First, just a Monday “starter thought” :
The simplicity of Uber. You can download the app and just click it. Soon, a driver is outside your door. It’s simple, Right?
With some humanity, comes bad conduct. And so it is with Uber. First, Uber confirms that there have been at least 175 sexual assault claims against its drivers. (Story here) And, there are thousands more passengers that say that they have been sexually harassed. Here’s the story of a Daily Beast reporter who claims that she was harassed by an Uber driver after she was picked up from the Democratic convention.
The company has also received another set back in the case of Meyer v. Kalanick,(case here). It’s a class action where the lead named plaintiff, Spencer Meyer, claims that Uber illegally uses a pricing algorithm to restrict price competition between drivers. The effect is that it keeps fares from lowering. Now here’s where the story gets crazy.
First the legal stuff. In the lawsuit, Southern District Judge Jed Rakoff enjoined the company and its CEO from using information that was gathered by “ikntrusive and clandestine” investigation from a private investigator they hired.
If you read the attached lawsuit opinion, the investigator employed some misleading tactics when trying to obtain information about the named plaintiff and his attorney. A crazy story of surveillance and misrepresentation.
The investigator learnerd that Meyers was part of an environmental conservation research project associated with Yale University. So the investigator decided to use that information, almost like a character out of a Grisham novel. He told them that he was doing an article/news report on up-and-coming researchers. The investigator also told co-workers at the law firm of Plaintiff Meyer’s attorney, that he was writing a piece on up-and-coming labor attorneys.
Based on his misrepresentation, he was able to gather private information on both the plaintiff and his lawyer. All of this was at the direction of Uber management. That’s why the judge was so incensed with the conduct and called a halt to it, and said that none of the information could be used in the defense of Uber. All of a sudden, it gives a bit of a bad taste about the way Uber is doing business! Sounds like Uber is going to have a crowded closet of claims against it.
Now to fun stuff!
I usually don’t post a Monday pic o’ day that talks about the past weekend versus the “fight” of Monday, but this was sent to me and it made me laugh.