Liquid Labour

Through the profound of internet, the notion of career and profession has changed and are no longer standardized in which employees are compulsory to assemble at work in a specific time and place. Moreover, the shift of paradigm has enable to the new prototype in which they have the own privilege of flexibilities and freedom which means they are allow to work at anytime and anywhere and perhaps physical work forces by man has decrease as the existence of liquid labour has subsisted by using the global networks indeed the convenience of internet. Gregg (n.d.) suggested that liquid labour allows and give workers the apparent freedom to work where and when they choose, new media technologies have been complicit in inaugurating new forms of emotional and embodied labour—new habits that are taken to be commonsense—from employees who see their working conditions as individual rather than structural.

Now, the labor market has emerge and global networks has arose to become very powerful hence the old deep-rooted forms of works that develops and innovates to an information network and communication economy from the industrial economy. Liquid labour has formed new types of labour which uses centralized and computerized types of technology to produces progress and manufactures product and works. For instance, in a factory based type of work, it is essential to use voluminous quantity of physical and mental man forces to produce product or goods. Somehow, the emergence of liquid labour has move the paradigm of works from hierarchical to decentralized whereby works will be fully dependent to be done by computerize based technologies and machines to produce goods, therefore the need of human resources will be eliminated.

However, the demand of liquid labor has increase thus the rising numbers of institutes, colleges and universities have offered various types and skills of expertise related courses to feed the demand of liquid labor. Promptly, companies now at least employ and exploit to use liquid labor to manage and handle their websites and computer systems, indeed big corporations obligates to have their them for working on it’s very own department called IT Department.

Nevertheless, through practicing liquid labour, “presence bleed” may occurred by many as they will need to posses with their works and tasks at anywhere and anytime even after work or during a holiday, it is because of the speediness of internet and no time barrier subsist although it allows intense progress of works. According to Gregg (n.d.) presence bleeds explains the familiar experience whereby the location and time of work become secondary considerations faced with a ‘to do’ list that seems forever out of control.Also, it has given a big impact of increasing percentage of unemployment and loss of opportunities of works to certain group of people. Indeed agree, according to Castells (2004) why the network society now? The answer is in the development of microelectronics and software-based communication technologies… We know that technology does not determine society. But we also know that without specific technologies some social structures could not develop.

However, still the question have not unravel with answer whether the controversy emergence of liquid labour is a positive or negative type of labour practices?



Castells, M, 2004, ‘Afterword: why networks matter’ in H McCarthy, P Miller and P Skidmore (eds), Network Logic: Who governs in an interconnected world? Accessed on 28/08/2014. Available online at: 

Gregg, M. n.d., Function creep: Communication Technologies and Anticipatory Labour in the
Information Workplace. Accessed on 28/08/2014. Available online at: 

Mitew, T 2014, Liquid labour, lecture, DIGC202 Global Networks, University of Wollongong, delivered 26 August.





1 Comment

  1. Everything has its pros and cons. I would not say that liquid labour is creating a negative type of labour practice because with technology, it helps a certain group of employees to reduce the amount of work that they usually do in the past and enabled them to have discussion or meeting wherever they are at any time. However, in my point of view it is also not creating a positive type of labour practice because this flexibility has took away some of the employee’s personal time. With the use of new technologies to work, they are hooked onto their gadgets 24/7 even after working hours for the reason that they are expected to reply emails or have discussion at any location without a given specific time. Therefore, the emergence of liquid labour can be quite challenging for employees to achieve a better work-life balance.

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