"We will appeal this decision on behalf of millions of
The Mayor of London has asked Transport for London to meet with Uber following the firm's totally heartfelt apology – issued after it collected 730,000 signatures protesting TfL's decision not to renew its licence. Sadiq Khan said: "I welcome the apology from Dara Khosrowshahi, the Uber CEO. Obviously I am pleased that he has …
A beautiful example of political theatre. It's interesting that this follows a similar pattern to when the London club Fabric got shut down. After a few meetings and an appeal, they were back up and running with some more stringent policies. I'm sure that the same will happen with Uber - Although probably with a few more brown envelopes passed under the table.
Will this be one of the last peaceful Government vs Corporations battles, ultimately using humans as ammunition?
Been reading too much Richard Morgan perhaps.
The inevitable Uber PR leanings though.. scary and all those mongs signing the petition.. Sure TfL could be more easily seen as the conventional bad guy but that's mainly due to Uber's campaign.
You don't have to take any notice of Uber's PR to form the opinion that TfL's decision to revoke their licence does warrant a great deal of (independent) scrutiny. A body making quasi-judicial decisions suddenly reverses the position it took under a Conservative Mayor, to amazingly align with the views of a new Labour Mayor - the same body whose Chair is that self-same Mayor, and whose Deputy Chair is another Labour politician appointed by the Mayor. It hardly gives the impression of independence and transparency of decision-making, does it?
Who ever said that TFL was independent of the mayor's office?? I always believed that the two were closely linked.
Well, quite. But in in licensing private hire vehicles, to use the Mayor's own words they're exercising a quasi-judicial function - so they have to behave independently. See the problem?
@AC "Who ever said that TFL was independent of the mayor's office?? I always believed that the two were closely linked."
Very closely linked as this page confirms from the TfL website detailing TfL Board members:
"Sadiq Khan, Chair. Sadiq Khan is the Mayor of London and has appointed himself as Chair of TfL."
I seem to recall the previous Mayor, Boris Johnson, was also Chair of TfL so the position seems to go with the office of "Mayor of London".
Some people just like Uber's service and don't care about its behaviour, they have a genuine motive to sign that petition.
But it did seem to get a very large number of signatories, and Tweeted exhortations to sign it, very quickly (no one I know spent their Friday night in London looking for petitions to sign).
There were Tweets of the same form (but in different languages) from Monte Carlo to Bogota suggesting people might want to sign - a cynic would wonder quite what the incentive was for many of these people, some of whom were not self-employed media types, to support Uber's London operation so enthusiastically and so quickly.
So I actually got a Facething update from sister saying sign the thing. Not what I was expecting.
My sister is quite vociferous for womens rights (got chased out of her own company by the people that she sold it too when amongst other things they though a strip club was the appropriate end to a business dinner with their new employee). She is also very very anti sexual abuse type stuff (she got abused by a teacher when she was a kid - teacher recently went down for 6 years).
So anyway, in response to her request to sign the petition I responded with the litany of news stories that have been on here regarding Ubers utter balls-fuck-cock-up of any kind of ethical, moral & social responsibility or respect for the law (I only went back to the end of May - I got bored), she replies "Well the drivers have always been fine with me"!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!
This is the level of fuck wits we are dealing with (sorry sis)!!
Downvoted for your use of the word "mongs".
And in turn, I've voted Ishtiaq down for having a sadly thin skin. I grew up with all manner of words like that that are now officially non-PC and therefore totally unacceptable. I'm old enough and wise enough to know what people really mean, and be reasonably relaxed about terminology (including when I'm on the receiving end).
'black' (traditional) cabbies.
They are simply trying emulate the fight they had when those 'mini-cabs' first burst upon the scene those many decades ago.
There is little stopping 'black' (traditional) cabbies from setting up their own 'App' scheme as has been done in many other countries.
Didn't end too well for Hailo when they started accepting minicabs (even though I'm pretty sure the user could select/pay for a black cab if they wanted).
Surely better solution is for Uber to allow black-cabs to advertise as black-cabs.
Can't find a fair - let Uber point you to one for a nominal fee.
I have a sneaky suspicion that that's not what cabs want though. Using app is easier that hailing - and nothing's going to change that, apart from getting rid of apps.
Uber has exposed an anachronism in taxi-licensing in the UK. The solution is to close the loophole and remove the synthetic distinction between Hackney carriages and other vehicles, and work on ways of avoiding exploitation of drivers (and fares) and relegate Uber to the dustbin of history, where it belongs.
Apologies are meaningless - are they going to develop a set of ethical behaviours overnight? Are they going to pay tax properly? Are they going to admit they have employees? Will they treat those employees like they have value?
