Google Pac-Man Might've Cost Us $120,483,800

Last week, the Google logo was turned into a game of Pac-Man and we all took breaks to play. In theory, we wasted a combined 4,819,352 hours and many, many dollars. Here's the math.

The Rescue Time Blog made these calculations based on observations and assumptions about the Google audience:

This weekend, we took a hard look at Pac-Man D-Day and compared it with previous Fridays (before and after Google's recent redesign) and found some noticeable differences. We took a random subset of our users (about 11,000 people spending about 3 million seconds on Google that day) The average user spent 36 seconds MORE on Google.com on Friday. [...]

If we take Wolfram Alpha at its word, Google had about 504,703,000 unique visitors on May 23. If we assume that our userbase is representative, that means:

  • Google Pac-Man consumed 4,819,352 hours of time (beyond the 33.6m daily man hours of attention that Google Search gets in a given day)
  • $120,483,800 is the dollar tally, If the average Google user has a COST of $25/hr (note that cost is 1.3 – 2.0 X pay rate).
  • For that same cost, you could hire all 19,835 google employees, from Larry and Sergey down to their janitors, and get 6 weeks of their time. Imagine what you could build with that army of man power.
  • $298,803,988 is the dollar tally if all of the Pac-Man players had an approximate cost of the average Google employee.

Of course all these numbers are assuming that the time we spent playing Google Pac-Man would've been spent in some sort of productive manner in the first place. [Rescue Time via Slashdot]