Bizarre Doordash experience - should I say something?
March 5, 2020 4:43 PM   Subscribe

I just had a weird experience with a Doordash driver. Should I give some feedback about it, or just charge it to the game?

I ordered dinner through Doordash tonight. When the delivery came, though, delivery person didn't knock on my door. Instead, she opened the door and called my name. I'm pretty weirded out by this. As it happened, I was in the front room when she arrived, and my screen door is super creaky, so I could hear the whole process. It's not like she knocked a couple of times and then tried something else after not getting an answer. She just walked up to the porch, opened the screen door, and then immediately opened the main door.

Since I was right there, it wasn't a big deal, but what if I hadn't been? What if I'd been upstairs helping my potty-training toddler? Or just in the kitchen? There's a table in our entryway where my wife and I set our keys, wallets, loose cash, etc. Is this just white-person paranoia? (The driver was also white.)

On the other hand, I'm not trying to cause problems for someone who's working to feed their family. I might be making assumptions about her life, but I feel like it's safe to say she probably has plenty of stress already. She doesn't need to get yelled at by a company that she's not even an employee of. Maybe I should just be thankful nothing happened and get on with my life.

What do you think?
posted by kevinbelt to Human Relations (24 answers total) 1 user marked this as a favorite
It’s a little weird but she’s probably under tremendous time pressure to get deliveries done as fast as possible because this is piece work.

Is it possible she tried to call or text first and you didn’t hear it?
posted by Automocar at 4:47 PM on March 5, 2020 [4 favorites]

I used to drive for Postmates, and this is not okay. I don't care what time pressure there is (and yeah, time pressure sucks). For her own protection, she shouldn't be doing this.

But I have a feeling that trying to resolve this through Doordash is going to result in overly punitive measures for her. You should have just discussed with her at the time, but I understand being taken aback by the whole thing.

How does Doordash's rating system work? Is it a star system or a happy face/sad face choice? If it's the former, just ding her a star. I don't know what you should do if you only have a yay/boo choice.
posted by queensissy at 4:52 PM on March 5, 2020 [2 favorites]

With things like this I tend to let it slide and assume that if it were part of a pattern of bad or weird behaviour, they'll get negative feedback eventually and all the consequences that come with that. On the offchance they just made a rash decision and won't do it again, I lean toward to giving a mulligan. No five stars, though.
posted by Municipal Hare at 4:53 PM on March 5, 2020 [5 favorites]

Response by poster: There aren't any missed calls or texts on my phone. She was about fifteen minutes early, so even though there's time pressure, she seems to be handling it OK.

I don't see a rating system on mobile web, just a comment form with a free-form textarea.
posted by kevinbelt at 4:56 PM on March 5, 2020

I am the kind of person whose brain would eventually, one day, glitch and reach for a doorknob. Especially if I was a poorly-paid exploited worker likely working multiple gigs.

Let this be a reminder to lock your doors. Please don't report them unless you truly believe there was any sort of malice or intent to harm involved.
posted by Lyn Never at 5:02 PM on March 5, 2020 [39 favorites]

Yeah, to me that's at the level of correct-it-in-the-moment or let it go - nothing wrong with saying, "please knock before opening the door, you could let a pet get outside or give someone a scare" when it happens, but it's definitely not worth causing some poor platform delivery person trouble over. You weren't at risk, it wasn't malicious or offensive and you got your food in time, so just write it off as a small manners error and let it go.
posted by Frowner at 5:15 PM on March 5, 2020 [14 favorites]

Also lock your door if you're leaving valuables in the hall! Burglars are the ones who walk around trying doors and coming in looking for stuff to take, not delivery drivers.
posted by Frowner at 5:16 PM on March 5, 2020 [41 favorites]

They delivered your food as quickly as possible, no harm no foul. I just assume all gig workers are extremely exploited / overworked, especially people doing piece work like this, so I would cut your fellow human some slack and let it go. It's not like they're UPS drivers who get paid an actual wage with a union (and one of my UPS drivers will put my packages inside my door if I leave it unlocked).

If this bothered you a lot, maybe you should look into the conditions these people are working under and reconsider using these platforms. Doordash in particularly is well known for systemically stealing tips.
posted by bradbane at 5:19 PM on March 5, 2020 [4 favorites]

I would be super concerned and report it. Your safety is #1.
posted by DoubleLune at 5:31 PM on March 5, 2020 [2 favorites]

It doesn't matter what your working conditions are. You don't open stranger's doors. Or even doors of people you know, without permission.
posted by NotLost at 5:54 PM on March 5, 2020 [8 favorites]

A possibility is that this person has a background in a culture where opening doors in that way is not taboo. For example, I lived in China for a while and this type of thing would happen more commonly there than in the U.S.
posted by bearette at 6:00 PM on March 5, 2020 [2 favorites]

I’d leave it be and lock my doors.
posted by quince at 6:51 PM on March 5, 2020 [2 favorites]

This is a threat to HER safety — what the hell is she doing walking blind into strangers’ houses?! She doesn’t know who they are or how they’ll react. I would reach out to either her (if possible) or via the app to express concern, because god forbid this delivery person walks into the wrong house, you know? So reckless.

