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138

Behind the Curtain: How Uber Manages Drivers with Algorithms

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Rosenblat, A. (2018). Behind the Curtain: How Uber Manages Drivers with Algorithms. In Rosenblat, A. Uberland: How Algorithms Are Rewriting the Rules of Work. University of California Press, pp. 138-166

143

[...] Drivers don't have a dedicated human manager who responds to their inquiries. Instead, they have community support representatives (CSRs), located at the email equivalent of a call center, often located abroad, such as in the Philippines, and managed by third-party companies, like Zendesk. Effectively, Uber offshores and automates its main communications with drivers. Drivers receive automated replies to most of their messages, which often appear to be based on keywords in the the text of their emails. [...]

christ. wonder if they're partnering with a startup that does automated customer service using "AI"

—p.143 by Alex Rosenblat 3 months, 1 week ago

[...] Drivers don't have a dedicated human manager who responds to their inquiries. Instead, they have community support representatives (CSRs), located at the email equivalent of a call center, often located abroad, such as in the Philippines, and managed by third-party companies, like Zendesk. Effectively, Uber offshores and automates its main communications with drivers. Drivers receive automated replies to most of their messages, which often appear to be based on keywords in the the text of their emails. [...]

christ. wonder if they're partnering with a startup that does automated customer service using "AI"

—p.143 by Alex Rosenblat 3 months, 1 week ago
158

[...] I ask if the company tries to build trust with its drivers, and hte answer - that Uber cares about building trust with all of its end users - floors me. The fact that even in an informal interview this person is deploying the language used in the lawsuits gives me pause [...] the senior employee persists in asking me how Uber can improve its relationship with drivers. I can't hep but think this is roughly akin to asking how to improve your relationship with your girlfriend after she discovers that she is, in fact, your mistress.

hahaha love this

—p.158 by Alex Rosenblat 3 months, 1 week ago

[...] I ask if the company tries to build trust with its drivers, and hte answer - that Uber cares about building trust with all of its end users - floors me. The fact that even in an informal interview this person is deploying the language used in the lawsuits gives me pause [...] the senior employee persists in asking me how Uber can improve its relationship with drivers. I can't hep but think this is roughly akin to asking how to improve your relationship with your girlfriend after she discovers that she is, in fact, your mistress.

hahaha love this

—p.158 by Alex Rosenblat 3 months, 1 week ago
159

[...] the company contorts itself in order to avoid giving the impression that its workers are considered employees [...] "It says bicycle couriers who work for Deliveroo are never to be referred to as workers, employees, or staff, and that the Deliveroo jackets they have to wear on the job are not uniforms but 'branded clothing'. These workers don't have 'contracts', says the document, but 'supplier agreements'. They don't 'schedule shifts', but 'indicate their availability'. And they can never get sacked - instead, they're 'terminated'."

about a leaked dock in june 2017

short story idea: non-tech company that tries the same thing and gets sued or workers unionise

—p.159 by Alex Rosenblat 3 months, 1 week ago

[...] the company contorts itself in order to avoid giving the impression that its workers are considered employees [...] "It says bicycle couriers who work for Deliveroo are never to be referred to as workers, employees, or staff, and that the Deliveroo jackets they have to wear on the job are not uniforms but 'branded clothing'. These workers don't have 'contracts', says the document, but 'supplier agreements'. They don't 'schedule shifts', but 'indicate their availability'. And they can never get sacked - instead, they're 'terminated'."

about a leaked dock in june 2017

short story idea: non-tech company that tries the same thing and gets sued or workers unionise

—p.159 by Alex Rosenblat 3 months, 1 week ago