Labor, Automation, and Human-Machine Communication


In recent years, artificial intelligence (AI) systems have been deployed and implemented in a variety of economic sectors. These developments have contributed to increasing fears of worker replacement by machines. However, instead of completely replacing workers, in most cases, they have led to the transformation of existing jobs and cooperation relations—frequently conflicting—between workers and machines. In this chapter, we explore three types of relations between workers and AI in the workplace: human-to-machine communication, human-with-machine communication, and machine-to-human communication. We argue that these relationships and the need for human-machine communication in the constant development of artificial intelligence have blurred the boundaries between the development, customization, and deployment of AI. We conclude that, while the cooperation between humans and AI will remain essential in productive activities, the quality of these relationships—and especially the power relations between these actors—will be a fundamental object of study.

The SAGE Handbook of Human–Machine Communication
Julian Posada
Julian Posada
Assistant Professor

Research interests include platform labor, data production, and social computing.