Why the rise of the robots won’t mean the end of work

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Joe Capo : This video was made by evil robots

B-doe - ThatsHowitBdoe : A robot created the title...nice try.

David Reyna : In the future people will make money vlogging and entertaining each other

Yash Kshirsagar : The automation is different this time around though. Machines are smarter and are constantly learning thanks to AI, meaning they can potentially learn whatever new jobs humans get displaced to, and creating unemployment. On the other hand, if this automation leads to decreased production costs and end-consumer costs, we won't need to work for money in the traditional sense. Really hope it works out that way :)

Enders Turkers : Yes new jobs will apear but who will do it? AI of course

JuxtaposedStars : This is wishful thinking. Going forward, automation will eliminate most low or unskilled positions. Not every one is suited to be a college educated or white collar worker(many of those jobs will also disappear). If(for example)fast food chains replace their workers with robots, you have a huge number of people immediately unemployable. The number of new jobs created(like robot mechanic or programmer) will never equal the amount of jobs lost. You'd need laws setting artificial quotas of human workers. When consumers can choose between a robo-burger that is always made perfectly for $1 vs. human error at an ever increasing cost to support the human workers' lifestyle, people will take the lowest price. If anything, the current political climate in which coal and factory workers think their old jobs can come back is a perfect example of those who will be left behind.

Scott Freedman : The argument that technology won't cause job losses because people have been wrong about automation in the past sounds a lot like the argument that climate change isn't happening because scientists were wrong in the past about an impending ice age. Also, and this is just speculation of course, but; where in the past technology might have driven productivity allowing businesses to expand, thereby creating new jobs for low-skill workers in retail, field work, warehouse work etc.; modern technology will no doubt soon be replacing those jobs as well -- regardless of any productivity boom it might achieve. It may pave the way for more highly skilled jobs, but you can't retrain everybody who's been displaced to work those new jobs, and even if you could, many people just don't have the aptitude for it.

poppet pala : *_COUGH_* tesla gigafactory *_COUGH_*

DarKMaTTeR : This argument reminds of the "Oil isn't running out, because we keep finding new oil reserves". Is oil infinite? No. Therefore it will run out. "We won't run out of jobs, because there are professions which aren't automatable". The missing word is "yet". Is there anything that a human can do and a robot can't? With AI and lab-grown tissues, the answer is no. There will be a day when robots will even give warmer hugs. It's not this generation's problem, but the day will come. That's not a bad thing in itself. It just means that the current design of our society, where everyone has to work in a market to earn a living, will simply become outdated. Capitalism will have to be replaced. The real problem is that the people with the power to change things are the ones who don't stand to lose.

Duwang Man : That's what the robots want you to think

Court 02468 : At 5:37 it activated my Google Assistant.

Leo Noir : No need to be replaced by machines... Most of us are grinding our lives away like machines anyway.

Nathan H : The problem with this argument is create new jobs (based on expansion) humans need to be integrated, soon there will be maybe one or two humans employed per store. Thus new stores (or whatever building the company has) will not help.

dave c : You are my favorite reporter at vox. Good job with this video, it helped me see the issue in a different light. For me I first heard about this issue from CPG grey's video: human's need not apply. I have happy to see the new side of the issue but I am still skeptical of both sides. Only time will tell.

The Suicidal Muffin : Sounds like something a robot would say.

Ryukachoo : Unemployable is the right way to put it. Machines have been replacing base tasks for a long time, but this new era can replace even very complicated tasks. All of the service industry, all of the transportation industry, all retail, will be very easily replaceable in a decade.

Outkast : I don't get it isn't the whole point to not work isn't that why we're making robots in the first place if there's no jobs then there's no people to buy stuff from the people that have the robots so it'll Force the people that have the robots to lower their prices and maybe we'll just get a wadge from the government not such a big problem when you realize that the whole point is to not work

