much El Reg costs UK biz each year? You should do a study... …


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  1. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton

    On what basis

    Over how long a time period? Is it hours wasted per week or working day?

    ...and of course what else could the icon be regarding an article about slacking off?

  2. Anonymous Coward

    Meaningless Poll

    I spend at least 6 hours a day reading El Reg, but alas, my time is worthless!

  3. Anonymous Coward


    Just say your the new Web 2.1 Reg and value yourself for £100 trillion dollars and what for the media muppets to over hype you and hand you shed loads of real money...

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Yes Man

    how is reading El Reg NOT work?

  5. Dam

    And the lolphone angle is ?

    I can see the Paris angle,

    I can see the Chuck Norris angle,

    I can even see the Jack Bauer angle,

    but where's the iPhone one ?

  6. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Also need to factor in pay rate

    To calculate this accurately, you also need to put in the currency and pay rate per hour (this would be interesting, it lets you work out if it differs in different parts of the world).

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Pleas define...

    "should be working"

  8. James Anderson
    Dead Vulture

    Exaguarated figures cost economy £327.6 trillion

    I am sure over a million man days are lost from hangovers, pissing of to the pub early, stayng at home the day after cause they have a vague but horrible memory involving Gretchen from the typing pool and the broom cupboard etc. etc.

    The trouble with the calculation is it makes a false assumtion that these people would be productive had they turned up and worked. I have experience of several cow orkers who increase productivity merely by taking a day off.

    Imagine how much better of the world economay would be if the OS group at Redmond had spent the last five years in an orgy of drink, drugs , debauchery and illadvised kebab consumtion. Instead they all turned up to work regularly, worked overtime every day, and inficted Vista on the world.

  9. Matt

    Bean Counter maths

    I love this bean-counter style maths - "if you're doing x for y amount of time, then you're costing z amount in lost productivity".

    Just what work am I supposed to do when:

    a. waiting for something to compile

    b. waiting for something to run


    c. it's friday ;-)

  10. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    I should say this:

    There should be a feed that aggregates news from all categories, but showing only the top ones. I like reading the news, but I only read a few of them - I'm not interested in most of them and I waste much time reading the titles of those news.

  11. Hedley Phillips

    But what about the money it saves the economy

    What about all the money El Reg saves the economy by providing a consolidated IT media source for virus alerts and security risks.

    Surley companies are save millions each year by their IT staff keeping informed of the latest threats and proactively protecting their networks before disaster strikes.

  12. Alex
    Paris Hilton

    @AC:Yes Man

    Agreed! El Reg is a vital part of my research and development! If it wasn't for El Reg, I wouldn't be using SANs or even VMWare/Virtual Server. Not to mention all the info on Server 2008. A vital part of my working day. I think that everyone of my team reads El Reg at some point during the day - whether it be about new technologies, or the latest flame war between BR/HD-DVD or PS3/XBOX360 (Not including Wii as it's a different keelt of fish... let's see if this causes a flame war on this thread! lol!).

    Magic! Also agree with AC:On what basis; Paris is the Slutty Queen of Slacking off! (or should that be "Jacki...." nope. won't go there..)

  13. Anthony

    All work and no play

    I only work whilst I'm waiting for new Register stories.

  14. James Dunmore

    Surely we need a unit of time standard

    (perhaps in units of Paris videos' ?!)

  15. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Re: Bean Counter maths

    ...or (d) It's Friday and you're going on your Christmas lunch/afternoon/evening in one hour forty three minutes :-)

  16. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    Dammit ! Only 1016 votes so far and a colleague is already a better slacker than me ! (Doesn't this skew the data towards the higher figure ? You need a fiddle factor to bring it back again.)

  17. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    My company will be sending you a bill for my time spent on here.

  18. Nick Drew
    Paris Hilton

    You forgot a variable...

    which is the value to the economy of specific articles. For example, an article about Microsoft and Google's advances in online software delivery could be extremely useful to me with my work hat on.

    While an article about Paris Hilton obviously has zero value for my work. Unless I plan to stay there on my next work trip to France... You need to include, therefore, some kind of 'work page rank' for El Reg articles.

  19. Richard Austin
    Thumb Up

    Actually working

    In my contract of employment - it actually specifies "keep up to date on new issues and developments" as a key performance indicator.

