• John PJohn P, 5 years ago

    These feelings will evaporate when you leave school, have to pay rent and when you see how much of your money disappears into taxes before it even hits your account.

    Figure out how to survive and become sustainable > Then focus on getting paid for what you love > Then if you ever manage earn enough to no longer worry about money then maybe you can take up philanthropy.

    1 point
    • matt michelsonmatt michelson, 5 years ago

      This is a false choice. You can care about the world, your community, and the people living in it while still making ends meet. The idea that we all must become pure selfish rational actors in order to meekly survive is one of the reasons capital has been able to perpetuate itself and concentrate wealth over generations, by pitting working folks against one another. OP's feelings are legitimate and widely shared by many working in this field, and we'd do better to support and encourage ourselves to do more than settle for meager self-preservation when we're smart, empathetic, and capable of great things.

      2 points
      • John PJohn P, 5 years ago

        This idealism will be stamped out of you if you ever lose your job and have <2 months rent left in your bank account.

        Look at your bank account, look at your rent, count how many days you have before you're literally homeless if income stops that second. Look up what safety nets are available as a homeless individual in your country, (Spoiler alert: If you're a man it's zero).

        All these loud voices in the industry shouting at you to care more about your actions and that you have privilege are earning six figures at Google, Airbnb, Uber and the like.

        OP's feelings are legitimate and widely shared by many working in this field,

        Honestly makes me feel sick that some self-righteous individuals try and make others feel bad for their achievements.

        1 point
        • matt michelsonmatt michelson, 5 years ago

          I'm sorry if I gave the impression that I was trying to make other people feel bad for their achievements. I think the impulse to want to help your community is venerable, and to have these doubts about ethically operating in this economic system is natural and encouraging. I'm not denigrating survival; it's hard enough as it is. But if you have the luxury of time to spend thinking about how you can be helping people, you have the time to help people, even if it's only in small personal ways to start. I'm not suggesting that product design is the way to do this, but rather that product designers tend to have developed a strong sense of empathy, intelligence, and awareness of how systems work that can be used in a lot of ways big and small to enrich our communities and our neighborhoods.

          You likely won't find this sort of satisfaction in your work no matter who you're working for, but that's okay — we get plenty of opportunities to volunteer our time and talent, whether we have the time and resources to do so immediately or need to get situated first.

          3 points
        • Rowan Rosenthal, 5 years ago

          Wanting to use your skills and knowledge to produce ethical work isn't "idealistic." It's something we should try to strive for, to whatever extent is feasible in our own lives. Sustaining your own well-being and keeping this in mind aren't mutually exclusive

          This isn't a matter of making people feel bad. It's fine if you don't view your work this way. If you feel bad, that's a projection on your end

          (Also, not sure what the comment about being homeless / being a man is coming from? Homelessness is drastically more dangerous if you're a woman or a part of any marginalized group)

          5 points