As thousands of techies head to Austin for SXSW, one city councilwoman stands to lose her job over a regulatory showdown with the ride-sharing firms. Councilwoman Ann Kitchen has proposed rules such as driver fingerprinting. The backlash against it might see her become the first woman in the city’s history to be booted from office. Ann Kitchen never imagined the repercussions of her decision to regulate Uber, the ride-hailing behemoth with a valuation of $62.5bn and – she now knows – a reputation for taking no prisoners.
The 61-year-old Austin councilwoman had the temerity to propose that Uber and its rival, Lyft, be subject to the same rules that apply to other companies offering transport in the Texan state capital.
• Ann Kitchen’s ‘crime’? Aiming for a level playing field.