The Media is Bored of Remote Work

And that’s a good thing

In the beginning (read: March 2020), remote work was the hot new thing. Of course, it wasn’t actually new. But it was definitely hot. 

The media was a-flutter with articles touching on hard-hitting topics like wondering if remote work is possible at all. Or sharing one individual whose life was not really suited to remote work - and therefore implying the whole experiment is off. 

Months dragged on, and remote work went from hot new thing to very annoying reality for millions. However, as I usually rant, most people are decrying remote work in name only. What they really hate is pandemic lockdown work. Which is, of course, entirely understandable. 

But now, as we reach a year of lockdowns, things seem a bit… blasé. 

Maybe we’re just gearing up for a media circus of “Remote Work: One Year Later”. Something tells me I’ll be seeing a LOT of black and white or sepia-toned photo essays of messy desks (with a crying kid in the foreground for artsy effect). 

Or maybe the world (and by extension the media) are tired of talking about remote work. But it seems to me that the articles are all repeats:

And, my personal favorite, we’ve reached the point where remote work is apparently sustainable for small businesses! As if it wasn’t for years already (with examples like C4 Media, Fire Engine RED, and Remote.com). 

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As someone who spends a lot of time reading about remote work and freelancing, I see these articles and just think “Yup, an article brought up that issue 6 months ago.” 

To all of this I say: that’s fine. 

In February 2020, I wrote that COVID would be a terrible thing for remote work. I mentioned the lack of preparation (aka being forced into it) and that people would associate remote work with a pandemic and not the freedom it usually provides. 

So if the media is finally taking their foot off the “iS rEmOtE wOrK tRuLy ViAbLe” pedal, I’m all for it. 

I like that recent articles are scratching a bit below the surface, talking about VPNs over general “cyber threats” and pointing out that some businesses are still in denial about remote work long term. 

As I was planning this post (I wrote it on Wednesday, you’re reading it on Thursday), I had a great conversation with a few entrepreneurs. They all talked about missing human interaction (same) and how they wanted flexibility but hated being stuck at home (also same). Then I read over Remote.com’s list of remote work influencers

And that’s when I realized I was ok with the media not talking about remote work as much (or in such an inflammatory way). There are people working behind the scenes to make life easier, and there are people just trying to live their lives. I don’t think we need any additional emotion in that fire.

Thanks for reading! 

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