Ethics: Outsourcing and Forum Assistance
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View Poll Results: Should people in "High-Cost" countries give advice to people in "Low-Cost" countries

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  • I work in a high-cost country: we should give help to low-cost countries

    5 41.67%
  • I work in a high-cost country: we shouldn't give help to low-cost countries

    0 0%
  • I work in a low-cost country: you should give help to low-cost countries

    2 16.67%
  • I work in a low-cost country: you shouldn't give help to low-cost countries

    0 0%
  • It doesn't make any difference.

    5 41.67%
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Thread: Ethics: Outsourcing and Forum Assistance

  1. #1
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    Ethics: Outsourcing and Forum Assistance

    The issue of technology outsourcing is a hot one at the moment, particularly with regard to the export of technical development & support jobs from expensive (eg. USA/UK etc) countries to inexpensive (eg. India, China etc).

    Now as a UK citizen working the the USA I'm an international kind-of fellow, but here are the questions that folks might be facing.

    Should I be feeling bad about helping my co-professionals in Bombay/Chennai etc with their technical problems?

    Could it be that by helping them improve their skills I am helping to deplete the US market of job opportunities?

    Here's a poll to let you post a simple opinion -- post a more complete opinion as well if you like, of course.
    David Aldridge,
    "The Oracle Sponge"

    Senior Manager, Business Intelligence Development
    XM Satellite Radio
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    Oracle ACE

  2. #2
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    This poll is kind of discriminatory - I for example would also expect some other options like:

    - I work in a low-cost country: we should give help to high-cost countries
    - I work in a low-cost country: we shouldn't give help to high-cost countries


    Of course, low-cost/high-cost countries could be very relative term....
    Last edited by jmodic; 01-12-2004 at 05:47 PM.
    Jurij Modic
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  3. #3
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    Originally posted by jmodic
    This poll is kind of discriminatory - I for example would also expect some other options like:

    - I work in a low-cost country: we should give help to high-cost countries
    - I work in a low-cost country: we shouldn't give help to high-cost countries
    Yes, I pondered that exact issue myself, but it would have meant introducing four more poll answers which would have been in addition to the four (major) ones i posted, and would be in addition to them -- ie people would have to be able to tick answers 1 and 6 for example.

    Mostly though I thought it would confuse the issue. i'd rather keep it more simple.

    Of course, low-cost/high-cost countries could be very relative term....
    I think that they already are, no? you could extend this to "should people working in India assist people working in China?", if Chinese costs are much lower than India's.
    David Aldridge,
    "The Oracle Sponge"

    Senior Manager, Business Intelligence Development
    XM Satellite Radio
    Washington, DC

    Oracle ACE

  4. #4
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    1) knowlege should be shared, not hoarded like gold.
    2) knowlege is power.

    So you are performing a 'capitalistic and educational flattening' which is good.

    However I don't think that there should be any kind of positive or negative discrimination (e.g. import tariffs, $10 copies on WIN2k for developing countries).
    The same goes with forum questions - who cares where the guy is working? it's irrelevant.

  5. #5
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    You bring up a good question. By helping others do you sacrifice your own well-being and contribute to your own demise? Or, do you foster a co-operative spirit in which you may be on the receiving end of some help at one time?

    Recent articles in Business Week point out that while costs of labor may be lower in other countries, quality and security suffer. (Their words, not mine. ) In other words, you get what you pay for.
    Jeff Hunter
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    http://marist89.blogspot.com/
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  6. #6
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    Originally posted by onlysimon
    1) knowlege should be shared, not hoarded like gold.
    2) knowlege is power.

    So you are performing a 'capitalistic and educational flattening' which is good.

    However I don't think that there should be any kind of positive or negative discrimination (e.g. import tariffs, $10 copies on WIN2k for developing countries).
    The same goes with forum questions - who cares where the guy is working? it's irrelevant.
    Would you say that you are in a position potentially to benefit or suffer from outsourcing? Do you think it will affect you at all?
    David Aldridge,
    "The Oracle Sponge"

    Senior Manager, Business Intelligence Development
    XM Satellite Radio
    Washington, DC

    Oracle ACE

  7. #7
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    Originally posted by marist89
    Recent articles in Business Week point out that while costs of labor may be lower in other countries, quality and security suffer. (Their words, not mine. ) In other words, you get what you pay for.
    I'd like to think that the decision-makers are not motivated more by short-term cost cutting and share prices, but unfortunately I don't believe that to be true.
    David Aldridge,
    "The Oracle Sponge"

    Senior Manager, Business Intelligence Development
    XM Satellite Radio
    Washington, DC

    Oracle ACE

  8. #8
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    Is it a question of ethics or one of defending economic interests?

    Would you purchase a piece of clothing, a car, or a television set with consideration for outsourced jobs, or focus on quality and price?

    I.T. may be the first well paid, rule based line of work that goes overseas en masse. Many have made the argument that accounting, law, engineering, and others could easily be done elsewhere at cheaper rates.

    Perhaps I.T. workers will unionize and start a trend among white collar workers.
    David Knight
    OCP DBA 8i, 9i, 10g

  9. #9
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    Would you say that you are in a position potentially to benefit or suffer from outsourcing? Do you think it will affect you at all?

    From an economic perspective it's changing technology from a non-tradable commodity, to a tradable commodity. That is, it's just like rice, sneakers, or steel. So it is a good thing for the economy.

    Certainly it would be better for me personally to move to a non-tradable industry (plumber, electrician, real estate salesman..), however just like making steel or shoes there are many 'specialist' jobs still that will not benefit from being tradable because the sector is so small.

    My point is, if you are just a 'generic' dba then you are well & truely buggered, what's more it was probably a ****e job anyhow.

    If you are someone like a 'supply chain consultant', 'teramegagigglebyte admin', 'nasdaqtraderOLTP architect'.. etc then I reckon you will be ok.

    At least I hope so, since I'm trying to turn myself into a super specialist in a narrow field.

  10. #10
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    Originally posted by dknight
    [B]Is it a question of ethics or one of defending economic interests?
    I would say that if you consider the question from the point of view of your own job being at stake, then it's economic self-interest -- if you consider it from the point of view of someone else's job being at stake, then it's ethics

    Would you purchase a piece of clothing, a car, or a television set with consideration for outsourced jobs, or focus on quality and price?
    Good parallel -- the purchasing of individual items by one person is very similar to the answering of individual questions in a forum. You can't correlate the purchase of an individual shirt that is made in china with the loss of a job in your own country, anymore than I can correlate the correction of a person's misplaced trust in Buffer Cache Hit Ratio's with the loss of a DBA's job in Noo Joisey. The cumulative effect may be the same.

    I.T. may be the first well paid, rule based line of work that goes overseas en masse. Many have made the argument that accounting, law, engineering, and others could easily be done elsewhere at cheaper rates.
    Yes, I think it will be -- at the very least it will depress salaries in the US/UK etc. to a more competitive level.

    Perhaps I.T. workers will unionize and start a trend among white collar workers.
    A general strike of IT staff would be interesting, but if the jobs can be exported to non-labor organized parts of the world then it increases the benefits of doing so.
    David Aldridge,
    "The Oracle Sponge"

    Senior Manager, Business Intelligence Development
    XM Satellite Radio
    Washington, DC

    Oracle ACE

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