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[Fuck The Gig Economy]: AB5 Is Coming

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Posts

  • milskimilski UNTZ UNTZ UNTZ UNTZ Registered User regular
    Two and Three make perfect sense to me. You can't have "contractors" who do the primary function of your business, or who don't have the option to do the work for other people.

    My question is what qualifies as "free from control" for point one. If I am at, say, a refinery, and have minimum safety requirements and permits associated with contract work, do people coming in for a week to install a pump skid count as employees? Do cleaning services count as employees if we direct where to clean and how often to take out the trash?

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  • AngelHedgieAngelHedgie Registered User regular
    milski wrote: »
    Two and Three make perfect sense to me. You can't have "contractors" who do the primary function of your business, or who don't have the option to do the work for other people.

    My question is what qualifies as "free from control" for point one. If I am at, say, a refinery, and have minimum safety requirements and permits associated with contract work, do people coming in for a week to install a pump skid count as employees? Do cleaning services count as employees if we direct where to clean and how often to take out the trash?

    Cleaning services actually wouldn't "count", as the people doing the cleaning are usually employees of the service that takes the contract. (This is the case with a good deal of contractors, by the way - they're actually employees, just for a different firm (which has its own problems, but that's outside the scope of this thread.)) This is mainly focused on contractors hired for a specific task (say, an independent plumber being brought in to deal with an issue with plumbing at a facility. The reason that this would hit the gig economy so hard is because they are directly "contracting" with their workers.

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  • evilmrhenryevilmrhenry Registered User regular
    Free from control usually covers stuff like "You're a independent contractor, who needs to come in 9-5 on weekdays" being bullshit. A search turned up this document, which goes into detail on what this stuff means:
    https://www.edd.ca.gov/pdf_pub_ctr/de38.pdf
    When a worker is required to follow company procedure manuals and/or is given specific instructions on how to perform the work, the worker is normally an employee.

    If you have the right to fire the worker at will and without cause, it indicates that you have the right to control the worker.

    Independent contractors are free to hire employees and assign the work to others in any way they choose. Independent contractors have the authority to fire their employees without your knowledge or consent.

    Independent contractors furnish the tools, equipment, and supplies needed to perform the work.

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  • Void SlayerVoid Slayer Very Suspicious Registered User regular
    In most cases cleaning services also do not get direct direction but instead have a scope of work detailing what needs to be done. If it is not done then rather than direct the employees of the other company one would talk to the company directly about work not completed.

    I do not think very specific requirements in skill or certificates will be an issue. If I need an electrician who can do xyz, has a specific certificate as an electrican, is bonded and licensed and can do it in the next 3 weeks that is still free from control. They can use whatever tools they want, do things in whatever order, take a meal when they want ect.

    Many times the employer for a contractor will require.things like controlling exactly when and how people do work, not provide a scope of work or change it on the spot to what they need, look at time and quality issues for individual parts rather then wait for the entire work is completed and such.

    Thie new test is a much better starting point.

    I am sure uber, lyft and such will continue trying to say the contract is between the driver and rider and they are only a middle man despite it being fairly obvious they are using a model of subcontracting the work while maintaining employee level control over rhe drivers.

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  • evilmrhenryevilmrhenry Registered User regular
    In most cases cleaning services also do not get direct direction but instead have a scope of work detailing what needs to be done. If it is not done then rather than direct the employees of the other company one would talk to the company directly about work not completed.

    I do not think very specific requirements in skill or certificates will be an issue. If I need an electrician who can do xyz, has a specific certificate as an electrican, is bonded and licensed and can do it in the next 3 weeks that is still free from control. They can use whatever tools they want, do things in whatever order, take a meal when they want ect.

    Many times the employer for a contractor will require.things like controlling exactly when and how people do work, not provide a scope of work or change it on the spot to what they need, look at time and quality issues for individual parts rather then wait for the entire work is completed and such.

    Thie new test is a much better starting point.

    I am sure uber, lyft and such will continue trying to say the contract is between the driver and rider and they are only a middle man despite it being fairly obvious they are using a model of subcontracting the work while maintaining employee level control over rhe drivers.

