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Author Topic: Uber & Lyft just left Austin  (Read 2384 times)
heironymouspasparagus
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« Reply #15 on: May 10, 2016, 03:23:45 pm »

Last taxi I took was in Ft Worth last October.  It was just like the previous taxi I took about 8 years before that.  Disgusting.  Filthy pigsty - carpets, seats, doors.  And so heavily overwhelming with cigarette smoke it was sickening.  Yellow cab at the Heartland flyer train station.  From now on, someone will have to pick me up, or Hertz can come get me to rent me a car there.

Haven't tried Uber or Lyft for the reasons AquaMan stated - too many uncertainties that haven't been sorted out yet.  Yeah, a lot of people - most of them - that use those have good experiences.  I don't want or need to be a guinea pig. 


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« Reply #16 on: May 10, 2016, 04:30:58 pm »

The change has already started for Uber. http://gizmodo.com/uber-agreement-will-let-new-york-city-drivers-be-repres-1775789767

California and Massachusetts were part of a class action suit challenging the "contractor" status.

"Uber’s been navigating similar labor issues in several states. The agreement with IAM comes just two weeks after Uber settled class-action lawsuits in California and Massachusetts. Drivers in those states will continue to be recognized as contractors and not employees, but Uber was required to make some changes, including allowing its drivers to ask for tips. Some cities like Seattle have ruled that Uber should allow its drivers to unionize, although Uber Austin’s city council also voted this week to kill Uber, Lyft, and their ilk, due to a disagreement about how drivers should be vetted."

and they know it too, " IAM will certainly help Uber drivers to have some semblance of job security, especially in situations where drivers are being “deactivated” from the app without any warning. Helping its New York City drivers to have some legal recourse, as well as the potential promise of benefits, is smart, and this could eventually help other drivers at companies like Lyft as well."

"As Uber’s policy head David Plouffe said in remarks published by Uber today, “We haven’t always done a great job working with drivers. As our CEO, Travis Kalanick said two weeks ago, that’s not good enough. It’s time for a change."

I suspect the cab companies that survive will do so by upgrading their operations to be competitive.
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Conan71
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« Reply #17 on: May 10, 2016, 07:31:45 pm »

The change has already started for Uber. http://gizmodo.com/uber-agreement-will-let-new-york-city-drivers-be-repres-1775789767

California and Massachusetts were part of a class action suit challenging the "contractor" status.

"Uber’s been navigating similar labor issues in several states. The agreement with IAM comes just two weeks after Uber settled class-action lawsuits in California and Massachusetts. Drivers in those states will continue to be recognized as contractors and not employees, but Uber was required to make some changes, including allowing its drivers to ask for tips. Some cities like Seattle have ruled that Uber should allow its drivers to unionize, although Uber Austin’s city council also voted this week to kill Uber, Lyft, and their ilk, due to a disagreement about how drivers should be vetted."

and they know it too, " IAM will certainly help Uber drivers to have some semblance of job security, especially in situations where drivers are being “deactivated” from the app without any warning. Helping its New York City drivers to have some legal recourse, as well as the potential promise of benefits, is smart, and this could eventually help other drivers at companies like Lyft as well."

"As Uber’s policy head David Plouffe said in remarks published by Uber today, “We haven’t always done a great job working with drivers. As our CEO, Travis Kalanick said two weeks ago, that’s not good enough. It’s time for a change."

I suspect the cab companies that survive will do so by upgrading their operations to be competitive.

Unionization will be the end of these carriers.  At least listening to their recruiting ads, they aren’t looking for full-time employees, they are looking for people who want to earn extra income or to have the ability to work around family schedules.  Uber and Lift’s business models sound to me as if they are directed at people who want to work at their own pace and use their own equipment.  I don’t see how anyone could confuse this as being anything but pure contract labor.   Uber/Lyft provide nothing but the customer for the driver to contract for a ride with.

