Why don't you pretend I'm working?
August 23, 2004 8:00 PM   Subscribe

Outsource Your Own Job! -- "Says a programmer on Slashdot.org who outsourced his job: "About a year ago I hired a developer in India to do my job. I pay him $12,000 out of the $67,000 I get. He's happy to have the work. I'm happy that I have to work only 90 minutes a day just supervising the code. My employer thinks I'm telecommuting. Now I'm considering getting a second job and doing the same thing." " via BBspot.
posted by Space Coyote (23 comments total) 1 user marked this as a favorite

 
With the company's approval, fine. Otherwise, I hope he makes a ton of money because that non-disclosure agreement can sure be a bitch. Medical trascriptionists have been doing this too and getting caught.
posted by Feisty at 8:17 PM on August 23, 2004


Uh, is there any evidence that Slashdot post was anything other than a joke?
posted by Armitage Shanks at 8:20 PM on August 23, 2004


brilliant, totally brilliant
posted by daHIFI at 8:33 PM on August 23, 2004


An unnamed programmer at an unnamed company makes a statement and provides no real proof.

This is being taken as actual fact because of what corroborating evidence?
posted by pixelgeek at 8:43 PM on August 23, 2004


pixelgeek, take it up with the Times of India. I just think it's a good idea :)
posted by Space Coyote at 8:45 PM on August 23, 2004


Yeah, it must be true! The Times of India wouldn't do anything weird.
posted by wendell at 8:47 PM on August 23, 2004


This is smart (/sarcasm). When American companies started outsourcing manufacturing jobs overseas, economists said you have to be "computer literate." Now that "computer literate" work is being outsourced overseas, economists say that's great, now instead of being computer literate, you have to be an innovator. What do American workers do when the "innovating" jobs are inevitably shipped overseas?

This is like Nike, which does all manufacturing overseas, but the design, innovation, and marketing in the U.S. What happens to American marketing workers or innovators when those tasks can be done overseas?

My point is, I think these tech workers are only hastening the pace of outsourcing and hence hastening their own demise. It's like making a pact with the devil -- good for awhile, but what do they do when the time to pay the bargain comes?
posted by F4B2 at 9:25 PM on August 23, 2004


All of these "problems" would disappear if people could be as mobile as monetary capital. Companies can engage in jurisdictional arbitrage, and people should too.

If, by legal fiction, a corporation can be considered a "person" then a person should be able to acquire the legal status of a corporation. I'm not talking about creating yet another LLC shell; I'm talking about John Doe being able to divide himself up among various legal jurisdictions.

John Doe should be able to say that for the purposes of employment he's a Swedish citizen, while for the purposes of property ownership he's Swiss, and for all financial transactions he's based in the Isle of Man, while he physically is in Bermuda. Any one of these "corporate operations" should be able to shift citizenship at will.

Companies can do it, and so should you. Demand it every time you talk with someone who supports "free markets".
posted by aramaic at 9:56 PM on August 23, 2004


An unnamed programmer at an unnamed company makes a statement and provides no real proof.

This is being taken as actual fact because of what corroborating evidence?

Gee whiz: It's one the frickin' *Internet*. It _must_ be true.

The only evidence more compelling would be a Google cache of a page that has since been changed.

John Doe should be able to say that for the purposes of employment he's a Swedish citizen, while for the purposes of property ownership he's Swiss, and for all financial transactions he's based in the Isle of Man, while he physically is in Bermuda. Any one of these "corporate operations" should be able to shift citizenship at will.

Companies can do it, and so should you. Demand it every time you talk with someone who supports "free markets".


And when they balk, tell them you were just kidding, then remind them that corporate charters are instruments of the State, and essentially amount to State intervention in the market through the granting of special privileges.

Then ask them to support a phasing out of all corporate charters.

