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I worry for the job environment after COVID-19

purple

Senior Member
As I sit and watch my local news, where all the anchors are sitting in their living rooms, some with green screens, some with plain white walls behind them, I can't help but think a lot of news agencies are thinking "why are we paying people thousands to produce this in a studio, this looks fine!" In fact this is a sentiment I have seen in many media and office jobs. Given how easy it is to get and properly use "prosumer" gear these days, it begs the question whether anyone would really care if news agencies and other such industries started to transition to this sort of thing permanently. For this reason I'm worried a lot of people who work on these sorts of crews will lose their jobs or see pay become less competitive after this is all over.

The same may happen to those in offices and the like which can do their job entirely remotely. Why hire someone locally in say, San Francisco, who needs a higher salary due to cost of living there, when someone in rural Missouri can do the job just as well for much less remotely.

What if studios trial bigger and bigger blockbuster films as streaming-only and quickly abandon theaters for all but the most epic and loud cultural landmark movies?

I wonder how many primarily dine-in restaurants will struggle to compete with those that got a head-start on the delivery boom. I've had multiple people express the idea that they would find it hard to go back to leaving the house for food now that they've realized how easy delivery is.

This will only accelerate the loss of local businesses to the every-growing Amazon empire as well.

Maybe I'm just paranoid.
 

CGR

Pianist, Composer & Arranger
Interesting thoughts, and I don't think you're being paranoid. This global situation will have a profound effect on how business is conducted "on the other side" of it all. I've read of a few projections that many people will continue to work from home after the social distancing restrictions have been lifted, which has positives in a number of areas including traffic & pollution, but will have negative effects on office leases, maintenance staff, restaurants, catering and industry specific related jobs as companies assess their setups & structures.

Even though many people have discovered that the stay-at-home situation can be well managed using technology for work, food & shopping deliveries etc., the need to connect and interact in person for work & socialising is strong, and in many ways far more effective, productive, creative and enjoyable. I'd imagine there will be a huge surge of people getting back out in the world again in gatherings, and then later on finding an equilibrium and settling down into a new way of living, hopefully with some positive outcomes of what we all learn from this experience.
 

ptram

Senior Member
As someone who mostly work from home, I can say that the energy you get from the office can't be had from video conferencing. In presence, you feel the others. You can all stand around the hardware you are developing, or in front of the audio monitors where you listen to the same song in the same space. I like to walk while presenting. A lot of ideas come out of confrontation.

And I like the fine dress and scent of the administration personnel. At home, I only have cats.

More energy, less neurosis. Long live the office. Even if not for everyday.

Paolo
 

CGR

Pianist, Composer & Arranger
As someone who mostly work from home, I can say that the energy you get from the office can't be had from video conferencing. In presence, you feel the others. You can all stand around the hardware you are developing, or in front of the audio monitors where you listen to the same song in the same space. I like to walk while presenting. A lot of ideas come out of confrontation.

And I like the fine dress and scent of the administration personnel. At home, I only have cats.

More energy, less neurosis. Long live the office. Even if not for everyday.

Paolo
Well said. It's an over-used word, but there is a 'synergy' which happens in person that can't be replicated via a Skype or Zoom meeting.
 

Thundercat

Senior Member
I don’t think things will ever go back to being the same. With them telling us we can be reinfected and with the prospect of mutating strains, this virus has now hitched a ride on all of our lives, permanently.
 

Jimmy Hellfire

Senior Member
I think that working from home is the future. Always said that.

Depends on the job of course. If you're doing something that could be done from your home's toilet, it's nonsensical to be forced to sit somewhere else for 8+ hours. Add in the commuting and all the other nonsense.

I also don't feel that it's my responsibility to waste away my life in the office so that some facility management company can exploit more or their staff.
 

Crowe

Avian Member
I despise having to travel to and from work. I despise having to sit in an office garden. I've already decided that 'being forced to work from home' is the best thing that has ever happened to me job-wise.

Yeah, things are going to change and I couldn't be happier. I'm a happy minority however and my own manager is already pushing for my team getting back into the office so I believe we will end up on a middle-ground somewhere.
 
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purple

Senior Member
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I despise having to travel to and from work. I despise having to sit in an office garden. I've already decided that 'being forced to work from home' is the best thing that has ever happened to me job-wise.

