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PlankOfWoood t1_iu58n3p wrote

Starbucks and Amazon: We're going to shut down the locations in your area.


BallardRex t1_iu5aq3z wrote

> Workers at a combined Starbucks and Amazon store in Times Square filed a petition for union election Friday morning, saying they’re required to do the responsibilities of two jobs for the pay of one.

Was that in their job description when they signed up?


jeffinRTP t1_iu5d92f wrote

If they become unionized and either company changes the benefit package they would not get it as any change will need to be negotiated by the union.


zippopopamus t1_iu5dk85 wrote

How they haven't suffered from mental breakdown already


BallardRex t1_iu5ldpk wrote

Starbucks, like MCDonalds, seems like the sort of business that will be early to full automation. I think that’s the strategy, the tactic is to delay until that’s feasible on a wide scale, then use that to pressure workers until the transition is made.


SliderHMSS t1_iu5m1w2 wrote

I’m at the Amazon. What?

I’m at the Starbucks. What?

I’m at the combination Amazon and Starbucks.


mabrul_squeen t1_iu5nwae wrote

"You don't need a dedicated organization whos goal is to stop your employer from fucking you. Yes, they've been fucking you for multiple years with no sign of slowing down. But what if one day they decide they don't want to fuck you any more? Thered be an extra signature needed on a piece of paper for them to stop fucking you, which would never happen anyway without the leverage provided by the union. The horror."

Multinational megacorps don't just randomly wake up and go "let's double employee wages and give them chairs behind the register and fair amounts of PTO because we feel like it", they have to be forced to do so or they will operate in the way that generates max profits at the expense of the employees.

The "but if you have a union, it prevents your employer from doing nice things for you!" argument is nonsense.

No union would ever say "oh, you want to give our guys better bennies? No, we won't sign that"

But the employer isn't going to just give them better pay or benefits spontaneously out of the goodness of their hearts

You're coming off goofy af rn bro


ggdsxxxc t1_iu5oolh wrote

Get a better job lol


jeffinRTP t1_iu5pqkm wrote

If they change the benefits or wages of nonunion workers the union workers would not automatically get the same benefits. Yes, the union would have to negotiate with the company for the benefits. Exactly what I said.


techimp t1_iu5rce1 wrote

How very very tone-deaf. Acting like it's not a concern that people are mistreated because "lolz" they could just "walk away" because you aren't in that situation is peak asshole.

You do realize those jobs would still have to be staffed....and one group walking away doesn't mean shit to companies where workers are constantly viewed as easily disposable.

Amazon and Starbucks arent going to suddenly become "better companies" because of people leaving. They will only do so when forced to, because getting rich off of underpaying/abusing the workforce is very very lucrative, morality be damned.


BearDick t1_iu5rv1a wrote

Well I mean so far ~250 of the ~15,700 US stores have voted to 1.6% of stores is a start but at the same time Starbucks has started offering raises and additional benefits to non-union shops and my understanding is that really slowed down the unionization efforts.


mabrul_squeen t1_iu5vd3x wrote

You have to realize that the raises in the article you linked were only offered BECAUSE of the unions, right?

Starbucks could easily have given the same raise to union workers. Would have been a simple contract amendment that any union rep would instantly sign.

But STARBUCKS chose not to do that, because they want unionizing to look like a bad idea.

This isn't starbucks saying "we want to give EVERYONE raises" and the unions saying "not without our approval you dont!"

This is starbucks intentionally giving raises they otherwise wouldnt have to non union employees, in order to make them want to stay non union.

If the unions give up, starbucks no longer has any reason to try and play nice like this, and can go back to a "you'll take what we give you or we'll replace you" model.

Any problems employees experience from being in a union are problems that starbucks intentionally creates for union employees, because they want to kill the union.

And it saddens me that your response to that, as a presumably intelligent, adult human being, is "well, we should just give in to the corporate overlords, remove any potential checks and balances against their ability to exploit their workers, and just trust that they care more about being good people to their workers than they do about profits"


THISISALLCAPS t1_iu62tvh wrote

So unionizing helped those that weren’t even in the union, and the business is saying, “see, wee take care of non union folk”.

Except they didn’t take care of anyone until the union was invited in. It’s so odd how that happens.

Starbucks should just be called $ucks, at this point.


SM_Lion_El t1_iu6fjc3 wrote

Good for them. Unions are worthwhile.