    That's what question 3 in the form I linked is for: "Is the work being performed part of your regular business? ", as well as question 4: "Does the worker have a separately established business?" and question 9: "Is the work considered unskilled or semi-skilled labor?". The other questions are a bit more iffy, but those 3 are sitting squarely in the middle of Uber's business model.

    Julius
  • KamarKamar Registered User regular
    I wonder how that interacts with, say, writers who work exclusively with content mills? Or one particular content mill?

  • JragghenJragghen Registered User regular
    It's getting trimmed down as it goes, by the by.
    Doctors, dentists, real estate agents, hair stylists, salespeople, among others, were already exempt from the bill. Lawmakers added provisions that would make exceptions for workers in marketing and human resources, as well as travel agents and commercial fishermen.

    The news industry won exemptions for photographers, editors and cartoonists, but failed to make a case to continue treating newspaper carriers as independent contractors.

    https://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/capitol-alert/article234573332.html?

    News editors and human fucking resources?

    I mean, it's good to get ANY of them, but this bill has been trimmed down too much as is. Both of those things are employees.

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  • evilmrhenryevilmrhenry Registered User regular
    Kamar wrote: »
    I wonder how that interacts with, say, writers who work exclusively with content mills? Or one particular content mill?

    I think a content mill is less likely to get hit by this than Uber, (less control over the contractors) but there's an outside chance some of them get hit.

  • evilmrhenryevilmrhenry Registered User regular
    Jragghen wrote: »
    It's getting trimmed down as it goes, by the by.
    Doctors, dentists, real estate agents, hair stylists, salespeople, among others, were already exempt from the bill. Lawmakers added provisions that would make exceptions for workers in marketing and human resources, as well as travel agents and commercial fishermen.

    The news industry won exemptions for photographers, editors and cartoonists, but failed to make a case to continue treating newspaper carriers as independent contractors.

    https://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/capitol-alert/article234573332.html?

    News editors and human fucking resources?

    I mean, it's good to get ANY of them, but this bill has been trimmed down too much as is. Both of those things are employees.

    That sounded weird to me, so I looked up the bill:
    https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billTextClient.xhtml?bill_id=201920200AB5

    Stating that exceptions were made for marketing and human resources doesn't look accurate. Instead, it looks like the pre-existing exceptions were retained. In general, it looks like exceptions are being made for skilled jobs, but with explicit language such as: "The service provider actually contracts with other businesses to provide the same or similar services and maintains a clientele without restrictions from the hiring entity." I.e., your independent contractors actually need to be independent.

    I will also point out that you can contract out human resources to actual companies which manage this stuff. This is no different from hiring a company to empty the trash, or handle business taxes, or manage health insurance. The question of whether to handle non-core business stuff in-house or contract it out isn't really related to the gig economy. as far as I know nobody is doing HR as a gig job through an app.

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  • MadicanMadican No face Registered User regular
    Jragghen wrote: »
    It's getting trimmed down as it goes, by the by.
    Doctors, dentists, real estate agents, hair stylists, salespeople, among others, were already exempt from the bill. Lawmakers added provisions that would make exceptions for workers in marketing and human resources, as well as travel agents and commercial fishermen.

    The news industry won exemptions for photographers, editors and cartoonists, but failed to make a case to continue treating newspaper carriers as independent contractors.

    https://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/capitol-alert/article234573332.html?

    News editors and human fucking resources?

    I mean, it's good to get ANY of them, but this bill has been trimmed down too much as is. Both of those things are employees.

    I was actually just coming in here to mention that when I delivered newspapers I was told I was an independent contractor but I had to show up at a specific time to bag and prep all the various papers, a specific route to take, at a specific time slot, and it needed to be completed before the end of that time slot. I quit after the first month because I was losing more in gas than I was making in paycheck. Had I known what I know now I'd have ripped into that company with as much legal force as I could muster, because there was plenty of flesh to start divvying up the pounds among those of us delivering the papers.

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  • SleepSleep Registered User regular
    So what does all of this mean for software developers and QAs that are on recurring contracts rather than full employment for the company they work for?

