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New CBS Boss Button Has a Dilbert Feel

This time of year the almighty “Boss Button” is a huge item of contention. Last year we criticized CBS’ March Madness on Demand Boss Button because of the content on the page. If anyone were to look at the screen closely, they would have seen that the content was all sports-related rather than business-related. A month ago, we got on NBC for their Olympics Boss Button because launching the boss page makes it look like you’re working on a computer that has Windows 7. Obviously that would clash on a Mac so it wasn’t very versatile. This year’s CBS Boss Button is much like last year’s — it will do the trick from afar but you’re burned if anyone sees it from within five feet. Part of the reason is because there’s a Dilbert cartoon strip on the side, ostensibly because this year’s creator of the boss button is Scott Adams, the founder of Dilbert. Here’s what the bad boy looks like:

You also better hope you have a tiny computer monitor because that image only stretches about 12″ wide. That doesn’t exactly provide the best look if you’re on a 17″ screen.

NBC Sports Olympic Boss Button Fail

I can’t quite figure out if it’s a blessing to be at home rather than the office while the Winter Games are taking place. On the one hand I’d love to be watching some of these competitions live but on the other you have NBC tape-delaying most of its coverage until the evening. It pretty much stinks considering we’re in 2010 and anyone with a computer knows the results are a few clicks away. Making matters even more confusing is that NBC allows you to watch events live on their website. I guess they figure tech people will be able to watch at their pace while old school people will be at their tape delay mercy. Here’s another thing I can’t figure out. As Deadspin pointed out, NBC’s “Boss Button” is a complete failure. The whole idea is people can click on a “boss button” to change the screen and make it look like they’re working rather than watching Olympics coverage online. The problems with NBC’s Boss Button are pretty clear:

As you can tell, there’s nothing on the damn spreadsheet so it makes the worker look completely unproductive. Also, and this is more specific, the boss button takes you to a Windows screen which doesn’t exactly make much sense if you’re on a Mac. CBS had problems with their Boss Button last year during March Madness considering the spreadsheet they linked you to was filled with nothing but basketball information. Maybe NBC can readdress these issues since the current system is pretty stupid. Maybe they can also start airing some of their coverage live on real TV. That would be nice.

CBS’ New Design Defeats the Purpose of the Boss Button

I’m lucky enough to work in a field where my job is to watch, study, analyze, and report on games. For most of the world unfortunately, it’s a different story. It’s pretty common knowledge that countless hours and dollars of work productivity are lost during March Madness because every breathing sports fan is huddled over a computer trying to see how their brackets are doing. Naturally most work places would frown upon such wasteful activities. That’s why CBS designed the “boss button” as something you could click on at work that would change the computer screen from basketball to a spreadsheet in order to make it look like you were doing work. It was a great idea and something all sports fans could appreciate. But now it appears as if CBS has entirely forgotten the entire purpose of the boss button. Here’s what the 2009 version looks like according to Awful Announcing (click on image to enlarge).

The spreadsheet involves nothing but basketball information which would be a total burn if anyone took a look at it from a semi-close distance. Worst of all, it appears as if they sold ads on the Boss Button spreadsheet to Comcast. Dude, you so cannot sell ads on something that’s supposed to help workers sneak away from the corporate world! It’s like they’re just asking to get people busted!