VW to Shut Off BlackBerries

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Let’s hope this becomes as popular as the Volkswagen Beetle. Volkswagen has agreed to deactivate email on staff BlackBerries in certain German plants outside of working hours. Under the agreement, staff will receive emails on the smartphones from a half hour before work until half an hour after work, but will receive no emails the rest of the time. The company said, “mobile communication devices offer a great amount of freedom, but also embody the risk of no longer being able to switch off.” While many applauded Volkswagen—and the German goods-making company Henkel announced they would impose a BlackBerry-free week for the management board—there has been some backlash, especially since Germans are proud of their work ethic—despite burnout being responsible for some 10 million sick days a year.