  • DevoutlyApatheticDevoutlyApathetic Registered User regular
    I don't think they're doing anything about contracts where they pay the SS and Medicare/Medicaid taxes. That is the big reason (along with min wage) why companies want these independent contractors classified as such. Not the "You're hired for six months then we might rehire you" sort of contracts.

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  • Gnome-InterruptusGnome-Interruptus Registered User regular
    Sounds like there is a difference between a fixed term employment contract where you are an employee for a fixed term, and contract work where independent contractors perform specific tasks

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  • HefflingHeffling No Pic EverRegistered User regular
    Jragghen wrote: »
    It's getting trimmed down as it goes, by the by.
    Doctors, dentists, real estate agents, hair stylists, salespeople, among others, were already exempt from the bill. Lawmakers added provisions that would make exceptions for workers in marketing and human resources, as well as travel agents and commercial fishermen.

    The news industry won exemptions for photographers, editors and cartoonists, but failed to make a case to continue treating newspaper carriers as independent contractors.

    https://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/capitol-alert/article234573332.html?

    News editors and human fucking resources?

    I mean, it's good to get ANY of them, but this bill has been trimmed down too much as is. Both of those things are employees.

    That sounded weird to me, so I looked up the bill:
    https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billTextClient.xhtml?bill_id=201920200AB5

    Stating that exceptions were made for marketing and human resources doesn't look accurate. Instead, it looks like the pre-existing exceptions were retained. In general, it looks like exceptions are being made for skilled jobs, but with explicit language such as: "The service provider actually contracts with other businesses to provide the same or similar services and maintains a clientele without restrictions from the hiring entity." I.e., your independent contractors actually need to be independent.

    I will also point out that you can contract out human resources to actual companies which manage this stuff. This is no different from hiring a company to empty the trash, or handle business taxes, or manage health insurance. The question of whether to handle non-core business stuff in-house or contract it out isn't really related to the gig economy. as far as I know nobody is doing HR as a gig job through an app.

    The site I work at has ~150 employees. Our HR Managers works for this site and another with around 500 employees, so he's only at our site every Friday and every other Monday. 95% of my HR interactions are through the HR website, and the majority of my interactions with the HR manager related to HR issues have been to point me to places on the HR website. So, I don't think we're that far from HR becoming a gig job.

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  • evilmrhenryevilmrhenry Registered User regular
    Heffling wrote: »
    Jragghen wrote: »
    It's getting trimmed down as it goes, by the by.
    Doctors, dentists, real estate agents, hair stylists, salespeople, among others, were already exempt from the bill. Lawmakers added provisions that would make exceptions for workers in marketing and human resources, as well as travel agents and commercial fishermen.

    The news industry won exemptions for photographers, editors and cartoonists, but failed to make a case to continue treating newspaper carriers as independent contractors.

    https://www.sacbee.com/news/politics-government/capitol-alert/article234573332.html?

    News editors and human fucking resources?

    I mean, it's good to get ANY of them, but this bill has been trimmed down too much as is. Both of those things are employees.

    That sounded weird to me, so I looked up the bill:
    https://leginfo.legislature.ca.gov/faces/billTextClient.xhtml?bill_id=201920200AB5

    Stating that exceptions were made for marketing and human resources doesn't look accurate. Instead, it looks like the pre-existing exceptions were retained. In general, it looks like exceptions are being made for skilled jobs, but with explicit language such as: "The service provider actually contracts with other businesses to provide the same or similar services and maintains a clientele without restrictions from the hiring entity." I.e., your independent contractors actually need to be independent.

    I will also point out that you can contract out human resources to actual companies which manage this stuff. This is no different from hiring a company to empty the trash, or handle business taxes, or manage health insurance. The question of whether to handle non-core business stuff in-house or contract it out isn't really related to the gig economy. as far as I know nobody is doing HR as a gig job through an app.

    The site I work at has ~150 employees. Our HR Managers works for this site and another with around 500 employees, so he's only at our site every Friday and every other Monday. 95% of my HR interactions are through the HR website, and the majority of my interactions with the HR manager related to HR issues have been to point me to places on the HR website. So, I don't think we're that far from HR becoming a gig job.

