AYABONGA CAWE: Employment’s new frontiers still need old-style boundaries
‘AirBnB and Uber outcomes show digital and technology shifts are inevitable, but this should not imply a hands-off regulatory approach’
The poster children of the fourth industrial revolution, Uber and AirBnB, were "on trial" in SA last week. If you were to read this introductory paragraph on a signboard along a busy road, it might seem alarmist. However, nothing is nearer to the truth. It started with a South African film-maker being thrown down a flight of stairs by a Dutch AirBnB host. Reminded that "Amsterdam isn’t Africa", she became a flashpoint for the age-old European mistrust of all that is foreign. We should be grateful that her friend, artist Zanele Muholi, caught it all on tape.Uber has often suggested that its drivers are "partner drivers" (independent contractors) and no employment relationship exists between the technology platform and the drivers. Surely, this is the case, as Uber owns no cars and merely provides technology, right? The CCMA found otherwise, despite the fact there is no direct or physical supervision and control is exercised through technology. As such, Uber drivers have now been clas...