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Sat May 9, 2015, 11:41 AM

 

Philadelphia journalist went undercover as an Uber driver — here's how much she made





Last year, Uber claimed its full-time New York City UberX drivers were making a median wage of about $90,000 a year.

Drivers responded by telling Business Insider's Maya Kosoff that they were often making less than minimum wage, with yearly earnings in the range of $10,000 to $41,000.

<snip>

But in the long run, Guendelsberger found that the numbers didn't add up. One reason was Uber's massive fare cut, which took place just before she started driving. And since UberX drivers aren't licensed with the company

Over the course of 100 rides, her hourly rate averaged out to $17. But after subtracting the 28% cut that Uber takes and 19% for car-related expenses, her actual pay ended up being $9.34 an hour.

http://www.sfgate.com/technology/businessinsider/article/A-Philadelphia-journalist-went-undercover-as-an-6251625.php




A Nice BIG Corp FU to working class Americans trying to eek out a living

125 replies, 22909 views

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Reply Philadelphia journalist went undercover as an Uber driver — here's how much she made (Original post)
FreakinDJ May 2015 OP
Luminous Animal May 2015 #1
Agschmid May 2015 #4
FreakinDJ May 2015 #6
Agschmid May 2015 #11
Trajan May 2015 #15
bvf May 2015 #16
nxylas May 2015 #29
bvf May 2015 #36
nxylas May 2015 #45
Agschmid May 2015 #46
bvf May 2015 #47
Agschmid May 2015 #48
bvf May 2015 #49
Agschmid May 2015 #50
bvf May 2015 #51
Agschmid May 2015 #52
bvf May 2015 #53
Luminous Animal May 2015 #67
lunamagica May 2015 #18
AtomicKitten May 2015 #22
JVS May 2015 #27
CoffeeCat May 2015 #77
mackerel May 2015 #78
RedCappedBandit May 2015 #42
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FreakinDJ May 2015 #88
CoffeeCat May 2015 #89
FreakinDJ May 2015 #90
Recursion May 2015 #100
FreakinDJ May 2015 #106
Recursion May 2015 #107
FreakinDJ May 2015 #110
Recursion May 2015 #111
underpants May 2015 #5
Luminous Animal May 2015 #43
underpants May 2015 #75
CoffeeCat May 2015 #79
Egnever May 2015 #80
stevenleser May 2015 #94
trumad May 2015 #14
Skittles May 2015 #117
wyldwolf May 2015 #2
Starry Messenger May 2015 #3
malthaussen May 2015 #7
Liberal_in_LA May 2015 #10
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Fla Dem May 2015 #8
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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Sat May 9, 2015, 11:46 AM

1. I am disgusted by people who use Uber and the like.

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Response to Luminous Animal (Reply #1)

Sat May 9, 2015, 11:52 AM

4. Why? Is that a fair reaction?

I know people who rely on Uber for on demand transit to their job.

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Response to Agschmid (Reply #4)

Sat May 9, 2015, 11:58 AM

6. Its like "Shopping at Walmart" - your Screwing ALL Working Class Americans

 

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Response to FreakinDJ (Reply #6)

Sat May 9, 2015, 12:47 PM

11. So these people shouldn't be able to get to work on time?

Uber allows them to ensure that they have a ride to their job. Sometimes mass transit systems don't start early enough or because of their living location they don't have access to it.

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Response to Agschmid (Reply #11)

Sat May 9, 2015, 01:20 PM

15. If they instead made $1 per hour

 

Your friend can make it to work even more securely ?

I don't think your answer was directed to the question of wage, but to whether your friend has a convenient lifestyle ... I'm sure he/she does ... But at what expense?

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Response to Agschmid (Reply #11)

Sat May 9, 2015, 01:22 PM

16. People couldn't get to their jobs on time

 

before Uber?

I had no idea!

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Response to bvf (Reply #16)

Sat May 9, 2015, 02:13 PM

29. In cities without adequate mass transit, no

I hear the bus system in Columbia, SC has improved since I was living there, but I had to turn down several job offers at the time, because I can't drive due to a disability, and the buses couldn't get me there in time.

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Response to nxylas (Reply #29)

Sat May 9, 2015, 02:30 PM

36. Maybe cities should focus more

 

on having adequate mass transportation then.

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Response to bvf (Reply #36)

Sat May 9, 2015, 03:42 PM

45. You'll get no argument from me there

I've been saying that for decades.

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Response to bvf (Reply #36)

Sat May 9, 2015, 03:58 PM

46. Yes they should.

But in the meantime as the poster above mentioned no some people couldn't, or the time it took them to get there was exorbitant.

Wages should increase for everyone, even the people using Uber it's not like they are made of money.

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Response to Agschmid (Reply #46)

Sat May 9, 2015, 04:30 PM

47. There shouldn't be any need for Uber.

 

If the rich paid their share of taxes, there wouldn't be.

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Response to bvf (Reply #47)

Sat May 9, 2015, 04:31 PM

48. That's just rediculous.

Uber provides multiple benefits to people that even a well funded/developed mass transit system can't.

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Response to Agschmid (Reply #48)

Sat May 9, 2015, 04:37 PM

49. OK. Sure. Uh huh.

 

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Response to bvf (Reply #49)

Sat May 9, 2015, 04:40 PM

50. What decade were you born in?

And do you live in any kind of city in Ohio?

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Response to Agschmid (Reply #50)

Sat May 9, 2015, 04:46 PM

51. Late 50s. Cleveland.

 

What the hell?

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Response to bvf (Reply #51)

Sat May 9, 2015, 04:48 PM

52. It answers my question.

Mid 80's, Boston, by way of NYC.

Mindset is everything

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Response to Agschmid (Reply #52)

Sat May 9, 2015, 04:55 PM

53. Again, what the hell?

 

Mindset means nothing here.

ETA:. What are you driving at?

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Response to Agschmid (Reply #48)

Sat May 9, 2015, 09:09 PM

67. At the expense for those who work for them.

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Response to FreakinDJ (Reply #6)

Sat May 9, 2015, 01:29 PM

18. My mother and I don't have a car

My sister tries to drive her to the supermarket, but now my sister was also left without a car. So my mother tries to use a courtesy shuttle in our neighborhood that goes to the supermarket once a week, but sometimes the shuttle breaks down

Shopping for groceries and carrying them on a transit bus is a hassle, especially for an elderly woman.

So she takes a bus to the supermarket, and calls a cab to take her home. She has done this twice. Both times the cab never shows up. After waiting (once for over four hours), she finally gets on a cab that just happened to stop at the supermarket. The trip cost her $20.00

So she tried Uber, which arrived in less than 10 minutes, with a super courteous driver. The ride cost her $9.00

Are you disgusted by her for not wanting to go through that ordeal of calling a cab, just to pay more?

What is she supposed to do?

