Uber mandates driver selfies for new mask policy


How do you create sustained participation across an enormous peer-to-peer user network, when it comes to something like common-sense safety procedures for a pandemic scenario?


Uber, the ride-sharing giant that has revolutionized personal transport, is using selfies.


Reports this morning show that Uber continues to enforce it’s “no mask, no ride” policy with daily checks that consist of drivers snapping digital photos of themselves with masks on before every shift.


Part of this policy is meant to address scattershot compliance, where some self-minded drivers just flout mask rules.


“Before you can go online to drive or deliver, you will be asked to confirm, via a new Go Online Checklist, that you’ve taken certain preventive measures,” write company spokespersons detailing the “new normal” on a blog post meant to inform drivers. “The Go Online Checklist includes steps such as having on a face cover or mask, that you have sanitized your vehicle or food delivery equipment, and that you will not allow anyone to ride in your front seat.”

Writers also cover the responsibilities of errant riders:

“Riders too will be asked to confirm they have taken certain precautions like wearing a face cover or mask and washing or sanitizing their hands before they can ride. They must also agree to sit in the back seat and open windows for ventilation.”


With the protocols, it’s probably more likely that a rider will be the one to buck the system, but as Uber’s directive shows, riders aren’t the only ones making themselves scofflaws of Uber’s mask policy. The Internet abounds with stories like this one where a mask-less driver boasted to a hapless passenger of potentially being an “a-systematic” carrier.


We’ve seen that in the wake of missing federal leadership and individual state efforts to mandate social distancing, masks continue to be controversial, just like everything else. Uber selfies and store signs are responses to a universal challenge – innovation is pivoting in the COVID age. Your trading portfolio may need to pivot, too.