    That's not really gig economy related, though. The gig economy is more about taking a low-skill task, and creating an app that can pay people for it via piecework. (And using piecework payment and "independent contractors" to pay people less than minimum wage.) A 150 person office not needing a full-time HR person isn't the same thing.

    FencingsaxJulius
  • FencingsaxFencingsax It is difficult to get a man to understand, when his salary depends upon his not understanding GNU Terry PratchettRegistered User regular
    Yeah, the problem isn't contracting in general, it's using "contracting" as an excuse to abuse labor laws and labor.

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  • HacksawHacksaw J. Duggan Wrestler at LawRegistered User regular
    Fencingsax wrote: »
    Yeah, the problem isn't contracting in general, it's using "contracting" as an excuse to abuse labor laws and labor.

    Especially the latter.

    In my city, Seattle, there's a company called Video Tech Services that staffs labor for corporate events which require the services of audio/visual technicians. They're located in California and classify all the laborers they dispatch as 1099 workers, despite violating Washington state labor law by telling there where to be for a gig, what to wear to said gig, and disallowing them from negotiating their own wage rate for the gig. Every time I've spoken to one of their representatives, they've been very combative and adamant that they aren't subject to our state's labor laws because they're a California company (despite the fact that if your business has operations in a state, it's subject to that state's laws 🙄).

    My hope is that AB5 will fuck them hard and force them to reclassify all my local union siblings who take work from them as fully fledged employees, thus entitling them to proper benefits, or otherwise force the business to fold and thus allow my union to slip in and fill the void in their absence. 😎

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  • Void SlayerVoid Slayer Very Suspicious Registered User regular
    Wait, I can just base my business out of Ecuador and use thier wage and labor laws?

    What do you means that is not how any of this works!

    Lyft had a link to the new bill in thier app for a bit but they removed it quick. Not sure why but I bet a lot of riders were actually supporting the bill.

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  • JragghenJragghen Registered User regular
    Meanwhile, the STUPIDEST FUCKING THING

    https://www.kcra.com/article/sacramento-food-delivery-robots-california/28767439
    The city of Sacramento announced Tuesday it plans to bring food delivery robots to town as part of a pilot program with company Kiwi Campus, Inc.

    The service works much like other food delivery companies, such as DoorDash, Grubhub and Postmates. But, instead of a person delivering the food, a robot drops it off instead.
    3) How will the robots navigate difficult terrain, like stairs?

    People will help the robots in tough spots. According to Stewart, the program will generate jobs needed for service, maintenance and distribution.

    “The robots go off and do their thing and then come back and meet the human,” he said. “They get put back and reloaded and distributed around the city as needed.”

    Good fucking luck.

    Also they're not atonomous, they're apparently controlled by people in Colombia being paid $2/hr (can't find a citation on the salary, but the website does mention Colombia).

    So I guess this will be the next tier before autonomous, huh?
    I will give them that this is environmentally better than cars, emission-wise but given they are slower than human walking pace, it's still fucking worthless

  • Kayne Red RobeKayne Red Robe Master of Magic ArcanusRegistered User regular
    People are absolutely going to destroy those things.

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  • AngelHedgieAngelHedgie Registered User regular
    People are absolutely going to destroy those things.

    Remember - we murdered HitchBot.

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  • FencingsaxFencingsax It is difficult to get a man to understand, when his salary depends upon his not understanding GNU Terry PratchettRegistered User regular
    People are going to steal that food.

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  • AridholAridhol Daddliest Catch Registered User regular
    The problem with all new technology is, inevitably, humans.

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  • VishNubVishNub Registered User regular
    Was this the thread with the argument about robbing automated big rigs on the highway?

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  • AngelHedgieAngelHedgie Registered User regular
    Aridhol wrote: »
    The problem with all technology is, inevitably, humans.

    FTFY. In the end, the weak link is the human one.

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  • AridholAridhol Daddliest Catch Registered User regular
    VishNub wrote: »
    Was this the thread with the argument about robbing automated big rigs on the highway?

    That's the Fast & Furious thread.

