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Intangible commodities with free delivery: Finding the limit in digitally mediated e-commerce and workforce injustice

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Intangible commodities with free delivery : Finding the limit in digitally mediated e-commerce and workforce injustice. / Bates, Oliver Emile Glaves; Friday, Adrian John.

LIMITS '18 Proceedings of the 2018 Workshop on Computing within Limits. New York : ACM, 2018. 9.

Research output: Contribution in Book/Report/Proceedings - With ISBN/ISSNConference contribution/Paperpeer-review

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@inproceedings{11c7220832fc4f5dbc824afc61559b4c,
title = "Intangible commodities with free delivery: Finding the limit in digitally mediated e-commerce and workforce injustice",
abstract = "Increasingly digital technology is implicated in promoting ever more convenient access to products and services. At just a click, user interfaces promote {\textquoteleft}instant gratification{\textquoteright}, deliberately leveraging human behaviours and addictions, to promote frequent interactions and drive consumer demand. Behind the friendly interface, digital services hide the com- plex impacts and externalities associated with products and services, which often involve human actors. This, coupled with the lack of attachment and transparency of the under- lying actions and processes contributes towards a model in which consumerism is encouraged, and workforces can eas- ily be marginalised as part of services that promote limitless growth in consumption. In this article we use the example of {\textquoteleft}free{\textquoteright} parcel deliveries where digital services hide the true impact and costs of consumer actions, and are leveraged by industry to gain competitive advantage. To help prompt dis- cussion surrounding the role of technology and technologists in challenging the assumptions behind this conspicuous con- sumption and the impacts on workforces and infrastructures, we focus on two main themes for further exploration: 1) the impact of e-commerce on the social justice of delivery work- forces; and, 2) how we might find a limit in e-commerce to help curb limitlessness in the demand on energy intensive infrastructures and parcel delivery services.",
keywords = "last-mile logistics, social justice, responsibility, social good, e-commerce, limits, intangible commodities, free delivery, human cost, digital mediation, work forces",
author = "Bates, {Oliver Emile Glaves} and Friday, {Adrian John}",
year = "2018",
doi = "10.1145/3232617.3232622",
language = "English",
isbn = "9781450365758",
booktitle = "LIMITS '18 Proceedings of the 2018 Workshop on Computing within Limits",
publisher = "ACM",

}

RIS

TY - GEN

T1 - Intangible commodities with free delivery

T2 - Finding the limit in digitally mediated e-commerce and workforce injustice

AU - Bates, Oliver Emile Glaves

AU - Friday, Adrian John

PY - 2018

Y1 - 2018

N2 - Increasingly digital technology is implicated in promoting ever more convenient access to products and services. At just a click, user interfaces promote ‘instant gratification’, deliberately leveraging human behaviours and addictions, to promote frequent interactions and drive consumer demand. Behind the friendly interface, digital services hide the com- plex impacts and externalities associated with products and services, which often involve human actors. This, coupled with the lack of attachment and transparency of the under- lying actions and processes contributes towards a model in which consumerism is encouraged, and workforces can eas- ily be marginalised as part of services that promote limitless growth in consumption. In this article we use the example of ‘free’ parcel deliveries where digital services hide the true impact and costs of consumer actions, and are leveraged by industry to gain competitive advantage. To help prompt dis- cussion surrounding the role of technology and technologists in challenging the assumptions behind this conspicuous con- sumption and the impacts on workforces and infrastructures, we focus on two main themes for further exploration: 1) the impact of e-commerce on the social justice of delivery work- forces; and, 2) how we might find a limit in e-commerce to help curb limitlessness in the demand on energy intensive infrastructures and parcel delivery services.

AB - Increasingly digital technology is implicated in promoting ever more convenient access to products and services. At just a click, user interfaces promote ‘instant gratification’, deliberately leveraging human behaviours and addictions, to promote frequent interactions and drive consumer demand. Behind the friendly interface, digital services hide the com- plex impacts and externalities associated with products and services, which often involve human actors. This, coupled with the lack of attachment and transparency of the under- lying actions and processes contributes towards a model in which consumerism is encouraged, and workforces can eas- ily be marginalised as part of services that promote limitless growth in consumption. In this article we use the example of ‘free’ parcel deliveries where digital services hide the true impact and costs of consumer actions, and are leveraged by industry to gain competitive advantage. To help prompt dis- cussion surrounding the role of technology and technologists in challenging the assumptions behind this conspicuous con- sumption and the impacts on workforces and infrastructures, we focus on two main themes for further exploration: 1) the impact of e-commerce on the social justice of delivery work- forces; and, 2) how we might find a limit in e-commerce to help curb limitlessness in the demand on energy intensive infrastructures and parcel delivery services.

KW - last-mile logistics

KW - social justice

KW - responsibility

KW - social good

KW - e-commerce

KW - limits

KW - intangible commodities

KW - free delivery

KW - human cost

KW - digital mediation

KW - work forces

U2 - 10.1145/3232617.3232622

DO - 10.1145/3232617.3232622

M3 - Conference contribution/Paper

SN - 9781450365758

BT - LIMITS '18 Proceedings of the 2018 Workshop on Computing within Limits

PB - ACM

CY - New York

ER -