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Discussion Starter · #1 ·
Hello all,

First, please don't ding me because I'm a new driver! I got into this because I'd been riding my bicycle for years around the city, and then renting a car over the winter months. After a few years of that, I sat down and added up how much I paid for renting and realized I'd paid for a car without having anything to show for it! So, being a student and underemployed, I needed to get a car. I needed a way to pay for the car, so I decided to get the car and drive for Uber, Lyft, etc. As a P.S., I also have a rescue dog, and I'd been riding around for months dragging that dog around, and she was getting so sick bouncing around! It was time for a car!

So anyway, once I started driving for these rideshare companies, I immediately noted there was a real problem with the wear and tear on the car, paying for gas, and dealing with passengers that were.... weird. Being a female driver, it's a little scary sometimes when you have guys in the car, and you're wondering if you're going to be ok, and the conversation gets.... different. I'm not by any means a supermodel or anything, but I did have some initial fears. However, over time, those have subsided. It seems as though most people are well-intentioned. I've been given bogus reviews, probably from riders who are wanting their money back. For instance, I was accused of having a dirty car and not checking my back seat after the rider exited to make sure they didn't leave anything. I remembered that rider and responded to Uber- perhaps the next time she gets in the car, she should be sober, not drunk, not passed out in the back of my car, then waking up and ordering me to go a different route than what the app was giving (it was after 2 am on a Saturday night), and then after realizing that the ramp to the I-395 was closed and THAT'S why the app was navigating me to go in a route she didn't like, not get mad that she now has to be driven a longer distance to get to her car. And perhaps she should not be so drunk that she should forget her stinky food in my car. And- after I dropped her, she was going to her car. I insisted on making sure she got to her car, then made sure she could drive off without incident. Only then did I realize she left her food in my car. What am I supposed to do, Uber? There's no way for me to contact her for the food. I still kept that food for 48 hours in my fridge, but she didn't call. If her drunk butt had called, perhaps she could have gotten her food back. Instead, she complains, said my car was dirty, and that I attempted to drive her around in circles. Uber sent me a nasty email about it, and that's when I realized that Uber is for Uber.... not the drivers. I had to defend myself, and I wasn't happy about the result of that back and forth.

I've had a couple of other back and forths with Uber- being accused by a pax of taking money for a trip, which is untrue. Well, I have a video camera in my car and told them to check with the pax and let them understand that yes, they are being taped every time they're in the car, and if they didn't retract their statement, I'd release the tapes to Uber to investigate. Magically, the statement was retracted, but then I got a nasty follow up email from Uber reminding me that pax trips are cashless. Guess what, ******bags? I already knew that, and since I had the proof I didn't do it, I had to email them back a sharp email asking them not to remind me of something that I don't do, since I now have the evidence in my car. No apologies, but a sheepish, "yes, you're right" email back from them. I've also been told that I've not followed directions according to the pax, but of course, we all know that when the pax gives directions, and they give it incorrectly, or they give it too slowly for us to catch the turn or whatever, then they get upset and they blame us. Well, unless you're a human rainman walking GPS, there's nothing that can be done when you're substituting yourself as the GPS!

GRRRRRRRRRR!!!!!

I digress. So this morning, I get an email saying that they were adjusting rates if you were hired before something like December 12th. They give the rates, and I'm thinking.... ok.... I can handle that. But then tonight, I wanted to log on for a minute to check in on the (now nearly defunct) surges, and I see there's an agreement I have to sign. Basically, because I was hired after October 12th, my rates are much lower than the email I received. Well, that kind of deflated my sails a bit. I think we all work hard as drivers, depreciate our cars, deal with all the crap from unruly passengers, etc., and now, they're lowering how much we make. I saw these surges tonight- strong ones! And I just couldn't get enthusiastic enough to go out there. One was right in my back yard, and I just let it go. I can say that I don't have the enthusiasm to drive as much anymore.

Yes, I know I wasn't part of the elite originals. I see a lot of the back and forth with noobs and old-timers. But- we are all invertly in the same boat- we drive, we get screwed. It sucks.

