UBER RIDES THE WORLD

News of Uber racing into China brings to mind images of young, rich guys with naked girls in Ferraris, racing late at night on a Beijing ring road. You know it’s going to end badly – though in Uber’s case, the young, rich guys will be in a billion-dollar wreck instead of a million-dollar one – but it really doesn’t bother you that much.
Robert Boxwell, South China Morning Post, 09 July 2015
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ber is taking over the world one city at a time. And taxi drivers, regulations and unethical leadership have not hindered its international growth in the slightest. Whether it is due to the “mandate of the people” or Uber’s blatant disregard for laws, the ride-sharing service has been a major success and is now on its way to China. Racing after an initial public offering, Uber is about to hit its biggest speed bump so far. As it heads toward China, the company will encounter a challenge it has not yet faced: the millions of Chinese taxi drivers and their local taxi cartels. With job loss being the most threatening effect to a community, Uber CEO Travis Kalanick claims that Uber creates jobs, yet he does so in a Silicon Valley “New-Economy” kind of way. But critics argue that his statements are blatantly inaccurate due to the simple economics of taxi drivers. An influx of drivers drags prices down, and local taxis can’t compete when Uber drivers don’t have to pay for the licensing and insurance that a regulated taxi driver is required to have. This has caused many protests across the world. From France to Hong Kong, bans on Uber have been enacted following protests by taxi drivers.

Uber’s response has ultimately been to ignore the bans, as it sees its intrusion into the market as “privileged confrontation” instead of breaking the law. Although Uber is a creative disruption that has made transportation easier and more accessible for many people, it is also a clear exploitation of the laws to earn a profit with no regard to the institutions in place.

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Debate: Related Articles
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For now, though, it’s worth standing back and enjoying the moment. The biggest, scariest lobbying machine in the nation is hard at work lobbying to make most Americans’ lives a little bit better. How often is that going to happen?.Justin Fox, Bloomberg, 09 June 2015
Not quite sure why ride-sharing app Uber is getting so much flack? Political muscle of the taxi industry is one answer. But there are legitimate safety concerns at stake.Jacob Davidson, CNN, 10 December 2014
So how does all of that – the cleverness to come up with the idea, the skill to create the company, the discipline to make it work – square with the portrait of Uber that has emerged this week? It appears to be a company run by juveniles.Joe Nocera, The New York Times, 21 November 2015
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UBER RIDES THE WORLD

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