The board said the current, indefinite suspension isn’t appropriate. “In applying a vague, standardless penalty and then referring this case to the Board to resolve, Facebook seeks to avoid its responsibilities,” the board wrote in its report.
The political reaction was as you’d expect. Trump put out a general statement, saying, “What Facebook, Twitter and Google have done is a total disgrace.” Rep. Jim Jordan, Republican of Ohio, said Facebook should be broken up (as did many other conservatives). Senator Richard Blumenthal, Democrat of Connecticut, called the decision “a minimal marker for truth and decency.”
Today’s episode of “The Daily” features Cecilia talking through the board’s decision with host Michael Barbaro.
Today’s episode of “Sway” with Kara Swisher features Frank Luntz, the veteran Republican pollster, discussing how Trump lost his social media status (and the presidency).
“Last week was terrible. We started with policy changes that felt simple, reasonable and principled, and it blew things up internally in ways we never anticipated.”
— Jason Fried, the C.E.O. of the software firm Basecamp, where a third of employees resigned after company executives banned political discussions in the workplace.
Driving questions at Uber and Lyft
As Uber and Lyft recover from the pandemic slump in their ride-hailing businesses, they face two big challenges, both to do with their drivers.
Driver growth isn’t keeping pace with rider growth. About 940,000 more people took at least one Lyft trip in the first quarter than in the previous quarter, Lyft said in its latest earnings report on Tuesday. But rider growth began to outpace driver growth at the end of February, leading to higher rates for passengers (and higher pay for drivers). Uber, which is facing a similar problem, said last month that it would spend $250 million on incentives to lure drivers. It now has 3.5 million drivers on its platform, about 4 percent more than last quarter, but 22 percent fewer than a year ago.
The debate over how to classify gig workers isn’t settled. Last year’s passage of Prop. 22, which ensured gig workers would be classified as independent contractors in California, was a huge win for Uber and Lyft. But it only settled the question for California. Last week, Marty Walsh, the U.S. labor secretary, told Reuters that “a lot” of gig economy workers should be classified as employees instead of independent contractors. And yesterday, the Labor Department blocked a Trump-era rule that would have made it easier to classify Lyft and Uber drivers as contractors.
Uber’s revenue in the first quarter, it reported yesterday, was reduced by the $600 million it set aside in response to a February ruling by Britain’s Supreme Court that Uber drivers in the country are not self-employed contractors, but workers entitled to benefits.