Tag Archives: Lyft

Lyft Introduces Lyft Media



Lyft has introduced Lyft Media, its very own media and advertising business. “As more people resume their daily travel, we’ve built a suite of new products to allow advertisers to engage with this growing audience throughout their transportation journeys.”

Lyft says, “Our vision is to build the world’s transportation media network, delivering value to advertisers while also elevating the platform experience for riders and drivers. Over the past two years, we’ve been growing our media business and are excited to share more details about our products, new partnerships, and future plans.”

Lyft Halo: Lyft Halos are smart digital rooftop screens that capture attention with engaging videos targeted to the vehicle’s exact location and time. Brands can reach mass audiences at the specific times and places most relevant to their business, and track the performance of their campaigns through Lyft’s attribution partners. This provides a level of targeting and measurement unprecedented in out-of-home (OOH) advertising.

In 2019, Lyft acquired rooftop advertising startup Halo Cars to start their own media business. These rooftop screens are available in New York City, Los Angeles, and Washington, D.C., with more cities to come.

Lyft Tablets: Lyft’s in-car tablets are seamlessly integrated with the rideshare experience. Riders can track progress along their route, rate and tip drivers, and control the music of their ride through Lyft’s partnership with iHeartRadio – all directly from the tablet. Brands can serve dynamic content to a highly engaged rideshare audience for the duration of the ride.

Lyft Bikes: Lyft operates the largest bike share network in the country, including Citi Bike (New York City), Divvy (Chicago), Bay Wheels (San Francisco Bay area), and Nice Ride (Minneapolis) with over 3,000 stations, 45,000 biles, and 36 million rides annually in those markets.

As Lyft rolls out their next-generation e-bikes, they will also be upgrading their stations to include digital ad panels.

Lyft Skins: Lyft Skins allows advertisers to engage the rideshare audience with Lyft’s most powerful digital channel – the Lyft App itself. Brands can reach Lyft’s almost 20 million active riders with a customizable branded icon and banner.

Lyft partnered with Cardi B for an immersive Lyft Skins campaign that went viral – generations over 2.6 million social media impressions, 50,000 code redemptions, and 2,000 tweets. The Lyft App is the starting point for all of Lyft’s transportation modes, and they are excited to continue bringing delightful experiences to it.

The Wall Street Journal reported that Lyft will work with third-party firms to help advertisers measure campaign performance using aggregate data, but won’t collect personal data from riders, said Kenan Saleh, general manager of Lyft Media and former chief executive of Halo.

Targeting for app, tablet, and rooftop ads will be based on the time and location of trips, and riders can turn the tablet off at any time, though fewer than 1% have done so in test studies, said Mr. Saleh.

As an immune-compromised person, I really don’t want to touch a tablet that has been touched by countless Lyft riders. That’s really not safe for me, especially if someone sneezed or coughed on it. I also wish that more ride-share drivers would wear masks because it would make it much safer for immune-compromised riders to avoid getting sick. Lyft wants to delve into advertisements – but should also consider the needs of people with disabilities.


Judge Grants Uber and Lyft a Temporary Stay



The ongoing battle between ride-sharing companies Lyft and Uber,and the state of California, continues with an appeals judge extending a temporary stay, CNBC reported. This gives Uber and Lyft more time in which to comply with an order requiring the companies to reclassify their drivers as employees.

The situation began with a California law called AB5, when went into affect on January 1, 2020. It requires companies that hire independent contractors to reclassify them as employees.

On August 10, 2020, California Superior Court Judge Ethan Schulman ordered Uber and Lyft to reclassify their contract drivers as employees with the same protections and benefits as other staffers. Those workers would be entitled to workers comp, unemployment, paid sick and family leave, and health insurance.

AB5 allows independent contractors to be classified as employees if the employers can verify that that the worker performs work that is outside the usual course of the hiring entity’s business (among other things).

It seems to me that Uber and Lyft, both of whom are ride-sharing companies, are going to have a difficult time trying to convince a judge that their workers are performing work that is outside the usual course the hiring entity’s business. The workers are driving their own vehicles and picking up and dropping off passengers. That’s literally the main purpose of ride-sharing companies!

Both Lyft and Uber posted blogs that can be summarized as a threat to users of their services. Each made it clear that they would shut down service in California. The blog posts also push people to vote for Proposition 22 which, if it gets enough votes, would reverse AB5. Lyft later updated their blog post to note that rideshare is back on, thanks to the stay.

As a person who lives in California, and who is also disabled, I think Lyft and Uber should not have threatened users with a stoppage of service. I rely on them to get me to and from appointments with health care providers. It feels like Uber and Lyft never bothered to consider how an abrupt stoppage of service could become a huge difficulty for people who cannot drive.

The Guardian reported that Proposition 22 has millions of dollars in backing from Uber and Lyft as well as other gig economy firms that are affected by the law. It appears that Lyft and Uber have plenty of money to fund Proposition 22 – which directly benefits them and harms their workers. They should use that money to do the right thing and comply with AB5.


California Bill AB5 Turns Contract Workers into Employees



California’s Assembly Bill 5 (AB5) will reclassify many contract workers in California into full employees with benefits. It doesn’t cover all types of contract workers, and is anticipated to affect companies like Uber and Lyft the most.

The New York Times reported that AB5 passed the California State Senate in a 29 to 11 vote. California’s Governor, Gavin Newsom, endorsed the bill this month and is expected to sign it. If signed, the measure will go into effect on January 1, 2020. State Senator Maria Elena Durazo (Democrat – Los Angeles) authored the bill.

The bill redefines “employee” using an existing law that includes an “ABC” test to establish whether a worker is an independent contractor or an employee. It says a worker is an employee if the worker’s tasks are performed under a company’s control; those tasks are central to that company’s business; and the worker does not have an independent enterprise in that trade.

Those who are considered employees under this bill will have access to basic protections such as a minimum wage, unemployment insurance, and perhaps access to health insurance coverage.

Personally, I am an independent contract worker – not an employee. None of the work I do for a living could be considered “central to that company’s business”. That said, people who are part of the gig economy and who drive for companies who produce ride-hailing apps, could be considered employees. They are doing the work that is central to the the business of Uber, Lyft, and DoorDash.

According to The New York Times, Uber and Lyft have “repeatedly warned that they will have to start scheduling drivers in advance if they are employees, reducing drivers’ ability to work when and where they want”. But, this is nonsense. There is absolutely nothing in AB5 that requires companies to “schedule drivers in advance”. It is possible that Uber and/or Lyft will retaliate by raising the prices for rides – but this will ultimately backfire because public transit is always going to be less expensive.

There are lists of professions who are exempt from AB5. Those professions include: doctors, dentists, psychologists, insurance agents, stockbrokers, lawyers, accountants, engineers, direct sellers, real estate agents, hairstylists, commercial fisherman, travel agents, and graphic designers.