Delivery drivers and customers have once again been backhanded by the gig economy. News broke this morning concerning the delivery giant DoorDash and a tip skimming policy that may set them back.
On the heels of a major victory against their rival Uber Eats and their inability to resign McDonald’s to an exclusive contract, DoorDash faces a large scandal. According to Gizmodo, the delivery giant has admitted to and apologized for a nationwide DoorDash tip skimming scam.
What are the details?
In short, the tips that were supposed to be going to delivery drivers were instead going to DoorDash. The way the tip skimming scheme reportedly works is that all tips that did not break a certain threshold remained with DoorDash. Meaning that if the delivery driver’s tip wouldn’t be given to the driver unless it was “very generous”. Drivers would, of course, receive their guaranteed delivery fare. However if the tip was $1 to $4 (they are unclear on what the threshold was exactly), DoorDash would simply snatch it up. This means that for quite some time DoorDash has been pocketing your tips.
This is a similar scam that many restaurants have employed over the past years. Ever been to a restaurant that asks for a tip at the point of sale? Well, in recent news reports it was illuminated that many restaurants were pocketing said tips.
What does this mean for DoorDash?
It’s not good. Considering that DoorDash is currently facing a major investigation with the city of San Fransisco in regard to labor violations. Driver discontent is one thing, but now DoorDash has been exposed for deceiving its customers as well. This is a major dent in its brand image and could be a major boon to rivals like Grubhub. I expect to see a class-action lawsuit in the coming months spearheaded by their delivery driver workforce.
DoorDash has stated in an email to its drivers that it is sorry…
I received the email earlier today and had I not seen the news report first thing, I would have been confused. The email along with several tweets from DoorDash CEO Tony Xu, outline the practice and apologize. However, the apologies seemed hollow and did nothing to allay concerns. It is not known exactly how much the $7.1 billion valued company made off of the tip skimming. DoorDash has stated publicly that it is looking at transforming this pay model to more accurately reflect their companies values.
When will the new pay model be released?
An exact date has not been stated, which means that for the time being, DoorDash delivery drivers will not be receiving their tips. That is of course unless they are “very generous”. With no end in sight to this scandal, DoorDash could be in for a rough stretch. It would appear that the tip skimming scam that has been in place since 2017 will continue well into the latter half of 2019.
Some pointers for DoorDash customers
If you plan to tip your DoorDash delivery driver, be sure to tip them in person. If you tip them in the app you are only putting your hard-earned money into scammers pockets. Not sure how much to tip? Here’s a tipping guide to help you.
Remember that without the delivery driver, that delicious meal you order wouldn’t happen. Believe it or not, but drivers and customers are in this together.
Drivers, what are your thoughts?
Do you drive for DoorDash? We want to hear from you. How does this news affect your loyalty to DoorDash? Will you be jumping ship? Newbie drivers, after learning about this tip skimming policy, would you still consider driving for DoorDash or choose of other gigs to keep you afloat?