So, I know that some will say "Don't drive! More for us!". That's not what this post is about. It's about me just kind of venting my frustration in general. I know my hire added on to the overall Uber driver nation, and that the old timers that used to go out and get $100 fares are probably upset at my presence. But that's not my fault- it's the fault of greedy Uber execs who want as many cars on the road driving for as little as possible and collecting as much of our fare as possible so they can line their pockets. Uber is a billion dollar company ripe for an IPO that will make billions off our backs. As independent contractors, it's appalling that these rich fat cats will ride our depreciated backs to billions in profits while we get stuck doing all the driving and making very little for ourselves. That's why I emailed them the OPT-OUT!!!!! If you haven't OPTED OUT of the binding arbitration and you still have time, DO IT! It takes like a minute to do, and then in the event of the lawsuit that will definitely happen, you can ride that wave and get some type of compensation. Because they WILL have that IPO. They will make money. And we, as independent contractors, will see none of it. Had we been employees, we would have been able to reap the benefits of an IPO. They are really working to push us out of seeing any of that money. And that keeps us poor. And since we're poor, all we can do is keep driving to get the pennies so they can make dollars. Sucks to be us, right?

Oh- the Uber email I got came in to my Promotions tab for my gmail account, by the way. For those of you who didn't get an email, you might want to check again. I thought I was ok when I didn't get the email, but then later this afternoon, I meandered over to my Promotions tab and saw the email thing from Uber. Uuuuugh. Again, sucks to be us. *sigh*

It would be nice if we could all get together and strike, but I do agree with most on this forum- there are always going to be drivers that are not from this country, come here, and will work for peanuts for 20 hours, sleep and live in their car, and rush around chasing those stupid surges all day long, and catch enough to give them hope that one day, they'll get rich and make that big payout. I was not under that impression within one week of driving. It was painfully obvious that this job is pretty tough, and generally, getting paid decent money would be difficult. With the new rates, it will be nearly impossible. Hence, my sitting around and not feeling too inclined to get in my car (a prius, by the way, with solar panals on the sun roof to save even more on gas) and drive.

I'll reiterate- my primary reason for Uber was to make some extra cash. I don't view this as my primary job. I am a professor at a university here in DC. I actually do have a business as well, but it's a start up, and it won't make money for several years, if I can survive the initial first five years. I have private clients. But- I wanted a side gig that would net me the money to make my car payments. I still plan to have a plan in place to be done with Uber by summer 2016. Or- maybe I'll win the powerball tonight, start my own car service, and go up against Uber! Whooo hoooo! Let me go get my powerball ticket before they call the numbers. Peace out, suckas! ;-)

With much love to my Uber family,

Koffee
 

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Hello all,

First, please don't ding me because I'm a new driver! I got into this because I'd been riding my bicycle for years around the city, and then renting a car over the winter months. After a few years of that, I sat down and added up how much I paid for renting and realized I'd paid for a car without having anything to show for it! So, being a student and underemployed, I needed to get a car. I needed a way to pay for the car, so I decided to get the car and drive for Uber, Lyft, etc. As a P.S., I also have a rescue dog, and I'd been riding around for months dragging that dog around, and she was getting so sick bouncing around! It was time for a car!

So anyway, once I started driving for these rideshare companies, I immediately noted there was a real problem with the wear and tear on the car, paying for gas, and dealing with passengers that were.... weird. Being a female driver, it's a little scary sometimes when you have guys in the car, and you're wondering if you're going to be ok, and the conversation gets.... different. I'm not by any means a supermodel or anything, but I did have some initial fears. However, over time, those have subsided. It seems as though most people are well-intentioned. I've been given bogus reviews, probably from riders who are wanting their money back. For instance, I was accused of having a dirty car and not checking my back seat after the rider exited to make sure they didn't leave anything. I remembered that rider and responded to Uber- perhaps the next time she gets in the car, she should be sober, not drunk, not passed out in the back of my car, then waking up and ordering me to go a different route than what the app was giving (it was after 2 am on a Saturday night), and then after realizing that the ramp to the I-395 was closed and THAT'S why the app was navigating me to go in a route she didn't like, not get mad that she now has to be driven a longer distance to get to her car. And perhaps she should not be so drunk that she should forget her stinky food in my car. And- after I dropped her, she was going to her car. I insisted on making sure she got to her car, then made sure she could drive off without incident. Only then did I realize she left her food in my car. What am I supposed to do, Uber? There's no way for me to contact her for the food. I still kept that food for 48 hours in my fridge, but she didn't call. If her drunk butt had called, perhaps she could have gotten her food back. Instead, she complains, said my car was dirty, and that I attempted to drive her around in circles. Uber sent me a nasty email about it, and that's when I realized that Uber is for Uber.... not the drivers. I had to defend myself, and I wasn't happy about the result of that back and forth.