I’m also assuming Uber and Lyft’s ability to dismiss drivers without cause (i.e. being de-activated from the app) helps assure a better customer experience if the driver has been dismissed due to complaints or unreliable service.  Having unions to help protect the lowest hanging fruit is not a benefit for the customer nor the carrier.

My brother owned Mel-O-Dee Ice Cream back in the 1980’s.  The previous owner had always treated the drivers as contractors to avoid having to deal with withholding taxes, worker’s comp, and unemployment insurance. 

Here’s the rub: 

1- Drivers drove company-owned and insured trucks.
2- Had to buy their product wholesale from Mel-O-Dee’s vault.  They were discouraged from selling product from other sources.
3- Had to turn in their sales proceeds at the end of the day to the office. 

Once a week, they would get a check for the difference between what the driver turned in, minus what they signed out of the vault.  At one point, the company even had it’s own gas pump, that was logged and that was deducted from the driver’s proceeds.  At the end of the year, they sent out 1099 forms to the driver’s last known address and Mel-O-Dee had completed it’s obligation to the government.  Drivers who didn’t care to have to cash a check simply estimated how much their daily profit was and kept that rather than turn it in.

Calling the driver in a situation like that a contractor had red flags all over it.  If I recall correctly, a driver tried to file unemployment after they were fired for one reason or another.  That brought the OESC sniffing around and a legal hassle for my brother.  I believe his attorney got them to go away eventually.  Following this, he got a stern admonition from the attorney that what everyone had assumed for years was a grey area in terms of contractors wasn’t really that grey and it would only be a matter of time before it created a major smile storm for him either with the OESC, OTC, IRS or all three.  He got out of the business before he had to find out.
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TheArtist
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« Reply #18 on: May 10, 2016, 08:07:05 pm »

First time we used Uber was a few weeks ago in California.  Was fantastic.  Super easy and convenient to use.  Downloaded the app, put in some info, then when you wanted to use it you "dropped" a pin on the map that showed where you were or put in your current address, then put in where you wanted to go, then voila you got someone who accepted, a picture of them pops up on your phone screen and it showed how long it would be till they got to you and you could even see their car moving along on the map as it headed your way so you could tell if they were getting close, and it showed how much it would cost.  Amazing technology that even an old, not good with computers, fart like me could easily use and see how it worked.  Once you were dropped off a little thing popped up on your phone screen so you could rate your driver and then the drive was paid automatically.  No fuss no muss.

Drivers were always nice very nice and interesting, cars were always clean. Our first driver was a young professional who was donating the money he earned via a program with the company he worked at to a charity. Others we used did it full time, and some like a lady we used here in Tulsa just this week, was a single mom who used it as extra income.  

I don't know what "uncertainties" or "guinea pig" stuff there is with all this lol.  I told a friend about what some have said on here and they just gave a strange look and laughed. It's just an everyday, ho hum thing like... using e-mail instead of regular mail lol.  But perhaps some are waiting to see how that all works out too. All kinds of things could happen with that you know.  
« Last Edit: May 10, 2016, 08:14:15 pm by TheArtist » Logged

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« Reply #19 on: May 11, 2016, 08:49:08 am »

Unionization will be the end of these carriers.  At least listening to their recruiting ads, they aren’t looking for full-time employees, they are looking for people who want to earn extra income or to have the ability to work around family schedules.  Uber and Lift’s business models sound to me as if they are directed at people who want to work at their own pace and use their own equipment.  I don’t see how anyone could confuse this as being anything but pure contract labor.   Uber/Lyft provide nothing but the customer for the driver to contract for a ride with.

Exactly.  Taxi companies and their financially backed politicians want to force ride-sharing services through litigation, legislation and unionization to become more like the taxi companies.  Make no mistake, the goal is to protect the taxis from having to change their ways and compete for customers through the product offered.  The problem is, enough people have experienced Uber/Lyft and now know how much better it can be than the taxi systems.  It will be interesting to see what happens in cities like Austin that lose these services.  I would not be surprised to see Austin modify its law in some sort of compromise to get these services to come back due to public pressure.

