Friday September 11, 2020 |Notes

Remove tech backlash

The general public seems to be experiencing a form of tech backlash against the tools that have enabled connection throughout the first 6 months of the pandemic. It is a challenge, it's important to remember the changes were made in response to a global pandemic, not as a superior replacement.

For those who have worked remotely for years, the challenges are no surprise. It's difficult to work remotely without seeing people face to face. And without great home office space, it's much more challenging. This is clearly not an ideal situation for most people.

Theses changes were implemented quickly and abruptly. While there are some changes that will last forever, many are temporary. Many parents are no longer willing to put in the effort to make remote learning work. Netflix and JP Morgan have reiterated the importance of working in offices:

This was his exchange with Joe Flint of the WSJ on the matter:

WSJ: What elements of the Netflix culture are tougher to maintain now that so many employees are working from home? Mr. Hastings: Debating ideas is harder now. WSJ: Have you seen benefits from people working at home? Mr. Hastings: No. I don’t see any positives. Not being able to get together in person, particularly internationally, is a pure negative. I’ve been super impressed at people’s sacrifices. WSJ: It’s been anticipated that many companies will shift to a work-from-home approach for many employees even after the Covid-19 crisis. What do you think? Mr. Hastings: If I had to guess, the five-day workweek will become four days in the office while one day is virtual from home. I’d bet that’s where a lot of companies end up. WSJ: Do you have a date in mind for when your workforce returns to the office? Mr. Hastings: Twelve hours after a vaccine is approved.

It's completely understandable and expected that people want to return to many of the old methods of work and school. However, rushing the move because it's too difficult to continue in this manner is shortsighted and counterproductive.

To make school and work safe for the community as a whole, it's necessary for everyone to continue facing the challenges presented by the pandemic. Unfortunately, there is not yet a cure for the coronavirus disease and it's not time to give up. The tech tools exist to make it better, not perfect.

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