Liquid Labour and the flowing stream of Information

Historically speaking, work was a concept that usually referred to physical labour. Building, baking, slicing and dicing were all forms of industrial labour. This form of labour was dependent on a hierarchical system where people would do what they were told. Order was established by workers following orders. However, with the introduction of the internet and liquid labour, information now flows free and constant.

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Liquid labour is dependent on the free flow of information. The internet enabled information to flow free. This allowed labour to be always available and unrestrained by borders. Liquid labour is derived from the distributed network because without this continuous free flow of information, liquid labour wouldn’t exist. Information in a distributed network flows freely and is communicated in a controlled manner. Liquid labour is an inexpensive way to coordinate a network and it makes for quick decision-making.

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Bottom-line is that we are no longer in one place. Due to a distributed network and liquid labour we can now work anywhere, anyplace and anytime. So, my question to you is, will industrial labour ever cease to exist?

 

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3 comments

  1. Jess · August 19

    I think that there will always be a need for industrial labour, at this point in time and for the foreseeable future; computers can’t build infrastructure or accurately pinpoint what exactly is blocking the kitchen sink.
    I don’t think it’s healthy to build such a reliance on technology- what if you need to stop the flow of information? When is too much information too much?
    If your phone is constantly going off, how are people going to get a break from work?
    I think it’s important to consider ALL possible effects of this, and not just recount all the positives.
    This slide show, from a previous student is a really good source for how liquid labour can effect the work and also the negatives of such a shift in paradigms!

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  2. gbaer35 · August 19

    Very insightful post! I definitely don’t think that industrial labour will ever cease to exist – the absolute untouchable companies such as Nestlé, Disney, Unilever etc. will all employ hierarchal structures and business models that really limit the workers and their business. However, that doesn’t mean that other major companies such as Uber and Airbnb aren’t cashing in on this idea of liquid labour and the distribution network – these two types of labour will co-exist, and hopefully thrive.

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  3. sanjihan · August 19

    Really enjoyed reading this post. The meme used is quite hilarious as well. In regard to your post, I feel that there will always be a need for industrial labour. Technology itself is very useful and powerful but it isn’t perfect. Because of this, industrial labour will always be around. That’s not to say using both industrial and liquid labour would be bad. Both can cover for each other’s faults.

    Like

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