California bill takes aim at Amazon’s productivity-tracking algorithms

Russell Brandom

The Verge

Illustration by Alex Castro / The Verge

California is poised to pass a new bill pushing back against the productivity measurement algorithms allegedly used in Amazon fulfillment centers, as recently reported by NPR’s Morning Edition and The New York Times. The bill passed California’s lower legislative chamber in May, and the upper chamber is expected to vote on it next week. If passed, the bill would place new transparency requirements on automated quota systems, and block any such systems that could endanger the health and safety of workers.

Introducing the bill in July, Assemblywoman Lorena Gonzalez (D-San Diego) cited a Verge report that found “hundreds” of Amazon warehouse employees had been fired for failing to meet productivity quotas at a single facility in Baltimore...

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