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  • JragghenJragghen Registered User regular
    Fencingsax wrote: »
    People are going to steal that food.

    Especially given, like much of CA, Sacramento has a bit of a homeless problem.

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  • mrondeaumrondeau Montréal, CanadaRegistered User regular
    Aridhol wrote: »
    The problem with all technology is, inevitably, humans.

    FTFY. In the end, the weak link is the human one.

    Clearly, we need to put everything under the control of randomly initialized neural networks trained unsupervised on random data, using a topology selected by untrained raccoons.

  • HacksawHacksaw J. Duggan Wrestler at LawRegistered User regular
    Jragghen wrote: »
    Meanwhile, the STUPIDEST FUCKING THING

    https://www.kcra.com/article/sacramento-food-delivery-robots-california/28767439
    The city of Sacramento announced Tuesday it plans to bring food delivery robots to town as part of a pilot program with company Kiwi Campus, Inc.

    The service works much like other food delivery companies, such as DoorDash, Grubhub and Postmates. But, instead of a person delivering the food, a robot drops it off instead.
    3) How will the robots navigate difficult terrain, like stairs?

    People will help the robots in tough spots. According to Stewart, the program will generate jobs needed for service, maintenance and distribution.

    “The robots go off and do their thing and then come back and meet the human,” he said. “They get put back and reloaded and distributed around the city as needed.”

    Good fucking luck.

    Also they're not atonomous, they're apparently controlled by people in Colombia being paid $2/hr (can't find a citation on the salary, but the website does mention Colombia).

    So I guess this will be the next tier before autonomous, huh?
    I will give them that this is environmentally better than cars, emission-wise but given they are slower than human walking pace, it's still fucking worthless

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  • Jebus314Jebus314 Registered User regular
    Jragghen wrote: »
    Fencingsax wrote: »
    People are going to steal that food.

    Especially given, like much of CA, Sacramento has a bit of a homeless problem.

    I mean, the solution here seems pretty simple. Give the robots weapons and legal standing to "defend" themselves. Maybe even just make that the robots primary job (stopping crime). Just make sure they are reliant/addicted to some kind of red liquid, so that you can maintain control.

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  • TryCatcherTryCatcher Registered User regular
    AI technology being revealed in most cases as a farce to pay underpaid labor under the table and then lie about it is one of the most depressing things about Silicon Valley...and is barely a story.

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  • JuliusJulius Registered User regular
    Jragghen wrote: »
    Meanwhile, the STUPIDEST FUCKING THING

    https://www.kcra.com/article/sacramento-food-delivery-robots-california/28767439
    The city of Sacramento announced Tuesday it plans to bring food delivery robots to town as part of a pilot program with company Kiwi Campus, Inc.

    The service works much like other food delivery companies, such as DoorDash, Grubhub and Postmates. But, instead of a person delivering the food, a robot drops it off instead.
    3) How will the robots navigate difficult terrain, like stairs?

    People will help the robots in tough spots. According to Stewart, the program will generate jobs needed for service, maintenance and distribution.

    “The robots go off and do their thing and then come back and meet the human,” he said. “They get put back and reloaded and distributed around the city as needed.”

    Good fucking luck.

    Also they're not atonomous, they're apparently controlled by people in Colombia being paid $2/hr (can't find a citation on the salary, but the website does mention Colombia).

    So I guess this will be the next tier before autonomous, huh?

    I will give them that this is environmentally better than cars, emission-wise but given they are slower than human walking pace, it's still fucking worthless

    It's just dumb as hell. In Amsterdam, we now have electronic bikes for deliveries (like this), which I think is obviously a way better idea. They go about 15-20 miles an hour with light pedalling and require far less technology. And you can't just pick it off the ground and steal it.


    But of course it means you have to pay an actual person there and can't just pay 2 bucks to some guy in Colombia.

