The rise of artificial intelligence and its continued influence on nearly every industry is clear, but who is driving the conversation about automation in the workforce? We dove into the data to find out.

As we move into a world where automation and smart tech continue to collide with the workforce, how are conversations about the automation of millions of jobs spreading? We looked at the rise in the sheer number of articles surrounding automation in the workplace to start.

Engagements to automation in the workplace content Graph depicting the YTD engagements to stories about automation

In June, an article claiming people were refusing to use self-checkout at the store because they didn’t want to kill jobs went viral. It was widely circulated around the web and garnered nearly half a million engagements alone. Much of the coverage continues to explore the idea that automation will take over work in markets where there are already limited jobs available for those without college degrees. These types of stories tend to drive the bulk of the engagement, and with each passing year, more articles are covering these changes in technology.

Top Ten Most Engaged Automation Articles in 2019
Ranking of top 10 most engaged automation articles

The number of articles covering automation has risen in recent years, (17k articles in all of 2018, 21k to date in 2019) but apart from one viral article, engagement stays in below 100k for the top ten. In 2019, there was a focus on Walmarts efforts to double down on robot janitors, Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez’s statements on being “excited about automation” and what the future of the workforce will really look like in the future.

Top Web Publishers Covering Automation in 2019
Chart ranking the top publishers for automation in the workplace content in 2019

While many of these publishers put out fairly consistent content on the topic of automation, the top publisher only produced one article in 2019 titled “People Are Refusing To Use Self-Checkout Because It’ll “Kill Jobs.” This one article received 435k engagements, but now, the site seems to have disappeared without a trace. The rest of the top ten is filled out with mainstream publishers which wrote with varying degrees on the subject. Ranging from just three stories on CGTN.com to 79 articles from NBC.com, coverage in this area can only be expected to grow, as more and more technology in all industries continues to advance.


If you’d like more insights on the future of automation in the workplace, check out NewsWhip Analytics.

Katherine Ellis

Katherine is a Content Strategist working at the confluence of journalism + marketing. She's most interested in bridging the gap between business and editorial and exploring ways publishers can use data to inform their storytelling.

Email Katherine via katherine.ellis@newswhip.com.

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