Daily Balajisms – Blue checks are the new blue collars
AI will disrupt journos before it disrupts truckers
Balaji on a Superteam podcast discussed with Amjad Massad of Replit the implications of our current AI summer that flipped our previous assumptions. Many people thought AI will give us self-driving cars sooner and disrupt blue collar jobs like trucking.
But projects like The GPT Times, show that the traditional journalism and the downstream media are more prone to AI takeover than truckers. Many media abandoned their niches and became wokeified, and their journalists sound the same and write the same. This means that NPCs can be replaced by an actual NPC, an AI, says Balaji.
He has a vision of much better information diet and information supply chain, with “news you can use” and user-aligned content. Web3 with future crypto-instruments, like fitness trackers that report your performance on-chain, can change the media landscape.
They can create new media business models – a content for a single user, the next big founder like Mark Zuckerberg, created by a venture journalist. Or community driven media – where a community can see its gradual progress in a team dashboard based on information diet their members produce.
Blue checks on Twitter, mostly journalists and legacy institutions, lost their status when Elon Musk took over the social media company. They must pay as everyone or lose their blue checks.
Balaji contrasts blue checks to blue collar (workers). He observes hundreds of weak signals and graphs that can go vertical. With LLMs and ChatGPT we got the AI summer, but Balaji thinks people are not budgeting for the AI winter – a backlash by the blue checks who fear losing their jobs and status. Lawyers and journalists will not lose to AI without a fight.
Centralized AI is inherently unethical, believes Balaji. Because the faux-diversity of WASP establishment and the WEIRD people with legacy credentials cannot make up for the true diversity of global tech and media talent. And they want to tell their own stories and own myths.
There is the NPC meme, there is the mid-wit meme, and a longer tradition of critiquing managerial capitalism and its professional managerial class members – or the PMCs. Artificial intelligence might disrupt them first, before it disrupts the deplorables, like the Canadian truckers who got unbanked for Covid protests.
People have multiple justifications for their actions and many overlapping motivations. PMCs and Woke Capital are often driven by a missionary zeal to make the world a better place and they engage in a telescopic morality – to help people on the other side of the planet.
But a telescopic morality is not enough, since we have a mobile telescope to search for dark talent among billions of people worldwide that can access and process information with their mobile phones. Many Indians use mobiles to code on Replit.
The telescopic morality of the PMCs might hide another underlying motivation – to shield themselves from the Other – the previously hidden dark talent across the globe - that can now use Chat GPT to sound just like a Western journo, and deliver better work than a PMC, and have a more unique viewpoint than an NPC.