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The false freedom of the employees of Deliveroo

With the lure of flexibility, food distribution platforms and objects have become new forms of labor exploitation

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The false freedom of the employees of Deliveroo

The ideal of new businesses of provision of services is to be able to meet orders with minimum possible expenditure in logistics. As demand can be variable, it is best to have at disposal a legion of carriers to be able to use only necessary at any time, so that goods reach customer just in timey with least delay possible. The ideal is completed if this legion of carriers is always available to organization but charges only for each service it provides and also puts vehicle, whose maintenance and amortization runs from your account. That's how big food distribution platforms work like Deliveroo or UberEats, or whatever product you might need, like Stuart or Glovo, whose motto is "Whatever you want whenever you want."

Such a scheme would not have been possible without emergence of digital economy, which allows to put in contact to suppliers with clients through Internet. This is how y have created se new businesses that offer to take home at any time of day or night what you may need, a new world in which largest provider of hotel accommodation does not have a single bed and main transport platform nor a Single car. If y have spread so quickly it is because y have been able to respond to demand of a consumer society dominated by culture of urgency. But reason why y have become such a lucrative business is that y establish a business model that allows to outsource most of costs of service in addition to social costs.

These companies do not have employees, but self-employed who work for m, and refore do not have to pay Social security fees, extras or vacations. And if your self-employed get sick or have an accident, that's your problem. Through a technological revolution, se platforms have found form of out of se expensive contraptions of disciplinary society, result of social pact, which are minimum wage, labour standards or collective agreements. They have become new paradigm of deregulated society: all benefit to company, all risk to worker.

To gain social legitimacy, service platforms try to be presented as part of so-called ' collaborative economy ', but in most cases y are not. Deliveroo or Glovo have nothing to do with truly collaborative forms of organization such as a workers ' co-operative. With lure of freedom and flexibility, two great values of liquid society that defined Zygmunt Bauman, are actually new forms of labor exploitation that take advantage of many people willing to accept se conditions because y have no or Option. Freedom and flexibility yes, but at what price? In most cases, at price of being always tied to mobile, without being able to do anything else, pending to leave a service and if it does not come out, worse, because n y do not charge.

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