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Some Uber and Lyft drivers say they were misled into petitioning against their own worker rights. [Recode]

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SmittenKitten
1953 Rider
 Posted 4 weeks ago

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A few weeks ago. It's the whole employee vs. contractor petition in the app. Many drivers apparently clicked on it without knowing.

Some drivers say they unintentionally signed messages from Uber and Lyft asking politicians to support their job flexibility, without realizing they were campaigning against being classified as employees. Uber and Lyft have been fighting a proposed bill in California, AB 5, that could potentially compel gig economy companies to reclassify many of their independent contract workers as employees. Both companies have sent emails and in-app notifications to drivers warning that they are at risk of losing the ability to set their own hours. "When I first saw the petition, I thought it was something for us drivers,” said one driver who talked to Recode. “But when I talked to other drivers on WhatsApp, I learned more and realized that isn’t the case.” 

https://www.vox.com/recode/2019/6/27/18759387/uber-lyft-drivers-misled-companies-political-campaign 

Several California drivers told Recode they signed messages from Lyft and Ubers asking politicians to support their job flexibility, without realizing they were campaigning against being classified as employees.



Comments

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    chawes
    726 Rider Guru
     3 weeks ago

    Read what you are signing, people!! Don't just skim it and assume it's in your favor because the dude asking you to sign it seems cool. And if you don't understand it, don't sign it!

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      richdonhue
      4
       3 weeks ago

      I am amazed at how many people just sign documents without reading them, especially at the doctors or entertainment venues. If the person giving the document out says "this is all just normal stuff" then 90% of people just sign it without reading it, so insane.

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      Uberserge
      916 Rider Driver
       3 weeks ago
      When it’s in the driver app, most people sign it in fear or some sort of retaliation. I did not, I’m not in favor of being an employee but AB5 may be a powerful deterrent for U/L to come to the table for some concessions. They already have been talking to the SEIU and Teamsters, hopefully no Sweetheart deals are cut.
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    RedANT
    1058 Rider Driver
     3 weeks ago

    Ignorance is no excuse for signing documents that you don't understand.  

    Further, they may favor being "employees," but they also seemed to embrace many of the benefits associated with being an independent contractor. 

    Show Hide  6 Replies
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      DaimsLer
      255
       3 weeks ago

      I don't think they "signed" anything.  It was some cleverly situated popups and buttons those drivers pressed.  That's their argument.

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      Uberserge
      916 Rider Driver
       3 weeks ago  (edited 3 weeks ago)


      https://therideshareguy.com/the-battle-for-ab5-heats-up-in-california/

      Rule #1, never ever sign anything without reading it thoroughly. However, the coercion and bullying tactics UBER and Lyft deploy are shameful, what else is new? I've extensively written about AB5 simce I'm in CA on RSG, the most we'll known blog in the country when it comes to the rideshare industry.

      The so called flexibility is the last leg on the U/L table and it's not a structurally sound one. We're all IC in employee clothing. U/L dictate everything else, even turning off the driver's app after two or three missed requests. 

      AB5 has nothing in it where it says it will get rid of flexibility, that's UBER and Lyft BS.

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        RedANT
        1058 Rider Driver
         3 weeks ago

        Uber and Lyft didn't force anyone to do anything.  These people did it on their own.  There was no coercion, just unsubstantiated half truths and talking points to confuse the already confused drivers.  

        Independent contractor or employee.  Status doesn't change the fact that Uber and Lyft will ultimately make that determination regardless of what drivers want.  People rant and rave about how Uber and Lyft screw them as contractors.  Do people really think that they'll treat you better as an employee?

        The only people that would see an improvement will be the very part time drivers who drive in demand hours.  Everyone else will end up with less money, more taxes/withholdings, fewer hours and less flexibility.  

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          Uberserge
          916 Rider Driver
           3 weeks ago

          We will have to agree to disagree on that subject I don't think you're studying ab5 enough. Are you telling me that the in-app notifications you got from Uber and Lyft was not coercion saying that you're going to lose your flexibility saying that you're going to lose your Independence come on now

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            RedANT
            1058 Rider Driver
             3 weeks ago

            I don't think we define coercion the same way.  

            Signing was VOLUNTARY.  These people weren't forced to sign.  They were explained one side of the debate, and chose sides without exploring alternate options.  

            Uber and Lyft presented their side, and the drivers signed on.  That's carelessness, not coercion.  

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              Uberserge
              916 Rider Driver
               3 weeks ago

              I would agree with you except Uber and Lyft did not present their side they said in those in-app notifications that this law would take away flexibility and independence from the driver that is twisting the law there is nothing in AB5 that says anything like that therefore I see this coercion. As I said we have to agree to disagree however where I agree with you is that maybe it's due to lack of Education or whatever the reason is most drivers pretty much sign anything they see in the app like the amendments to the existing TOS so that they could sign on and keep driving.

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    SimOran
    10
     3 weeks ago

    I want to know how this was phrased in the app, how could so many people click on something and sign it without "knowing" what it was. I have no doubts that Uber worded it funny. Anyone on here have any screenshots?

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      Uberserge
      916 Rider Driver
       3 weeks ago
      Look at my screenshots below under Uberserge, I posted them for someone else who had asked. In in this thread, so you don’t have to go far.
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    rectorma34
    1
     3 weeks ago

    Wow, this is so messed up. Was the petition worded confusingly? I am not a driver but trying to understand how this happened.

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      Uberserge
      916 Rider Driver
       3 weeks ago

      Here are the two app notifications they sent, you'll be the judge. AB5 has nothing in it fir flexibility.

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        AsStibelDude
        624 Driver
         3 weeks ago

        Where’s the “don’t sign the petition” button?

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          Uberserge
          916 Rider Driver
           3 weeks ago

          Good question, great question. 

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        rectorma34
        1
         3 weeks ago

        Thanks for sharing. They are pushing it hard huh. I can see why some drivers signed t his thinking it would benefit them, so sad.

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          Uberserge
          916 Rider Driver
           3 weeks ago

          Thank you for your interest