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Response to lunamagica (Reply #18)

Sat May 9, 2015, 01:50 PM

22. I'm with you.

 

I used it for this first time this week to go to a doctor's appointment here in SF. I haven't used my car in a couple years. My son takes MUNI to work and I work at home. I had a hip injury that makes taking the bus impossible because I can't walk for any distance to meet the bus at various stops. We called Uber and in 2 minutes (no kidding) a car arrived. Two people can ride without a price increase. On the way back, same thing - a 2 minute wait. They delivered us door to door for a total of $14, $7 each way. In comparison, when I had surgery at a local hospital, a cab cost $15 each way. Uber also uses debit, no cash exchange, which is really convenient. All in all, I used Uber out of necessity and was pleased with the prompt service.

So, sue me.

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Response to lunamagica (Reply #18)

Sat May 9, 2015, 02:08 PM

27. Tell her to ask the cabbie if they have a business card.

Most cabbies are happy to make regular appointments or take phone calls on the road to drive regular customers. I've even seen cab drivers who established their own dispatching system to make more money. Uber drivers would probably jump at the chance to make a fare without having to pay 28% on it.

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Response to lunamagica (Reply #18)

Sun May 10, 2015, 01:33 AM

77. I drive for Uber, and so does my husband...

…and we hear stories like your over and over. Dozens of times a day.

I had a guy tell me that he would call for a cab two hours before he needed to get to work--and often times he was still late because the cab didn't pick him up in time. Now, he calls Uber 15 minutes before he needs to get to work and he's there on time, every time. At half the cost. In a clean car with a courteous, friendly person.

I have heard so many stories like this. And there are also a lot of twenty-somethings who use it to transport them to bars and restaurants. They love being driven around and they don't have to worry about driving drunk.

I've also picked up a few people who have been busted for DUI. They tell me that paying Uber to drive them to work daily is cheaper than the high insurance and costs that it takes to get them back on the road. That's sad and I feel bad for them--but Uber is a cheaper alternative.

I've driven quite a few people with disabilities. I think it's so much easier and more convenient for them to get around and to where they need to be. It's a time-saver.

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Response to lunamagica (Reply #18)

Sun May 10, 2015, 01:40 AM

78. This happened all the time when I lived in S.F. and the bus was never on time

it was often times faster to walk to my destination than wait for the bus. I can see uber working in a situation like that and I don't see why people should be denied the opportunity to use something like uber if it works. My only concern would be if the drivers were properly insured in the event of an accident.

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Response to FreakinDJ (Reply #6)

Sat May 9, 2015, 02:54 PM

42. How so?

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Response to FreakinDJ (Reply #6)

Sun May 10, 2015, 01:21 AM

76. I am a working-class American...

In fact, my husband and I are working our butts off. We took a massive hit in 2008 when the economy tanked. My husband was laid off for six months and after he found employment, the new normal in his field (IT), was a 25 percent pay cut.

I returned to work as a freelance writer. We're staring down the barrel of two teenage girls getting ready to go for college. We don't have an extra $75k lying around, so we decided to try driving for Uber to make some extra cash.

We work hard. We both work part time Ubering and this "third income" helps us to save for their college fund.

I understand that Uber is putting a dent in the Taxi business. However, Uber is an incredible service for so many reasons. They've improved upon the traditional Taxi service immensely. So yes, Taxi drivers are hard-working, but so are Uber drivers.

Sometimes markets evolve and improve. That is what is happening here. Uber is creating jobs, as far as my husband and I are concerned.

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Response to CoffeeCat (Reply #76)

Sun May 10, 2015, 09:28 AM

88. Wish you could see what Capitalism looks like in other countries

 

Most parts of Asia have Taxis, Rikshaws Tricads Buses and Vhires all completely UNREGULATED

ALL RACING TO THE BOTTOM of the pay scale

While I'm glad Uber was there for you and your husband in your time of need - all that really has happened here is that because your standard of living was reduced - you in turn have helped reduce the standard of living for ANOTHER Hard Working Working Class American - All the while some Wall St Shmuck is laughing all the way to the bank

Do you carry Commercial Insurance

Pay proper Airport Fees

Have you properly calculated in cost of operating your vehicle when you determined what your really earning?



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Response to FreakinDJ (Reply #88)

Sun May 10, 2015, 02:48 PM

89. Using your logic...

…there should never be any innovation or entrepreneurialism--even if those innovations make life better for many. So no one should make a better mousetrap because those making outdated products or providing inferior service--might be left behind?

Should we return to being tethered to the kitchen counter on rotary phones because cell phones caused rotary-phone manufacturers to lose their jobs? Quicken enabled accountants to do their jobs faster and CAD software increased speed for engineers and architects, which resulted in some job loss due to increased efficiency. Should we just return to hand drawings?

Uber is shaking up the cab/taxi service--because Uber is such a stark improvement. Uber cars are clean, the people driving them are courteous and they know the areas well because they live in those areas--and most have done so for years. Uber is half the price of a cab most circumstances and your wait time is minutes.

Uber may be taking away businesses from standard taxis and cabs, but the vast majority of Uber passengers tell me, they've never taken a cab. Uber filled a niche that no one was filling--picking up people in five minutes and getting them where they need to go quickly with little wait time.

And just because something is "unregulated" as you said--does not guarantee that it descends into third-world status. Are accountants regulated? Do public-relations practitioners belong to a union? How about doctors, lawyers and graphic designers--is their income regulated and do they belong to unions? Not every industry or job must be tightly regulated to thrive or to be good for the employee. The laws of supply and demand will regulate Uber-driver pay. If it isn't worth it for drivers to drive--they'll quit. Most drivers have other jobs and do this for extra income--like my husband and I are doing.

As far as regulation--What good has it done for cab drivers? Any of them millionaires? They are screwed over and barely left making any money--even if they work 70-80 hours weekly.

I don't begrudge the Uber CEO for being successful or making billions. The company is valued at $40 billion right now. Am I supposed to be envious or mad because someone is raking in the dough? He had an amazing idea and assumed the risk to start a business. He deserves to be a billionaire. I'm nothing but grateful for his ideas and success.

Yeah, the economy does suck. Don't get me started about stagnant wages and how businesses skimp on benefits. Workers have definitely suffered as the wealthy have amassed whatever they please. No arguments there. Food and gas prices are a crime. It's all death by a thousand paycheck cuts.

I just started Uber. I'm ramping up. My husband is clearing about $1200 per month working part-time hours mainly on the weekends. I will get up to that level within the next month. That's $2,400 of extra income monthly. That is after Uber takes its cut and we subtract for taxes, gas and a car-repair fund.

I am grateful everyday for Uber. Where else could I have the flexibility to set my own hours, work where I want and in the neighborhoods I want--and not have to worry about punching a clock, buying new clothes for work? It's so flexible and carefree, it's crazy. I Uber when my kids are asleep at night or at school. I still get to attend all of their activities, go to lunch when I please and volunteer at school as much I like. So yeah. I'm more than jazzed.

You can make people feel like shit for doing this, and that's your choice--but we're responsible people and parents, trying to do the best for our family. Yeah, the economy sucks and corporate America is screwing us all like dogs. But that has nothing to do with Uber. Everyone works for someone. Everyone who has a job makes money for someone else. I worked in PR for fifteen years. You think I went to work and complained that our CEO was a multimillionaire or the executives took home six-figure salaries when I didn't? The thought never crossed my mind.