Yeah, things are going to change and I couldn't be happier. I'm a happy minority however and my own manager is already pushing for my team getting back into the office so I believe we will end up on a middle-ground somewhere.
I'm right there with you. I do all my work from home anyways, and now that I don't have to be at school during the day, I have a lot more time to be productive (I'm using this quarter for gen-eds, I'd hate to take my music classes online) and engage in my hobbies as well... I can see the appeal of this as a norm depending on the job. I'm very much a "give me a job and let me sit in my dark room in silence until it's done" kind of person and the lack of outside obligations makes this an environment in which I can thrive. I hate to say this has been good for me, because most others are very sad they cannot do so many of the things they used to love. Almost makes me feel guilty. But also worried for those who may never see a return to a good and healthy "normal".
 

Crowe

Avian Member
I'm right there with you. I do all my work from home anyways, and now that I don't have to be at school during the day, I have a lot more time to be productive (I'm using this quarter for gen-eds, I'd hate to take my music classes online) and engage in my hobbies as well... I can see the appeal of this as a norm depending on the job. I'm very much a "give me a job and let me sit in my dark room in silence until it's done" kind of person and the lack of outside obligations makes this an environment in which I can thrive. I hate to say this has been good for me, because most others are very sad they cannot do so many of the things they used to love. Almost makes me feel guilty. But also worried for those who may never see a return to a good and healthy "normal".

As I've been saying to my best friend who has been obsessing about Covid and keeps being disappointed when something turns out to be cancelled:

Everything is cancelled forever. This is the new normal. We need to adapt, or drive ourselves mad obsessing about how things used to be. Humans are extremely adaptable but at the same time hold on for dear life to the things they are used to, even if that thing is a ship and the ship is sinking.

I do not feel guilty for having taken to the new normal as a fish to water. I also understand that things are bad right now, but I also know that things could be so much worse.

'Normal' is a curse word, in many, many ways.
 

Mornats

Hobbyist
I just want to comment on thoughts about local businesses losing out to Amazon and the like. Over here in the UK our supermarkets can't keep up with the demand for deliveries and are (very rightly so) prioritising the most vulnerable. To help with the situation, local businesses (at least in Bristol where I live) are stepping up and delivering to those who need it. A lot of businesses are adapting and generally chipping in and helping out. We've started ordering fresh veg from a community farm, coffee from a local roaster and so on.

After all this is over, we won't forget these businesses. We have no intention of stopping our regular deliveries and will support these local businesses like they've supported us. Likewise for all the companies offering discounts and freebies (a lot in our virtual instrument world but also the likes of Serif and others). I've seen a lot of small and local businesses step up to be more a part of the community than ever before. I think this is the time of the small business in the community. They've been here for us so we'll be there for them after this.
 

Saxer

Senior Member
I'm used to collaberation over the net. In the moment I'm working on a TV movie where I was invited by the composer to collaborate. Most time it works but there are some moments you can't share over the net. Watching a director while he's auditioning the score in the same room is not replaceable. When you see a doubtful glance you can immediately explain your intention for a scene. And all together can listen with studio monitoring instead of laptop speakers.

Thousands of musicians are now recording home videos singing songs or playing something from their live performances and record all that on phone mics. Others listen for a few seconds on their phone too for a few seconds until the next thread or message comes in. I don't think they are doing themselfs a favor. A living room isn't a stage, a phone isn't a P.A. And the world is bigger than a screen.
 

MauroPantin

I engrave little black dots
I think you have a point. I don't doubt for a second that the current situation will severely impact the way we do things moving forward. As with any big and sudden change, it will assign winners and losers depending on where you were standing before all of this happened. A lot of disruption will occur, probably in the same vein as to what you are describing.

But there are possible upsides, too. Less mindless commute for a lot of people means more time at home with their families. Less time spent on traffic with everybody road-raging, or riding on a super-crowded subway train nobody wants to be in. Less pollution, perhaps, I really wouldn't mind that. What is happening is terrible but a re-examination of our societies and what is really essential could be a good thing.

I already work from home, so this is hardly a change for me. But my wife has been working from home these past few weeks and will continue to do so until August or just about because of the situation. And I have to tell you guys if it wasn't for the terrible grief a lot of people are experiencing and the uncertainty we have right now, we would be quite content. In spite of the lockdown and the inability to go outside and catch a movie, visit our parents or go climbing, all of which we both really miss, there are things about this that are great. We get to have lunch together, share our day... I don't think we've had this amount of time with each other since we were in college, we've been always running the rat race since then. I feel great about having her home and I know she feels the same way.

And I am not alone. Some of our friends are having a similar experience. One of my best friends has a 1-year-old and he told me he's happy to be there for her first words. He wouldn't have been if not for the lockdown. So, more people working from home is not all that terrible. We all work way too much and sacrifice a lot to do so, a human being lives about 30.000 days or so. It is not that much and we spend a significant portion of it away from those we love. People being at home a bit more could be great for our general wellbeing.

