Shock report: Workers buying their own laptops, cell phones

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Google's Joe Kraus Discusses the Social Web At Supernova Conference

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If you’re like me, you spend a lot of time on the road, and a laptop and cellphone are vital to your work. I’m fortunate enough to have a job that takes care of the hardware issue, but many aren’t so lucky. Some people who travel have to buy their own equipment, and some people aren’t happy about it.

But there’s a question there. What should an employee reasonably be expected to own on their own? If you’re in certain industries, you’re to wear a suit to work, but the company doesn’t buy your suits for you. So why would a laptop be any different?

I’m not saying it’s right, I think an employer has a responsibility to provide everything an employee needs to do his or her job, especially hardware, but the argument that certain things are expected — a telephone, a computer — in this modern time is a good one.

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