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Photo: Eric Baradat/AFP via Getty Images

San Francisco's district attorney has filed a lawsuit against food delivery company DoorDash, accusing the company of misclassifying its drivers as contractors instead of employees.

Why it matters: This is the latest attempt by elected officials to force gig economy companies to relabel their workers. In May, California's attorney general, along with DA's from three cities sued Lyft and Uber over similar issues.

From DoorDash:

"Now more than ever, Californians from all walks of life look to DoorDash for flexible earnings opportunities, working on average a few hours per week. Throughout the pandemic, DoorDash has supported Dashers on and off the road with free safety equipment, telemedicine, earnings replacement, and more. Today’s action seeks to disrupt the essential services Dashers provide, stripping hundreds of thousands of students, teachers, parents, retirees and other Californians of valuable work opportunities, depriving local restaurants of desperately needed revenue, and making it more difficult for consumers to receive prepared food, groceries, and other essentials safely and reliably. We will fight to continue providing Dashers the flexible earning opportunities they say they want in these challenging times."
— Max Rettig, DoorDash global head of public policy

Go deeper:

Go deeper

Dan Primack, author of Pro Rata
Sep 1, 2020 - Economy & Business

DoorDash CEO doesn't slam door on "Dasher" unionization

DoorDash, like most other gig economy companies, is reliant on a business model whereby workers are categorized as independent contractors instead of as employees. But, unlike traditional independent contractors, "Dashers" don't have the ability to directly negotiate with the company.

"Axios on HBO" dug into this seeming discrepancy with DoorDash CEO Tony Xu, and also asked if he'd be open to Dasher unionization.

Gig companies know plenty about having employees

Illustration: Eniola Odetunde/Axios

Gig-economy companies have long argued that their workers place high value on the freedom to choose their own hours. But many of these firms either used to schedule workers for shifts — or still do, to some extent.

Why it matters: The companies are fighting efforts to force them to reclassify workers as employees, arguing that a rigid work model is incompatible with their operations.

America's Chinese communities struggle with online disinformation

Illustration: Annelise Capossela/Axios

Disinformation has proliferated on Chinese-language websites and platforms like WeChat that are popular with Chinese speakers in the U.S., just as it has on English-language websites.

Why it matters: There are fewer fact-checking sites and other sources of reliable information in Chinese, making it even harder to push back against disinformation.