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Speaker: Confessions of an Uber Driver III: How do I rate?

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  • Sacha, in reply to goforit,

    through Scoop NZ

    Please add links - it helps the rest of us follow the conversation.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19705 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to goforit,

    I don’t see him having made a fuss about the process, it’s just background, a single sentence. The point of the letter is that there is no checking at all of people being able to work legally.

    For the rest of your question, we’re doing it, whether anyone likes it or not. We are finding out whether the drivers have any rights or protections, however we can do it. Because it is important to know, one way or the other. It is part of the picture of an employment situation. You claim it’s illegal, but currently anyone who has the main compliance required is not being taken off the road. It is being accepted as a form of employment by our enforcement officers. It is being tolerated by the government. We’re trying to find the limits of it, what the shape of this new brand of employment is. If it turns out to be master-slave, as you seem to think it should be, by virtue of people being ensnared into contracts stripping them of rights, then it’s important that every driver in the country knows that, and considers whether the alternatives aren’t better. It’s possible that a judge won’t see it that way and will consider the precedents set in our high courts against multinationals in the transport industry to be well established and not something they want to overturn. It’s an attempt to find just where in limbo the drivers stand. I’m not a lawyer, I’m not a legislator, I’m not a judge. I won’t speculate any further on how this will pan out in a public forum. Take it offline if you want to find out more.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10650 posts Report Reply

  • Alfie, in reply to Sacha,

    Please add links – it helps the rest of us follow the conversation.

    Thanks for that Sacha.

    Dunedin • Since May 2014 • 1433 posts Report Reply

  • goforit,

    The outcomes of the action will be interesting. Just to slightly change direction I have noticed in the last month or so Uber drivers being given hints from Uber about being involved with other related services, some have been deactivaed and others warned. I been thinking this over but havn't come to any conclusions yet. Has this issue come to your attention.

    Auckland • Since May 2016 • 314 posts Report Reply

  • goforit,

    Sorry I don't know how to add the links in but The NZTA has just stated in the NZ Herald they suspect there is up to 1934 noncompliant drivers working in Uber.

    Auckland • Since May 2016 • 314 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to goforit,

    Has this issue come to your attention.

    Not yet. Their deactivation terms and conditions do suggest that “illegal street hailing” is grounds for deactivation. Also that poaching customers is not allowed, nor is disparaging their service. But I’ve never seen them specifically say that working for another ride sourcing service would lead to deactivation.

    ETA: I should add: It’s always been their policy that you can’t just be a taxi. No signage. I think this is the law for a private hire service anyway. Passengers are encouraged to report taxi signage on Ubers.

    ETA2: One thing I can say for sure is that a growing number of drivers do work for multiple ride sourcing services. Eventually, this could kill Uber's monopoly outright, so I would not be surprised if they got bitter on it. It could, however, be very difficult for them to detect.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10650 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to goforit,

    Instructions for adding links are at the bottom of the screen. Use double square brackets, then the URL, then a "|" then any text you want to show for the link, then double square brackets. Give it a go...I could link what you're talking about, but it's not rocket science, have a go.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10650 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to goforit,

    Thanks for asking. Simplest way is to just paste the whole link into your comment - including the 'http' etc at the beginning. Site will automatically make it an active link ..

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19705 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to goforit,

    Sorry I don't know how to add the links in but The NZTA has just stated in the NZ Herald they suspect there is up to 1934 noncompliant drivers working in Uber.

    .. like this: http://www.nzherald.co.nz/business/news/article.cfm?c_id=3&objectid=11716898

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19705 posts Report Reply

  • goforit, in reply to BenWilson,

    ETA2: One thing I can say for sure is that a growing number of drivers do work for multiple ride sourcing services. Eventually, this could kill Uber’s monopoly outright, so I would not be surprised if they got bitter on it. It could, however, be very difficult for them to detect

    I think this is the one I think may be behind it all. I keep my eyes and ears open and see if its just isolated or a trend.

    Auckland • Since May 2016 • 314 posts Report Reply

  • linger,

    One point that leapt out in that NZH article, which really should give prospective Uber drivers pause for thought:

    because the drivers work as self-employed contractors, they would individually be responsible for paying fines, not the company.

    Tokyo • Since Apr 2007 • 1923 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to linger,

    This is at variance to what the drivers are themselves told when they sign up, though. The line I was given was that "no Uber driver has ever paid a fine". Hopefully, in the next few days, I'll know whether that is actually true.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10650 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to goforit,

    I keep my eyes and ears open and see if its just isolated or a trend.