We'll continue to drive part-time for Uber and it will help our family. If driver rates are slashed, we won't continue. But for now, we're sticking with it.

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Response to CoffeeCat (Reply #89)

Sun May 10, 2015, 07:56 PM

90. Because Corp America is Screwing us - you in turn screw some thing else

 

So much for American Exceptionalism



No I don't fault you for that - yes it has attempted to reduce my standard of living too. I choose to Work Smarter not Work Harder

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Response to FreakinDJ (Reply #88)

Mon May 11, 2015, 03:52 AM

100. A popular myth, but false, at least in South Asia

Rickshaws, etc., are tightly regulated with an eye to protecting incumbent medallion owners.

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Response to Recursion (Reply #100)

Mon May 11, 2015, 09:00 AM

106. obviously you have Never been to the Philippines

 

Millions of people attempting to live on $2 a day

You should check your facts first

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Response to FreakinDJ (Reply #106)

Mon May 11, 2015, 10:23 AM

107. I live in Mumbai, which is poorer

Which is why I mentioned "south Asia". Tuk tuks and rickshaws and cabs are strictly regulated by a board that sets their numbers. There are waiting lists just to bribe the right person.

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Response to Recursion (Reply #107)

Mon May 11, 2015, 11:59 AM

110. So you don't live in America

 

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Response to FreakinDJ (Reply #110)

Mon May 11, 2015, 12:15 PM

111. I'm an American overseas on orders

My story about the monkeys was pretty popular...

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Response to Luminous Animal (Reply #1)

Sat May 9, 2015, 11:52 AM

5. Why?

Not that I am pro or anti Uber, I am just curious.

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Response to underpants (Reply #5)

Sat May 9, 2015, 03:20 PM

43. Shifting risk to labor, few or no labor protections, predatory pricing,

disruptive "innovation", no training, inadequate insurance, no vehicle inspection, pits worker against worker, customer "satisfaction" ratings which force workers to lie about their jobs lest they get an unfavorable rating (and fired), worthless background checks, price gouging "surge" pricing…

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Response to Luminous Animal (Reply #43)

Sun May 10, 2015, 12:21 AM

75. Understood

Thanks

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Response to Luminous Animal (Reply #43)

Sun May 10, 2015, 02:03 AM

79. Most of what you have written NOT AT ALL what I have experienced as an an Uber driver...

"Shifting risk to labor"---What risk? I set my own hours. I drive when I want to. I drive where I want to and pick up who I want to. I don't have to accept a ping, if I don't feel like it. I develop a strategy to maximize profit--based on my analysis of "busy times" and the best locations in which to be. I have the freedom to craft my own work-day and business strategy. I like the control this job gives me.

"few or no labor protections"-Sure, we don't have a union. We are independent contractors. This is why so many drive for Uber. The flexibility. We're not coming in from 8-5. We are freelancers. That's what we love about it. I am also a freelance writer on the side. Some people do NOT want to be tethered to a job with all of its trappings, even though some of those trappings are perks. I'd rather have my freedom.

"predatory pricing"--I don't get this. Uber is often less than half the price of a cab and Uber offers better service. Surge pricing happens when there aren't enough drivers in an area. The prices increase to encourage more drivers to move to those areas. Most surge pricing ends within ten minutes. It is a device that is used to control supply and demand and it works. However, it is rare.

"disruptive "innovation"--To the competition maybe. The drivers and customers are not disrupted at all.

"no training"-- The job is easy. The ap is even easier. No training required. Uber does provide online videos and there are videos posted on youtube, for those who want to see the ap and how it works.
Basically, you turn on the ap. You get "pinged" when someone needs a ride. You are guided to them via GPS--turn by turn instructions. You click "arrive" and the rider comes out. You hit "start trip" and you follow the GPS instructions to the rider destination. When you're done--rate the rider and hit "END TRIP."
That's it.

"inadequate insurance"--UNTRUE. Uber requires all drivers to provide proof of insurance. You have to have adequate insurance. Uber also insures drivers. The Uber insurance kicks in when the driver is pinged and accepts the ride. The driver and the rider are insured through the entire trip. That's quite adequate.

"No vehicle inspection"--No, Uber doesn't come to my home and check under my hood. However, we are required to send pictures of our car. Both inside and outside shots.

"pits worker against worker"--I've never thought of it this way. There is enough work to go around. The ap automatically pings the drivers nearest to the person requesting the trip. So, there's really no hostility or bad feelings.

"customer "satisfaction" ratings which force workers to lie about their jobs lest they get an unfavorable rating (and fired)," --What are you talking about? Riders rate drivers. Drivers rate riders. Riders rate drivers on the drive and the courtesy of the driver. Period. You must be misunderstanding the ratings. Ratings help to weed out bad drivers--and bad riders. If someone is rude, inefficient or not a nice person--they are rated low. Keeps everyone kind, honest and on track, I think.

"worthless background checks"--Both my husband and I went through a rigorous criminal-background check and a major driving history check. They also did a credit check. I wouldn't call that "worthless."

"price gouging "surge" pricing"--See my comments above. Uber prices are low. However, when demand for cars increases in specific areas, the prices rise. However, these prices are rarely as high as cab prices. Surge pricing usually lasts for ten minutes--and it is designed to get more drivers to the area. Then, the surge ends. My husband made a lot of money driving during a major 3.0 surge. There was a horrible blizzard (2 feet of snow falling and 40 mph winds). Drivers *should* be compensated for taking these additional risks. Different conditions sometimes mean higher prices. That's not nefarious.

I'm not saying that Uber is perfect. It's not. However, it bothers me that misinformation and half truths get spread.

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Response to CoffeeCat (Reply #79)

Sun May 10, 2015, 02:12 AM

80. Thanks for that post

 

A lot of info in there I was not aware of.

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Response to CoffeeCat (Reply #79)

Sun May 10, 2015, 09:41 PM

94. Curious of what you think of this OP by me...

 

http://www.democraticunderground.com/10026653270

discussion today with an Uber driver.

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Response to Luminous Animal (Reply #1)

Sat May 9, 2015, 01:12 PM

14. Use it...love it.

 

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Response to Luminous Animal (Reply #1)

Mon May 11, 2015, 04:32 PM

117. I won't use Uber

it's contributing to this part-time employment being the norm - it absolute bullshit

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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Sat May 9, 2015, 11:49 AM

2. There is no free ride

(pun intended.)

Even though we often have no choice, you'll never make what your worth working for a corporation.

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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Sat May 9, 2015, 11:52 AM

3. People who tout those companies are chumps.

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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Sat May 9, 2015, 12:16 PM

7. Why does the article show a pic of Birdcage Walk in London?

Bit far from Market Street, yah.

-- Mal

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Response to malthaussen (Reply #7)

Sat May 9, 2015, 12:45 PM

10. good catch

 

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Response to malthaussen (Reply #7)

Sat May 9, 2015, 01:11 PM

13. Right?

 

Thought that was a bit strange myself....???

