In the USA and Canada the app propaganda war is clearly heating up with the release of the short and hard-hitting YouTube-clip ‘Four Uber Myths Debunked – Four things about Uber you wish you never knew’
mentioning the fact that Uber and Lyft are not just technology companies, UberX- and Lyft-passengers are not insured properly, taxi regulation does apply to UberX and that a lack of regulation of these ridesharing apps (or deregulation in other words) is not necessarily a good thing.
The clip was produced by the website ‘Who’s driving you’ (www.whosdrivingyou.org), launched in February this year by the US-based Taxicab, Limousine and Paratransit Association (TLPA) in an effort to provide more information on the taxi and FHV industry’s position on ridesharing apps like Uber and Lyft. The website also lists numerous incidents with these companies and comments on political campaigns and public relations strategies used by these ‘technology companies’.
Not long after the start of the website, Uber-boss Travis Kalanick hit back at the taxi and FHV industry by saying that “we’re in a political campaign, and the candidate is Uber and the opponent is an asshole named Taxi. Nobody likes him, he’s not a nice character, but he’s so woven into the political machinery and fabric that a lot of people owe him favors.” Not long after hiring David Plouffe, a political strategist straight from the White House, Uber, Lyft, Sidecar and other allies launched the website www.taxifacts.com, branding the taxi sector as ‘Big Taxi’, a nasty cartel like Big Oil or Big Tobacco.
The new TLPA-film shows lawyers, transportation specialists, politicians and insurance experts, commenting on “some of the key myths that Uber perpetuates in order to profit from illegal for-hire transportation services that put communities and consumers at risk.” Now it’s Uber’s move.
• With the latest app-videoclip the PR-battle is heating up in the US.