Think Freely Media presents Common Sense with Paul Jacob

Customers in Germany and elsewhere have flouted irrational attacks on the popular ride-sharing service Uber.

As I have explained before, Uber’s software lets passengers and drivers connect in a way that bypasses regularly regulated taxicabs. Cabbies don’t necessarily oppose the innovation. Many see Uber’s app as a nifty way to get customers. And, of course, many riders see it as a nifty way to get rides.

But taxi dispatchers? Well, that’s another story.

At least it is in Germany, where an organization for dispatchers called Taxi Deutschland has kvetched that the San Francisco company lacks the Necessary Permits to do electronic dispatching in Deutschland. Thanks to TD’s loud complaints, a German court issued a temporary injunction against Uber, prohibiting it from conjoining ride-seekers and ride-givers in happy synchrony.

Uber decided to keep operating in the country anyway, despite the threat of huge fines.

They’ve gotten lots of moral support. In response to the injunction, customers quietly but firmly told regulators “Laissez nous faire!” — a.k.a. “You’re not the boss of me!” — by doubling, tripling and even quintupling demand for Uber’s app. Matthew Feeney of Cato Institute points to jumps in signups in the days following the court’s order: in Frankfurt a 228 percent jump, Munich 329 percent, Hamburg 590 percent.

Last July, in the U.K., Brits surged their signups eight times over after protests against the company.

Keep up the good work, rebels.

This is Common Sense. I’m Paul Jacob.

By: Redactor


  1. JFB says:

    This is wonderful, and hopefully only the beginning of an awakening of the population that there is a cost – to them – in service and fees for the restrictions for the regulatory and licensed “for their protection” sectors.
    Generally regulations shortly digresses to a love fest between the regulators and the regulates, most commonly to the detriment of the customers of the good or service.
    The best to do here is to continue and expand the fight with the “if you think that is foolish and costly, look at this” model.
    Guyot’s thought of the day was most appropriate, and true.

  2. Karen says:

    Love Uber – use it all the time. The response time is amazing as well. I have never waited more then 5 minutes for a driver. Usually they arrive in 2 mins. I have never had a cab dispatched in that time. Usually the cabs arrive within 20 mins and the drivers are down right hostile if you only go a short distance.
    Not so with Uber. Every driver I’ve had has been pleasant with clean cars. No one has ever griped about the brevity of a trip either.
    California legislature, under pressure from the taxi commissions, is considering forcing Uber & Lyft to obtain inordinate amounts of insurance, among other demands. I have written & protested this “law.”
    Everyone should be so sick of the micromanagement of government in their lives. It stifles entrepreneurship as well as our quality of life.

  3. laughtiger says:

    You’re missing the bigger story — Uber in the end is just another taxi company, although with more money and power, and the Silicon Valley connections to bend governments to its interests. For the drivers themselves, Uber has made things worse.

    The real “Uber Rebellion” is going on among the drivers who are organizing to fight back against their new uber-masters. There are driver organization and actions going on among Uber drivers across the US (LA, Seattle, SF, NYC); at the same time an activist spark has been lit in the licensed cab industry, prompting new interest from both the Teamsters and AFL-CIO. These are the rebels that threaten Fuhrer Kalanick’s new international taxi Empire…

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