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Session Summary: Work in the Digital Age

Submitted by Miriam A. Cherry

This discussion group was a part of the SEALs Workshop on Labor and Employment Law.

Our discussion group members talked about the various technologies that impact work, including remote work, gig platforms, virtual reality, gamification, algorithmic management, and the ways that the law either has or has not kept up with the pace of different technology.

In some instances, our panelists noted that technology enabled people to do their work from home during the pandemic, and that it helped people stay safe and protected during an extremely disruptive time.  One of our speakers noted the possibilities inherent in online worker organizing.

However, others noted that on gig platforms and with remote work, technology has rendered workers more invisible to the ultimate customers or consumers of products and services.  Discussions were had about privacy and algorithmic discrimination, especially the potential for such when touching upon sensitive health information.  Altogether the discussion was enlightening, driven by current events, and was overall very informative.

Many thanks to Prof. Jeff Hirsch for helping to organize the Labor and Employment Workshop.