Also, don’t feel weird for how shaken this has left you. I’ve had strangers just walk into my house uninvited before, too, and it’s an extremely, extremely unsettling experience.
posted by rue72 at 6:55 PM on March 5, 2020 [7 favorites]

She shouldn’t have done that and it would freak me out but honestly if you don’t want people walking through your front door, the answer is to keep it locked.
posted by Jubey at 6:59 PM on March 5, 2020 [12 favorites]

What she did was far out of American norms, especially given that Ohio is a Castle Doctrine state. It's a problem that in order to get a message to her you would have to go through Doordash, but someone really needs to let her know before she opens the wrong door.
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 1:28 AM on March 6, 2020 [4 favorites]

WHY WAS YOUR DOOR UNLOCKED!?!?!? that is unsafe for so many reasons!

it is absolutely weird that a stranger just came into your house without permission. but, if this is the kind of locale where doors are left unlocked, maybe it's normal for people to just walk in? i know that's the case in some places, but usually they aren't strangers.

i would not report to door dash, because as others have said it's not worth this person getting fired over.
posted by misanthropicsarah at 7:28 AM on March 6, 2020

Also, there's a big difference between opening a door and calling out while standing outside versus actually setting foot inside the house.
posted by Larry David Syndrome at 7:42 AM on March 6, 2020 [1 favorite]

The NEXT time you order something from Door dash, they will ask you to rate your LAST food and delivery experience. You can leave up to 5 stars for each. I agree with the above that she was probably just not thinking/trying to be fast. It's on you to keep your door locked at all times.
posted by pearlybob at 7:48 AM on March 6, 2020

As you didn't lock the door, how are you even sure it was fully shut? Opening and calling through a cracked-open door when you're an expected delivery person doesn't strike me as crazy weird or aggressive.

If this was a novel, I'd say a person getting angry over someone opening an unlocked front door that leads to a hallway where they keep their keys, etc. was actually angry not at the intrusion but at themselves for not realizing how foolish it was to keep valued possessions close to an unlocked door and displacing that onto the convenient low-status stranger who they have the power to punish. As it is, I'd say: she didn't invade your home, she didn't do anything else strange that you've mentioned. She opened your unlocked door. Jeepers. Leave her job alone.
posted by praemunire at 9:00 AM on March 6, 2020 [3 favorites]

Like someone else has mentioned above, I've *absolutely* done this on autopilot--within the last two weeks. I walked up to the door of a gentleman I'd met a couple times, but whose home I'd never been to. On the walk over to his place, my mom called me and we had a nice chat for ten minutes or so. When I was going up this guy's stoop, I told my mom Id call her over the weekend, hung up, and--fueled by the feeling of "I was just talking to mom, I'm thinking of mom's house," I just stuck my dang hand out on the doorknob, pushed the door open, and the second I found myself in his foyer I thought, oh god, I have messed up. He was cool, we had a laugh.

Moral of the story: lock your door if you're weirded out by people like me just waltzing in.
posted by late afternoon dreaming hotel at 10:01 AM on March 6, 2020 [1 favorite]

Eep. I wouldn't report it, but the idea of someone popping in like that freaks me out. We have a mastiff and utter mayhem would ensue if a stranger would just sort of appear. Would give me gray hair for dayyys.
posted by speakeasy at 10:14 AM on March 7, 2020

Response by poster: Update: I dropped it. Too much other stuff going on at work and at home to care about something theoretical. Nothing actually happened, aside from getting my meal earlier than I expected, so I’m letting it drop.

I guess I didn’t understand the extent to which keeping doors locked all the time has become the standard. My wife always does, and it makes me feel like I live in a prison. I’ll be honest, I’m probably still not gonna be great about keeping them locked, but going forward I’ll at least be more aware of the risk I’m assuming.
posted by kevinbelt at 4:59 PM on March 7, 2020 [1 favorite]

I guess I didn’t understand the extent to which keeping doors locked all the time has become the standard.

I think that's very dependent on the neighborhood you live in. I didn't lock my front door for thirty years but have recently moved to a new place where it is appropriate. In two cases friends who bought houses were told that the patio door and back door keys were lost a long time ago so they just made sure to never lock them.

As you say though, it's just a matter of weighing the probable consequences.
posted by Tell Me No Lies at 10:39 PM on March 7, 2020

My wife always does, and it makes me feel like I live in a prison. I’ll be honest, I’m probably still not gonna be great about keeping them locked, but going forward I’ll at least be more aware of the risk I’m assuming.

So your wife likes to keep her stuff on the front table with the door locked. You are choosing the level of risk for everyone in your house when you leave the door unlocked. And it's not just about your stuff, I've had a strange man wander into my house when a roommate left the front door unlocked, and believe me that your wallet might go missing is not the first thing that occurs to you in that situation.
posted by yohko at 2:19 AM on March 13, 2020 [3 favorites]

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