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Only 4 stars for you — China’s Social Credit System

pexels-photo-233129Confession—I have a poor Uber rating. Not terrible, but just below satisfactory, and lower than mom’s. That’s embarrassing.

Maybe it’s from splitting Uber ride with my friends, convincing the drivers to “please, please, please can we fit just three more girls?” We are really good at squeezing. Or maybe my poor rating is from choosing to engage in a conversation with my driver—or staying completely silent. Do people want to talk or does Ubers etiquette follow airplane etiquette?

It feels weird, getting out of the car, knowing that my driver just rated me—and I rate them, do I give them four or five stars? And that rating determines who might bother to pick me up next time I decide to Uber—and in some cases, if they keep their job. Drivers with a rating below 4.6 are automatically on probation and most likely fired—all because a passenger might not have appreciated being dropped off only one block away.