This is Uber’s playbook for sabotaging Lyft

The Verge:

Uber is arming teams of independent contractors with burner phones and credit cards as part of its sophisticated effort to undermine Lyft and other competitors.

Interviews with current and former contractors, along with internal documents obtained by The Verge, outline the company’s evolving methods. Using contractors it calls “brand ambassadors,” Uber requests rides from Lyft and other competitors, recruits their drivers, and takes multiple precautions to avoid detection. The effort, which Uber appears to be rolling out nationally, has already resulted in thousands of canceled Lyft rides and made it more difficult for its rival to gain a foothold in new markets.

Uber calls the program “SLOG,” and it’s a previously unreported aspect of the company’s ruthless efforts to undermine its competitors.

If true, and there’s no reason to believe it’s not given previous Uber tactics, this is, at the very least embarrassing to Uber. It’s definitely sleazy.



  • matthewmaurice

    Sure, I’ll handover my credit card number and get in a sent car by a company that does business like this. The irony is that this is a company that rates both drivers and riders.

  • GFYantiapplezealots

    After being harassed (dirty looks, snide comments) by multiple signature seekers outside of grocery stores I am completely against Uber. What a pathetic company.

  • http://www.lazyprogrammers.com Eugene Kim

    I wonder if there is even a lesser of evils though.

  • http://www.asktheidiots.com Dean Lewis

    Disappointing. There really is space for both of these companies,particularly in a market like here in Oklahoma City.The cab service here is horrible.If you aren’t going to and from the airport, then fat chance getting a cab from Yellow Cab. I worked at a hotel, and scheduling pick up times for my guests was like rolling dice. Sometimes they came, and sometimes they didn’t. As soon as we found a taxi service that actually met their obligations, they were bought out by Yellow Cab and became useless. We need something like Uber and Lyft to shake things up — but if this is true, then I’ll back Lyft (until I hear something nasty about them…sigh.)

    • http://www.laugh-eat.com/ kyron

      same here in new orleans. even the favored cab companies won’t schedule pickups, won’t give ETAs, illegally refuse fares, etc.. they need to be disrupted, badly.

      • Moeskido

        I can’t imagine a car service in NY or NJ doing those things and staying in business. Way too much competition for that.

  • BC2009

    Dispicable

  • Moeskido

    I’m very sad to hear this sort of thing. Doesn’t sound like the kind of business I’d want to support.

  • http://www.jphotog.com Hrunga Zmuda

    This is one thing the RICO Act was designed to deal with. How is this different from the Mafia muscling in on someone’s territory? Or Amazon’s sleazy tactics in so many markets.

    I will never use Uber because this is racketeering. It’s a libertarianism run amok. How do they think they can get away with this.

    And where the heck is the Department of Justice? Trying to figure out another way to punish Apple for not paying politicians to leave them alone?

    • Moeskido

      One territory at a time. All this needs is someone to convince a state District Attorney’s office that they can make points by pursuing this as a case.

  • struckpaper

    “If true, and there’s no reason to believe it’s not given previous Uber tactics, this is, at the very least embarrassing to Uber.” This is a poorly constructed sentence. Probably hastily written?

  • Terry Maraccini

    Call me old fashioned, but I don’t believe Uber is a disruptive force that will benefit anyone.

    This gaming of competition has been reported for quite a while. So, no thanks, Uber. And Lyft, forget about it too.

    Companies that acquire customners like cattle have no claim to my money.

    I’ll call a cab.

    • http://www.laugh-eat.com/ kyron

      unfortunately the cab companies in my city are garbage.

  • http://twitter.com/matthewwanderer Matthew

    I can think of far betters ways to spend venture capital. Just saying.