    So by reading your articles I am increasing my worth to my company.

    As Alex says above, this is a great place to find out about new technologies. It's also amazing how the odd story filters through to radio and tv a few days after too.

    Thank you EL Reg.

  20. Andy S


    Of the tens of thousands of people in my company, somebody else beat me to it and now it won't accept my submisssion as i'm behind a proxy.

    At this rate you're only going to get one person per company, not a particularly accurate figure

  21. Ray

    get away with it...

    ... i got my work to allow Reg through to my PC by saying that I need to keep abreast of all new and related IT issues.... now i find that the whole IT department slack off as much as me!

  22. Frank Haney

    @Hedley Phillips

    Hedley Phillips wrote "...Surley companies are save millions each year by their IT staff keeping informed of the latest threats..."

    Surely you meant "surly".

  23. Morely Dotes
    Jobs Horns

    @ JamesAnderson

    "Imagine how much better of the world economay would be if the OS group at Redmond had spent the last five years in an orgy of drink, drugs , debauchery and illadvised kebab consumtion."

    I have Vista. Please produce any evidence you may have that Vista is not the *result* of the afore-mentioned activities.

  24. Michael

    Let's not forget...

    ...that middle class vices cost more money than there is in existence...

  25. Anonymous Coward
    Thumb Up

    No need for calculations

    We, the plebeians, have decreed that the cost is 1 1/2 sestertii per reader per year. Now all you have to do is find out how many people read the Reg regularly.

    We use the table below:

    as = 1

    dupondius = 2 asses

    sestertius = 4 asses or 2 dupondii

    denarius = 16 asses, 8 dupondii or 4 sestertii

    aureus (gold Aprox 5.4 grams) = 400 asses, 200 dupondii, 100 sestertii or 25 denarii

    Current Value of Gold = US $795 per gold ounce.....1 troy ounce = 31.10grams.........

    Our calculations

    1 Aureus = $138.......therfore 1 1/2 Sestertii 2.07$.

    The plebeian decree is valid as we all know the cost of asses is directly linked to the US dollar via the Whitehouse.

  26. daniel
    Jobs Horns

    @Morely Dotes

    Oh fsck man, man, make me unsee that post!!!!! :D

    That said, with Apple's hippie iFree iLove iAttitude, iThis iCould iExplain iWhy iThey iPut iSo iMany iRestrictions iOn iThe iPhone?

    (go on Apple, sue me for iBreaching at least 17 iTrademarks:)

  27. Alan Ferris

    Oh bugger!

    I'm self employed... this is costing ME money

  28. Vic

    didn't know anyone else in sunny SA slacked like this

    But someone beat me to this. It's certainly not someone in my company as there's only moi here...

    I don't consider it slacking. Imagine the screeds of worthless crud and propaganda I'd have to wade through to get this much info in this little time. Okay, so I still have to do some crud-wading but hey, Santakins was fun. Yep, that was definitely slacking though....

    One sad point though: if there's more than one of us in South Africa that will really knock your 'cost to the world' down big time once you've factored in our measly minimum wage in the rest of the world if you're lucky pay scales.

  29. One Van
    Dead Vulture

    Anonymous Coward...

    ... you seem to have racked up a larger than most cost to an employer, from the amount of posts I read with your comments. Do you get commission ;)

  30. Bob Counts

    Break Even

    Using the Office Spreadsheet software I came to the conclusion that It is a break even proposition. I have used the same figures 5 times and got 5 different answers. Averaged the answers together and arrive with $0.00.

    This, of course, allows for the buggy M$ software, in which case your cost is $63,000,489.27

  31. Anonymous Coward


    is everyone who doesn't want to be quoted, or bothered by webster phreakey (or his friends or sockpuppets). BTW has anyone seen Webster he didn't die or something.

  32. Anonymous Coward
    Paris Hilton


    "Over how long a time period? Is it hours wasted per week or working day?"

    If you'd actually read the article, you would know it was per day.

    It's quite clear in the bit where it says "...please tell us how much time you spend each day reading El Reg when you should be working..."


    (PH as icon not because of angle, but to show just how dumb that question was.)

  33. Fred


    off topic but very funny...

    my mate just googled google...

