Sensitivity as a Competitive Advantage

Buzzfeed fired all its writers and will use AI instead. Immediately, people started asking, “But did anybody even know the names of these “content creators “? Did they stand out in any way?” The answer is of course not, and yes, the stuff they wrote can easily be reproduced by AI.

Here’s the thing, though. This is an economic model, the neoliberal model, where you need to stand out, make a name for yourself, be different, be special – and a lot of economic benefit will accrue. But if you can’t, then go talk to the Buzzfeed content creators.

It’s not possible for everybody to stand out. By definition, “special”, “unique” and “different” is for a small minority. Is it surprising, then, that people chop off their body parts, cultivate lists of imaginary disorders, affect exceptional sensitivity, and compile lists of identity grievances? People are trying to generate a competitive advantage while removing from the competition those who prove to be less sensitive (read special).

What can humans do that machines never will? Feel, obviously. So we see these “devastated victims of horrific abuses” pose on social media. They are simply trying to show off their only marketable skill.


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