The sweet irony is that in smaller cities like Tulsa, the taxi industry is relatively small and lacked the political clout to block Uber/Lyft from fundamentally changing the market.  Uber/Lyft have changed the way a lot of people behave.  I know a lot of people of all ages in Tulsa who routinely use Uber/Lyft on weekends when they go out who never used taxis before.  For a lot of reasons, that is a good thing.
 
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Conan71
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« Reply #20 on: May 11, 2016, 10:07:34 am »

Exactly.  Taxi companies and their financially backed politicians want to force ride-sharing services through litigation, legislation and unionization to become more like the taxi companies.  Make no mistake, the goal is to protect the taxis from having to change their ways and compete for customers through the product offered.  The problem is, enough people have experienced Uber/Lyft and now know how much better it can be than the taxi systems.  It will be interesting to see what happens in cities like Austin that lose these services.  I would not be surprised to see Austin modify its law in some sort of compromise to get these services to come back due to public pressure.

The sweet irony is that in smaller cities like Tulsa, the taxi industry is relatively small and lacked the political clout to block Uber/Lyft from fundamentally changing the market.  Uber/Lyft have changed the way a lot of people behave.  I know a lot of people of all ages in Tulsa who routinely use Uber/Lyft on weekends when they go out who never used taxis before.  For a lot of reasons, that is a good thing.
 


I find it interesting how industries which have become irrelevant or out-moded will hang on kicking and screaming via legislation and litigation instead of evolving in spite of consumer demand to the contrary.

Oklahoma’s package retail liquor industry is one of those that comes to mind. Roll Eyes
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« Reply #21 on: May 11, 2016, 10:57:47 am »

I find it interesting how industries which have become irrelevant or out-moded will hang on kicking and screaming via legislation and litigation instead of evolving in spite of consumer demand to the contrary.

Oklahoma’s package retail liquor industry is one of those that comes to mind. Roll Eyes

Change is hard and uncertain.  Political cronyism is easier.
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cannon_fodder
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« Reply #22 on: May 11, 2016, 02:13:56 pm »

Change is hard and uncertain. 

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« Reply #23 on: May 11, 2016, 03:41:12 pm »

My experience with Taxi services have been horrible.  Awful vehicles (dirty, old, poorly maintained, safety very questionable) and sketchy drivers...(same issues as the vehicles).

My experience with Uber and Lyft?  Fantastic.  I've never had a bad experience.

I'm shocked Oklahoma hasn't outright banned the service.
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heironymouspasparagus
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« Reply #24 on: May 11, 2016, 04:32:35 pm »

First time we used Uber was a few weeks ago in California.  Was fantastic.  Super easy and convenient to use.  Downloaded the app, put in some info, then when you wanted to use it you "dropped" a pin on the map that showed where you were or put in your current address, then put in where you wanted to go, then voila you got someone who accepted, a picture of them pops up on your phone screen and it showed how long it would be till they got to you and you could even see their car moving along on the map as it headed your way so you could tell if they were getting close, and it showed how much it would cost.  Amazing technology that even an old, not good with computers, fart like me could easily use and see how it worked.  Once you were dropped off a little thing popped up on your phone screen so you could rate your driver and then the drive was paid automatically.  No fuss no muss.

Drivers were always nice very nice and interesting, cars were always clean. Our first driver was a young professional who was donating the money he earned via a program with the company he worked at to a charity. Others we used did it full time, and some like a lady we used here in Tulsa just this week, was a single mom who used it as extra income.  

I don't know what "uncertainties" or "guinea pig" stuff there is with all this lol.  I told a friend about what some have said on here and they just gave a strange look and laughed. It's just an everyday, ho hum thing like... using e-mail instead of regular mail lol.  But perhaps some are waiting to see how that all works out too. All kinds of things could happen with that you know.  


