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Hundreds of Amazon workers walk out to protest return to office, climate


OverSword

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Hundreds of Amazon employees briefly walked off the job Wednesday, calling on the company to reconsider its return-to-office mandate and curb its greenhouse gas emissions. 

Outside Amazon’s Seattle headquarters, standing underneath a banner that urged the company to stop its “short-term thinking,” Pamela Hayter told her colleagues she wasn’t nervous about speaking out anymore.

“We’re here today because it’s the right thing to do,” the Seattle-based program manager said. “I’ve not been nervous. I’ve been fired up.”

On Wednesday, nearly 2,000 Amazon employees joined the walkout, according to organizers who gathered pledges before action took place. Of those pledges, roughly 900 had planned to gather outside Amazon’s headquarters in South Lake Union while another 1,000 would join from offices elsewhere. 

 

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22 minutes ago, OverSword said:

Get a grip people.  Go back to work at the office.   They are not even requiring 5 days a week at the office as most companies do.

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7 minutes ago, Myles said:

Get a grip people.  Go back to work at the office.   They are not even requiring 5 days a week at the office as most companies do.

You only have to go in to my office two days a week.

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Amazon has a reputation, deserved or not, for being a careless employer at the best of times, warehouse staff are reported to say the work is onerous to say the least.

On the topic of WFH, I con't see the problem if the work is done online. It saves time, money, and staff are happier. It saves the environment if there is less commuting.

I can see the argument that it harms companies that serve offices and office employees- fast food places and city-centre shops take a hit.

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6 hours ago, Myles said:

Get a grip people.  Go back to work at the office.   They are not even requiring 5 days a week at the office as most companies do.

Starting August 10th, we are officially opening back up since the pandemic started.   We weigh, measure babies, children and pregnant women.  We also have to poke a finger or toe and check hemoglobin.   Then people will be shuffled back to our offices for nutrition counseling.   We took turns working from home a couple of times, mostly working at our building.  

 

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7 hours ago, pellinore said:

Amazon has a reputation, deserved or not, for being a careless employer at the best of times, warehouse staff are reported to say the work is onerous to say the least.

On the topic of WFH, I con't see the problem if the work is done online. It saves time, money, and staff are happier. It saves the environment if there is less commuting.

I can see the argument that it harms companies that serve offices and office employees- fast food places and city-centre shops take a hit.

I can tell you with certainty that at some points of the day many people when remote are unreachable by messenger, email or phone.  Conveniently they will contact you hours later with  "I just saw your message I must have been in the bathroom earlier" for an excuse.  Seems like they are in the bathroom almost every time I try to contact them.

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1 hour ago, OverSword said:

I can tell you with certainty that at some points of the day many people when remote are unreachable by messenger, email or phone.  Conveniently they will contact you hours later with  "I just saw your message I must have been in the bathroom earlier" for an excuse.  Seems like they are in the bathroom almost every time I try to contact them.

It makes sense.   If it is supposed to rain, most will mow their lawn before it rains.   When I worked from home, my hours were longer (maybe 7am to 7 pm, but I did other things during the day.

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7 hours ago, Myles said:

Get a grip people.  Go back to work at the office.   They are not even requiring 5 days a week at the office as most companies do.

But why?   Personally, I had to be  on a factory floor 5-6 days a week, I couldn't do it over the internet.  But if people can work from home and like to do so, then I don't begrudge them the opportunity.     Its a different story for those of us who make a product and need raw materials and machinery or those who have to deal with the public,  I don't see a way around that.

For one thing, people working from home during covid made gas was cheaper and the roads less crowded, it even made my commute easier. They  can save money on work clothes, have no office drama, and thin out those useless meetings if they work from home.  If people are not being productive, that is another mater.  I know for some jobs Personnel tracks computer time and clicks and productivity, doesn't matter where they  are.

 I must admit, I hated shopping so Amazon has been a boon, delivery has changed a lot of people's habits and shifted where people work too. 

Can  someone get a tax deduction for furnishing their home office, work computer and internet?

Seems like the company could save, employees get to keep a little more of their pay without adding cost to the product or service.

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31 minutes ago, Tatetopa said:

But why?   Personally, I had to be  on a factory floor 5-6 days a week, I couldn't do it over the internet.  But if people can work from home and like to do so, then I don't begrudge them the opportunity.     Its a different story for those of us who make a product and need raw materials and machinery or those who have to deal with the public,  I don't see a way around that.

