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Developers call for social benefits to offset the impact of AI on jobs

AI
(Image credit: Image Credit: Geralt / Pixabay)

Although most web developers don’t think their role is threatened by advancements in artificial intelligence (AI), they do think AI is going to have an impact on many jobs, and that it’s up to the government to soften the blow.

These are the results of a new report from MDBootstrap, based on a survey of 500 web developers on their reaction to the launch of Copilot, the new coding automation tool from GitHub.

The company found that 70 percent of the respondents believe their government should work on implementing various social benefit policies to help ease the transition. These include elements such as social aid, shelter benefits and universal basic income (UBI). 

But while most developers see AI as a danger to their industry in the future, they don’t think their job is at immediate risk. In fact, two-thirds (66.8 percent) of web developers disagreed with the idea that AI might take their job or limit their career possibilities. Only a fifth (21.7 percent) said they worried about the future of their job.

MDBootstrap believes this to be the case of optimism bias, a cognitive bias whereby a person believes it’s unlikely that they, themselves, can experience a negative event that is clearly happening to others around them.

These concerns won’t stop them from using GitHub Copilot in their day-to-day tasks, though, as well as employing more AI-powered tools in the future.

And while most web developers called on the government to provide aid, most (51 percent) wouldn’t want to see the government meddling in AI regulation.