This new article on the gig economy talks about why it is important that we consider the legal status of workers on MTurk as well as Uber drivers, etc. It reports on several new legal statutes that identify certain type of workers are actual employees, not freelancer. Why do we care?
“Misclassification not only impacts on workers’ incomes, but it also deprives them of essential workplace protections and social security benefits. Crucially, their ability to join trade unions and bargain collectively is also heavily curtailed.”
It also calls for a re-think of current standards:
“The legal tests for determining employment status may need some adapting to take into account, amongst other things, temporal aspects of digital work (do you get paid from the moment you turn on the Uber app or when you accept a job?) and workers switching between platforms. However, these issues are not insurmountable and can be addressed within existing labour law frameworks.”