This is an older article but I still agree with it. Coding as a blue collar job is why we also absolutely need labor and trade unions for coding. Too many coders are essentially wage slaves or old school gold panners, deluded by the notion that they're going to have The Idea and strike it rich. We need to organize, accept that the huge salaries are aberrations, dig in and protect our own from predatory employers.

HT @sng

@sungo @sng This article popped up in discussion at my job a while back. I remember the coders having a good laugh at the idea what they do could be considered blue collar work. Later that year they all got moved from salary to hourly and our bennies were "improved" at a greater cost to us per paycheck. Most of them still don't see the writing on the wall. That code-cowboy imagery is still too ingrained in a lot of people's minds for reality to set in.

@adw @sungo The single biggest issue are the number of people who don't see that if we stand together we are powerful.

But if we keep up the "code-cowboy" thing (like that turn of phrase) the bosses will eat us alive.

@sng @adw Part of it is that we've traditionally gotten large salaries and the notion is that collective bargaining will result in lower salaries for for senior folks. But it's like Atlas Shrugged, right? Everyone assumes they're good enough to make it into the elite group and that's simply not true.

@sungo @adw Right. When I was a teenager "good union job" was the shorthand for doing well. To some degree this idea is baked into me.

And, yes, those large salaries confuse a lot of people about what kind of work they are doing.

If more people seriously thought about it getting overtime and union negotiated benefits would be worth FAR more to them than any sort of Randian fantasy.

I'm also interested in the people younger than 30 who don't know the difference between a labor union and a


@sng @sungo Not to mention something like an industrial union.

sng: your point about IBEW is interesting. Technically CWA and IU560 represent coders already. I wonder if one of the reasons they haven't had much luck organizing in our industries is because both unions have such a broad group of workers they represent. Maybe people would respond better to a specific union for coder/devops types.

@adw @sungo Here's something funny and I think demonstrates the problem.

I'm a BIG advocate for the IWW. Philosophically I'm a natural Wobblie.

I had no idea till just now that IU560 existed.

More outreach from both would be great!

But I would see a more focused effort from the IWW. Somebody work with them to focus a bit more would not be a bad thing.

@adw @sungo One of the big things something along the lines of IBEW brings to the game from my point of view is mentorship, training, apprenticeship, etc.

Give somebody looking to start a way in the front door.

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