Fear that AI will cause job loss may be exaggerated

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As businesses rapidly adopt AI tools for tasks such as speech translation and language learning models. According to the online periodical Insider Tech, many workers are panicking about the potential for job loss due to automation.

Noah Smith, the renowned economist, and writer behind the popular “Noahpinion” newsletter, argues that the fear of automation-induced unemployment may be exaggerated. 

In a recent post, Smith sheds light on the nuances of AI tools in business and debunks the common misconceptions associated with job automation.

Smith starts by highlighting that the term “automation” is often loosely defined in studies on the topic. And that makes it difficult to draw definitive conclusions about its impact on jobs. 

He points out that some scenarios presented in these studies even reveal the potential benefits of automation. This includes allowing workers to automate mundane tasks and move to more responsible job roles. 

Smith argues that the labor market is not just about automation, but also about how it changes overall, including the creation of new jobs with higher wages.

The job loss paradox 

Many studies tend to focus solely on automation. And that may create a skewed perception that workers are always the losers in the situation, even if that’s not necessarily the case.