  • CouscousCouscous Registered User regular
    edited September 4
    The company still has to use people physically there to deliver the food. They take it from the restaurants to where the robots that travel at a few miles an hour are. The robots just do the last bit that could probably be handled by just putting up cheap insulated lockers and having people walk however far to get them because it is like an eight of a mile.

    https://www.sfchronicle.com/business/article/Kiwibots-win-fans-at-UC-Berkeley-as-they-deliver-13895867.php
    On the ground in Berkeley, people also do a lot of robot support. Traveling at 1 to 1½ mph, the bots would take too long to chug to local restaurants, so Kiwi workers pick up the food at restaurants and take it via bikes or scooters to meeting spots around campus to insert into an insulated bag in the bots’ storage compartment.

    That sounds labor-intensive but Iatsenia insists it pencils out. With robots’ help, each worker can handle 15 deliveries an hour, he said, far more than rivals such as Uber Eats. Within the limited confines of a college campus, however, those services might be just as efficient.

    The average distance a robot covers for a delivery is about 200 meters (656 feet, or one-eighth of a mile) which makes them fall short of a “last-mile” solution.
    Assuming 1/8 of a mile is just one way, that comes out to a round trip of a 6 minute walk for a person walking 2.5 mph.

    Couscous on
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  • SiliconStewSiliconStew Registered User regular
    So it's a standard RC truck chassis with a 6-pack cooler bolted to the top. Meaning it's only going to hold food for one person, it'll be so top heavy it'll be very likely to fall on its side or back at least once every trip if not just kicked over by pedestrians, and it'll need the battery swapped every 15 minutes. I suspect how this will end for the ones lucky enough not to have them get destroyed or stolen is the delivery people will get tired of babysitting it, and rather than unloading a 20 pound robot every time, they'll take the 2 pound lunch bag and walk it there themselves since they were going to have to make the trek anyway to get it unwedged from the lobby door again.

    Just remember that half the people you meet are below average intelligence.
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  • LilnoobsLilnoobs Alpha Queue Registered User regular
    edited September 4
    Aridhol wrote: »
    The problem with all new technology is, inevitably, humans.

    I don't see people destroying a robot designed to replace them or used to exploit labor as a problem?

    Lilnoobs on
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  • CouscousCouscous Registered User regular
    edited September 4
    A bunch of companies are working on last mile delivery bots.

    My problem with those small delivery bot ideas is that they are pitched as environmentally friendly because you won't use a several ton vehicle to go get minor items, but a convenient solution will likely end up increasing trips and the bots themselves usually do not have the advantage of being able to deliver a lot in one trip.

    Not to mention I am going to cynically say they will be used to justify making a lot of cities even less pedestrian friendly if they are successful.

    Couscous on
  • EddyEddy Gengar the Bittersweet Registered User regular
    The legislation will affect at least one million workers in California who have been on the receiving end of a decades-long trend of outsourcing and franchising work, making employer-worker relationships more arm’s-length. Many people have been pushed into contractor status with no access to basic protections like a minimum wage and unemployment insurance. Ride-hailing drivers, food-delivery couriers, janitors, nail salon workers, construction workers and franchise owners could now all be reclassified as employees.

    https://www.nytimes.com/2019/09/11/technology/california-passes-landmark-bill-to-remake-gig-economy.html

    well, damn

    “Even as a gengar she was lovely.” ― Ovid, Metamorphoses
    DoodmannFencingsaxShadowfireCalicaHacksawAngelHedgieKetarSkeithDark Raven XNobodybowenGnome-InterruptusLord_AsmodeusIncenjucarMartini_PhilosopherGnizmoStabbity StylerndmheroWhittledownCantideMoridin889shrykeMegaMekrhylithMan in the MistsQuid
  • HacksawHacksaw J. Duggan Wrestler at LawRegistered User regular
    About fucking time.

    GnizmoCouscous
  • Captain InertiaCaptain Inertia Registered User regular
    People are absolutely going to destroy those things.

    Remember - we murdered HitchBot.

    I thought it was Philly

  • BlackDragon480BlackDragon480 Bluster Kerfuffle Master of Windy ImportRegistered User regular
    People are absolutely going to destroy those things.

    Remember - we murdered HitchBot.

    I thought it was Philly

    The Whizz is in all of us.

    First they came for the Muslims and we said...NOT TODAY MOTHERFUCKERS!
    Moridin889
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