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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Sat May 9, 2015, 12:31 PM

8. How One Woman Could Destroy Uber’s Business Model

How One Woman Could Destroy Uber’s Business Model
— and Take the Entire ‘On-Demand’ Economy Down
With It


One of the perks of being a top Uber driver is the company’s employee-of-the-week
award. It’s called the Sixth Star prize, and it comes with a swag bag and a $1,000
American Express gift card. It’s the sort of thing that all sorts of big companies do to
encourage their workers to go that proverbial, or actual, extra mile. But with Uber,
there’s a hitch. The taxi behemoth does not employ any of its drivers. They are all
independent contractors, paid by the gig.
Working for Uber might come with its perks, then, but it also comes without the benefits
and protections many businesses provide for their employees. That’s unfair and illegal, a
Boston labor lawyer is now arguing in court, potentially threatening the business models
of the dozens and dozens of popular apps that make up the so-called “on-demand
economy.”


more>>>>>> http://uberlawsuit.com/PDF%201.pdf


Case Against Uber Seeks to Reclassify Drivers as Employees, Not Contractors

Audio>>>>> https://soundcloud.com/siriusxm-news-issues/lawyer-bringing-case-against

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Response to Fla Dem (Reply #8)

Sat May 9, 2015, 12:56 PM

12. So her actual pay of 9.34 an hour does not even count her taxes as a contractor.?

Which she has to pay quarterly.
And her Soc. Sec. deducts, I think, are higher, since there is no employer match, so she has to pay all.

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Response to dixiegrrrrl (Reply #12)

Sat May 9, 2015, 08:56 PM

65. Yep, she has to pay about 15.3% in self employment taxes

Whereas an employee only has to pay 7.65%, with the employer paying the other half.

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Response to AZ Progressive (Reply #65)

Sat May 9, 2015, 09:18 PM

69. You'd also need a commercial insurance policy

So the 19% for vehicle expenses may be on the low side.

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Response to Major Nikon (Reply #69)

Sun May 10, 2015, 06:14 AM

87. From what I understand

Your regular auto policy is all you need. During the time that your auto policy is null and void because you are using the car commercially (from the time you get pinged to when you drop the customer off), Uber has a million dollar policy that kicks in and covers you and your passengers for the duration of the trip. Part of what the Uber cut of the fare pays for.

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Response to Fla Dem (Reply #8)

Sat May 9, 2015, 01:53 PM

23. Good article- I'm glad to know there are people like this out there.

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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Sat May 9, 2015, 12:41 PM

9. I've only done Uber when other people ordered it for us.

Here in Philly, there are plenty of taxis. As tech oriented as I am, I don't see what the advantage of Uber is, at least here.

Not surprised that it's not very profitable for drivers.

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Response to onehandle (Reply #9)

Sat May 9, 2015, 01:37 PM

20. It is when you make a cash deal with your local drivers who use the app to make a living.

If they have a decent enough car.

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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Sat May 9, 2015, 01:23 PM

17. Eventually, we're going to see this...

 

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Response to Spitfire of ATJ (Reply #17)

Sat May 9, 2015, 01:56 PM

24. Change that figure to a screen with "Robert" or "Cynthia" from South Asia.

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Response to NBachers (Reply #24)

Sat May 9, 2015, 02:21 PM

31. Ah yes,...the six year old urchins that have been on the posters for twenty years.

 

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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Sat May 9, 2015, 01:35 PM

19. Uber takes a 28% cut? to allow car drivers to use their fare finder app? nice gig for Uber.

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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Sat May 9, 2015, 01:40 PM

21. Here's a tip: TIP.

I've never used Uber, but I can imagine circumstances (rush hour, no cabs available) where I might be forced to use it. Now that I know they only make nine bucks an hour, the only way I could use Uber with a clean conscience is to give the driver a BIG tip.

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Response to mainer (Reply #21)

Sun May 10, 2015, 02:17 AM

81. My husband worked for 16 hours last weekend...

…and he made $420. That was after Uber took their cut.

Minus 17 percent tax (that we set aside), gas and $20 that goes into car repair/oil change fund--he made about $18.00 per hour.

We're still learning the ropes (optimal times to go out, best places to wait for rides, etc.).

Tips are wonderful (but not required!)

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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Sat May 9, 2015, 01:57 PM

25. That 28% cut is pretty big and I'd be very surprised if drivers don't find work-arounds.

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Response to JVS (Reply #25)

Sun May 10, 2015, 02:26 AM

82. Uber takes 20 percent...

…of the fare for all Uber X rides (the cheapest service).

The 28 percent cut is what Uber takes for Uber XL rides. Those rides are more expensive, so they take a bigger cut. You actually end up making more money as a driver, if you do Uber XL rides (even with that 28 percent cut being taken out).

To qualify for Uber XL, your car has to fit 4-6 passengers. So bigger cars, SUVs are more expensive rides.

The riders choose, when they book the trip--Uber X or Uber XL. It's totally up to the passenger. My husband and I have cars that qualify for Uber XL. However, most of the trips that we get, are Uber X. 85 percent of passengers pick Uber X because it is cheaper. Of course, some exclusively pick Uber XL, because they always want to ride in a bigger car.

There are other Uber services too--Uber Black (luxury cars) and Uber Limo. I don't know much about these services, as they are not offered in our area.

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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Sat May 9, 2015, 01:57 PM

26. The Goober Taxi

 

Since we live close to our area's airport, we ferry a lot of relatives and friends to and from the airport and they leave their cars at our place..

They started are calling our taxi service The Goober Taxi instead of Uber...

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Response to Playinghardball (Reply #26)

Sat May 9, 2015, 02:29 PM

34. LOL. Cute story. nt

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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Sat May 9, 2015, 02:10 PM

28. I am an Uber driver

I am 69 years old and it is the only job I could get. I worked in the semiconductor industry for 35 years and when I was laid off.
I tried to find another job, even a general labor job in any industry. Uber was the answer. I do not make a large amount of money,
but I make enough to live. I have never had a complaint from any of my customers. They always tell me of the great experiences
that they had with Uber. Where I am, Uber charges 20% but the fares are calculated as $0.90 a mile and that is for up to 4 passengers. I love this job. It is the best job a lazy person can have. Uber is all over and that makes a vehicle available any where
from 2 to 20 minute, espically for people living away from the city. A cab can take up to 1 hour in these places and then they charge
extra for the trip out. Uber ON!!

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Response to uwep (Reply #28)

Sat May 9, 2015, 02:45 PM

40. Good for you!

As an over-70 senior, I admire your energy, determination and positive attitude. You provide a service that benefits more than I'd ever imagined. I've reached the point where I'd gladly welcome Uber drivers who'd transport me to places I love going when I'm no longer able to drive myself. Thanks and keep up the good work!

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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Sat May 9, 2015, 02:18 PM

30. Travis Kalanick, the founder of Uber, is a billionaire.

The drivers are not doing quite as well. There are many nice stories about how Uber gives people the freedom to get around town. But the stories focus solely on the well being of the customers. What is not discussed is the human price paid by the Uber drivers.

