A Voicemail Transcription Scandal in Britain

SpinVox, a British company that converts voicemails into text with speech recognition technology, has been accused by the BBC of using humans at call centers to manually conduct the majority of the translations.

The U.K.-based company, which boasts 30 million users across five continents, says that voicemails are translated into text via conversion technology known as “D2,” or “the Brain.” Customers can read the messages and post them on blogs, social networking sites, or send them to their email inboxes.

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It’s one of the dirty secrets of economics: technology progress does grow the economy and create wealth, but there is no economic law that says everyone will benefit.

— Erik Brynjolfsson, a professor at the MIT Sloan School of Management, who theorizes that advances in computer technology, like advanced robotics, are behind the post-2000 employment slowdown, and that technology is destroying jobs faster than it can create them