For one thing, people working from home during covid made gas was cheaper and the roads less crowded, it even made my commute easier. They  can save money on work clothes, have no office drama, and thin out those useless meetings if they work from home.  If people are not being productive, that is another mater.  I know for some jobs Personnel tracks computer time and clicks and productivity, doesn't matter where they  are.

 I must admit, I hated shopping so Amazon has been a boon, delivery has changed a lot of people's habits and shifted where people work too. 

Can  someone get a tax deduction for furnishing their home office, work computer and internet?

Seems like the company could save, employees get to keep a little more of their pay without adding cost to the product or service.

I understand all of that, but if your company wants to get back to their "normal" it is what it is.

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1 hour ago, Myles said:

I understand all of that, but if your company wants to get back to their "normal" it is what it is.

I get that too.   But sometimes after a little taste of freedom, employees start looking around.  Its kind of human nature that once people get something they value, they don't want to give it up.  

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11 hours ago, Tatetopa said:

I get that too.   But sometimes after a little taste of freedom, employees start looking around.  Its kind of human nature that once people get something they value, they don't want to give it up.  

Of course, but if they are fired for it, It is their own fault.

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16 hours ago, OverSword said:

I can tell you with certainty that at some points of the day many people when remote are unreachable by messenger, email or phone.  Conveniently they will contact you hours later with  "I just saw your message I must have been in the bathroom earlier" for an excuse.  Seems like they are in the bathroom almost every time I try to contact them.

:lol: Is there a chance you did something to them, to make them not like you and avoid you?

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12 hours ago, Tatetopa said:

I get that too.   But sometimes after a little taste of freedom, employees start looking around.  Its kind of human nature that once people get something they value, they don't want to give it up.  

Currently for people who mainly work with computers and phones it is an employees market.  Too many companies are offering a remote option for other employers to require full time in office workers.  Requiring a five day in office week currently will result in a lot of turnover for those companies.  During the pandemic people discovered that more time with families and less time commuting resulted in a higher quality of life and that may remain that way from now on.  It's difficult to micro manage people remotely and I think many people in management discovered they may not be as crucial as they once thought they were and that's why they push for a presence in the office IMO.

 

1 hour ago, Myles said:

Of course, but if they are fired for it, It is their own fault.

See above.  In my experience that's not really a thing.

6 minutes ago, Katniss said:

:lol: Is there a chance you did something to them, to make them not like you and avoid you?

Yes, I have to tell them if there is some task overdue in the system that they have not worked on yet :lol:

(this is happening more than before the pandemic)

Edited by OverSword
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7 minutes ago, OverSword said:

Yes, I have to tell them if there is some task overdue in the system that they have not worked on yet :lol:

If you could prank them to get your message to them, for instance send them your message via courier in a sealed large box wrapped with a pretty pink bow, OMG you would absolutely have sooo much fun with that! :w00t:

Grrrgh!!! That guy! It's that guy again!

:lol:

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1 hour ago, Myles said:

Of course, but if they are fired for it, It is their own fault.

Yes indeed, that is also true.  Employers can terminate to further their goals as a business, and employees can quit to further their own personal  goals in our free society. It is a balance.  When you get your paycheck, all debts are paid. At first, layoffs generate unease with the remaining employees, so they swallow the extra work load left behind after the layoffs.   After a number of rounds of that, those left with the same salary and twice the work and no certainty that they might have a job start to look around. 

 Truth is, we are just numbers to them.  It may be our life, but to a corporation, we are a commodity.  You only live once so better make the best trade for your limited time that you can. 

I think part of what frustrates us about young people and their attitude is that we view corporations as our father's did, lifetime partners in our life and we feel some loyalty in that partnership.  Young people see them for what they are and feel no loyalty, unless the company is exceptional.

Steers are not  partners in the slaughterhouse, they are a raw material. 

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49 minutes ago, OverSword said:

It's difficult to micro manage people remotely and I think many people in management discovered they may not be as crucial as they once thought they were and that's why they push for a presence in the office IMO.

That is a good insight.  :yes:

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On 6/1/2023 at 9:16 PM, Myles said:

I understand all of that, but if your company wants to get back to their "normal" it is what it is.

