Tuesday, October 26, 2010

Collective Bargaining for IT Workers?

I've always thought unions make the most sense in occupations where the workers are uniquely skilled but downtrodden.  I picture sheet metal workers in large factories in poor working conditions. 

Until recently, I never put IT workers in that mental picture because 10 years ago, IT experts were a valued commodity in a position to command good jobs, make good money, and control their environments.  We no longer are.  Now, the work has either been "offshored" or turned into 2nd class citizen contract jobs.  Salaries stagnated and the quality of working environments have plummeted. 

Granted, IT workers rode an unnatural high for a while.  We can't go back there.  But we are ethical, dedicated, highly educated, highly skilled, and can deliver real solutions -- we deserve opportunities for real employment, realistic demands, reasonable pay, decent work environments, and respect.

It's time for an IT Workers Union.

Unfortunately, I know nothing about unions, unionizing, or organizing in that fashion, so I'm not the one who's going to make this happen, but if it does, I'm telling you now, I will be among the first to sign up.

Tuesday, October 19, 2010

IBM > Facebook??? Srsly?

Well, FastCompany's writer Drew Neisser thinks so in this article.  Shrug.  It's possible.

IBM does have a much better grip on capitalism than Facebook seems to.  Aside from their penchant for purchasing smaller companies and running their products into the ground, IBM has an undeniable market force -- economic clout hard to match.

Frankly, I'd really like to see IBM succeed at making social software a must-have for organizations and it can't do that until social software is profitable.  I like that FB is free, but if I owned a company, I would want something with more security, more controls, more ability to capture\reuse knowledge.  And it'd be worth my while to pay something for it.