That always gets a laugh.
posted by Ayn Marx at 11:27 PM on August 23, 2004


via BBspot

Last time I checked BBSpot was a very mildly funny 'comedy' site.
posted by stavrosthewonderchicken at 11:44 PM on August 23, 2004


As a programmer, I'm offended that anyone would believe that it only takes 90 minutes to review the code I write in a single day. Quite frankly, you could look at some of my code, even quite small bits, and still not know what it does after days.
posted by krisjohn at 1:43 AM on August 24, 2004


When I have kids I'm going to start them off on the right track and get them to outsource their homework. Of course if I am very happy with the job the outsourcee does I may adopt him instead. All in the name of efficiency, you know.
posted by Space Coyote at 3:03 AM on August 24, 2004


Quite frankly, you could look at some of my code, even quite small bits, and still not know what it does after days.

so perl is doing well for you i see.
posted by chrisroberts at 7:52 AM on August 24, 2004


If it was hard to write, it should be hard to read, right?
posted by kenko at 7:57 AM on August 24, 2004


If it was hard to write, it should be hard to read, right?

It worked for Joyce.
posted by adzuki at 8:09 AM on August 24, 2004


My point is, I think these tech workers are only hastening the pace of outsourcing and hence hastening their own demise. It's like making a pact with the devil -- good for awhile, but what do they do when the time to pay the bargain comes?

Well, I think the idea is that we'd then start to have worldwide economic parity and a lessening of global poverty. It might sound like trickle-down economics, but by saying they can't have those jobs or become adequately qualified to hold those jobs, that puts them in a state of perpetual subjugation -- and while that state of affairs has worked out pretty well for the US (give or take Al Qaeda, which thrives on that disparity), I don't think it's a sustainable model. If x% of the worldwide value of intellectual property comes from US companies, and we don't employ from outside the US, then as citizens of other countries become qualified to do the work, they'll erode that x% market share by direct competition for products instead of direct competition for jobs. Now, neither is fun or good in the short-term for US workers but we export so much that we can't talk authoritatively about being our own isolationist fiefdom. If we're going to play globally, well, these are the costs.
posted by blueshammer at 8:16 AM on August 24, 2004


Oy. "When they outsourced the factory workers, I said nothing because I wasn't a factory worker..."

Media outlet with ax to grind runs with serious story based satirical Internet article. Not like that's ever happened, right?
posted by FormlessOne at 8:16 AM on August 24, 2004


Uhm, BBSpot is a satire site. Other recent fake story purported to be real: "Company designs motherboard with the principles of Feng Shui"

Hoax.
posted by mnology at 8:26 AM on August 24, 2004


"It's like making a pact with the devil -- good for awhile, but what do they do when the time to pay the bargain comes?"

I think the idea is, by the time that comes around, it's not your problem anymore, since you're already financially set. Just shift the burden down the line! It's the American way!
posted by Civil_Disobedient at 8:41 AM on August 24, 2004


July's Wired contained an article referencing this. The author's take: crap.

Since when is Slashdot a primary news source? Even an authoritative news source?
posted by Ogre Lawless at 8:56 AM on August 24, 2004


If, by legal fiction, a corporation can be considered a "person" then a person should be able to acquire the legal status of a corporation. I'm not talking about creating yet another LLC shell; I'm talking about John Doe being able to divide himself up among various legal jurisdictions.
I've heard of people doing something like this. You are a citizen of country A, but want to live and work in country B (where you'd need a work visa, etc). You set up a company in country A, and dispatch yourself to country B to run the local rep office. A lot of fooling around, but it can be done.
posted by adamrice at 8:59 AM on August 24, 2004


I've heard of people doing something like this. You are a citizen of country A, but want to live and work in country B (where you'd need a work visa, etc). You set up a company in country A, and dispatch yourself to country B to run the local rep office. A lot of fooling around, but it can be done.

Or you could just move to the European Union where your right to do so is a Treaty right.
posted by dmt at 10:55 AM on August 24, 2004


mnology , i got the link from bbspot, it's not an article posted on bbspot itself. Hence the 'via'. That's not to say it's a decently researched article, which it plainly isn't. But it's a cool idea.
posted by Space Coyote at 11:13 AM on August 24, 2004


« Older boom chicka wow wow...   |   Don't Hold Back Folks, Let Us Know How You Feel Newer »


This thread has been archived and is closed to new comments