Consider, the reporter averaged $17.00 an hour. If she did that full time she would have grossed $34,000 a year. Subtracting her expenses to Uber and her vehicle expenses, she grossed $18,600 a year. Subtract Federal tax, state tax, and Social security and Medicare and she would be lucky to make $10,000 a year. That assumes of course that every driver actually drives 40 hours a week.

And of course if she gets sick she does not get paid.
And she gets no vacation.
And she will pay more for commercial car insurance, and have much higher maintenance costs.
And there is no guarantee of hours.
And Uber can increase its share at any time.
And the more drivers that enter any particular market, the less money made.

Remind me again why Uber is such a wonderful idea?

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Response to guillaumeb (Reply #30)

Sat May 9, 2015, 02:30 PM

35. The $9.37 was after the Uber fees and vehicle fees were taken out, but before taxes. nt

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Response to okaawhatever (Reply #35)

Sat May 9, 2015, 02:35 PM

37. thanks. I updated.

I meant to say $17 an hour for the gross yearly pay.

In my view, the whole Uber, Lyft, Delivr, model is nothing more than a 21st Century version of a plantation economy, without the actual plantation. The inventor of the service makes massive amounts of money while the workers bear all the costs. Is this really what people see as the future?

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Response to guillaumeb (Reply #30)

Sun May 10, 2015, 10:34 PM

96. If you are trying to be fair, you compare apples to apples.

When you evaluate employment (as opposed to independent contractors), you don't deduct Federal, state, Social Security and Medicare taxes. To be a fair comparison, you would deduct roughly half of the social security taxes - since when you are your own employer, you have to pay both your share (not deducted for a fair comparison) and the employer's share.

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Response to Ms. Toad (Reply #96)

Sun May 10, 2015, 11:35 PM

97. Actually a subcontractor is considered an independent businessperson.

My point is that the Uber driver typically does not earn the advertised income. Plus the drivers bear all the expenses, the code writer/billionaire gets 28% of the gross. Not a recipe for a livable job.

Will the economy of the future be composed of Uber, Lyft, and Delivr type contingent jobs, coupled with minimum wage, no benefit McJobs? If so, who buys the houses?

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Response to guillaumeb (Reply #97)

Mon May 11, 2015, 03:29 AM

99. You completely missed the point. Neither does an employee.

You are trashing Uber because your take-home "pay", free and clear after all expenses and taxes you have estimated is $10,000.

While that may not be a living wage, but it is considerably more than you would take home from job as an employee advertised as $10,000 - because as an employee you start with $10,000 and then subtract federal, state, and local taxes, social security taxes, and medicare, leaving you with around $8900 (assuming typical Ohio tax rates for a single person).

Pointing out that the car expenses, the fees to Uber, and the employer's half of social security have to be deducted from your gross receipts is an appropriate comparison to an employee's salary/wage. Suggesting that you should evaluate it by also also taking out federal, state, local, social security taxes, and medicare is NOT an equivalent comparison.

If you're going to talk about all the deductions to point out how bad you think it is, at least be fair and limit what you are deducting to those things which an independent contractor has to pay out of pocket that an employee doesn't (fees to Uber, vehicle expenses, and the portion of social security & medicare which are above and beyond what an employee has to pay).

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Response to Ms. Toad (Reply #99)

Mon May 11, 2015, 11:43 AM

109. My original Post was about Uber being a poor substitute for a real job.

Here was/is a condensed version of my original, without the wage information:

The matter of gross versus net pay aside, Uber, like Lyft, and Delivr, and other such digital era jobs, offer a job where the employee is guaranteed no hours at all. The creator of the app takes 28% of the gross revenues immediately. The employee is responsible for all the costs of delivering, driving, shopping. In addition, I noted the following:

"And of course if she gets sick she does not get paid.
And she gets no vacation.
And she will pay more for commercial car insurance, and have much higher maintenance costs.
And there is no guarantee of hours.
And Uber can increase its share at any time.
And the more drivers that enter any particular market, the less money made.

Remind me again why Uber is such a wonderful idea?"

And no one, including you, has offered a response to any of this, nor have any of the Uber supporters answered my last question. These crowd sourced apps and the "jobs" they create are a virtual plantation for the 21st Century.

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Response to guillaumeb (Reply #109)

Mon May 11, 2015, 02:39 PM

113. My concern (which you are still completely ignoring)

is that in portraying Uber as dramatically different than other low income means of putting food on the table is that you are being deliberately misleading about how you talk about the pay earned through Uber. Yes, there are expenses you have that you don't as an employee. But it is unfairly misleading to compare Uber AFTER deducting federal taxes, state taxes, local taxex, Social Security, and Medicare to a salary/wage BEFORE those things are deducted.

No one who gets a $9/hour job says, ny pay is really only $7.50 an hours because I don't get to pocket that entire $9 - the government takes some for federal taxes, state taxes, local taxex, Social Security, and Medicare. Everyone describes it as a $9 an hour job.

If you want to slam Uber, do it with an apples to apples to comparison as to money.

As to your other concerns:

People who work minimum wages do not, by and large:
get sick pay
get vacation
have no guarantee of hours
As for the rest - very similar things happen anytime there is a glut of people who flock to a particular job; competition gets stiffer, pay decreases (or stays stagnant), hours are cut so less money is made even when you have a job.

Commercial car insurance is not required (according to the descriptions I have heard). Uber maintains car insurance which covers your car once you accept a ride (part of what the 28% covers - not to mention that that is the highest rate, rates for anything other than a luxury car are lower.

As for wear and tear - have you also been ranting about food delivery drivers who almost universally use their own cars?

I'm not saying Uber is perfect, but my concerns are that they are creating an unfair competition by skating around the rules designed to ensure minimum standards in taxi services.

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Response to Ms. Toad (Reply #113)

Mon May 11, 2015, 04:00 PM

115. My concern pre-dated your concern.

But that does not matter Ms. Toad.
As to Uber and insurance, Uber only insures while one is driving with a passenger:
https://www.policygenius.com/blog/insurance-secret-uber-doesnt-want-know/

Otherwise a driver must purchase commercial insurance, which is costly.

My rant covered ALL the crowd source platforms, as my posts described and named them. All of these part time work positions are the type of jobs that are fine if a person only needs part time, no benefit, occasional work. If that is your idea of how to build an economy that works for all then we have a disagreement. All of these services create unfair competition because all the wage rats are competing with each other for crumbs from master's table.

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Response to guillaumeb (Reply #115)

Mon May 11, 2015, 04:30 PM

116. I responded to a specific statement you made.

Which seriously misrepresented what you make as an Uber driver, by deducting items that are applicable to BOTH self-employed individuals and employees - things that one does not normally deduct when you are asked a question about how much you earn.

Criticize them all you want - but do it honestly. The ONLY thing I was addressing (until responding to your last post, in one last attempt to get you to correct your misrepresentation).

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Response to Ms. Toad (Reply #116)

Mon May 11, 2015, 04:41 PM

118. Is my statement more or less accurate than the Uber propaganda about

what the "average" Uber drives make? Consider:
"According to Uber, the median wage for an UberX driver working at least 40 hours a week in New York City is $90,766 a year and $74,191 a year in San Francisco, The Washington Post reports. UberX is its lower-cost service, where drivers use their own vehicles, similar to Lyft’s service."

