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10/24/2008
02:28 PM
Venkatesh Rao
Venkatesh Rao
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Introducing the Cloudworker

Melanie Turek posted a piece last week, on a contest sponsored by Plantronics, inviting submission of terms to replace "telecommuter."Never one to pass up an opportunity to win nice goodies for a single word, I threw "cloudworker" into the hat. I hope the term is evocative enough that you get the reasoning behind it without much explanation. Anyway, the process of coming up with that term (5 minutes of private brainstorming) sparked a whole interesting train of thought, which I just captured in a post on my blog, The Cloudworker's Creed.Here is a picture and a little extract. Do check out the article and weigh in on the merits of my pen-portrait of the archetypal information worker of the future. I'll be writing a fair number of follow-up posts in a series.

The cloudworker is the prototypical information worker of tomorrow. He overachieves or coasts remotely, collaborates or backstabs virtually, and delivers his gold or garbage to a shifting long-tail micro-market defined only by his own talents or lack thereof. The cloudworker manages personal microbrand equity and network social capital rather than a career. Over a lifetime, through recessions and bubbles, he navigates fluidly back and forth between traditional paycheck employment, slash-work and full, untethered-to-health-insurance free agency.

Go to the full article.

Venkatesh G. Rao writes a blog on business and innovation at www.ribbonfarm.com, and is a Web technology researcher at Xerox. The views expressed in this blog are his personal ones and do not represent the views of his employer.

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