Both socialism and capitalism are complex ideologies with distinctive characteristics. Capitalism refers to an economic structure wherein privatization predominates (as opposed to governmental dominance) and in which there is incentive to generate returns and, consequently, wealth. Under capitalist systems, individuals invest money in a business venture to create a service or a good that can be offered to customers on the open market. After deducting distribution and production overhead, the firm’s investors are often entitled to a portion of any returns generated from sales made. These investors frequently put their profits back into the company in order to grow it and add new customers (Chryssides & Kaler, 2010). On the other hand, socialism is a system of the economy wherein the government controls the manufacturing of products and has an impetus to distribute labor and wealth equitably among its members. All that individuals produce under socialism is viewed as a social commodity, inclusive of services. Every person has a right to a portion of the rewards from the usage or sale of anything that they helped create, whether it be a service or a good. Governmental authorities have to be able to manage distribution, production, and property in order to ensure that every member of society receives their equitable share. Socialism puts a greater emphasis on advancing society, whilst capitalism prioritizes the interests of the individual (Chryssides & Kaler, 2010). According to socialists, a capitalism system breeds inequality through unequal wealth distribution and the exploitation of society by powerful figures. In an ideal world, socialism would regulate the economy to prevent the issues that come with capitalism.
The emergence of digital marketplaces for the purchase and sale of labor is changing the nature of employment and posing a threat to the legal frameworks in place to control it. Based on one’s perspective, Uber has emerged as either the poster child of this shift, upending both employment and labor legislation and established taxi regulations. Technological ideologists applaud the conversion of traditional laborers into micro-entrepreneurs who are liberated to work for however long and whenever they would like in accordance with their preferences for leisure and income, whereas critics see a degrading of the standard labor relations and elevated levels of employment market vulnerability and precariousness. With very few outliers, most research on Uber, nevertheless, miss the opportunity to contextualize it historically and, in particular, neglect to look at the development of taxi capitalism and the production links that underpin it (Cramer & Krueger, 2016). On the surface, it appears that everyone agrees that capitalism is essential to comprehending how the platform economy, in which Uber operates, works and what that means for the workforce. The Uber business is supported by capitalism because private owners invest their money and other people’s money to create services and goods they can sell on the open marketplace. The forces of competition, demand, and supply determine salaries and prices. Since the production means are not held in common ownership and because all or some of the economy is not centrally regulated by the government, Uber would not be acceptable from a socialist standpoint.
Uber has been able to maintain the pricing of their services lower than that of conventional transport firms by avoiding the expensive cost associated with hiring personnel. Uber pricing would increase if states were to govern it as a transportation provider that must adhere to the same rules that taxi businesses have in place. The expense associated with running the Uber business would be greatly impacted by employee salaries, benefits, taxes, and paid time off. According to research, Uber drivers may make up to $90,000 annually whereas typical taxi drivers only make $30,000. Due to the expense and potential to compete with other businesses in the same area, the annual salary of normal taxi drivers would be much lower if they worked for Uber (Smith, 2016). In order to operate in some places, Uber would then need to obtain licenses and certifications in accordance with the law, which would also raise the price associated with their services. Uber would eventually have to reduce the wages offered to the drivers and increase their per-mile prices if restrictions were imposed that forced them to operate as a taxi firm. Uber currently presents itself as a differentiator of cozy enterprises and as a benefit to both customers and workers, and is highly commended for doing so. Due to their innovative concept and the outstanding work of their independent contractors, their firm’s (or technological application’s) success has been compensated with large returns.
According to the utilitarian perspective, the most beneficial course of action is one that promotes the greatest common good. In accordance with Jonsson and Voorneveld (2018), utilitarianism entails reducing human character and output to simple representations driven solely by their response to suffering and pleasure. According to this concept, Uber thus provides excellent potential for itself, consumers, and equips its drivers generate reasonable income. The firm’s senior managers have technically embraced a stakeholder-centric strategy that takes into account the corporate interests of all stockholders in their process of decision-making. Due to Uber’s entrance into the transportation industry, customers now have more options regarding the accessibility and caliber of transportation services. To meet consumer needs and increase interest in the usability of the service, the firm uses contemporary technology and inexpensive service price. The management developed a growth-centric ethos through their business tagline, which instills exciting business advancement chances for the organization, in order to foster in employees’ and investors’ interests. The executive’s main goal is to accelerate and sustain the business’s international expansion and growth by luring investors, hiring qualified workers, and promoting the firm’s strategic advantage through an expanded resource base. This tactical choice impacted the firm’s quick growth in the transportation industry. Uber is thus morally acceptable since it offers consumers a good and meets a need that the taxi business was unable to meet initially.
Chryssides, G. D., & Kaler, J. H. (2010). An introduction to business ethics. South-Western Cengage Learning.
Cramer, J., & Krueger, A. B. (2016). Disruptive change in the taxi business: The case of Uber. American Economic Review, 106(5), 177-82.
Jonsson, A & Voorneveld, M (2018). ‘The limit of discounted utilitarianism’, Theoretical Economics, vol. 13, no. 1, pp.19-37.
Smith, J. W. (2016). The Uber-all economy of the future. The Independent Review, 20(3), 383-390.
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