    I'm willing to bet it's a trend. It has been everywhere else in the world. Like I've said many times, this company has only invented an app with some servers, not some kind of amazing game changing rocket science. They're extremely vulnerable to competition.

    It will be rather ironic if they try to aggressively protect their monopoly after their entire rhetorical spin for years being about busting up monopolies. How are you going to punish drivers for working for someone else? Fire them?

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10650 posts Report Reply

  • goforit,

    http://www.nzherald.co.nz/transport/news/article.cfm?c_id=97&objectid=11714841

    Auckland transport don't care if Uber operation is compliant or not. lets see what happens here.

    Auckland • Since May 2016 • 314 posts Report Reply

  • goforit, in reply to goforit,

    Auckland transport don’t care if Uber operation is compliant

    Rereading the article, looks like AT been in talks for sometime with Uber, sort of explains why AT has progressively been removing taxi stands in Auckland and the increased enforcement of AT towards the taxi industry for parking infringements due to stands not be available.

    Auckland • Since May 2016 • 314 posts Report Reply

  • goforit, in reply to goforit,

    This fits into what the Minister of Transport was saying two weeks ago. I now beleive Uber is going to be given a free hand to do what ever and the new regulations (before Parliament) will not to apply to them.

    Auckland • Since May 2016 • 314 posts Report Reply

  • Ben Austin,

    I saw a transit app in Toronto last week which seemed to integrate Uber availability with the local metro bike hire scheme, which was quite neat. Think it may have been semi official, linked to the local Transit Commission

    London • Since Nov 2006 • 1022 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson,

    Interesting idea. I guess AT isn't bugged by the whole non-compliance thing, presumably bus drivers etc are still required to have P-Endorsements, even if Uber isn't. Presumably buses still have COFs and their drivers log their hours. Presumably their organization does actually know what's in the Land Transport Act. Presumably they've put thought into the potential ramifications of partnering with an organization that isn't following any of the rules.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10650 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to goforit,

    sort of explains why AT has progressively been removing taxi stands in Auckland

    That has been going on since the various council transport arms were merged and the rarities like North Shore council who treated taxis as public transit were diluted. Car storage spaces along our roads are being prgressively removed in favour of transit options like bus and cycle priority.

    I'll defer to you on enforcement levels.

    And thanks for the link.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19705 posts Report Reply

  • Sacha, in reply to BenWilson,

    I guess AT isn't bugged by the whole non-compliance thing

    That article sounds like they merely observe it's no risk to them, not their job, etc.

    Ak • Since May 2008 • 19705 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to Sacha,

    That was my take also. Airports would seem to have a different view of the matter, Wellington in particular, seems concerned about the health and safety angle. But that is probably because pickup/dropoffs there are on private property. I'm not sure if AT owns any of these bus terminals.

    In theory it's not a bad idea to solve the "last 3 km" problem that public transport faces, by having passengers delivered there in private vehicles that don't have to park. In practice there is simply no way that Uber has scale to make any kind of dent in the problem of getting people to buses, with the hundreds of thousands of people who commute daily. There are a couple of thousand Uber vehicles, tops, in Auckland. Rush hour is reliably terrible for Uber, both riders and drivers. Riders because Uber prices always surge at rush hour, due to the inability of drivers to get to their riders. And slow rides to a destination are much more expensive than fast ones because of the per minute charge. Bad for drivers because you get a lot of cancellations when access is difficult due to traffic conditions, and the payment structure is geared towards most of your money coming from the per-km charges. Sitting in a traffic jam with an angry passenger who is actually trying to save money by using a bus isn't a driver's idea of fun either.

    I hope AT conducts some passenger surveys to find how many people are using Ubers to get to buses, and how much that cost them. It will give solid information back about whether it's making any kind of dent. I'd have thought that this idea is in direct competition to their own services, that the best way to get large numbers of passengers to a bus terminal would be in buses.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10650 posts Report Reply

  • goforit,

    Wonder who got the bribe in AT over this one

    Auckland • Since May 2016 • 314 posts Report Reply

  • goforit,

    Hello, has everyone gone on holiday LOL

    Auckland • Since May 2016 • 314 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5550 posts Report Reply

  • goforit, in reply to Rich of Observationz,

    hi, I had forgotten about that, that GST regulation kicks in tomorrow. I guess Uber will handle it in there normal way by just ignoring the regulation like all the others. LOL

    Auckland • Since May 2016 • 314 posts Report Reply

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