As ride-sharing becomes more popular, the tension between companies like Uber and traditional taxi unions continues to rise. On Monday, Uber cars in Paris were attacked by French taxi drivers during huge protests against the “unfair competition” posed by rideshare chauffeur programs.
This morning, Kat Borlongan, cofounder of consulting firm Five by Five, tweeted that her Uber car was attacked by cab drivers near the Paris airport:
Uber confirmed the attacks on its blog, calling the violence unacceptable:
Parisians also have a choice when it comes to moving around in their cities, and today’s incident certainly discourages Parisians from choosing a taxi for their next ride. Safety, reliability and choice, not violence, are what continue to draw customers towards private hire vehicles (VTCs).
In France, startups like Uber have to wait 15 minutes before picking up a customer, which is the result of a bill passed in a government attempt to pacify angry taxi unions.
In California, the effort to regulate ride-sharing services has been tumultuous. In June of last year, Uber, Lyft, and Sidecar received cease-and-desist letters from the Los Angeles Board of Taxicab Commissioners’ executive director Thomas M. Drischler. But in September, the ride-sharing services claimed a victory when the California Public Utilities Commission voted to make them legal in the state. Uber has also faced backlash in New York, Washington, D.C., and recently, from customers themselves, who complain about the service’s price surging.JH