I've had a couple of other back and forths with Uber- being accused by a pax of taking money for a trip, which is untrue. Well, I have a video camera in my car and told them to check with the pax and let them understand that yes, they are being taped every time they're in the car, and if they didn't retract their statement, I'd release the tapes to Uber to investigate. Magically, the statement was retracted, but then I got a nasty follow up email from Uber reminding me that pax trips are cashless. Guess what, ******bags? I already knew that, and since I had the proof I didn't do it, I had to email them back a sharp email asking them not to remind me of something that I don't do, since I now have the evidence in my car. No apologies, but a sheepish, "yes, you're right" email back from them. I've also been told that I've not followed directions according to the pax, but of course, we all know that when the pax gives directions, and they give it incorrectly, or they give it too slowly for us to catch the turn or whatever, then they get upset and they blame us. Well, unless you're a human rainman walking GPS, there's nothing that can be done when you're substituting yourself as the GPS!

GRRRRRRRRRR!!!!!

I digress. So this morning, I get an email saying that they were adjusting rates if you were hired before something like December 12th. They give the rates, and I'm thinking.... ok.... I can handle that. But then tonight, I wanted to log on for a minute to check in on the (now nearly defunct) surges, and I see there's an agreement I have to sign. Basically, because I was hired after October 12th, my rates are much lower than the email I received. Well, that kind of deflated my sails a bit. I think we all work hard as drivers, depreciate our cars, deal with all the crap from unruly passengers, etc., and now, they're lowering how much we make. I saw these surges tonight- strong ones! And I just couldn't get enthusiastic enough to go out there. One was right in my back yard, and I just let it go. I can say that I don't have the enthusiasm to drive as much anymore.

Yes, I know I wasn't part of the elite originals. I see a lot of the back and forth with noobs and old-timers. But- we are all invertly in the same boat- we drive, we get screwed. It sucks.

So, I know that some will say "Don't drive! More for us!". That's not what this post is about. It's about me just kind of venting my frustration in general. I know my hire added on to the overall Uber driver nation, and that the old timers that used to go out and get $100 fares are probably upset at my presence. But that's not my fault- it's the fault of greedy Uber execs who want as many cars on the road driving for as little as possible and collecting as much of our fare as possible so they can line their pockets. Uber is a billion dollar company ripe for an IPO that will make billions off our backs. As independent contractors, it's appalling that these rich fat cats will ride our depreciated backs to billions in profits while we get stuck doing all the driving and making very little for ourselves. That's why I emailed them the OPT-OUT!!!!! If you haven't OPTED OUT of the binding arbitration and you still have time, DO IT! It takes like a minute to do, and then in the event of the lawsuit that will definitely happen, you can ride that wave and get some type of compensation. Because they WILL have that IPO. They will make money. And we, as independent contractors, will see none of it. Had we been employees, we would have been able to reap the benefits of an IPO. They are really working to push us out of seeing any of that money. And that keeps us poor. And since we're poor, all we can do is keep driving to get the pennies so they can make dollars. Sucks to be us, right?

Oh- the Uber email I got came in to my Promotions tab for my gmail account, by the way. For those of you who didn't get an email, you might want to check again. I thought I was ok when I didn't get the email, but then later this afternoon, I meandered over to my Promotions tab and saw the email thing from Uber. Uuuuugh. Again, sucks to be us. *sigh*

It would be nice if we could all get together and strike, but I do agree with most on this forum- there are always going to be drivers that are not from this country, come here, and will work for peanuts for 20 hours, sleep and live in their car, and rush around chasing those stupid surges all day long, and catch enough to give them hope that one day, they'll get rich and make that big payout. I was not under that impression within one week of driving. It was painfully obvious that this job is pretty tough, and generally, getting paid decent money would be difficult. With the new rates, it will be nearly impossible. Hence, my sitting around and not feeling too inclined to get in my car (a prius, by the way, with solar panals on the sun roof to save even more on gas) and drive.

