back to article Australian regulator will decide if Uber drivers are staff or contractors

Scandal-ridden, leaderless not-a-taxi dudebro poster-child Uber is under investigation in Australia about whether its “independent contractor” drivers are actually employees. The investigation, by workplace regulator the Fair Work Ombudsman, was launched this week in response to a long campaign by a group of drivers calling …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward


    This current Californian shit-wave makes the previous decade look positively tame. I'm almost nostalgic for consumer law flouting scum like Groupon.

    I can only hope that this will trigger a massive 'immune reaction', reminding everyone in the west why we fought so hard for our labour and consumer protection laws. To keep the spivvy fucking yanks out of our societies.


    Nigh on impossible to argue Uber drivers are contractors when they have virtually no control over any portion of the process, except when they choose to work and they can be dropped off the platform at any time. Uber decides what the fare will be, Uber directly gets the money for the total fare in their Amsterdam bank account Uber BV. The driver has to pay the GST on Uber's share (commission) of the fare. The driver has to trust that Uber will repatriate their share back to Australia in a timely manner. It appears that the only way the driver can obtain any kind of protection is to be classified as an employee. Uber currently operates a flawed business model that only benefits the corporation not their so called driver/partners.

  3. Your alien overlord - fear me

    On the one hand it's good Uber employs rapists and murderers, most companies wouldn't. On the other hand it's not good Uber employs rapists and murderers and lets them carry on doing their crimes.

    1. Cereberus

      On the one hand it's good Uber employs rapists and murderers,

      If only you had the word reformed after employs I would have agreed with your obviously non-sarcastic comment. (He says sarcastically).

      I do think, on a serious note, that reformed convicts should be given a second chance albeit they should be perhaps monitored closely and not allowed in a position where they could re-offend. So Uber could employ a convicted rapist who is reformed but only give them jobs for couples, male customers, etc. and not ones where they would be left driving a lone female either directly or as a result of dropping her friends off first.

      Of course not being an employer they wouldn't know about any prior convictions, certainly wouldn't charge customers a premium for searches they have carried out on drivers, or be expected to screen the drivers they don't employ.

  4. redpawn

    A Happy Quote

    "The man who lets a leader prescribe his course is a wreck being towed to the scrap heap." - Ayn Rand . Got to love this heartless icon.

  5. bazza Silver badge

    At what point do the VC investors pull the plug? The way things are going they're going to burn through all the money and have nothing to show for it except for a lot of disgruntled drivers, a poor reputation as a company and possibly a whole bunch of unpaid fines. Not very good material around which to build a compelling IPO...

    They’ve been going for a while now, and AFAIK there's little evidence to suggest that they can ever be profitable. Why waste more money on it? If they closed down Uber now, they wouldn't have to pay redundancy to all those drivers who look like becoming staff in the near future.

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