At the same time, given all we’ve seen in the news about both Amazon and Starbucks and their “shit on the employees” mentality, why would anyone go to work for a pairing of the two?


[deleted] t1_iu6i8ud wrote

These companies will never reach full automation. They'll spend more money on automating and failing than they would paying a regular human to just do the job. Even if they do reach "full automation" it will never actually be fully automated because you'll still need people to fix the machines when they break.


BallardRex t1_iu6ikxe wrote

We both know that “full automation” doesn’t mean that skilled maintenance and programming jobs are gone, and we know that the people serving coffee and hauling packages aren’t going to be getting them.


chaiguy t1_iu6uhib wrote

There’s a robot cafe at SFO and it always draws a few onlookers but I’ve yet to ever see anyone actually buy a coffee from it. Meanwhile the Peet’s kiosk always has a line.

I don’t think people want to interact with robots as much as corporations think we do.


chaiguy t1_iu6v12i wrote

A robot can pour a perfect cup of coffee, but it can’t stop a junkie from shooting up in the store, or chase a schizophrenic person having an episode out, or clean up a spilled frapuchino. It definitely can’t soothe an irate Karen hurling expletives at it, and it damn sure can’t get the manager.


chaiguy t1_iu6xejv wrote

I wouldn’t know cause I’m not buying coffee from a robot, but I can tell you that I’ve seen people leave McDonald’s when forced to order from the kiosk and I’ve seen people leave entire shopping carts of merchandise when forced to do self checkout.


HippoObjective6506 t1_iu7b5q2 wrote

Im sorry but if you think the workers at Starbucks are just pouring coffee you don’t really know what you’re talking about. Starbucks doesn’t have a cleaning crew. Literally I worked both 4:30am shifts opening and 2am shifts doing what the store calls “clean plays.” Cleaned bathrooms. Ran trash in subzero temperatures. Had to do 40 second drive times literally running around like an insane person. All for 9.45 an hour. One time someone took a literal shit in our garbage can in the bathroom, and my coworker had to clean it up. Literal shit. And sometimes that was favorable to customers screaming at us over their drink being made wrong when we had tickets literally on the floor. Maybe you don’t agree with what these employees are asking for, but to say all they do all day is pour coffee is just straight up incorrect. I can’t speak for Amazon as I haven’t worked there but I believe anyone who works full time should be paid a living wage. These places are not.


Triple_C_ t1_iu7eh1q wrote

If they become "better companies" is their concern, and their choice. Just like working there is absolutely 100% a choice. I know you hate that, but these individuals CHOSE the job. You simply can't get around that, no matter how many ways you try to spin victimhood.

If they are such AWFUL places to work and EVERYONE hates working there, WHY are so many people still buying from them? Where is the outrage, where are the boycotts? Surely everyone who shops Starbucks and Amazon aren't just pro -business folks, right?

Hypocrisy and manufacturered biased bullshit.


techimp t1_iu7fr67 wrote

The illusion of choice as if people easily can get new better paying jobs in the service industry is just that, an illusion. Trade one task master for another and hope it's better or be unemployed. The fact it literally takes unions and federal regulations to hold companies feet to the fire to get them acting at least half decent is telling.

Trying to blame employees as having victim complexes is a really shitty way to look at it. Clearly you yourself nor loved ones or friends have had a shit run trying to get a new job to get out of a current bad one. One does not quit the current before having a new one on hand. Unless of course you just have money saved up from your not minimum wage job that pays above a liveable wage.


chaiguy t1_iu7gmmy wrote

Albertsons (a grocery chain in my area) completely abandoned self check out a while back.

But I’m sure overall you’re right.

Robots are still losing the coffee wars in SFO though, hands down.


Triple_C_ t1_iu7gp9f wrote

Your "illusion of choice" is actually an embrace of victimhood. You want to pretend that these individuals are somehow forced into these jobs, and it's simply not true. Individuals make choices, these choices lead to other choices. Sometimes these choices lead to working a job and individual may not WANT to work, but they still CHOOSE to work. It's still a choice, based on their individual situation. Situations that employers are NOT responsible for.

Personal responsibility and accountability. Your bills, your choices, your life, your responsibility.

You do understand that companies exist to make money right? That's the only reason. They don't exist to provide employment, and employees are a means to that end.

It is often in the best interest of an employer to take care of their employees because it boosts productivity, retention, and loyalty. But again, that is their choice.

