Read The Fourth Industrial Revolution Won’t Trickle Down, Under Capitalism by Aabid Firdausi (Socialist Economist)

Most economists suffer from misplaced optimism about the oncoming Fourth Industrial Revolution. Some reskilling here and there would suffice to spread its benefits to all workers. They ignore how capitalism invents and employs technology for profits, not people.

I first came across the idea of the third and fourth industrial revolutions (3IR and 4IR) in Jackson Rising, where the technologies of these present and upcoming revolutions were seen as potentially liberatory, if used in the right way.  The possibilities are exciting, with (amongst other things) fablabs enabling manufacture to move local, and an open web allowing information resources to be shared globally.

Unsurprisingly though, there’s a very capitalist potential outcome of 3IR and 4IR too.

Like the previous revolutions, it *could* be liberatory, or it *could* as easily reinforce existing inequalities. The historical record isn’t too great in terms of global equality and liberation.

This article makes the argument for ensuring these revolutions are for liberatory ends.

“how technology is put to use fundamentally remains a social choice and a “global network of resistance” to the way the emerging technologies are utilised “is both necessary and feasible.”

To me that’s a given really – shame the article doesn’t go into much detail on actual strategy. (Which Cooperation Jackson do in great detail.)

There’s much more to 3/4IR, but selectively quoting from the connectivity and communication parts, as they piqued my IndieWeb interest:

“While social networking provides relatively open spaces for public expression, the immense wealth that is generated by the techno-capitalists shows us that even public spaces can become a profitable business model.”

“necessitates the need for resistance against the tendencies of capitalism in general that has historically encroached upon public spaces for profit.”

Here’s to being part of a global network of resistance.