Of course, I am talking about this stuff for "when the dust settles". There's a lot of pain ahead for all of us in the meantime, I don't doubt that either. My point is that is not all terrible and it is not all great. Like most things, the situation just is, and as always it is up to all of us to try and squeeze as much happiness as we can out of life in spite of it.
 

easyrider

Embracing the Absurd
I just want to comment on thoughts about local businesses losing out to Amazon and the like. Over here in the UK our supermarkets can't keep up with the demand for deliveries and are (very rightly so) prioritising the most vulnerable. To help with the situation, local businesses (at least in Bristol where I live) are stepping up and delivering to those who need it. A lot of businesses are adapting and generally chipping in and helping out. We've started ordering fresh veg from a community farm, coffee from a local roaster and so on.

After all this is over, we won't forget these businesses. We have no intention of stopping our regular deliveries and will support these local businesses like they've supported us. Likewise for all the companies offering discounts and freebies (a lot in our virtual instrument world but also the likes of Serif and others). I've seen a lot of small and local businesses step up to be more a part of the community than ever before. I think this is the time of the small business in the community. They've been here for us so we'll be there for them after this.

Fish delivery tomorrow from the local Fishmonger and some beautiful Fruit and Veg delivered from the local green grocer :)
 

chimuelo

Star Of Stage & Screen
I think we’re lucky Amazon made others compete so their infrastructure can be studied and used.
I’ve supported my California businesses which of course are naturally higher than everyone else, but I’m a dual Union shopper and ALWAYS buy local produce, and local product if possible.

Im worried about my fellow musicians. Sadly many never pay quarterly self employment taxes so they can’t collect. This happened to an extent in 2008/2010. 3 of them are working 7/11, two more delivering weed, 2 more in the Car Wash. I get a wash weekly and throw a couple 20s to them since their wives and kids are family friends.
The guys who listened and learned after the the last crisis are happy campers. You give the IRS 1500 bucks every January, this is estimated earnings, plus the deposit takes you off of their hit list. Each quarter you report your estimated income, by years end you actually get half of the cash back, so in essence 8-1000 a year is all you end up paying after deductions and write offs.

This time there’s few restrictions, and no means testing, so I get over 1000 a week which is fine but I can’t only take a portion of it, and some who can’t even collect the max who get 180-250 a week still get the 600 just because they played by the rules.

But one nice thing is that Casino owners, Unions and Catholic Charities are helping immensely. Musicians helping each other is very important and keeping people from getting buried.

Mayor Goodman, wife of Mafia Lawyer/Former Mayor is the Casino billionaires lobbyist for our Governor. We’re looking at opening the doors very soon.
I’m looking at 14 more weeks of the free money, after that I might be pouring concrete at the Sphere.

Best 2 all of my brothas/sistas here.
 

Nick Batzdorf

Moderator
Moderator
Just seeing the title of this thread... um, well, yes, that's sort of the predicament!

The world is definitely going to change for the vast majority of people. My hope is that people are going to miss the human contact and crave live music so the clubs will all be full, but who knows.
 

Sears Poncho

Senior Member
My hope is that people are going to miss the human contact and crave live music so the clubs will all be full,
...and I hope they bring lots of cash.

Half of my living is playing for symphonies, the other half is writing music for them. I'm pretty much screwed with both. Regardless of the hilljacks, I can't envision 2,000 sane people voluntarily in one room any time soon. Hard to hear the choir when they are wearing masks, same with the horns. I can't see the conductor yelling "Diction, people, diction!". Because masks.

Other countries might bounce back, Germany can. The US won't. Our new policy of "let's kill Granny, because economy" ain't a-gonna fly with the symphony set. Our audiences do stuff like buy deodorant, it tends to be an older audience that doesn't wanna die so that Joe Redneck can play G.I. Joe and pretend whine about "socialism" while he gets his gubmint checks. We're boned.
 
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purple

Senior Member
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I just want to comment on thoughts about local businesses losing out to Amazon and the like. Over here in the UK our supermarkets can't keep up with the demand for deliveries and are (very rightly so) prioritising the most vulnerable. To help with the situation, local businesses (at least in Bristol where I live) are stepping up and delivering to those who need it. A lot of businesses are adapting and generally chipping in and helping out. We've started ordering fresh veg from a community farm, coffee from a local roaster and so on.

After all this is over, we won't forget these businesses. We have no intention of stopping our regular deliveries and will support these local businesses like they've supported us. Likewise for all the companies offering discounts and freebies (a lot in our virtual instrument world but also the likes of Serif and others). I've seen a lot of small and local businesses step up to be more a part of the community than ever before. I think this is the time of the small business in the community. They've been here for us so we'll be there for them after this.
That's good to hear.
 
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