I was leafing through yesterday’s dead-tree print edition of theNational Post when an article afront the “FPWorking” section caught my eye: It looked to be a piece onimmigration, hinted at by the accompanying graphic of a shipping box containing several goofy-looking”techie” caricatures. The box was drawn with the label “URGENT,SHIP OVERNIGHT TO CANADA“, and was emblazoned with the flag ofIndia.
Given that Canada has the highest per-capita immigration rate in theworld, articles on the topic are often thought-provoking andinformative, and usually serve as worthwhile fodder for debate, soI gave it a closer look.
Disappointingly, it turned out instead to be a hilarious pieceabout offshoring[*1], written with suchwide-eyed naivety that I had to check the date on the paper to seeif I accidentally pulled out one from half a decade ago, when thissort of “win/win!” nonsense was even remotely believable.
Without tearing apart the numerous fundamental errors in thisterrible article[*2] (oh, but everyone is doing it, thearticle claims, so surely it must be true?), I’drather simply point you to Paul Graham’s excellentessay on covert public relations via submarine PR.
If the author (and/or the paper) didn’t get a handsome kickback,they were robbed. I was surprized (and dismayed) that there weren’t”advertorial!” disclaimers atop it.
*1 – And I’m anything but an isolationist, andentirely believe in globalization. Apart from minor transitionhiccups, the end result is the enrichment of everyone.
*2 – In the case of offshoring, the early “cheapness” quickly faded as knowledge workers in India and China decidedthat their lot in life wasn’t just to be producers for the West,but rather that they too wanted a chance to “consume”. Wages havebeen increasing at a torrential pace, and getting anyone anywhereabove terribly incompetent has been described as close toimpossible (while there are huge numbers of great talents, thereare also huge numbers of potential employers. Bob’s Oil Cleaning isgoing to get the absolute dregs of the dregs of the dregs workingon their app – and that’s ignoring the ridiculous contentionthat having the app developed during the twilight hours is somehowadvantageous for an industry that hasn’t even come to grips withtelecommuting – leading to quality problems that arebecoming a serious concern in the industry)