On the r/Antiwork Subreddit, an IT expert garnered 86,500 upvotes and 5,000 comments in a post: I automated my job over a year ago and haven’t told anyone.
The original poster (OP) was hired by a mid-sized law firm as an IT specialist to handle its digital evidence for trials but found that the job could easily be done in under 8 hours.
The firm receives thousands of digital files, such as photos and documents, every day, which are saved on a local drive. The task for OP is to move the files to the Cloud and ensure their fidelity.
He Automated His Entire Role
With the onset of COVID, OP was able to work from home and created a script to automate his entire role— it scans local drives for any new files, generates hash values for them, transfers them to the cloud, and generates hash values for fidelity. The script runs automatically every day, leaving him with minimal work, yet he clocks in and out as usual.
“In about a week, I was able to write, debug, and perfect a simple script that performed my entire job,” OP admitted. “I clock in every day, play video games or do whatever, and at the end of the day, I look over the logs to make sure everything ran smoothly… then clock out. I’m only at my desk maybe 10 minutes a day.”
He Believes It Is a Win-Win Situation
He initially felt guilty about “ripping off” the firm but eventually convinced himself that everyone was happy with the arrangement. He also feels that he is getting paid “enough” for his job. All in all, a win-win situation for all involved.
How Was OP Able To Do It?
According to OP, the script can be found by Googling “.bat transfer files” and “.bat how to only transfer certain file types.”
OP clarified that the code they refer to is not a sophisticated program that could generate huge profits. “This is the type of script people put on GitHub with a $5 price tag linked to their PayPal,” OP admitted.
OP also had to program it to determine the appropriate time to scan for new files, specify the directories to scan, and exclude unnecessary ones to prevent lag.
While it may all sound complicated, OP insists that the script is “fairly simple.”
Social Media Users Were in Awe
The IT specialist received praise and congratulations from social media users, who expressed their amazement in the comments section. It was an inspiring example of how technology can make our lives easier and more enjoyable, liberating us from traditional notions of labor and productivity.
He Beat The System
Users recognized that OP had found a way to beat the system and be paid for hours they weren’t even doing. “Legend. This is true anti-work. You’re providing the exact services as required, and they’re paying for said services. Well done, I clap for you.”
“Think of your wages as a subscription service to your automation program,” another user said. “Big companies love subscription services, right.”
No Need To Feel Guilty
The responses that received high ratings did not believe that they had any reason to feel guilty.
“If it helps you justify it, they’re not paying you for the 10 minutes a day it takes you to do that; they’re paying the work to be done reliably and an expert on standby full time, ready to jump in and address any issues as they happen,” one person stated.
“If you leave, even if you leave the script, if they don’t replace you and something goes wrong, they’re up sh** creek.”
Other People Are Doing It Too
One commenter who had just taken on a data entry position expressed confidence in their ability to write code to automate the job.
“I just took a job at a power company. They explained what they needed and how many hours they expected a week,” they said. “It’s going to take about a month to automate. Then 30 seconds a month, mobile depositing my check. Can’t wait!”
We Are Conditioned to Believe In a 40-Hour Work Week
One user on social media noted that while OP’s situation is unique, a lot of jobs could potentially be like this. “What they really need is someone effectively ‘on call.’ No one else in your office has the knowledge to operate or troubleshoot those scripts if something goes wrong, and it’s an essential function that must work.”
Many people believe that society values individuals who work 40 hours a week, regardless of their productivity level. The user said. “I’ve worked in places where the entire office quietly whispers about how no one works anywhere near 40 hours. They’re just expected to be polite about it.”
“This is why skyrocketing productivity hasn’t resulted in less work for all of us. Secretly, it has, but we don’t want to acknowledge that or distribute the free time fairly because it would loosen the grip of capitalism, squeezing our hearts.”
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This post called An IT Worker “Automated” Their Job To 10 Minutes Per Day And Hasn’t Told Anyone Until Now was syndicated and produced by TPR Teaching. Our article has been inspired by Reddit and does not necessarily reflect the views or opinions of TPR Teaching.
Caitriona Maria is an education writer and founder of TPR Teaching, crafting inspiring pieces that promote the importance of developing new skills. For 7 years, she has been committed to providing students with the best learning opportunities possible, both domestically and abroad. Dedicated to unlocking students' potential, Caitriona has taught English in several countries and continues to explore new cultures through her travels.