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4 Dec, 2021 07:46

The microwork scam

Microwork is a rising form of labor exploitation being deployed by some of the world’s best-known corporations. It’s online work requiring the performance of repetitive, often menial tasks for minimal pay, and there are big players among the ranks of those who offer it, including Jeff Bezos’ Mechanical Turk. Naomi Karavani takes a look at the phenomenon and introduces us to some of those who know the industry all too well. Their tasks includes the likes of identifying and labeling the contents of images, or translating or transcribing audio. Vulnerable people such as refugees and those living in the Occupied Territories are the target workers for the microwork industry, and abuse is common, she discovers, extending in some cases to harassment. Later in the program, Karavani covers the victimization argument around which Ghislaine Maxwell’s lawyers are constructing their case, Joe Biden’s flippant lies about believing in a waiver for the intellectual property of Covid-19 vaccines, and more.

Jaffer Khan reports on the recent victory for Indian farmers, who had been engaged in a massive protest campaign to overturn reforms that had opened up their industry to exploitation. Prime Minister Narendra Modi finally gave into their pressure and reversed the changes, but they’ve chosen to continue their campaign in order to exact yet more concessions.

Anders Lee dives into the debate about inflation in the US. America has seen 6% inflation in the past year and the talking heads at the top are taking this as an opportunity to blame the rise on welfare spending. But is that really the whole story? Lee takes apart the arguments of economist Larry Summers.

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