My uncertainty goes to the background of the driver.  Are they licensed?  More tickets than the BOK center?  Warrants for murder (background check)?  Insured - liability in case of wreck.  Various things that Yellow Cab already has taken care of....or is liable for.

Big difference seems to be in what a pigsty the cabs usually are....I really hate riding in a cab.

Now, if we could just get an Uber clean car and the cab company background methods- then it will be best of all worlds.


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“When you wage war on the public schools, you're attacking the mortar that holds the community together. You're not a conservative, you're a vandal.”    - Garrison Keillor

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What you do speaks so loud, I cannot hear what you say.
Conan71
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« Reply #25 on: May 12, 2016, 10:07:38 pm »


My uncertainty goes to the background of the driver.  Are they licensed?  More tickets than the BOK center?  Warrants for murder (background check)?  Insured - liability in case of wreck.  Various things that Yellow Cab already has taken care of....or is liable for.

Big difference seems to be in what a pigsty the cabs usually are....I really hate riding in a cab.

Now, if we could just get an Uber clean car and the cab company background methods- then it will be best of all worlds.




Why do you automatically assume the cab company has run more than a simple OSCN or DMV check on any driver? Who is to say that the guy who hired on last week isn't running from officials in LA or NYC?  There's no guarantee that someone who has passed a background check hasn't been silently killing and butchering people for the last decade and just has never crossed paths with law enforcement.

Okay, a bit of hyperbole, but just making the point that a cab company which can't even provide basic hygienic needs for a motor vehicle can't really provide a great background check which is going to assure every driver is safe, competent, and doesn't have psychotic issues any more than Uber or Lyft can.
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heironymouspasparagus
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« Reply #26 on: May 13, 2016, 08:00:19 am »

Why do you automatically assume the cab company has run more than a simple OSCN or DMV check on any driver? Who is to say that the guy who hired on last week isn't running from officials in LA or NYC?  There's no guarantee that someone who has passed a background check hasn't been silently killing and butchering people for the last decade and just has never crossed paths with law enforcement.

Okay, a bit of hyperbole, but just making the point that a cab company which can't even provide basic hygienic needs for a motor vehicle can't really provide a great background check which is going to assure every driver is safe, competent, and doesn't have psychotic issues any more than Uber or Lyft can.


Which is more than Uber...

Cabbie has to have a CDL with P endorsement.  There is at least some minimal requirement to get that...kinda like a concealed carry permit - up till now, there was at least a class and "test".

And I am not defending cabs at all....they are the grossest mode of transport I have ever run across.  (I haven't ridden an ox cart yet...)  There needs to be increased standards/requirements across the board.

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I might be moving to Montana soon...


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« Reply #27 on: May 13, 2016, 08:37:18 am »


Which is more than Uber...

Cabbie has to have a CDL with P endorsement.  There is at least some minimal requirement to get that...kinda like a concealed carry permit - up till now, there was at least a class and "test".

And I am not defending cabs at all....they are the grossest mode of transport I have ever run across.  (I haven't ridden an ox cart yet...)  There needs to be increased standards/requirements across the board.



If cabbies have to have CDLs, then doesn't that mean they also have a medical requirement before they can be issued a full CDL?  I know a friend of mine still has his CDL but with restrictions since he never renewed the medical part of the license.  Maybe I'm confused.
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Conan71
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« Reply #28 on: May 13, 2016, 08:58:44 am »


Which is more than Uber...

Cabbie has to have a CDL with P endorsement.  There is at least some minimal requirement to get that...kinda like a concealed carry permit - up till now, there was at least a class and "test".

And I am not defending cabs at all....they are the grossest mode of transport I have ever run across.  (I haven't ridden an ox cart yet...)  There needs to be increased standards/requirements across the board.



