Is your presence bleeding?

The cultural paradigm shift from the telegraph to cyberspace allowed for the homogenization of network time and space to occur. It allowed for large networks to occur and to be constantly informed and able to immediately process the information and implement change.

Like all communication systems, whether it be verbal, written or aural, there will always be an input, noise surrounding the message, the output and feedback to the message. This cycle’s speed is determinant on whether the network is centralised or decentralised and the size at which it operates. At the point of feedback, the receiver must observe, orient, decide and act – this is called the OODA loop the faster the receiver/s are able to go through the loop, the faster the adaption to change, the longer the loop, the more noise has interfered. The decentralised sphere that is cyberspace possessed a faster loop than a traditional centralised network.

This is evident in the transition from the time of industrial labour; whereby factories utilised workers in an assembly line model and were set in the rhythm of machines and could easily be shut down, to the now ever-progressive era of liquid labour, a time of information machines whereby information is able to free flow and information processing is the assembly line. Liquid labour is still correctly a form of ‘labour’ as it demands that labour is always available in time and unrestrained by borders (space). This is the backbone to the network society paradigm of Standing in Reserve where workers are constantly available, work and leisure lines obliterated.

Standing in reserve leads to the concept of Presence Bleed, the challenging of personal borders, whereby someone may be present at a certain physical location but is in a sense multi-tasking and managing information on the homogenized cyberspace. They are “bleeding” as their focus is shifted in multiple areas and no one spot has their 100% attention.

The location and time of one’s labour becomes secondary consideration to the task of managing the expectation and or possibility that one is available and willing to work – Melissa Gregg ‘Function Creep’

This is particularly evident in professionals who multi task numerous jobs across multiple devices e.g. work & personal computer, work & personal phone, tablet etc. They are able to access an abundance of information from numerous technological points and this allows them to complete their tasks from literally anywhere.

  • Almost 25% of employees are either remote or mobile workers.
  • Mobile device adoption will grow to 651 million tablet users in 2017 from 154 million in 2012, and to 2.4 billion smartphone users from 1.2 billion in 2012.
  • In 2017, firms will spend $189 billion to engineer platforms and processes for mobile engagement.
  • Among organizations that implement mobile work strategies, 76% report increased employee responsiveness and decision making.


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