If you’ve used Uber in the last few days, you’ve likely come across a peculiar advisory on the ride-share app—one that directly calls out Mayor Bill de Blasio for pledging to crack down on the number of Uber drivers clogging up New York City streets.
Because of an unprecedented rise in drivers for hire in New York and the relatively stagnant number of official taxis combing the city streets in comparison, Mayor de Blasio proposed a bill that would institute an annual cap on ride-share vehicles in NYC. With the cap in effect, city government officials would study the service and its impact on congestion, reports the New York Daily News.
The bill, which could be voted on by the city council as early as next week, apparently sparked the ire of Uber, as the app recently programmed a new category called “DE BLASIO,” in which no cars can be found encircling a user’s location.
Here’s what it looks like when you click on the “DE BLASIO” tab on your Uber app:
If you click on the “see why” part of the advisory, you get a message that Uber’s most faithful clientele might see as apocalyptic: “This is what Uber will look like in NYC if Mayor de Blasio’s Uber cap bill passes.” The screen then prompts you to send an angry citizen’s email to the city council to protest the bill.
This is a pretty subtle way of Uber prolonging their already somewhat tense and public battle with the mayor’s office. Late last month, crowds of Uber drivers gathered outside City Hall to protest de Blasio’s bill, carrying signage that demanded city government “stand up for Brooklyn jobs” and “save Uber as we know it.”
Saving Uber hasn’t necessarily been on the top of city government’s agenda though, because times are currently thriving for the business. Uber is the by far the largest rideshare service in the world, and is currently valued at over $40 billion, according to the New York Times. The service has paved much of the way for the for-hire vehicle industry’s 60 percent growth in New York City since 2011.
[H/T The Next Web]
Follow Sam Blum on Twitter @Blumnessmonster