Jonathan Roberge, full professor at the National Institute of Scientific Research (INRS).
If these announcements are restructurings towards AI research and development, it is not clear whether it is human resources that are being moved into this department, or whether it is the capacity to automate jobs there. The interior of the teams of these platforms is at the forefront, according to the full professor at INRS.
He cites as an example the video game industry, which has been reporting job losses for two years: Programmers, actors and creative agents know very well that they are perfectly replaceable by the technologies currently developing.
And everything indicates that at present, technology companies have an inability to predict AI, which makes them, in a way, victims of themselves, analyzes the researcher.
< p class="StyledBodyHtmlParagraph-sc-48221190-4 hnvfyV">If AI can have its role to play in this wave of layoffs, we must still not leave aside the post-pandemic context which is still rife in the world. ;economy.
Technology industries have seen a period of strong growth during the COVID-19 pandemic. Circumstances have encouraged a suddenly renewed and massively significant attraction to computing, due to the marked increase in teleworking, but also video games, as people sought entertainment during confinements.
Google had around 120,000 employees before the pandemic, then increased to 180,000 during the pandemic. From there, it is certain that there will be corrections.
A quote from Jonathan Roberge, full professor at INRS
January 2024 is experiencing a bit of a Groundhog Day for staff members of technology companies, who, at the end of 2022 and the beginning of 2023, were tens of thousands to be shown the wears in this context.
The giant Microsoft announced in mid-January the elimination of 10,000 jobs due to the economic situation. That same day, Amazon cut 18,000 jobs worldwide. Two months earlier, it was Meta, the parent company of Facebook, Instagram and WhatsApp, which announced it would let go of 11,000 people while Mark Zuckerberg, its CEO, described 2023 as the year of efficiency.
Jonathan Roberge underlines that the post-pandemic context is also accompanied by new performance pressure on the stock market: Often, to increase your stock market rating, we will make announcements of layoffs. It's an old trick that people like because it gives the impression that there will be reductions in operating costs, and that expenses will be taken more seriously.
According to the INRS professor, it will take months, even years, to understand what is happening in the technological industries.
When we understand [what is going on in the industry], it will probably already be too late.
A quote by Jonathan Roberge, full professor at INRS
The big losers will be a plethora of workers, moral and ethical principles, says M. Roberge.
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