Mark Deuze refers to liquid labour as work based on information which has “permanent flux, constant change and structural indeterminacy” (2006). This type of work follows a horizontal organisational structure and deploys very fast OODA loops with very fast feedback loops (Mitew 2017).
This movement of liquid labour is a result of technological advancements, communication evolution and the paradigm shift towards distributed networks. This has caused the nature of work to change, including the emergence of entirely new professions such as digital nomads.
Digital nomads are individuals who earn their living by working online, they combine travel with work as they constantly move from place to place. They often travel on tourist visas (Cook 2018) and take freelancing to the next level, choosing when and where to work, occasionally taking months off at a time due to their successful online work.
This kind of career trajectory was unheard of before the networked society evolved into what it is today, digital nomads are a modern day knowledge worker, a term coined by Peter Drucker to describe individuals who work with information to create knowledge (Mitew 2017). Digital nomads can be found on the subreddit r/digitalnomad.
Cook, D 2018, ‘Digital nomads: what it’s really like to work while travelling the world’, The Conversation, 27 July, viewed 16 August, <https://theconversation.com/digital-nomads-what-its-really-like-to-work-while-travelling-the-world-99345>.
Deuze, M 2006, ‘Liquid Life, Convergence Culture, and Media Work’, Indiana University, March 19, viewed 16 August 2018.
Mitew, T 2017, ‘Liquid labour: Global media industries and the price of immaterial production’, Prezi, 21 July, viewed 16 August 2018, <https://prezi.com/jzxu5yetufdf/liquid-labour/>.
Header Image Source: Felix Russell-Saw