IT Confidential: A Word Of Advice: Watch Your Job - InformationWeek

InformationWeek is part of the Informa Tech Division of Informa PLC

This site is operated by a business or businesses owned by Informa PLC and all copyright resides with them.Informa PLC's registered office is 5 Howick Place, London SW1P 1WG. Registered in England and Wales. Number 8860726.

06:10 PM
John Soat
John Soat

IT Confidential: A Word Of Advice: Watch Your Job

Hello, and welcome to our show. Today's panelists include a prominent lawyer, a renowned psychiatrist, and a used-car salesman we picked up on a lot somewhere off Ventura Boulevard. We're here to talk about the most recent report from the Pew Internet and American Life Project, which says that 45% of Internet users have used the Net over the last two years to help them with major life decisions, such as health care or real estate (see "More Americans Using The Web For Life's Decisions"). First question: Are Americans on the right track with this Internet thing?

LAWYER: No. The Internet is full of liars, prevaricators, and fakes, all capable of offering legal advice. But that's a lawyer's job. We didn't spend that money on law school for nothing.

HOST: Maybe people don't want advice. Maybe they just want information so they can make their own decisions.

PSYCHIATRIST: Freud said all decision making stems from the Oedipus complex. Or was it bed-wetting?

CAR SALESMAN: You look like a Chevy person--am I wrong?

HOST: Toyota, actually. Isn't the Internet about empowerment?

LAWYER: Empowerment is a two-edged sword. It implies enablement and self-determination, yes, but it also carries with it responsibilities. Most people lose interest at that point.

CAR SALESMAN: You know what says empowerment? A 350 V-8.

HOST: Let's take a different tack. Does the word "disintermediation" mean anything to you?

PSYCHIATRIST: Disintermediation is the psychological state entered into during long business meetings.

HOST: Disintermediation refers to the ability of the Internet to connect users directly with the information or services they require, thus eliminating the need for third-party intermediaries. Does that raise any red flags?

CAR SALESMAN: The man knows his cars. Red is a very popular color these days.

LAWYER: Disintermediation is a bankrupt concept that went out with the online bust. The Internet creates new channels, it doesn't eliminate old ones.

HOST: Maybe. The point is, if Internet users can get access to enough information, it might radically alter the employment landscape, even obviate the need for certain professions--real estate broker, for instance.

PSYCHIATRIST: The psychological syndrome of assuming multiple personalities is known as dissociative identity disorder. My fees for that vary, depending on how many personalities are involved. And all movie rights are reserved.

LAWYER: Disintermediate the legal profession--are you kidding? Have you ever read any of those law books? Almost unintelligible. Translation: job security.

CAR SALESMAN: What do I think? I think I've been selling cars for 15 years, and I've never met a customer as sharp as you.

Where's the Oracle now that we need her? Not that Oracle. If you know of any good advice Web sites, or industry tips, send them to [email protected] or phone 516-562-5326.

The News Show is full of it--good advice, solid information, penetrating analysis, that is. Watch it at noon EDT every weekday, at

To discuss this column with other readers, please visit John Soat's forum.

To find out more about John Soat, please visit his page.

We welcome your comments on this topic on our social media channels, or [contact us directly] with questions about the site.
Comment  | 
Print  | 
More Insights
State of the Cloud
State of the Cloud
Cloud has drastically changed how IT organizations consume and deploy services in the digital age. This research report will delve into public, private and hybrid cloud adoption trends, with a special focus on infrastructure as a service and its role in the enterprise. Find out the challenges organizations are experiencing, and the technologies and strategies they are using to manage and mitigate those challenges today.
Augmented Analytics Drives Next Wave of AI, Machine Learning, BI
Jessica Davis, Senior Editor, Enterprise Apps,  3/19/2020
How Startup Innovation Can Help Enterprises Face COVID-19
Joao-Pierre S. Ruth, Senior Writer,  3/24/2020
Enterprise Guide to Robotic Process Automation
Cathleen Gagne, Managing Editor, InformationWeek,  3/23/2020
Register for InformationWeek Newsletters
Current Issue
IT Careers: Tech Drives Constant Change
Advances in information technology and management concepts mean that IT professionals must update their skill sets, even their career goals on an almost yearly basis. In this IT Trend Report, experts share advice on how IT pros can keep up with this every-changing job market. Read it today!
White Papers
Twitter Feed
Sponsored Live Streaming Video
Everything You've Been Told About Mobility Is Wrong
Attend this video symposium with Sean Wisdom, Global Director of Mobility Solutions, and learn about how you can harness powerful new products to mobilize your business potential.
Sponsored Video
Flash Poll