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/uber-drivers-salary-90000-2014-5#ixzz3ZreLNzdK

When the Uber claims were investigated:

"The numbers obtained by BuzzFeed News offer only a small slice from a particular time of the year. Since driving hours and patterns are subject to a variety of factors like time of year, even time of day, and weather, a definitive average number cannot be calculated with this sample size. However, if we assume an average weighted driver wage of $21.90 per hour, which factors in just a fraction of driver expenses, and assume drivers work 30 hours a week (again, not necessarily typical, but a middle range of the hours worked by the eight drivers we spoke to), we can assume a rough projected yearly driver salary of $34,164."

Read more: http://www.businessinsider.com/how-much-money-uber-drivers-really-make-2014-11#ixzz3Zrem2t00


My take:
Yes, I was comparing net income to gross income, but I also talked about the fact that Uber makes no guarantees about wages. The job has no guarantee of any income, and all costs are borne by the drivers. So is my claim more or less accurate than Uber's wildly inflated claims?

P.S. your insurance claim is incorrect.



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Response to guillaumeb (Reply #118)

Mon May 11, 2015, 07:15 PM

122. Uber, so far as I know, is not posting on this board trying to convince people of those claims.

You are. I was responding to you. Thank you for finally acknowledging that you were comparing apples to oranges.

As for the insurance claim - all I see are anecdotes. I clicked through to numerous stories - none of which included anything beyond a handful of "I heard this," "I was told my by insurance company," etc.

Commutes to and from commercial activity are not generally commercial, so I would be surprised if it treated this particular commuting use any an differently than any other commute to a commercial venture - for example, as a self-employed attorney on the way to the courthouse or to meet a client, or a pizza delivery person driving to the pizza store where they were to pick up their first pizza of he night. At worst, it will depend on your policy as to whether any change is necessary - and if it is, smart individuals will investigate before starting to drive for Uber.

As I've said - I have concerns about Uber because they are essentially taxi services that have (temporarily at least) found a way around taxi regulations. But aside from that, anyone who is going into business for themselves needs to evaluate the the pros and cons. But the business model (aside from skirting the regulations) is no more inherently evil than any other franchise or quasi-franchise venture.

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Response to Ms. Toad (Reply #122)

Mon May 11, 2015, 08:47 PM

125. Uber has no need to post on DU.

They let the weak job market do their work for them. Only in the absence of full time jobs with actual benefits can companies like Uber find a steady supply of workers who are trying to juggle multiple bad jobs and pay the bills.

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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Sat May 9, 2015, 02:26 PM

32. Here is a link to the article from the journalist herself from a local Philly paper

http://citypaper.net/uberdriver/

I remember all the rancorous discussion about them here - notably because the livery services (taxis, limos, etc) are intensely regulated her by the PA Public Utility Commission (PUC) and the Philadelphia Parking Authority (PPA). And I remember reading a recent article about the taxi medallion costs and how they were slowly forced to reduce the price.

In fact, according to my linked article, the service is still technically illegal (despite our City Council authorizing them to be here).

Philly was one of the last big U.S. cities to get UberX, likely because of the Philadelphia Parking Authority's (PPA) ferocious reputation. Even though it's popular and widespread (in April, Uber celebrated its millionth Philly UberX ride), UberX is still not legal here. PPA executive director Vince Fenerty Jr. sent over a statement:

UberX and competitor Lyft are both illegal taxi services that use an app to connect people looking for rides with private citizens willing to use their own vehicle as a commercial taxi. Unlike the 1,600 licensed medallion cabs in the city, there is no guarantee these cars are clean, safe, inspected or insured.

Their drivers have no training and have not gone through extensive driving or criminal background checks.

Drivers providing illegal taxi service in Philadelphia will be fined $1,000, as well as having their cars impounded and be required to pay all associated towing, storage and court costs. Drivers are also committing a misdemeanor offense punishable by a fine of $2,500 and/or a one-year jail sentence.


http://citypaper.net/uberdriver/


I know for years, they have gone after what were dubbed "gypsy cabs", where, for example, you had drivers serving neighborhoods where taxis refused to go, in order to take folks (often the elderly) to supermarkets outside of their neighborhoods (because they had no supermarkets where they lived), and then they would wait until they were done, and bring them home. Amazing how "things change".

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Response to BumRushDaShow (Reply #32)

Mon May 11, 2015, 04:16 AM

101. Are they "intensely regulated" or "a corrupt politically powerful cartel"?

It varies by city; I don't know about Philly. In DC the cab medallion owners are one of the most powerful political forces in city politics (or were until a couple of years ago) and fought tooth and nail against any increase of the medallion fleet size (which was set in like 1938 or something like that). It's not as bad as NYC, but medallions were still absurdly expensive and under-available, with the result that Virginia cabbies would pay people to ride into the district so they could pick up a fare on the way back (and don't even get me started on the "zone" scam; thank God they finally got meters).

Uber and Lyft have a market because the medallion owners used political influence to entrench themselves and then use the cab drivers they exploit as rhetorical shields. The big problem with that: cab drivers are fleeing medallion fleets to livery services like Uber because they make more money with Uber.

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Response to Recursion (Reply #101)

Mon May 11, 2015, 05:28 AM

102. Here in PA the type of practice that you describe

happens more with distributing liquor licenses than taxi medallions.

The Philadelphia Parking Authority (and its income) was taken over by the state when Ridge was Governor in order to gain access to that revenue. In fact, they even had a reality show called "Parking Wars". But believe it or not, the cab cos support the PPA against what they consider gypsy cabs. The rest of the state uses the PUC for taxis (and I believe there are no medallions involved except for Philadelphia's cabs which are regulated by the PPA). The cab cos only balked a bit with the push for handicapped-accessible vehicles (and medallions were offered for those).

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Response to BumRushDaShow (Reply #102)

Mon May 11, 2015, 05:58 AM

103. The liquor license issue sounds like Boston

The State legislature took licensure control away from the city back before prohibition (certainly no anti-Irish prejudice was involved there...) and the number of licenses hasn't increased in 25 years or so...

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Response to Recursion (Reply #103)

Mon May 11, 2015, 06:20 AM

104. It's worse here

I graduated from UMASS so know that they have "packy" stores there where no such exists in PA. So anything that is "hard liquor" or wine is strictly run by the state PLCB (an artifact created in 1933 after the repeal of the 18th Amendment) and can only be sold in a "state store" (they renamed them "Wine and Spirits Shoppes" over the past 20 years when they went through a major store renovation and re-branding ).

Beer and wine are strictly regulated as well, where it is only recently per some revised legislation (past year or two) that small quantities of beer (over the 6-pack limit allowed in delis), but still not wine, have started appearing in supermarkets and at "pop-up beer gardens" (that now have their own special license), although larger quantities still must be sold at a "beer distributor" (with its own license). Wine must still be purchased in the state stores and bars/restaurants have to vie for the limited licenses to serve alcohol (and that alcohol must be bought from the state). You'll see many smaller restaurants here in Philly with a "BYOB" sign on the door.

