Thursday, April 01, 2004

Baken writes:

Greetings, LIS 810 class/blog-mates. Regarding the Downey article:

1) It's interesting that software manufacturers, like WordPerfect application designers for example, have figured out through studies that there are 8.3 "man-years" of same-question-over-and-over "customer service" considerations to be figured into their product. Hence, the knowledge that the service personnel need to know in order to be able to field that occassional "smart" question is considerable; yet, hierarchially (sp?) they rank low-ish on the totem pole. In the future, will they, like telegraph messenger boys and telephone operators (women) of yesteryear, simply be relegated to the "sub-level proletarians" of the field? In other words, will the "knowledge bank" they have invested years/hours/dollars/rupiahs/baht/etc. into simply be second nature stuff, that all workers will be expected to just know?

2) Taking the "analog analogy" of yesteryear into the "digital" sphere of today, what is the modern equivalent to the old "singing telegram" that Greg writes about?? (scary thought: FBI "physically" knocking down your door for "misuse of internet-user options" ??)

3) Ben put up a link to an article about outsourcing as a key ingredient in new "start-ups" (which wouldn't open up for me, darn it) and that idea, coupled with a classmate telling me just yesterday about her graphics artist husband worrying about his Madison company job because many such companies are out-sourcing those types of jobs now (to India and other places), has me thinking that there's a "digital divide" issue here that reminds me of the "still high" U.S. unemployment figures dichotomy--in so far as, there are so many U.S. service industry jobs gladly being filled by (more competent) recent immigrants. Is there a correlative inference to be drawn here? How does it compare/not compare?

By the way, good article, Greg (brownie points gladly taken)!


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