JDiculous : Problems with this video: 1. Something not happening in the past doesn't mean that it won't happen in the future 2. Job automation DID cause massive job losses and suffering. Laborers protested, rioted, and died over this. 3. Job automation is already wrecking havock on the labor market, it's just not something some ivory tower economist will see looking at bullshit statistics (eg. unemployment rate) from his/her cubicle. Just look at all the unemployed/underemployed college graduates working retail jobs (my neighbor graduated from a top 3 public university with a STEM degree and is currently waiting tables at a restaurant), or the decimated areas in the rust belt. Everybody knows that free trade shipped factories overseas, but what doesn't get enough attention is that automation is responsible for a huge percentage of those jobs being lost. Again, you're not going to see this from some doctored unemployment figure. 4. The question isn't just about # of jobs, its about QUALITY of jobs. Unemployment rate can remain flat, but if 3 million truck drivers with middle class salaries start working minimum wage retail and personal care aid type jobs (the jobs with the most projected growth), then that's an impending disaster. 5. People need money to buy things. If they lose their jobs, then they can't buy things. I'm glad you're raising attention to this enormously important issue, but to suggest that we should carry on as though everything is ok while millions of Americans are in danger of getting their careers automated away is incredibly irresponsible at best, incredibly selfish at worst.

Azio Prism : *Kurzgezagt robots already made a better video about this.*


johanna vaiz : I live in Ontario Canada. We are putting into place in the next 10 yrs a standard living wage allowance. Which means you will get a check from the government if you don't earn enough $. This is happening to Ontario because of robots and the Canadian government says we won't have jobs do to technology....... In Toronto where I'm from Google has bought some of our lake front where they will have a Google test site with robots and driverless cars . This test site is to be tested on the people of Toronto..... VOX YOU ARE BSing US!!!!!!!!

SeanG Plays : *THEY TOOK OUR JERBS!!!!!*

Vox : Thanks for all the thoughtful comments and debate! For those recommending that I watch CGP Grey's video on this, I have of course seen it already! To understand the key difference between our arguments, consider his 'humans are the new horses' analogy. The point of my video is: Horses don't buy things. Consumption rises with productivity growth, and it expands into weird unpredictable places, and that's what the futurists of the past couldn't imagine. They thought we'd work 15-hour weeks by now. Instead we're buying smart phones and apps, watching netflix, and eating at restaurants. That said, I hope nobody takes this video to mean we shouldn't worry about the future. It's not that there won't be challenges, it's that we need to diagnose those challenges correctly and precisely. If we sit around waiting for mass unemployment to show up so that we can pass a basic income, we may find that those conditions don't arrive any time soon. The idea is to shift the focus from the number of jobs to the quality of jobs, the prospects for mobility, access to education and opportunity. That's not as sexy as daydreaming about a robot jobpocalypse, but it's truly the task at hand. We'll be discussing some of these topics in future episodes, so stay tuned. And thanks for watching :) -joss

Hulky Smashy : There is a big problem with this video from 3:10 to 4:10. The problem is that the jobs that have overtaken them will only employ a fraction of what the original job had employed. Moreover, the more computers get advanced the more likely they will take over jobs that have been a part of the economy for over 3 centuries. CGP Grey made a video about this, you can see it here: https://youtu.be/7Pq-S557XQU

kricku : Halve workdays, PLEASE!

John Smith : That's why I'm a communist.

Al F : In my opinion yes. People are becoming lazy and don’t want to do work. So we use technology as an advantage to do things for us. We I live many shopping malls and small businesses like Kmart or big lots are closing. Because of increase of online orders. Which is another reason why many people in my city are also unemployed or have low paying jobs. In my opinion robots are in the same category of technology.

Harlion : Microprocessors on chips won’t continue to increase because we’re near the atomic maximum. That’s why quantum computers are a huge part of our future.

Azio Prism : *Automation needs to happen quicker, it may be painful at first but then its all comfy.*

Ashish Krishna Pandey : "People will never be replaced by machines. In the end, life and business are about human connections. And computers are about trying to murder you in a lake." - Michael J. Scott

Corrupted Archangel : Let the robots run government and why not the whole civilization? They are smarter than we are, and could be better in every way. Make them a servitor, our needs and wants are petty. They could be simulated easily. It could streamline our process to make it so efficient that or own waste is negligable to our new AI overlord (not lords, unless something really goes wrong)

Armagetron Fasttrack : They forgot to talk about the biggest thing - what will humans be able to do that robots cannot? For our entire history, we've been able to shift to areas that humans can still perform that robots can't, such as human interaction, complex processing of the environment (driving), and creative tasks such as making a business decision or working in a scientific field. Once AI comes around, robots will be able to do most human interaction jobs (depends on how comfortable/natural the robotic interaction seems with consumers, but will likely be very good decades from now), ALL complex processing of the environment jobs, and most if not all creative tasks. Where will the jobs be after this? All those auxiliary jobs the video talked about that are created when technology increase, will be done by robots. New industries may be created, but why would a human be able to do something in that industry that a robot couldn't? We are talking about entities that will be both vastly more physically capable, and more mentally capable in basically all respects.