But you didn't answer the core question. WHERE is the outrage from customers? WHERE are the boycotts? Why aren't these companies failing if they are so horrible?

I certainly know the answer, and I'm betting you do too...and that's why you didn't answer.


jeffinRTP t1_iu7hrl8 wrote

Yes or no, when they gave it to the nonunion workers did the union workers also get it? Is there any evidence that the union renegotiated the contract to bring the union workers to the same level?

You are telling me that they have gotten the same increase at the same time.


ASoundLogic t1_iu7ixxj wrote

The store you are referring to does not seem to be the norm of any major store I have seen. Take Wal-Mart for example. There are more self-checkouts than manned registers, and there is no "self checkout" discount given to those who use it. Oftentimes, there will be a long line waiting to use the self checkouts. I imagine it will not be long now for a similar practice to arise with fast food checkouts. I can see normal restaurants using Boston Dynamics caliber "Spots" to bring out your food and/or utensils drinks etc. With companies paying top dollar for burger flippers, cashier's, etc, at some point it no longer makes sense to have that recurring expense. The dawn of the AI powered robot is on the horizon, and it will be life as normal for up and coming generations to interact with them like self-checkouts are to us now.


techimp t1_iu7jphk wrote

Where are the boycotts? Things have to impact people directly (not just them feeling bad for workers) to have any semblance of of outrage. Let's not pretend for a minute that isn't what it is now and your false equivalence is bs.

The lack of boycotts does not excuse the piss poor attitude from companies that have worked hard to erode workers rights. Which is why I said it literally takes unions or federal laws to move the needle. I note you ignore the actuality to try and claim that everyone can just magically move on to greener pastures that also magically pay better. Let's be completely honest. Those don't exist for the population at large. But go to school you say...well that again is yet another problem that you shove off to someone else's accountability....rather than addressing a busted system.

But go on claiming that it's workers fault for a shit system. You show how utterly out of touch you are.


ASoundLogic t1_iu7jrfq wrote

I really feel it isn't that far away. Imagine restaurants replacing chefs and waiters with bots, and the restaurants telling their paying customers that there is no need to tip. The novelty, cost savings, and reliablity to customer will translate directly to customer satisfaction. I could see really premium restaurants having human waiters etc., but those would have exorbitant prices anyway.


Triple_C_ t1_iu7khj5 wrote

Yes, they're all victims of big mean companies right? Gosh, if those poor workers were just given a chance!

Your arrogance and self righteous attitude are demeaning to those individuals who DO succeed, who DO move from low level jobs by leveraging their skills, experience, knowledge, drive, and ambition. But you don't care about those people do you? Because they don't fit nicely into your victimhood narrative.

Believe what you like in your little Socialist Reddit Bubble. Keep circle jerking with your friends here. It's fine with us. We deal in reality, not untenable Reddit bullshit embraced by those who don't want to work for anything in their lives and blame everyone else for their failures.


chaiguy t1_iu7l1ac wrote

I mean, have you ever heard of an automat? These were a thing in the 1950s, but they didn’t survive.

Robots might have the ability to replace humans soon, but it’s going to be a while before they are more cost effective.


ASoundLogic t1_iu7l1td wrote

Maybe for now, but the children who grow up with VR headsets strapped to their faces will not bat an eye at interacting with bots in the next 15-20 years. Things 20-30 years ago people would have called you crazy for are all too commonplace now. People routinely get in a strangers car (Uber) or have a stranger in an unmarked car deliver food to them (UberEats) which was ordered via an app with zero human interaction. Cars have "self-drive" abilities. This is all deemed acceptable by society now. Gen Z is already way more into phones and social media than Millennials. The tech evolution just seems to be the natural progression of humanity.


HippoObjective6506 t1_iu7ldre wrote

I didn’t say it broke me, just that I did more than pouring coffee. Oh, and that you didn’t know what you’re talking about. Which i think still stands. Hope you treat your farm animals better than you seem to treat others. Also did farm work and construction. I still don’t think service workers deserve to be treated like shit. Have a great day my dude ❤️


ASoundLogic t1_iu7ms61 wrote

That's actually really a funny example that you gave. It was labor unions that were complaining for better wages which ultimately resulted in the automats having to raise the price of their items, particularly coffee, to accommodate the salaries of the workers. This is what led to the beginning of the downfall of the automat. By the 1960s, they we're considered old and out of date. There were faster options like take out and drive through, while in the early 1900's, Automats were really only competing with full-service, more expensive restaurants. What I am suggesting is the same thing will happen for the same reasons, which will lead to the growth and societal adoption of bot usage. Automats lost out because the food became more expensive, and there were other options to get other food, more quickly. Like then, industry now will pivot. Bot workers will allow the food to be cheaper to the customer, perhaps made more quickly, while offering a more reliable service.


