The Hustle

Hey DoorDash, here’s a tip — pay your workers

More tip disputes for the gig-economy. Here’s a tip: pay your workers.


July 24, 2019

You know how it goes: You put in an order from a food delivery app and once the driver makes the drop, your phone immediately pings you to provide a tip offering.

DoorDash recently came under fire when a New York Times report illustrated how the #1 ranked food delivery app in the US pockets those tips from its workers and includes the earnings in their base pay.

The ol’ mover and shaker model

Gig economy pay systems are set up pretty much the same way as the age-old “tipped wage” model popular at restaurants that allows employers to legally pay workers less than minimum wage — as long as the tips make up the difference.

But, just because it’s legal doesn’t mean it isn’t deceptive (of course, some feel more strongly about it than others).

Painting the perfect gig-economy picture

Uber and Lyft drivers picketed back in May to protest low pay and poor working conditions. Even earlier this year, both Instacart and Amazon Flex were slammed for using employee tips to make up their base pay just like DoorDash (a method that Instacart has pivoted from amid outcry).

While DoorDash updated its payment terms to increase transparency in June, this still serves as a reputational dumpster fire for the food delivery unicorn as well as the gig-conomy at large.   

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