New technology disrupting old workplace laws

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We’ve seen in sci-fi movies how humans would constantly interact with robots and artificial intelligence (AI). We used to think that the “future” was still far away from us, but changes are happening right now. 

Most storage warehouses and product manufacturers are already dealing with robots on a daily basis through automation. Technology has evolved and disrupted employment in many industries, but the only thing that stayed the same is the law. 

Today, even though we deal with a lot of tech tools, we don’t have any laws regarding automation.

Can New Technologies Disrupt Old Laws?

Some of the United States laws regarding work safety will soon become a decade old. Although private companies have some sort of freedom to figure out terms and conditions for workers, they don’t usually take technology into account. However, this will eventually have to change. 

With the evolution of new technologies like AI or robotics, the work field has changed. Therefore, safety terms and conditions we used to have may not be up-to-date with today’s work environment. If we continue to ignore the need for new work laws that are more adequate for today’s situation, workers will be unprotected. 

New technologies will eventually become a reason to modify work laws to create some that are more suited for workers’ dynamic nowadays.

Unprotected Employees

One of the biggest risks for employees with the current work laws is that they’re not protected against privacy intrusions. We’ll describe this deeper in the next topic, but the point is that a lack of privacy leads to other types of abuses in the work field.

For example, one Japanese company created a system that detects the movement of your eyelid. The system will detect if you feel drowsiness or you’re about to fall asleep. Once it detects drowsiness, it’ll blast cold air into the room. Here’s the article about that system if you’d like to know more about it. Some employees may feel this system is intrusive.

Would you imagine wearing a chip to be monitored by your boss all day? Another company embedded an RFID chip into their workers’ arms so it was easier for them to open doors and access the company’s computers. This could be some sort of biometric technology that seems very useful at first, but it could be a potential thread for workers’ privacy. This chip can’t be pulled out of their bodies once they get out of work, meaning that the company can monitor their employees even when they’re not working.

No Privacy Protections for Workers

The privacy invasion will not stop here. With the evolution of AI and machine learning, the possibilities are endless. Companies could start monitoring workers for all kinds of purposes they won’t even know about. 

Today, there’s a company that started monitoring their workers’ internet history and health insurance to see the possibilities of who is considering getting pregnant or who is likely to have diabetes. This process is done by using data science.

Conclusion 

Technology is disrupting many industries. Therefore, the work field will constantly evolve with these changes. However, if we continue to have the same safety and privacy laws in the future, workers will be vulnerable to abuses at work. 

We need to embrace laws that are adequate for the technology changes we’re living, and laws that continue to protect a company and its employees.

On the balance of a technicality

We’ve seen in sci-fi movies how humans would continuously interact with robots and artificial intelligence (AI). We used to think that the “future” was still far away from us, but changes are happening right now. Most storage warehouses and product manufacturers are already dealing with robots daily through automation. Technology has evolved and disrupted employment in many industries, but our laws still maintain the same status quo.

Today, even though we deal with a lot of tech tools, we don’t have any laws regarding automation.

Can New Technologies Disrupt Old Laws?

Some of the United States laws regarding work safety will soon become a decade old. Although private companies have the partial freedom to figure out terms and conditions for workers, they don’t usually take technology into account. However, this will eventually have to change. 

With the evolution of new technologies like AI or robotics, the work field has changed. Therefore, safety terms and conditions we used to have may not be up-to-date with today’s work environment. If we continue to ignore the need for new work laws better suited for today’s digital environment, workers will remain unprotected. 

New technologies will eventually become a reason to modify work laws to create some that are more suited for workers’ dynamic nowadays.

Unprotected Employees

The manifest failure to shield workers against privacy intrusions remains the most significant risk for employees. Workers subjected to the current work laws reiterate that the lack of privacy leads to other types of abuses of power on the job. For example, one Japanese company created a system that detects the movement of your eyelid. The program anticipates any drowsiness and if you’re about to fall asleep. Once it detects drowsiness, it’ll blast cold air into the room. Here’s the article about that system if you’d like to know more about it. Some employees may feel this system is intrusive. 

Would you imagine wearing a chip to be monitored by your boss all day? Another company embedded an RFID chip into their workers’ arms, so it was easier for them to open doors and access the company’s computers. This biometric technology seems very useful at first, but it could be a potential threat to workers’ privacy because the chip is not removable. Therefore, when workers clock out of work, the company can monitor their employees even when they’re not working.

No Privacy Protections for Workers

The privacy invasion will not stop here. With the evolution of AI and machine learning, the possibilities are endless. Companies could start monitoring workers for all kinds of purposes they won’t even know about whether they’re at work or elsewhere. Today, there’s a company that uses data science to scan their workers’ internet history and health insurance. The aim was to see the possibilities of who is considering getting pregnant or who is likely to have diabetes. 

Conclusion 

Technology is disrupting many industries. Therefore, the work field will continuously evolve with these changes. However, suppose we continue to have the same safety and privacy laws in the future. In that case, workers will be vulnerable to abuses at work. We need to embrace laws that are adequate for the technology changes we’re living, and regulations that continue to protect a company and its employees.