There is no such requirement for a cab driver to have a CDL in Oklahoma:

Quote
Taxi Drivers in Oklahoma

If you're a taxi driver in OK, you only need to have a valid driver's license, although local jurisdictions may impose additional requirements. Some municipalities may require you to:
Pass a criminal background check.
Have a clean driving record.
Provide your fingerprints.
Become medically certified.
Pay a taxi licensing fee.
http://www.dmv.org/ok-oklahoma/special-licenses.php

And apparently none in the city of Tulsa either, although the city apparently does the background check with fingerprints:

Quote
City of Tulsa License and Collections (918) 596-7640
How to Apply for a Taxi/Paratransit Service
1. Complete attached application. Each person named as a certificate holder must fill out a separate "Applicant Information" form. Application must be notarized.
2. Requirements, to be turned in with the application:
a. Statement of qualifications and experience for each person named as a certificate holder
b. Copy of Oklahoma Drivers License for each person named as a certificate holder and a copy of the Social Security card. If the Social Security card has the work restriction language, another qualifying document will be required.
c. Fingerprints for each person named as a certificate holder. Fingerprints must be obtained at the Tulsa County Sheriff's Office at 1st & Denver. The fee is $10 for digitally scanned prints, and is only payable by check or money order.
d. Color Scheme Approval Request
e. FCC License (Taxi only)
f. Insurance Policy
g. Certificate of Insurance (with cancellation notice set at minimum of
15 days)
h. Driver Manifest (Taxi only)
i. Schedule of Fares
j. Oklahoma Sales Tax Permit (if applicable)
3. Fees:
a. $75.00 processing fee for certificate application.
b. $19.00 fingerprint processing fee per applicant.
c. If more than two applicants, a $20.00 fee per additional person.
d. Upon approval, the Certificate fee calculated on the basis of Thirty-
Six Dollars ($36.00) per vehicle shall be assessed.
4. After submitting a completed application, a background investigation will be conducted. If the director finds that the application is complete and
that applicant has met the requirements set forth in Sections 105 and 106 of Title 36 Chapter 1 "Taxicab and Paratransit Vehicle Regulations", he shall issue a certificate to the applicant. The Director shall review the application within a reasonable time after its completion. Applicant will then be notified that the certificate is ready to be issued.
5. Please call License and Collections with questions. 1

https://www.cityoftulsa.org/COTlegacy/documents/TaxiParatransitServiceApplication.pdf

Lyft claims to do "extensive" background checks

https://www.lyft.com/drivers

/reading more into this, the city issues a “chauffeur’s” license after successful background check and a driver passing with 60% or better on the written exam.  There’s not even a proven driving skills component to the cab driver testing.  I’m not that impressed:

Quote
written test will be administered to determine basic knowledge of The City of Tulsa Taxicab & Paratransit Regulations (Title 36, Chapter 1, TRO), basic geography of the city of Tulsa, communication skills, and ability to make correct change. The test will not be administered after 3:00pm. A minimum score of 60% is required to pass; it is recommended that the applicant be familiar with this ordinance prior to testing. Applicants failing the test must wait 30 days to re-test and pay a $30.00 re-testing fee.

https://www.cityoftulsa.org/COTlegacy/documents/Chauffeur-NewApplication.pdf
« Last Edit: May 13, 2016, 09:02:48 am by Conan71 » Logged

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heironymouspasparagus
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« Reply #29 on: May 13, 2016, 10:46:34 am »

There is no such requirement for a cab driver to have a CDL in Oklahoma:



Whoa!!   Amazing, isn't it?  Well, that is just ignorant.  May be an underlying symptom of why I hate taxi's so much...

"And when we say
Yeow! A-YIP-I-O-EE-AY
Were only say-in "you're doing fine Oklahoma
Oklahoma your OK"


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“When you wage war on the public schools, you're attacking the mortar that holds the community together. You're not a conservative, you're a vandal.”    - Garrison Keillor

Use it up, wear it out, make it do, or do without.

What you do speaks so loud, I cannot hear what you say.
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