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surveillance software


to tattle = petzen, das Fehlverhalten eines anderen melden, besonders in der Schule —— tattleware = Software, die Ihre Internetnutzung an eine andere Person meldet



“Bosses turn to ‘TATTLEWARE’ to keep tabs on employees working from home”

Sandy Milne - The Guardian

Did you


Software that reports your internet usage to someone else. (e.g. your boss, your wife/husband, your pastor)

Urban DIctionary


Tattle first appeared in the late 15 century and meant “to stammer (stottern) and is possibly of imitative origin.

The meaning “tell tales or secrets” is first recorded in the 1580s.

Tatler, the name of the famous periodical by Addison and Steele (1709-1711), means “idle talker, a gossip.”


Tattleware employee monitoring programs like Hubstaff, Sneek, TimeDoctor, and TSheets can monitor almost everything on a computer, such as keystrokes and passwords, websites visited, chats in Facebook Messenger, Skype, and other social chats.

Managers claim that these measures provide a valuable library of information to help them understand and improve organizational productivity.


Many employees are now finding novel and creative ways to evade the executive gaze, and anti-surveillance software is experiencing a boom.

Sales and traffic for Presence Scheduler, which can set a Slack status as permanently active, doubled in the first two months of the lockdown, demonstrating real employee resistance against employers.

But in response, many workers are now required to remain logged in to a video call all day while they work.

MIT-Sloan Management Review

SYNONYMS for tattle

be a Judas to, blab, blow the gaff (whistle), do the dirty, dish the dirt, double-cross, give the show (game) away, grass, give the game away, let the cat out, peach on someone, point the bone at, put the finger on, rat on, shop someone, snitch, squeal, sneak, squeak, squawk, spill, stab in the back, spill the beans, sell down the river,  split on, finger, fink on, snitch on, TATTLE, tattletale, tell tales, turn King’s (Queen’s) evidence, weasel

SMUGGLE OWAD into a conversation today, say something like:

“Companies should invest in systems — based on trust, not TATTLEWARE — systems that aid collaboration and empower employees to be more productive at home. After all, if companies look after their employees, those employees will in turn look after their customers. And isn’t that what business is about?”

HERZLICHEN DANK to all readers helping me keep OWAD alive with single or monthly donations at:

Paul Smith

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