Our office has apparently started blocking certain sites (so far not the SDMB), and so far I can’t figure out their blocking criteria at all.
I frequently have to research stuff online for work-related reasons (technical terminology, legal stuff, job duties, pretty much anything under the sun), and every once in a while I will click a link on a Google search and get a message that “this site violates our corporate use policy; please contact user support if you feel this message is in error.”
So 1) how am I supposed to know whether the site should indeed be blocked, if I don’t know what it is because I can’t access it? And 2) in your experience, how likely am I to get in trouble with IT for attempting to access things which are blocked? I seriously can’t contact IT about every blocked link; usually when I’m doing this sort of online research, it’s because I’m in a big, fat, work-related hurry to lay my hands on some information that I need to finish my work, and don’t have the leisure of waiting around for my client to cough up the goods, or they have consistently provided information which doesn’t quite address my needs so that I can address their needs properly and in a timely fashion.
So far (since last week) they seemed to have blocked RealPlayer, which on one hand, I can understand, because they don’t want to eat up bandwidth with streaming audio; they even sent an e-mail message that use of streaming audio on work computers was prohibited. But why should they care if I use RealPlayer just as a jukebox to play my own CDs? There is no policy on listening to music in one’s own office, provided it doesn’t disturb anyone else…
So this is part rant, and part question: has anyone else run into this issue? How did your employer handle it, and how did you handle how your employer handled it?