There has been a LOT of talk during The Current Situation about how Things won't go back to how they were before when it's finally all over. For my kind of work, for instance, I sincerely doubt whether I'll ever work a five day week in a big office ever again, as working from home has been so weirdly straightforward, and it's been brilliant not having to travel across London on a regular basis to attend meetings where SHALL WE SAY my contributions are not quite as important as one might think.
Another thing that I REALLY hope we stick with on the other side is the massive use of EXPERTS on the telly news. It used to be that the TV news shows would get in the same bloody columnists and commentators that they always used, a bunch of journalists who would basically make things up that sounded good and give half backed opinions on stuff they knew nothing about. NOW, however, when everybody is talking via ZOOM and so forth it seems they've realised that it's just as easy to get WORLD EXPERTS in to talk as it is to get The Usual Posh Twits. This means that our telly has been FULL of PROFESSORS just lately who, as anyone who mingles with this rare breed of academic will know, are often EXTREMELY good value for opinions and general entertainment. They are also VERY POLITE when people are COMPLETELY WRONG about things - for instance, we particularly enjoyed it on the Coronavirus Newscast thing when one of the journalists proudly showed off about a calculation he'd made that said it would take four years for 80% of the population to get the disease. A PROFESSOR then came on who was DOING RESEARCH about it and KNEW WHAT HE WAS ON ABOUT and without making a big deal about it completed refuted the whole idea very kindly, as if he was correcting an enthusiastic but inept undergraduate.
It's happening all over the place - instead of posh drips spouting rubbish, you get the SUPERLOONS of Academia, who have had decades of experience UNDERSTANDING HARD THINGS and also EXPLAINING them to people who don't necessarily want to know, appearing in various states of bookish disarray and giving GENUINE THORTS to slightly stunned interviewers. It's fab - I really really hope that we get MORE Professors on telly FOREVER.
If nothing else, it'll keep them busy and give them less time to ask me why their computer isn't working!