Hi Myles

Many companies lease office space and those leases might be 10 year leases so how well does it work for a company to pay for unused space  and furnishings for employees. It still comes out of company profits which is paid for by consumers.

I see here that one office tower downntown is being converted into apartments because they had lost to many clients.

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On 6/2/2023 at 12:30 PM, Tatetopa said:

Yes indeed, that is also true.  Employers can terminate to further their goals as a business, and employees can quit to further their own personal  goals in our free society. It is a balance.  When you get your paycheck, all debts are paid. At first, layoffs generate unease with the remaining employees, so they swallow the extra work load left behind after the layoffs.   After a number of rounds of that, those left with the same salary and twice the work and no certainty that they might have a job start to look around. 

 Truth is, we are just numbers to them.  It may be our life, but to a corporation, we are a commodity.  You only live once so better make the best trade for your limited time that you can. 

I think part of what frustrates us about young people and their attitude is that we view corporations as our father's did, lifetime partners in our life and we feel some loyalty in that partnership.  Young people see them for what they are and feel no loyalty, unless the company is exceptional.

Steers are not  partners in the slaughterhouse, they are a raw material. 

Best thing you can do is to develop a skill set that’s in demand. 

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1 hour ago, WVK said:

Best thing you can do is to develop a skill set that’s in demand. 

And, very importantly pays well.  I wonder if any of the skill sets we consider critical will be implemented by AI?  The next 20 years will probably see a lot of changes in the job market. 

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22 minutes ago, Tatetopa said:

And, very importantly pays well.  I wonder if any of the skill sets we consider critical will be implemented by AI?  The next 20 years will probably see a lot of changes in the job market. 

My freelance artist friends are getting crushed by it.  They will take a day to draw a picture and then someone will upload it to the AI to "train" it along with other pictures- like say of animals or something.  Then the AI can spit out dozens of pictures within minutes drawn to that particular friend's style.

 

Heck, I wouldn't doubt that it would replace posters on forums in the near future if not already.  The different "styles" of posters could easily be replaced by AI.  For instance, people who just post memes or twitter reposts.  Or even text political arguments which have a large enough sampling to emulate. 

Here's a read about the success rates of using AI to change peoples political views compared to a regular person: AI’s Powers of Political Persuasion (stanford.edu)

 

I think I would trust an AI financial advisor more than a human one as well.  One of the things that is always in the back of my mind when I talk to a financial advisor is, "If you were any good at this, wouldn't you have more money than me and not need to do this as a job?"  With an AI, I know it's only role is to make money and it eliminates the lingering question in the back of my mind.

 

I left the field in construction and now do project management and estimation.  I can see an AI completely taking over estimation in a few years.  Just up load the architectural/mechanical drawings and the PDF with the specifications and then the AI takes over and just spits out the price.  I remember in the good old days, watching the estimator sit over the prints with colored pencils, a calculator and an engineering/architect scale.

Edited by Gromdor
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11 minutes ago, Gromdor said:

I think I would trust an AI financial advisor more than a human one as well.  One of the things that is always in the back of my mind when I talk to a financial advisor is, "If you were any good at this, wouldn't you have more money than me and not need to do this as a job?"  With an AI, I know it's only role is to make money and it eliminates the lingering question in the back of my mind.

This one struck me.  Do people really think AI will be impartial, wise, and have their best interests at heart?  Its all in the programming, and that is done by humans with their own agendas sometimes.  AI will not return us to an age of truth.

 

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10 minutes ago, Tatetopa said:

This one struck me.  Do people really think AI will be impartial, wise, and have their best interests at heart?  Its all in the programming, and that is done by humans with their own agendas sometimes.  AI will not return us to an age of truth.

 

They will have the programed in "purpose".  I expect a financial AI from a corporation to have that corporations interests at heart, but I also can see "pure" AIs being created soley for the intended task.

So yeah, AIs won't return us to an age of truth.  It will be the same as now when dealing with humans.  The main difference is that humans will be unnecessary in the equation except as consumers.  

Edit to add: I would go so far as to say, AIs would lead us further into an age of deceit.  Deep fakes and information can be logically presented in a manner to manipulate us in a matter of seconds.  

Edited by Gromdor
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