ASoundLogic t1_iu7o2jp wrote

It will be the same as self checkout is today. You will have the one or two people that are around to manage issues like that while there exists a plethora of self-checkout lanes. Having to pay one person versus seven is still a lot of savings.


techimp t1_iu7oh2r wrote

Ahh republican talking points! Thank you, makes it clear that I'm talking with someone who will constantly redirect and deflect logic like Teflon. And thus, not worth discussing how your lack of any discernable empathy nor understand how toxic things have gotten with companies undermining workers rights on the regular or how minimum wage is still not a livable wage exists and is a problem.

Thank you for simplifying your answer to "don't care because it doesn't affect you"


ASoundLogic t1_iu7olmg wrote

I would give it 15 to 20 years. Once you get economies of scale acting to produce standardized bots powered by advanced AI with vision systems, the price will take care of itself. There will be some company out there that will pioneer the standard model of bot chef, standard model of bot waiter, etc. Even Tesla is working on bots to interact with humans.


zackks t1_iu7xdxe wrote

59,000 little tiny unions that don’t all work together in labor action makes them mostly ineffective. I hate it


c0d3s1ing3r t1_iu808s5 wrote

The robot doesn't care about Karen and the bathroom/storefront has been removed.

If Starbucks maintains a dining area for the sake of the "experience" then cameras will monitor customer behavior like Amazon's cashier-less stores already do, and will either alert the police or a Starbucks private security task force (tm) to gun them down on the spot. Either that or customers will naturally be required to have some sort of Starbucks rewards membership in order to access the dining area at all and they'll simply let them ruin the dining area before charging the costs of repairs to them.

People are horrible but some of them give you money, so only allow the ones they give you money to enter the establishment in the first place, or else at least establish their identity that they won't try anything.


c0d3s1ing3r t1_iu80egz wrote

True! My family used to hate going through self-checkout because "it shouldn't be their job". Turns out corporations weren't willing to pander and eventually they caved lol.


minus_minus t1_iu825a1 wrote

> “We have partners that were coerced into working at this store using intimidation and miscommunication and not given any proper benefits when transferred here.”

Employees have been involuntarily transferred to this store apparently.


Triple_C_ t1_iu892ix wrote

Minimum wage will never be your politicized "living wage", and it shouldn't be. When will you people understand that businesses DO NOT exist to provide employment? They exist to make money. They have a right to offer a salary for a particular job, and if someone is willing to work for that amount, WHAT the individual does with the money is NOT the concern of the employer.

Employees must add value to a business. This, and supply and demand, determine salary. Not some bloated, made-up, untenable number that has no anchor point in actual employee value.

That you seriously don't understand these basic tenats of how a business works tells me everything I need to know about you.

As for my Republican talking wanna wait after election day and see how that works out for you? We're moving right again because of individuals like you , and I can't wait to see all of you cry like babies again.


techimp t1_iu8bg16 wrote

Who said the business is gonna do that on their own accord....I literally said they have no incentive to actually be decent unless feet are held to the fire by unions or fed.

I'm talking about addressing labor laws to make things better for everyone (the fed half). It's really good some people manage to struggle and pull themselves outta the should not be a rite of passage or badge of honor to overwork yourself just to maybe get a half-step ahead but more than likely a side grade.

And if you keep propping those who went through hell and back as "this is the way" you REALLY need to check that privilege and ego.


techimp t1_iu8byoi wrote

Do you know what minimum wage was?

It was, at one point, enough to cover food, rent and apply toward the future. You know, something sustainable.

You know what it is now?

Not that. No where in the country can you afford an apartment on minimum wage.

That is what the difference between a livable wage is (aka what minimum wage used to be) and the corpse of it now that has not kept to pace with the times.

You's funny you mention salary. Tells me you don't know how bad it's gotten but are willing to polish those greedy balls of capitalism til may you can delude yourself too that you'll be a millionaire too. Maybe that trickle down will hit ya.....oh's just companies doing the barest minimum to avoid it being called slavery. And you just keep on polishing those balls.


