One in four gamers play at work

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NEW YORK -- Colleagues tapping away busily on their BlackBerry, phone or laptop at the office might not be as productive as they seem -- with one in four video gamers admitting playing at work, even in meetings, according to an online survey.

A survey of 2,842 office workers conducted on a video game Web site found one in four people, or 24%, said they played video games during their working day.

Game play increased up the corporate ladder with more than one third, or 35%, of chief executives and other senior executives who took part in the survey admitting to playing games at work. They made up 8% of the survey.

But while 61% of those who play games at work said they did so during lunch or other official breaks, the survey by market researcher Information Solutions Group found one in seven, or 14%, admitted playing during business meetings or conference calls.

Two thirds of those said they did so at least once a month.

But the players claim it is not just for fun.

Eight out of 10 said playing a quick game helped them handle stress while about five in 10 said it helped strengthen their memory.

Carly Drum, managing director of executive recruitment firm Drum Associates, said it was not surprising that today's business professionals were casual video games users.

"We're seeing employees who are much more technologically savvy and familiar with all forms of new media from social networking to blogging and beyond," Drum said in a statement.

The study was based on an online survey conducted in June among visitors to the Web site of Seattle-based game provider PopCap.com.
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