dcblogs writes: Elevators once had attendants. When elevator operators were replaced by buttons, did shoppers start using stairs in protest? They didn't, but going to the human cashier at a Safeway or Giant feels like an act of resistance. Automated, self-checkout kiosks are gaining usage. Replacing one cashier with four automated systems has its appeal. But will self-service kiosk technology be as disruptive as offshore outsourcing? It would be useful to know how many jobs were actually lost to offshoring, but there is no comprehensive data “on the number of production and services workers who have lost their jobs as a result of the movement of work outside U.S. borders,” said the Congressional Research Service in a recently updated report about offshoring and its impact on jobs. There may be a similar problem in calculating the impact of self-service kiosks on retail employment.
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