SuperMechguy : We won't even need Vox presenters anymore .

loganatha K7 : How many more science fiction movies like Matrix and I robot have to be made to understand dangers of artificial intelligence , it is not just about cost cutting measures... But future of human existence 😑

Exzerno : Purge all synths

Mateusz Wojtkiewicz : I don't know about new jobs, but a lot of old ones will be lost. And people can't always change to those new jobs of they're created. I can't imagine many truckers for example going to collage to then be employed as AI programmers for those self-driving trucks.

Pirateboy04 : https://youtu.be/7Pq-S557XQU

stiqula : the automation of the past is NOTHING like it is now. comparing the two is myopic af

Chad : Of course automation causes job loss and will continue to do so. This is even subsidized through the government by several welfare programs. This conversation doesn't feel right when you're just saying "jobs". Lumping them together isn't right. Automation has cut into high skilled jobs yet people wonder why the middle class has been hit hard.

Fancy Wizard : In forty years if anyone wants to start a revolution against A.I, you know where to find me.

Itbelink : This video misses three important elements. One, as they say, the economy does in fact correct for this, but it's because everyone is forced to continue working to pay for things they need, so they end up developing new products and services, therefore jobs, to fill the gap. That will continue to happen like it has in the past. The video merely missed that as the actual reason for their argument is partially true. Two, this time is different because of the magnitude of displaced jobs and creation of new jobs. Even if we create new jobs like mentioned in number one, it won't be long before a machine will also duplicate that job too. We won't be able to outpace new products and services with the amount that machines replace. And three, we will hit leveling off or maximums in products and services where things are "enough" for everyone and there will be less incentive to want or need more. We already see this effect in food production. We still have time to get to a leveling off of many many things, but it will not be coming in the next 20 years for sure. The only thing that might change that, would be transportation. If we take to the skies or increase ability to travel, then consumption will continue to grow.

yoo : TOTAL BULLSH*T - the problem is not the jobs, but that salaries has been decreasing since the 70s - more productivity, lower salaries ( fore a period it was ~90% increase of productivity and only ~7% increase of salaries). So this video is very unprofessional ...

Andrew Kovnat : Boston Dynamics just made a new video today! What a coincidence! If ya don't know, Boston Dynamics are the dudes behind a lot of the automated walking robots you see on the interwebs. Give them a quick look!

somebody : you know why middle east is always in chaos? or why African countries never had a chance to develop? the thing is, in the middle east or dictatorships, we usually see that the dictator has a minority of armed forces controlling the country and most importantly the wealth of that so called country like its oil and thus creating a massive income for himself and his men who help him control his country, in this analogy the state or the government has no need for Taxation money since people and their income is irrelevant to the equation. on the contrary, in western societies such as US, we need the revenue produced by taxation to pay for our luxury which might be a road, hospital, bridge and... . so we need to have people with incomes to pay their share of living in this nation so we can pay other people to do maintain necessities like keeping the flow of water pipelines. but when you automate everything, you give the power to the people who have control over the country to jump over the equation so that means we wouldn't need people to maintain our country. I believe that would be the start of collapse of governments and traditional form of countries and nations and we will see something like collapse of soviet union worldwide which would end in forming a new worldwide institution which has a military control all over the world and would result in a AI powered and controlled government with human supervisors so that massive government could be suited for everyone instantaneously. the truth is we are irrelevant to the course of history, lots of people die without living a mark of their ever existing. so whatever happens, life would go one and it would be even better. no need to worry. people in NK are living as well as people in Africa or even Switzerland. some might die in those countries but life goes on; my point is, the robotic and AI revolution would definitely increase our standard of living astronomically.

MisterWilly : Dear reporter person in this video; may I offer you a coffee sometime? Sincerely, a fan.

shortbuspileup : I’m pretty sure this video was made by Skynet.

LRGD : they aren't just robots, they are neural networks, basically learning machines, they're far more advanced and have the power to learn an infinite amount, we should be worried if we don't regulate

Ryan Pham : did anyone see Kurzgesagt – In a Nutshell in there?

Emad Ze : I love her sound!

Phil Morris : But, but I want robots to do all the work. So we can hang out, travel, relax, retire! Why work?!