I'll reiterate- my primary reason for Uber was to make some extra cash. I don't view this as my primary job. I am a professor at a university here in DC. I actually do have a business as well, but it's a start up, and it won't make money for several years, if I can survive the initial first five years. I have private clients. But- I wanted a side gig that would net me the money to make my car payments. I still plan to have a plan in place to be done with Uber by summer 2016. Or- maybe I'll win the powerball tonight, start my own car service, and go up against Uber! Whooo hoooo! Let me go get my powerball ticket before they call the numbers. Peace out, suckas! ;-)

With much love to my Uber family,

Koffee
POST #:1/kbrown: Welcome to UPNF.
 

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Discussion Starter · #4 ·
something about the main post doesn't add up... university professors driving for uber !? never heard that one before...
And yet, here I am, doing this part time. I'm not a a tenured professor- they are the ones getting paid the big bucks. I'm considered faculty, but not a professor in the truest sense of the word. My sister's friend is a lawyer and she does this part time as well.

Koffee
 

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Discussion Starter · #8 ·
Welcome to the forum.

1. Get used to this treatment. Uber cares about pax and has been successful in recruiting drivers willing to work for $10/hr.

2. If/when gas prices increase, being an Uber driver is going to be absolutely nuts.
I know. I have a prius, so I will be at least cushioned somewhat when the gas prices go up. Gas prices WILL go up- I believe they are going down because the US companies that have been formed to mine are being sqeezed out by competing nations that dig dig dig and create a glut, which means the US companies will be squeezed out of any profit they get from drilling oil. As soon as those companies are driven out of business, the price of oil will go way way up. I plan to hedge my gas, btw. There's www.mygallons.com and www.lovemygasprice.com. Every rideshare driver should do extensive research into both those companies and lock in low rates or get insured for low rates NOW while the gas rates are low. If we need to even pool our money together and get a collective card (one recommended we purchase at least 700 gallons of gas to see the savings- better to get together as a group and split that up). I'll be getting my gas savings soon.

I am so used to bad treatment. If you don't own the business yourself, and the business is making money like bananas, then that means they are treating the people who work for them not very well. Thank goodness I opted out of the binding arbitration.
 

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I know. I have a prius, so I will be at least cushioned somewhat when the gas prices go up. Gas prices WILL go up- I believe they are going down because the US companies that have been formed to mine are being sqeezed out by competing nations that dig dig dig and create a glut, which means the US companies will be squeezed out of any profit they get from drilling oil. As soon as those companies are driven out of business, the price of oil will go way way up. I plan to hedge my gas, btw. There's www.mygallons.com and www.lovemygasprice.com. Every rideshare driver should do extensive research into both those companies and lock in low rates or get insured for low rates NOW while the gas rates are low. If we need to even pool our money together and get a collective card (one recommended we purchase at least 700 gallons of gas to see the savings- better to get together as a group and split that up). I'll be getting my gas savings soon.

I am so used to bad treatment. If you don't own the business yourself, and the business is making money like bananas, then that means they are treating the people who work for them not very well. Thank goodness I opted out of the binding arbitration.
POST # 9/kbrown: I believe your "Faculty"
Position is the
same as my Wifely's was prior to finding
work as an Educator with Benefits, Health
Insurance, etc.

Better known as Higher Education's
Dirty Secret the Position is known as
"Adjunct Professor" and has ALL the
Risk of Independent Contractors and
NONE of those Benefits that Employees
get!

Mentoring Bison: Keeping. It. 100%. REAL!
 

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Discussion Starter · #10 ·
POST # 9/kbrown: I believe your "Faculty"
Position is the
same as my Wifely's was prior to finding
work as an Educator with Benefits, Health
Insurance, etc.

Better known as Higher Education's
Dirty Secret the Position is known as
"Adjunct Professor" and has ALL the
Risk of Independent Contractors and
NONE of those Benefits that Employees
get!

Mentoring Bison: Keeping. It. 100%. REAL!
Very true- universities are like Ubers- they keep us as independent contractors to balance out the big bucks that the tenured professors get. It really sucks. I like it for the resume boost, and I like the kids I work with, but no way would I be able to do this for real forever. It pays the bills for now!
 
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