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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Sat May 9, 2015, 02:26 PM

33. I've been using Uber a lot and I always ask my drivers how they like it and if the pay is good.

 

I've gotten positive responses from every one and I have used Uber in a number of cities and states.

Several of my drivers switched from other car services or from yellow cabs and say the money is better with Uber.

There are a lot of potential reasons why this person didn't do well that may not reflect accurately what seasoned drivers are experiencing.

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Response to stevenleser (Reply #33)

Sat May 9, 2015, 02:39 PM

38. read post number 30 and tell me what you think.

Plus how do the drivers that you interviewed know that you are not a plant for Uber to gauge driver feeling? No matter what your anecdotal evidence is, Uber is not a full time job with a future. How do jobs like this create a thriving economy?

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Response to guillaumeb (Reply #38)

Sat May 9, 2015, 05:30 PM

54. Don't expect a cogent response,

 

because there isn't any.

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Response to bvf (Reply #54)

Sat May 9, 2015, 06:02 PM

57. As opposed to your response when you have zero first hand connection or knowledge at all?

 

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Response to stevenleser (Reply #57)

Sat May 9, 2015, 06:40 PM

59. Thank you for making my point.

 

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Response to bvf (Reply #59)

Sat May 9, 2015, 11:49 PM

73. It's sad that you actually think that. Nt

 

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Response to stevenleser (Reply #73)

Sun May 10, 2015, 03:31 AM

85. Cheer up, will you?

 

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Response to guillaumeb (Reply #38)

Sat May 9, 2015, 06:01 PM

56. I don't get the sense these folks were giving me the party line but...

 

I will ask specifically how much they are making after expenses the next couple of times.

This is NYC, the type of money you are talking about would not allow folks to survive. NEw Yorkers are not shrinking violets, and the economy is pretty good here right now. Folks can get other jobs. And they would trash an employer if it was screwing them.

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Response to stevenleser (Reply #56)

Sat May 9, 2015, 07:47 PM

62. My point is that the "economy of the future"

seems to be composed of part time, no benefit, no guarantees, jobs. All of these platforms exist to make their founders very rich while doing nothing for the workers. Uber could just as well be a co-operative venture where the drivers owned the platform and one creator did not skim off 28% of the gross profits.

As to average wages, many companies will talk about how much money a worker can make, but people often confuse the conditional case for a declarative statement. When they say "a worker can make", that is conditioned on many factors. I have known a number of people who sell or sold Avon, Discovery Toys, Amway, and other products. Rarely does anyone actually make a living wage with this type of job.

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Response to guillaumeb (Reply #62)

Sat May 9, 2015, 11:50 PM

74. i don't think railing at Uber makes your point. Nt

 

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Response to stevenleser (Reply #56)

Sat May 9, 2015, 08:32 PM

64. What's wrong with you?

 

Yeah, people can quit their jobs at McDonalds and pick up equally well paying positions at Burger King.

Is that your point?


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Response to bvf (Reply #64)

Sat May 9, 2015, 11:48 PM

72. You really seem to get upset when facts and reality contradict you

 

You can scream at me all you want, it won't alter reality or change facts.

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Response to stevenleser (Reply #72)

Sun May 10, 2015, 03:52 AM

86. "Scream"?

 

Really?

Heh.

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Response to guillaumeb (Reply #38)

Sun May 10, 2015, 02:47 AM

84. I love driving for Uber and so does my husband...

Most of the drivers that I know are using Uber to supplement their income, for various reasons.

I suppose one could argue that our economy has created situations in which two incomes are not enough any longer. We are trying to pay for two daughters to attend college. We don't want them to be saddled with student loans. So, we need to come up with $75k to do this.

We drive for Uber to help make this happen.

My husband is an network engineer. I am a freelance writer. We both drive for Uber part time, but we do so strategically. We only go out during peak hours--when the most rides are assured. Or we go out during special events (concerts, sports, theater, etc.) when we know demand for rides will be high.

I just started and my hours have been sporadic, but I hope to ramp up to my husband's level within the next couple of weeks. He makes around $400-$450 on the weekends doing this. Between the two of us, we anticipate that we will make $2,700 per month doing Uber part-time.

We are very happy with that. We are more than grateful for this gig. It's fun. It's flexible. It's really a great time. However, we are doing this because we took a big 25 percent pay cut after 2008. We've been clawing our way back ever since. So, that's a bummer. However, Uber has really been our silver lining to the income reduction/stagnant wages that so many have experienced in this country.

Edited, for bad math done soo late at night.

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Response to stevenleser (Reply #33)

Sat May 9, 2015, 06:50 PM

60. Yes, you can count on tipped workers to tell you "all my customers are assholes". (nt)

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Response to jeff47 (Reply #60)

Sun May 10, 2015, 08:52 PM

91. You don't tip Uber drivers. Obviously you've never used the service why are you arguing with

 

someone who has?

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Response to stevenleser (Reply #91)

Mon May 11, 2015, 05:33 PM

119. Yeah, that's why there's multiple posts in this thread about tipping uber drivers.



Just because Uber doesn't want you to, doesn't mean you don't have to.

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Response to stevenleser (Reply #33)

Sat May 9, 2015, 09:15 PM

68. And if they so 'no' they are at risk for being downrated and losing their job.

Kazi drives a Toyota Prius for Uber in Los Angeles. He hates it. He barely makes minimum wage, and his back hurts after long shifts. But every time a passenger asks what it’s like working for Uber, he lies: “It’s like owning my own business; I love it.”

Kazi lies because his job depends on it. After passengers finish a ride, Uber asks them to rate their driver on a scale from one to five stars. Drivers with an average below 4.7 can be deactivated — tech-speak for fired.

Gabriele Lopez, an LA Uber driver, also lies. “We just sit there and smile, and tell everyone that the job’s awesome, because that’s what they want to hear,” said Lopez, who’s been driving for UberX, the company’s low-end car service, since it launched last summer.

In fact, if you ask Uber drivers off the clock what they think of the company, it often gets ugly fast. “Uber’s like an exploiting pimp,” said Arman, an Uber driver in LA who asked me to withhold his last name out of fear of retribution. “Uber takes 20 percent of my earnings, and they treat me like shit — they cut prices whenever they want. They can deactivate me whenever they feel like it, and if I complain, they tell me to fuck off.”


http://www.jacobinmag.com/2014/09/against-sharing/

Get it, Steve. They are lying to you to keep their job and you slurp it up. Maybe you could try to replicate her efforts for a year and report back to us.


Ooops. Forgot. You don't do. You talk.

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Response to Luminous Animal (Reply #68)

Sun May 10, 2015, 09:52 PM

95. Get off your high horse. It doesn't suit you. There is an actual Uber driver trying to talk to you

 

in this thread and their experiences don't correspond to what you are selling. On Edit: Looks like there are two DUers who are Uber drivers, Prism and CoffeeCat. You might want to try talking TO them instead of talking AT everyone else.

I don't "do"? Right, because you know so much about me.

