Here you can find the original five, but I think there are types we’re still missing. So, in honor of the late David Graeber, I present my contribution to the literature:
- Derivative bullshit: The sort of job that only exists because other people are stuck doing bullshit jobs: Example 1: A cleaning lady who cleans the office of a cryptocurrency company.
Example 2: A dog walking service for people who can’t walk their own dog because they sit at an office doing a bullshit job.
Example 3: A doctor who has to prescribe opioids to people who get back problems from their office jobs, or actually just take opioids because they get miserable from their bullshit jobs.
- Non-delivering bullshit: The sort of job that involves promising to solve a problem that you don’t solve. Most of these involve an unfulfilled promise of making money.
Example 1: All these guides on the Internet you can buy that promise to teach you how to earn money online.
Example 2: Forex websites.
Example 3: Multilevel marketing schemes/ponzi schemes
Example 4: Tesla fits this category perfectly to be honest but it will probably take a few more years until this is widely accepted.
Example 5: Most weight loss pills.
- Hobby-job: The hobby-job is a special type of bullshit job, where you’re getting paid to do something you enjoy doing, yet society itself doesn’t really benefit and you get away with it because there’s ultimately just no direct accountability anymore once bureaucracies grow sufficiently powerful and complex.
Example 1: An artist who sells a statue nobody really likes for 150,000 dollar to a municipal government that is legally obligated to spend a certain amount of money on art.
Example 2: Someone at a university department who translates medieval Celtic poems as part of a Phd. I’m all in favor of people doing this, but I don’t understand why society should have an obligation to pay for it.
Example 3: Virologists stitching up viruses together in labs. Humanity can’t possibly benefit from this, they do this because they find it interesting.
- The fake job: The fake job is when you don’t have a job, but feel some sort of societal pressure to create the appearance of having a job, which then becomes your job.
Example 1: Guy I personally know who made million from crypto and has no desire to get a new job and now just kinda goofs around and daytrades a little so he can say he’s “self-employed”.
Example 2: A billionaire’s daughter who works at his charitable foundation.
Example 3: Freelance article writing that you don’t do for the pay but because it helps you get something on your resume.
- The bad job: The bad job is when you perform a service or produce a good that simply shouldn’t be performed or produced in the first place.
Example 1: Guy who makes zoophile porn for a living.
Example 2: Chinese fentanyl manufacturers.
Example 3: Guy who makes landmines for a living.
Example 4: Cleaning the streets with a leaf blower.
Example 5: Hunting whales to procure whale meat.
Example 6: Surgeon who performs sex changes.
Cleaning the streets with a leaf blower.
Why this? You don’t like spending energy on this effort or just because it’s noisy?
I like clean streets. But I hate people who use blowers in their gardens. But that’s their hobby, not their job.
i agree, clean streets is a great thing although in my experience a rake is often more effective.I hate using leaf-blowers, you just keep moving the leafs around in a random and chaotic manner. Plus its noisy.
Indeed. Leaf blowers to clean streets blows the leaves right back into the lawns of the people who blew them into the street to begin with. It’s as sensible a process as sweeping a dirt road.
And I have a suggestion for your next post. Write about that French sociologist. I am interested in this topic but I don’t have time to study it by myself since I have to work my bullshit job overtime (I serve people who trade debt).
Among other stuff i work in construction, im “self-employed”, and although it might be seen as a real job, in many cases, it actually isnt. Sure its hands on but what you’re really doing is keeping up an economy based on debt and fake money. You tear down and rebuild a kitchen just because the schmuck who just bought the house is already drooling over the pretend money he will never actually see 5 yrs down the road when he sells the house. Or you tear down perfectly fine, built to last, 50s-60s kitchens just because a greedy landlord wants to raise the rent.
I agree with that. It pisses me off that governments don’t protect us from overbuilt fancy housing
Construction as a bullshit job, interesting. It’s basically the last job I would have imagined to be a bullshit job.
Its not all bullshit but you also do a lot of stuff that are basically unnecessary.. Like how people remodel their kitchens every 5 yrs or how offices do complete reconstructions, changing from one soulless greyscape to the next. You throw out a lot of stuff that could have been used for 30 more yrs.