The Real Story Behind the “Riders”

Subtitles listening translation: LokHeyHey| Subtitles PR: CharlesS | Subtitles: Walking in the rain | Comment: Little Kids | Comment translation: Mount Everest | Translation PR: Marialu | Page: Daoiii

In recent years, we have witnessed the rise of takeaway delivery services in China. It is estimated that up to five millions of these “riders” (delivery men who get this nickname from the bikes they use ) roam the city streets, toiling away for a living.

In metropolitan cities such as Beijing, Shanghai and Shenzhen, riders are commonly seen to be camping overnight on the street. They literally work around the clock, trying to fill every order they could get their hands on. An average delivery man makes about RMB 5000-6000 a month. A high achiever can make up to RMB 15,000-20,000 a month. Every delivery order typically comes with a delivery charge of RMB 3.00 or more. But only a fraction of this delivery charge ends up in the pockets of the riders. Some online platforms skim as much as 25% of this fee. It’s quite common for a delivery man to make just a couple of RMB for filling a laborious order.

If he receives an unfavorable customer comment, because he misses the timeline or something, he runs the risk of having his basic salary deducted by the platform he is associated with. Although the riders register with these online platform companies, they are classifed as contract workers instead of formal employees. As a result, they are not entitled to any benefits, such as social insurance, year-end bonus, etc. Nor are they covered by the platform companies for any accidents or risks encountered during the course of their work.

Human rights are glaringly absent in Communist China. Cheap labor with no protection has almost become the norm.

Despite the apparent social progress and rising living standards, ordinary people have suffered from ever-increasing expenditures on home mortgages, car loans, parental and child care, education, social insurance, social security payments and personal expenses.

Although prices keep climbing, wages have been flat for a decade. People are suffocating under the pressure, for fear that a sick breadwinner brings down an entire family.

Edited by:【Himalaya London Club UK】

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