Next time try not going ad-hominem. It just makes you look like a loser.

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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Sat May 9, 2015, 02:40 PM

39. The L.A. Uber

doesn't have very good reviews on Yelp. I've never used them myself.

http://www.yelp.com/biz/uber-los-angeles-2?sort_by=date_desc

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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Sat May 9, 2015, 02:49 PM

41. There's a class action lawsuit against Über for

Misrepresenting expenses and earnings, I think. They persuaded drivers to buy new cars which they financed, but the drivers can't make enough money to pay the note. Last I heard, they were trying to get class action status.

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Response to Ilsa (Reply #41)

Mon May 11, 2015, 06:48 PM

121. Systematically destroying a car, which is basically what you do driving from A to B, and expecting

part time work to replace that and give you a living wage? Not going to get ahead that way. <smh>

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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Sat May 9, 2015, 03:30 PM

44. so what % of uberistas tell their personal auto insurance company they are driving for money?

Because when their personal insurance company finds out, they will cancel you for using your vehicle for commercial purposes, and lying about your driving habits.

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Response to msongs (Reply #44)

Sat May 9, 2015, 06:18 PM

58. ^this^

eom

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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Sat May 9, 2015, 05:49 PM

55. Love Uber

 

My limited experience- cheaper ride, quicker service, nicer vehicle and ride, and really interesting drivers to talk with. Pretty much everything cabbies are not.

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Response to Snow Leopard (Reply #55)

Sat May 9, 2015, 07:41 PM

61. And living in NYC on 9.17/hr minus taxes

 

You are what makes America great!

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Response to Doctor_J (Reply #61)

Mon May 11, 2015, 06:32 PM

120. no

 

I think those Uber drivers are

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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Sat May 9, 2015, 07:48 PM

63. this old geezer would rather walk

 

N.t.

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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Sat May 9, 2015, 09:04 PM

66. I'm an Uber driver. I think it's great.

 

Let's get some caveats out of the way:

I have a full time job with decent income and good benefits. I do Uber/Lyft for extra discretionary income - gadgets, travel, eating out, etc. Just this week I bought a new Macbook Pro with purely Uber money. Many of the drivers I know are doing it for similar reasons, or using it to pay an unexpected expense/bill or just to give themselves a bit of breathing room from living paycheck-to-paycheck.

What Uber is not is a decent full-time job.

Here's the thing. I only drive on weekends, during peak, mainly trading in the bar crowd. That is solid money. During various events, I can easily net $50/hr. Sometimes more during crazy events (World Series, Outlands, etc.) That's worth it to me. Puttering around all day getting one or two rides an hour off-peak? Not worth it in the slightest, and I will not do it.

It's also important where this is happening. I live in the Bay Area. San Francisco is compact as hell. I can get ride after ride after ride on a busy weekend, make a nice bit of cash, and still only put 80-100 miles on my car, using a half tank of gas. If you're working an area with far flung neighborhoods and suburbs, it's a bit different. You may have long distances to drive in order to get to your fare.

Ultimately, Uber is what you make it. The smarter you drive, the more money you make. I have a problem with the company touting these high incomes for full-time drivers. What they're not mentioning is these full time drivers are probably doing rush hour runs, bar/restaurant rushes, and heavy weekend cycles. They're not working 9-5 and making that kind of money. At all.

I like driving. I like the passengers. I've met all kinds of people I otherwise wouldn't have and made a lot of connections all around the city. I know the deal with Uber upfront, agreed to it, and get along just fine. Some drivers don't like it. I've seen some awesome online raging from drivers. I can't speak for them.

For what it is, I'm happy with it.

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Response to Prism (Reply #66)

Sat May 9, 2015, 09:28 PM

70. Great post.nt

 

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Response to Prism (Reply #66)

Sun May 10, 2015, 02:26 AM

83. What kind of insurance do you have?

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Response to MattBaggins (Reply #83)

Mon May 11, 2015, 12:35 AM

98. Comprehensive plus Uber's n/t

 

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Response to Prism (Reply #66)

Mon May 11, 2015, 10:41 AM

108. I think a lot of people don't understand this is a part-time gig

I used to deliver pizzas when I was a cop (not on duty obviously). It was my extra money. That's what Uber is best for.

A lot of this is Uber's fault because they are trying to convince people it's a great full-time job. It's not.

And for the record, I don't care that the founder of Uber is a bizillionare. He figured out a great product and sold it. More power to him.

I always think of that Star Trek movie "First Contact" where Picard, et al, go back in time to see Zefram Cochrane's historic warp drive flight. They go all noble and ask if he did it for the benefit of humanity. Cochrane mocks them and says "no I did it to get rich and get women" (or some such).

Well, such is the human condition, and most strides we make are based on that rather base desire.

Now, since he's rich, should he spread it around? Sure. But I don't begrudge him getting filthy rich.

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Response to MosheFeingold (Reply #108)

Mon May 11, 2015, 07:26 PM

124. Uber plays up that $90,000 figure. It's disingenuous of them.

 

If drivers are fine with it, so am I. But Uber needs to be more honest.
[hr][font color="blue"][center]You should never stop having childhood dreams.[/center][/font][hr]

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Response to Prism (Reply #66)

Mon May 11, 2015, 02:52 PM

114. one of my sons is an uber driver too

he has a full time job with the feds near san diego, but he and his wife have champagne tastes, so he ubers on the weekends, but not every weekend. he enjoys driving and yakking too, and has a brand new accord to pay for, so it works out well for him.

better uber than the valeting he was doing pt for so many years.

i couldn't do it though, as i hate driving!

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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Sat May 9, 2015, 10:36 PM

71. Care to tell us how much a Philadelphia Taxi Driver makes?

You're an Uber driver because they feed trips to you. Maybe it's financially lucrative and maybe it's not, but is the alternative any better?

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Response to brooklynite (Reply #71)

Sun May 10, 2015, 09:41 PM

93. And it turns out that's the rub. It looks like you make more at Uber than at least...

 

standard non-yellow-cab car companies in NYC http://www.democraticunderground.com/10026653270

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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Mon May 11, 2015, 07:14 AM

105. I got side swiped by a...

licensed, regulated, trained and insured T&LC driver in Brooklyn last year. He was texting at the time.

He wanted me to follow him to his body shop and not report the incident. Yeah... right.

I called the police from my cell phone and had to box him at the curb to keep him from leaving the scene.

Turns out that his plates were taken from another car and his insurance company was run by a gang of maggots that specialized in the "taxi" industry. My insurance paid to fix my car and they had to fight the maggots. I went to court to testify because they claimed that their insured was hit by me. Cell phone pictures said otherwise.

I've never used Uber and I rarely take cabs, but the NYC demolition derby involving T&LC drivers is nothing to brag about.

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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Mon May 11, 2015, 12:20 PM

112. Eke out a living

 

but eek!

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Response to FreakinDJ (Original post)

Mon May 11, 2015, 07:19 PM

123. Reminds me of some other very exciting opportunities!

 


[hr][font color="blue"][center]Stop looking for heroes. BE one.[/center][/font][hr]

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