Triple_C_ t1_iu8dg4b wrote

MY privilege and ego?! You're self righteous, arrogant attitude that "Oh I know best" is disgusting. But I'm glad you take that position, because you're about to get spanked, hard. The biggest mistake people like you have made is thinking that the majority of people in the US support your views. They do not. You assume so because your social media and your news tells you so. You assume so because, gosh, how could someone like you be wrong?

Time for a wakeup call.

Watch what happens.


Triple_C_ t1_iu8dm1x wrote

More Socialist pablum. Victim, victim, victim, that's all you people know how to cry. Embracing victimhood as a way of life is so fucking sad, but you've managed to rationalize it, right? After all, the world owes you right?

I honestly can't imagine living that way.


jeffinRTP t1_iu8w5ir wrote

My statement was simply that when Starbucks gave the pay raise to nonunion workers they didn't give it to unionize workers. Your link just proves I was right.

Starbucks illegally withheld raises from union workers, labor board says


Im1Thing2Do t1_iu9683v wrote

But that is not the issue? Unionized workers negotiated higher wages and better benefits for them, corporate doesn’t like that they do that so they pay non-union employees higher wages than the union employees to discourage union activity. Outcome: everyone gets either higher wages, better benefits or both. It’s not about everyone always being paid equal, it’s about everyone being paid more than before the union contract, because without the union corporate wouldn’t have an incentive to pay non-unionized workers more


chaiguy t1_iu98qko wrote

I mean, they already have a robot cafe at SFO and it isn't doing well, that's all I'm saying. Like Starbucks could literally start firing people tomorrow and replacing them with robots, the technology exists. You have to ask why they're not doing that. It's because all the reasons I mentioned, but also because at this point in time, there's no cost savings in doing so. Humans are cheaper than robots.

Yeah, they have ATMs attached to banks, people sleep in the ATM area, they have sex in them, they use them as shooting galleries, it's a problem (after-hours). And they still have real live people working at banks.


jeffinRTP t1_iu9bt00 wrote

But that had nothing to do with my comment. All I said was that Starbucks gave nonunion employees a raise that it didn't give union employees. I never said anything about the good or bad points of unions, whether what they did was legal, etc.


xford t1_iu9rkl5 wrote

The more realistic scenario is that they are feeling the affects of 'schedule optimization' where one person is being staffed in place of two because the algorithm says that is all you need. That single person is then being given completely disparate requirements such as 'stock this section in the next X minutes' while also 'greet every customer within fifteen seconds of them walking in the door' 'along with 'ensure that all drink orders are fulfilled within 3 minutes' and also 'ensure all packages are picked within 90 seconds of scanning the ticket'.

I've manged retail before, it isn't some secret that there are large stretches of time where the staffing levels 'make sense' if you only look at the computer but also objectively suck for the person tasked with working that time when it happens to be even slightly busier than projected.

This is the exact sort of thing that affects workers from minimum wage all the way up to six figure software developers. Kudos to them for standing up and seeking the only path that will empower them to do so without fear of retribution.


peolorat t1_iua0tj6 wrote

How come USA doesn't have big state-wide and even nation-wide unions for sectors like retail, restaurants? Why all these small single location unions?


c0d3s1ing3r t1_iub5mto wrote

Anyone designing such an algorithm should clearly have some automatic additional compensation system in situations where a storefront is busier than expected.

Over optimization of labor is a thing, for sure, but I wouldn't be able to say which one it is without knowing the situation of it better


blkknighter t1_iudk8vy wrote

It’s not doing well because of brand recognition. Everyone knows Starbucks, they know they’re usually order, and they want to use their punch card/app for points and free drinks


chaiguy t1_iudzcjy wrote

Of course that’s part of it. You’d think they’d get at least some business from sheer novelty but I make multiple trips through SFO and I’ve never ever seen a single customer.


halbiird t1_iuf7xmg wrote

yes ! i am actually a partner at this store and i was involuntarily transferred by my manager. there are about 4-5 amazon positions such as a hot foods section (cooking amazon food and stocking it every 2 hours from 6am to 2:30pm) inventory support (which manages the inventory of the amazon go market and receives PO’s, pulls slack to be cooked by the hot foods), the concierge (directing customers to the market / being the bouncer to the market) and the expirary (restocking, recounting stock in boh and THROWING OUT tens and tens of good food) we are not compensated for any of the work we do there and our store set up is awful. we receive the exact same pay as a regular barista despite the amazon work we are entailed