No of course not, they are a Sillycon Valley 'Disruptor', that would be tantamount to admitting that anyone outside of SIlycon Valley deserves respect and not be exploited sheep.
Personally I am quite happy with the concept that I can't afford to take cabs very often because cab drivers make a decent living. I'm not comfortable with billionaires in silicon valley turning every group of employees into sub minimum wage temps, because I might be next.
Personally I am quite happy with the concept that I can't afford to take cabs very often
You can't afford to take them very often, yet you subsidise them: black cabs are allowed to use bus lanes and exclusive parking zones, which imposes a small cost on every other road user with no collective benefit.
Black cabs are not efficient - they frequently drive with no passenger in search of a fare - and are foul polluters. A form of transport that is dirty, privileged and unaffordable for most Londoners isn't worth defending.
When I was a Londoner, I was not by any stretch of the imagination "rich" - yet I could afford to take a black cab occasionally.
Of course, it only needed to be occasional, because at least 363 days a year the tube was more than adequate for my needs.
I've never used Uber, and can't imagine myself doing so. On those (very, very rare) occasions when I need someone else to drive me somewhere, I'm still content to take a licensed and labelled taxi. And no, I still don't think I'm rich.
Perhaps the complaint is that Uber aren't too fussed about the drivers and only ask them to self-certify that they've got a private hire licence ?
Wasn't one of the longstanding complaints that while PH drivers need a PH licence and appropriate insurance, many hadn't bothered and Uber didn't appear to care ?
In the BBC report, they stated that Uver claimed to have never used Greyball in London. Even if that is so, the fact the created (or obtained) Greyball and DID use it in other parts of the world still says a lot about the company, it's morals and it's culture, which still has a bearing on the "fit and proper" argument.
You're having a laugh. Where I live (Posting as AC behind proxies because it isn't worth doing otherwise) corruption is absolutely endemic. You advertise you're taking paying passengers somewhere and you'll be pulled over and "fined" for something by the police, every single journey. That's after the extra "costs" to get all the bureaucracy in order to get a taxi licence.
Greyball would be absolutely essential here just to be able to make enough to survive. Probably isn't needed in London at all. You Westerners are wrapped in your cotton wool, working system of government and not having to worry about being shaken down all the time. Talk about a lack of understanding of culture.
As for safety, I'm really not exaggerating when I say Ubers are thousands of times safer than any other form of public transport here. Tracked, modern cars with navigation, no need to carry cash, and publically rated drivers which weeds out those that cannot drive properly. We live in different worlds when it comes to expectations, clearly.
Uber works, I've seen people break out of absolute poverty - banks are willing to give car loans if you have an Uber account with a decent rating and a driving licence, and you can earn enough to put food on the table, petrol in the car and send the kids to school - all those things you take for granted. But I'm sure you'd be pleased for all of it to collapse just to punish some badly behaved exec somewhere in America. Kindly leave us out of it, it's making a revolutionary difference here.
An excellent and wideranging report on how Uber operates. It seems pretty balanced and objective too. It ought to be required reading for anyone commenting on any Uber story.
I think some of the most salient points raised there include the separation of the Uber companies, where the money goes, the fact Hailo and it's app was around at the same time because other minicab firms were already using apps, ie before Uber, and the outrageously unfair competition by operating at a loss of about 50% per journey to kill the competition. Having a "loss-leader" as part of your product line to get customers is one thing, but selling your entire product range at a 50% loss is surely unfair competition.
Uber seem to have done an Apple in terms of generating the impression they invented taxi apps when the reality is they spent $billions on publicity.
Presumably therefore, all the revenue raised belongs to Uber London Ltd and is subject to UK Tax, both Corporation and VAT?
You can be sure due to some very 'clever' cross-licensing deals put in place by some very 'clever' lawyers and accountants, that Uber London is running at a £1 loss per year.
"Presumably therefore, all the revenue raised belongs to Uber London Ltd and is subject to UK Tax, both Corporation and VAT?"
From the link above, the users use an app from Dutch UBV, pay their taxi fee to Dutch UBV and Dutch UBV then contract and pay for the ride provided by London based ULL. Profits, if any, will only ever end up in the Netherlands, possibly via an Irish subsidiary one day.
Threats of Legal Action, pushing petitions, throwing out PR complaints by the bucket full. Result: No movement from TFL. Licence still revoked.
Apology and a promise that we'll look at changing. Result: TFL says ok lets sit down and talk about what needs to change to get you back your licence.
For the first time in a long time, I feel heartened that British values are not being overridden by yanky bullshit. Apologies and negotiation winning out over threats, PR and legal bollocks. Who woulda thunk it?
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