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Vice's Motherboard writer: Amazon's proposed algorithm for workers' schedules will prolong injuries

Edward Ongweso Jr., a staff writer at Vice’s Motherboard, said Thursday that Amazon founder and incoming executive chairman Jeff BezosJeffrey (Jeff) Preston BezosHillicon Valley: Trump's Facebook ban to stay in place, board rules | Facebook board's Trump decision pleases no one | Republicans float support for antitrust reform Republicans urge probe into Amazon government cloud-computing bid: report SpaceX's Elon Musk has become the coolest capitalist of them all MORE’s proposed plan of shifting workers around based on muscle use will not effectively prevent injuries in warehouses. 

Ongweso told Hill.TV’s “Rising” that the plans, which Bezos shared in his last letter to shareholders as CEO earlier this month, include using algorithms to shuffle workers around different warehouse stations based on the muscle-tendon groups they are primarily using. 

While Bezos outlined the plans as a way to help prevent injuries amid the fast pace and intensity of work at Amazon warehouses, the Motherboard reporter said it will likely only make sure employees “don’t get hurt all at once, and it just builds up over time, essentially.” 

“Amazon… in and of itself has a sort of churn rate that it needs to happen,” Ongweso explained.  “That churn rate prevents union organizing, that churn rate prevents work agitation, that churn rate prevents solidarity among workers and it’s key to this atomized workplace that Bezos has innovated.” 

He went on to say that should Amazon implement the proposed scheduling algorithm, workers are “still going to be doing back-breaking and grueling labor every day, all day. The difference is it’s just going to target different muscle groups.” 

Watch part of Ongweso’s interview above.