  34. Mike Mclaren

    Who's Math Class

    it all depends on the math used

    the same math MS uses to calculate the number of bugs in Vista = $0.00

    the same math RIAA uses to calculate the cost of sharing music =$99999999999999999999999999.09

  35. Ole Juul

    Interesting business model

    If there's others like me, (and I suspect there are) then the Reg could also garner revenue by threatening to go offline, because if I didn't spend all day reading the Reg I'd probably go out and get a job and, as many people would agree, any work place is safer and more productive without me. In fact, I can see a business model where nothing changes, except you end up charging different governments for different reasons... a real win win situation. It's been done before.

  36. Andy Worth

    Skewed results

    Only accepting one vote from one IP address? Well that kinda blows the result as many big companies use a proxy server. I don't know the average usage from where I work for example, but there's probably at least 50 people who look at the site.

  37. Chris Morrison
    Dead Vulture

    Advertising Revenue

    I have a funny feeling this survey has more to do with el reg's sales department trying to get stats for how much advertisers should be paying them rather than anything to do with how much time we spend reading the articles!

  38. Tawakalna


    you just broke the Interweb. Who will save us now?

  39. Thomas Swann
    Paris Hilton

    "If you are behind a proxy then one of your colleagues is a better slacker than you."

    I think we can assume this is going to be a conservative estimate.

  40. Slaine

    The Total Cost vs the Unseen Revenue

    Let me, if I may, prise the average reader and contributor from the normal routine and hum-drum existence that has an invariable tendency to proliferate around the average working environ and instead allow that same battered mind to adapt it's thinking processes, to adopt a mindset that is atuned to a different, even a completely unrelated topic of discourse. Need I remind that very same learned person that, as the often quoted proverb dictates, a "change" is as good as a "rest" and perhaps it is trite of me also to add that the human brain is capable of digesting in its entirity the many fractious elements of a complex problem without ever leaving the limitless boundaries of the subconscious mind.

    So having successfully circumnavigated another unecessarily diversionary contruct as might be found in any random article as depicted within the electronic pages of our most hallowed "El Reg" publication (black helicopters excused) we have obtained a state of mental accruity somewhat akin to intense work-related subconscious mental preparedness whilst symultaneously and consciously calculating the probability that tomorrow's newspapers might contain another pantiless crotchshot or other adult orientated reference to a slur on the character of our favourite European capital's namesake.

    Or in layman's terms, reading and contributing to El Reg keeps us alert and therefore makes us better at our jobs.

  41. Dan Collett
    Thumb Up

    Thanks for that. The current cost of El Reg to the global economy is £73656.25 after 4463 votes


    73656.25/4463= £16.50(i rounded down) Per reghead! Thats enough for a few beers and a bag of nuts each down the nuclear should reg decide to share its new found wealth with its loyal fan base ;)

  42. Jamie Kitson

    3 Hours, But...

    I work at McDonald's and so am doing my bit fighting the capitalist scum.

    Also, shouldn't it read:

    "...puking their guts up in mission-critical servers"?

  43. Brian


    I'm checking here in the morning after I read mail (sometimes before)... I'm on throughout the day and when I'm at lectures, I visit it on my laptop... I'll often even visit the site from my blackberry....

  44. Peter Lenz

    A unit of measure

    Of course the final number will yield us a new measure of the economy. Forget the Dow or NASDAQ averages, Pish off gold standard. The economic indicator of the web 3.0 world will be...The Vulture.

    It was only a mater of time (measurable in average period between stories featuring the eeepc girl) before this standard is used world over.

  45. John Gamble

    Subtracting From The Global Economy

    "Thanks for that. The current cost of El Reg to the global economy is £78981.25 after 4810 votes"

    Always glad to become yet another statistic. On the other hand, The Register is one of the few items that I don't need to conceal if I hear footsteps approaching. So how wasteful is it, really?

  46. Anonymous Coward


    How much of our lives do we waste making a rich man richer thats the real question, we only get a short time on this earth and a vast chuck of it is spent doing something we would probably rather not do, theres the real cost. Money doesn't have feelings and doesn't mind not being made but I have a life and do mind it being wasted.

    Apathetic IT worker doing monkey work from 9 - 5 oh and reading El Reg all the hours in between :)

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