Business, Society, & Ethics
Uber Recruiting the Competition, Ethical? In an article published by the New York Times title “Uber’s Secret Agents: When Poaching Becomes Unethical”, author Neil Irwin sets forth recent information on the questionable methods being used by the transportation service Uber. The service that Uber provides works as such: someone needs a ride somewhere, that person calls Uber to request a car or they use the mobile app or website to request a car, Uber notifies its nearest available driver, driver picks up client and transports him or her to the location they request. It is a very convenient mode of transportation, though more expensive than a taxi cab, for someone who needs to get somewhere and has few options for transportation. Uber has been very successful but, like in all other industries, there is competition. One of Uber’s largest competitors, the transportation and ridesharing service Lyft, has recently filed complaints against Uber for ‘poaching’, or recruiting its drivers as well as intentionally canceling rides after one has been requested. Uber has publically acknowledged the issue of recruiting drivers, claiming that it was all legal and no unethical conduct was involved. This may be true if they are not intentionally canceling rides at the last minute. As for that claim, Uber denies any involvement in Lyft’s accusation that they had intentionally cancelled over 5,000 rides.
The article, written by Niel Irwin, gives a brief description the situation between Uber and Lyft with some insight from the author and his opinion on the matter. However, even though it is not a very lengthy article, it is presented in a surprisingly unbiased manner, allowing readers to develop their own opinions. I found other articles on this topic but many were rather over informative, deterring the reader from making his or her own judgement, or they were noticeably biased and in doing so made it more difficult to form a well-built opnion.
In my opinion, the controversial situation between Uber and Lyft is an inherent result of capitalism and free market competition. Uber is being painted as the big bad wolf by hiring people whose only job is to recruit Lyft drivers and persuade them to drive for Uber. When forming an opinion on a topic like this, it is important to see who is being affected and in what ways they are effected. In this case, the only ones being affected are those who are employed by or are the employers of either Uber or Lyft. The consumers, or customers, are not being effected at all. The group affected by this method of recruitment Uber has been using consist of mostly drivers from Lyft and recruiters for Uber, as well