Lately all my friends have been having a good time sending me links to stories like this (click) that list jobs that are disappearing in this world full of trouble and woe and the Internet.
Ignoring for the moment the headline on that list that says “high” paying careers, I can’t help but feel the glee of whoever wrote the lead as they compared news reporter to — gasp! — buggy whip maker.
For the record, there is still a very brisk market in buggy whips among the horsey crowd, of which my brother and his wife are members. Buggy whips have also found a new calling as signal flags on bicycle trailers, dune buggies and the like.
But lists like that one at Yahoo are all too common. What I find amusing is some of the other listings: Judge, Fashion Designer, Insurance Underwriter, Travel Agent, even CEO.
It’s not so much a matter of the jobs going away as other economic forces lessening the demand for those jobs, or changing what they do.
In the case of Judges, there’s not enough high paying lawyering jobs around so people who might quit judgeships to take the big bucks are holding tight, making it harder for new judges to be hired. CEOs are fewer because of so many corporations merging with other corporations, although they still have such a tight union that I suspect they’ll continue to bathe in money even as they slash employee jobs to keep profits up.
Journalism jobs aren’t going away — they’re just being revised. People like me who expect to be paid have a hard time competing with people who seem willing to do it for free, so it is likely someday I’ll go the way of the typesetter and stereo matt operator.
But the journalist, like the buggy whip, will remain, just doing something different. And, eventually, tiring of bloggers who do half-assed work and don’t stick to it, the market may demand paid reporters again, just in some new form and market.