I normally love Thanksgiving but having to take a week off from our Friday Roundups only means that now we have double the stories to write about! Today, RSG contributor Jack Ross, takes a look at the fall-out from Emil Michael’s (or is it Michelle?) comments and also gives us an update on everything else that happened in the rideshare world over the past two weeks. Hint: it’s a lot!
Happy Thanksgiving to all! After a week hiatus that gave ample time for the dust to settle, we’re back. And there is aplenty to discuss: a deep look at all the comings and goings after Uber’s no-bueno week in mid November, Lyft and Sidecar strike back and some interesting facts about how much money you might be making on the road.
And a reminder of how much Uber might actually be worth: 100,000,000,000. (that’s alot!) But first…
HEADLINE OF THE WEEK: Uber’s CEO Compared Company’s Woes to Ferguson
I don’t really even know what to say here — this story doesn’t comprise much besides two tweets from reputable people who allegedly witnessed it — but still. Man.
Thanks to the data from the guys at Sherpa, this Nerd Wallet piece gets super-duper detailed about what drivers make per ride and each year, while also accounting for their costs. Some awesome bar graphs and a city-by-city breakdown, to boot.
Speaking of the dudes over at Sherpa, check out their latest survey on independent earnings (co-hosted by RSG!), if you wanna be a part of the next big story to break (and help out other drivers in the process).
Also, a detailed look comparing Deducting Mileage against Actual Expenses from the White Coat Investor that serves as a nice potential guide for any driver.
A similarly detailed and long-winded look inside Car and Driver’s rideshare fantasy—becoming an Uber driver for the night behind the wheel of a Rolls Royce Phantom. Lots and lots of people posing for pictures in their photo gallery; far fewer possibilities, they conclude, that this model could ever be paid for in a driver’s lifetime.
Two quick hits to the national rideshare fight out of Tacoma (Lyft shutting down Seattle’s southern cousin for the moment) and the Nevada, home to guns, prostitutes, sports betting, hot weather and Uber bans. Might be the best for all parties involved, given Uber’s spotty track record of late.
UBER’s WEEK-FROM-HELL FALLOUT, pt. 1: PRIVACY
Oh yeah, so that idea, that a potentially $100 billion company (don’t take my word for it, take Bloomberg’s), who doesn’t seem to have much regard for their work force or public opinion or pretty much anything outside of their bottom line, could potentially abuse their power, and has access to knowing where anyone with the app is at all times, might be somewhat troubling? Or more so than a journalist they might dig up an old internet secret about?
Well, yeah, that narrative—of what the bigger of Uber’s two offenses was—is getting traction.
“But in this case it seems that reading audiences cared more about their own privacy than that of some media person they don’t know,” concludes a spot on overview from Venture Beat about the oddity behind the outrage, complete with some interesting bar graphs of their own to drive the point home.
And it might be the ol’ canary in the coalmine, says io9, as far as how people take big data seriously and start to question its potential future for non-data (aka people).
This Yahoo writer then went to Demo (a tech event) in San Jose to prove his own theory, and found (from a whopping sample size of 6 start ups) that new start ups do NOT take privacy seriously. Kind of a big jump to conclusion via a click-bait headline, if you ask me, Yahoo.
Though, of course, plenty of Uber supporters did come out of the woodwork, like this guy at Bothsidesofthetable, who pretty much concluded Uber’s practices are sound (and “not evil”) because they operate in a power-hungry, money-fueled, dog-eat-dog, etc world of tech. And they are single-handily revolutionizing the world for better because he gets to his meetings on time. I really enjoyed reading this take; I do not really agree with any of it.
UBER’s WEEK-FROM-HELL FALLOUT, pt. 2: PANDO-GATE
Two medium writers argue about Pando’s Sarah Lacy and her intentions getting into the ring with Uber. The first suggests she is a bit of an egoist (“Here Ego Again” quite the cheeky title); the second says, nah, that assessment simply ain’t fair — and calls out 10 pretty solid points to illustrate how Uber kind of forced her hand (ok, maybe entirely).
UBER’s WEEK-FROM-HELL FALLOUT, pt. 3: OTHER COMPANIES DO GREAT!
Like Lyft, who reported they had their “Best Week EVER!” according to Buzzfeed, while John Zimmer made the rounds in an interview with Time Magazine, essentially quoting Mase and Puff Daddy, saying Uber “ain’t gonna hold me down. Oh no. I’ve got to keep on moving.” More or less, a direct quote.
TechCrunch even put together a super lengthy and interesting brief on Lyft switching it up and changing their tactics, complete with 2 money info-graphics/comics prepping riders for a chilled out rideshare experience.
This CNET piece even gets a plug for Sidecar in there as the “competition!” narrative took hold.
And my favorite move had to be the Gett team circulating an open letter to Uber denouncing their practices and calling them “assholes” in a very public way. Best of luck if Emil Michael ever gets a budget to dig up shit on you, Gett HQ.
IN CLOSING OTHER NEWS: Check out our mention in The Simple Dollar about how to make money driving Uber, a cool new rideshare company called BuddyTruk, this really interesting new subscription rideshare company based out of Arizona (with hybrids!), and a funny/pertinent Yahoo piece about how France is not down with Uber’s cause (don’t get Parisians started on Google or Netflix, either). Vive le resistance! And last, but certainly not least: a design company that needs a new name. :/
So what’d you guys think of all the fall-out from pre-Thanksgiving Uber stories?
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-Jack @ The Rideshare Guy