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Lyft Drivers Sue Uber for Alleged Sabotage
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Summary: Lyft drivers say Uber intentionally sabotaged them by creating fake accounts that would cancel rides. 

It seems like litigation against Uber is never ending, and now the multi-billion dollar transportation company is now being sued by more drivers—this time from rival company Lyft.

  
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Lyft drivers filed a class action suit against Uber on Monday. The lawsuit alleges that Uber created fake accounts in order to spam Lyft drivers with phony ride requests, thus slowing down their business. The lawsuit was filed in San Francisco, and the lead plaintiff is Lyft driver Ryan Smythe, who said he joined Lyft a month after he heard talk of Uber’s OPERATION SLOG.

The Verge investigated the claim of OPERATION SLOG in 2014 after rumors of its existence surfaced. The publication found that Uber was in fact operating a systemic “sabotage campaign” against its main app competitor, Lyft. Uber hired brand ambassadors to create fake Lyft accounts with prepaid iPhones and credit cards to send ride requests that were promptly cancelled. Verge called SLOG “a previously unreported aspect of the company’s ruthless efforts to undermine its competitors.”

Currently dominant Uber is known publicly for its win-at-all-costs tactics, but SLOG appears to be a prime example of how important it was for them to crush its competitors.

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In addition to canceling Lyft rides, The Verge wrote that OPERATION SLOG’s mission was also to recruit Lyft drivers to work for Uber. Using the prepaid phones and phony Lyft accounts, Uber ambassadors would sometimes ride with Lyft drivers and try to convince them to move over to Uber. Sometimes, ambassadors even carried “driver kits” to give them, and these kits included a new cell phone and anything else a driver would need to start driving for Uber. Lyft and Uber declined to comment for The Verge’s story.

In Monday’s lawsuit, the Lyft drivers are suing Uber for unfair business practices as well as intentional interference. The lawsuit claimed Uber’s intent was to deprive Lyft drivers of income.



Do you think Uber’s tactics were illegal? Let us know what you think in the comments below.

Source: Washington Times and The Verge

Photo courtesy of L.A. Times



 

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