Uber Eats Is Turning Into a Pyramid Scheme

French Uber Eats couriers are outsourcing their jobs to undocumented immigrants, and reaping the profits

In the latest edition of “late capitalism is a doozy,” the New York Times has a report on Uber Eats couriers in France who are essentially pulling a more dastardly Tom Sawyer, farming out their work to undocumented immigrants, and keeping the profits for themselves. TheTimes interviewed Aymen Arfaoui, an 18-year-old migrant, who earns about half the wages Uber Eats pays, as he “owed the rest to a French bicycle courier who considered Uber Eats’ terms too cheap — 3.50 euros (just under $4) per order plus a bit for mileage — to do the work himself.” Uber Eats couriers rent out their accounts, and sometimes take up to 50 percent of the earnings.

Labor groups and other apps are looking into it, but there seems to be little stopping a similar scam from popping up in the U.S., where we have both a rapidly growing gig economy and a large, undocumented workforce. It’s a classic tale of the impoverished trying to find a leg up on the backs of the even-more-impoverished, fighting for scraps while Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi pockets $45 million a year. [NY Times]


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