Would you give up your spouse to telecommute?

In order to celebrate Valentine's Day, a survey asks Americans what they would give up in order to telecommute. Five percent say "spouse," while 12 percent say "daily shower."

I have great news for romantics. The American marriage is strong. Well, quite strong. Well, it's not so awful that the majority of Americans would give up their spouse in order to telecommute.

However, 5 percent would.

How do I know? Well, my regular perusal of fine, scientific research has led me to a Harris survey performed on behalf of TeamViewer.

You will become divorced from your faculties when I tell you TeamViewer makes software so that people never have to see each other. Its research, though, is socially indispensable because it sought to understand just how badly Americans would prefer not to be at the office.

How much is your marriage worth? Chris Matyszczyk/CNET

Well, 34 percent of these no doubt harried respondents declared they would give up social media in order to telecommute. Who could have imagined such enlightened thinking?

Indeed, more people would give up social media than would give up chocolate (29 percent), which surely suggests civilization is not quite dead.

Some 17 percent even said they would give up a raise. A vast and minimally fragrant 12 percent would give up daily showers, with, stunningly, more women than men choosing this option.

But then there were the 5 percent who would give up their spouse.

Could this 5 percent represent spouses who cannot find another excuse to walk out on their tired, dreary liaisons? Could this represent the notion that telecommuting would mean more time at home--an increase that would make them more intolerant of anyone they see there?

Or could it mean that marriage, for those who do it, becomes such a habit that it is so much harder to shake than social media or even smartphones (25 percent said they would give those up)?

Telecommuting appears to represent something of the future. Indeed, 83 percent of these respondents said they thought it was increasing. It seems to fulfill deeply held human desires not to see other humans.

So do these deeply revealing figures suggest that the more people telecommute, the more they might radically alter their lifestyles?

Some of society's fundamental institutions might be at stake. You know, like bad sandwich lunches, saying hello to the 14 people you pass in a corridor and, um, working late with your personal assistant.

 

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