Meet Amy Derjue, Communications Director for Boston City Council President, Michael Ross. She takes in $39,000 a year while Twittering and updating her Facebook status with profound statements such as:
“20 minutes and I am OUT. Gone. No longer present. Do not contact unless you want to drink, shop, or watch sporting events.”
“Look at the uterus. It is so cute.”
Bored Boston government workers are goofing off on Facebook and other popular social networking sites on taxpayer time, boasting of napping during meetings, playing “Mafia Wars,” creating anagrams of their names and planning Halloween costumes.
The poster girl for the on-the-clock cyber-slacking is Amy Derjue, who earns $39,000 a year as Boston City Council President Michael Ross’ communications director.
The former Boston magazine blogger regularly updates her personal status on Facebook and Twitter throughout the work day, brazenly joking to her online pals about snoozing at a hearing, writing snarky comments about the reality TV show “Jon & Kate Plus 8,” opining on an article about Boston being one of the best cities to meet guys and babbling about her Halloween wig.
“Amy Derjue is going to sit in the Council meeting and nap,” she wrote on Facebook at 11:49 a.m. last Wednesday. The next day, she spent the morning complaining about her chilly City Hall cubicle on Twitter. “Somebody bring me a hot coffee and fluffy sweater, please,” she wrote at 9:32 a.m.
Another workday posting was a link to a cartoon “menstrual flow chart,” to which she commented, “Look at the uterus. It is so cute.” And she was apparently eager to punch out that day, writing at 4:40 p.m.: “20 minutes and I am OUT. Gone. No longer present. Do not contact unless you want to drink, shop, or watch sporting events.”
Other Facebook junkies include:
• Mac Daniel, the $93,000-a-year communications director of the Massachusetts Convention Center Authority, posted an item on Facebook during one apparently lazy summer workday that showed his name as an anagram for “I’m a candle.” Other workday musings included a YouTube video of comedian Louis C.K. and rants about the World Series and GOP Rep. Joe Wilson – who famously shouted “You lie” to President Obama during a speech.
• City Councilor John Tobin’s $71,000-a-year administrative assistant David Isberg plays a Web-based game called “Mafia Wars” almost daily on Facebook during regular work hours.
• Johanna Sena, a $49,000-a-year community liaison for Ross, bantered with Derjue on Facebook about prescription drugs and coffee one recent morning, and their cold office another day. “I say we plot to steal (co-worker) Julie’s portable heater,” Sena typed to Derjue.
Dot Joyce, spokeswoman for Mayor Thomas M. Menino, said city computers and equipment are for work purposes only.
Ross said one of the reasons he hired Derjue was to “broaden” his social networking and develop a personality for his office.
“I like what Amy’s doing,” said Ross, adding he encourages Derjue to use Facebook and Twitter to spread his message to constituents. “It’s not so that she’s fritting away her time. . . . She doesn’t have time to waste.”
Tobin defended Isberg’s Facebook usage, saying his staff doesn’t work a “typical 9-to-5 day.”
“The thing I’m most upset about is all this time playing ‘Mafia Wars’ and he hasn’t come close to the top 10 in scoring,” Tobin cracked.
Daniel, meanwhile, said MCCA policy allows for some personal usage but acknowledged, “In general, technology should be used for MCCA-related business.”
Some employees also may be violating laws that bar public employees from engaging in politics on the job. Isberg, for example, posted an ad for a Mike Capuano for Senate campaign event in West Roxbury Thursday afternoon.
Oh, to be a Hack.