Fake delivery bookings will become an actual crime, thanks to new Senate bill

In contrast, a paying grab customer.  <i>Photo: Grab Philippines / FB</i>
In contrast, a paying grab customer. Photo: Grab Philippines / FB

One has to be a real waste of oxygen to play a cruel prank on delivery riders by booking fake orders that the poor riders then have to pay for—and yet it happens, over and over again, as we’ve all witnessed through many heartbreaking and infuriating videos on social media.

In a Kapihan sa Manila Bay interview today, Senator Koko Pimentel spoke about the progress of Senate Bill 2302, authored by Senator Lito Lapid, contained under Pimentel’s Committee Report No. 273, which seeks to protect delivery riders from “hoax ordering”.

According to Sen Pimentel, legislators have found out that delivery riders are especially vulnerable because they advance the money for cash-on-delivery orders—which means they have to pay out of pocket for canceled or fake bookings.

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Also read: House bill demands fines, six years jail time for people who cancel delivery orders

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The bill aims to protect delivery riders by prohibiting app makers from putting the burden of advance payments on the delivery riders. “Hanapan ninyo ng paraan, i-improve ninyo ang inyong software na hindi dapat mag-advance ang ating mga riders,” said Pimentel during the interview. (“Find a way, improve your software so that delivery riders won’t have to advance [the money].”)

And if hoax orders manage to get through, the bill requires the app companies to pay out the delivery driver’s expected fees nonetheless. Pimentel said that the bill asks app makers to improve their software to prevent “unidentified users [and] fake identity users” from using their apps.

In an accompanying presentation, Pimentel was quoted as saying, “The recent incidents of fake booking and hoax orders are quite alarming. Those acts must be criminalized. Nagtatrabaho ang ating mga riders nang maayos. Yung iba ay inaabot pa ng madaling araw sa kalye para kumita ng pera. Hindi sila dapat linoloko.” (“The riders are doing their jobs right. Some of them are on the road till the wee hours of the morning to earn money. They shouldn’t be victimized.”)

A counterpart bill in Congress, HB 6958, was filed last year.

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Also read: No More Cry: Facebook group Order Hero helps delivery guys sell canceled food orders

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