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came through rouen yesterday , they blocked 2 of the three lanes on the right bank of the seine causing chaos

the police just stood there and had a laugh and a joke withe the drivers , maybe it is legal in france to cause an obstruction
 

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Hi,
Whatever you say about them - the French really know how to lay on a strike!
Cheers
Steve
 

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Not a fan of violence, but Uber's practices are not, in my view, straightforward or even honest (for example, they dodge responsibility by insisting they're an arranging and scheduling company rather than a transportation company). And there's an appropriate justification for requiring licensing, insurance, and so on when offering public service for compensation, especially appropriate when one considers how dangerous vehicles can be to both passengers and pedestrians/bicyclists.
 

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came through rouen yesterday , they blocked 2 of the three lanes on the right bank of the seine causing chaos

the police just stood there and had a laugh and a joke withe the drivers , maybe it is legal in france to cause an obstruction
It's not illegal to protest in France.

Uber is illegal in France, they are still operating here and in fact are ramping up those operations. Uber pays taxes in the US, not France. Uber effectively is promoting working on the black (undeclared either for social security or tax). The growth of such systems could have enormous negative consequences for France, and thus for French taxpayers. There's so much talk about competition - but it's not in any way a level playing field. IMHO the taxi drivers are currently pursuing a struggle which should be the struggle of the majority of citizens. Unfortunately, ever negative report is effectively advertising for Uber.

As for Courteny Love, an American singer and widow of Kurt Cobain - whllst I can understand the situation was scary, I suspect she exaggerates (and I remind you that she's safer in Baghdad). Her reaction is worse than shrill - am amazed that she would actually publicly post "Francois Hollande where are the ****ing police???" Hollande is the President of France and she was a visitor in France - that's a total lack of respect. I wonder what she knows about the strike. I'm surprised she was using Uber and not a limousine service. I wonder what she knows about the situation around Uber here in France. Amusingly though, a huge number of French people have absolutely no idea who she is.
 

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Uber itself is the real thug in this situation, hellbent on undermining - on a worldwide basis - licensed, insured, trained, and (especially!) unionized drivers by soliciting workers who are often inexperienced, uninsured/underinsured, unlicensed for passenger carriage, and sometimes even undocumented in the countries where they're living.

These Uber drivers are - at least in the US - offered no jobs: they are lured by promises of thousands of dollars of potential monthly income yet deemed by Uber to be "independent contractors" - which relieves Uber of all responsibility both in case of accident and for the payment of the employer's share of social charges (yeah, we have a limited number of those even here). The onus is completely shifted to the driver for liability in the event of an accident. When anything bad happens, Uber, the great friend of the "Sharing Economy", just throws its hands in the air: "Who, us? Not our problem."

This is just another ploy to destroy stable employment for those who have paid their dues and learned their trade, another smokescreen purporting to be "user-friendly" that is actually thrusting us further into a dog-eat-dog environment for the benefit of the wealthy and the self-absorbed iPhone-addicted young.

Everyone with whom I was having cocktails tonight in Manhattan was cheering at the sight of the French taxi drivers demonstrating against the Uber cars, whose drivers are equivalent to scabs in a strike.

On a personal note, albeit from this side of the Pond: trust me, Uber isn't about "sharing." I was brutally knocked off my cane and into the street on a rainy night recently as I attempted to hail a cab that a threesome of Millennials thought was their Uber car. And when it turned out not to be, they didn't make the slightest effort to pick me back up off the ground. Fortunately, the cabbie who had avoided hitting my prone body got out and helped me to my feet and into his cab. The Millennials vanished...in search of their Uber, no doubt.

So, Uber and its passengers..??? They are, to my mind, evil incarnate.

But of course, I respect the differing opinions of others.

And as for Courtney Love... no, wait, never mind: anything I said would be immeasurably snarky [gnaws on fingers in mouth...].
 

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Yep Newyorkaise - Uber uses the same model in France. I'm with you on this. Sadly many people (drivers, potential drivers, users, potential users and others) are sucked in here and can't see the harm because Uber provides work and cheap transport. Meantime Uber gives not a damn about the negative consequences.
 

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Discussion Starter · #12 · (Edited)
At the outset, I'll state that I'm no fan of Uber, and would not use the service. The corporate founders have demonstrated that they have no sense of ethics or social responsibility. Yet, I admire companies that set out to disrupt existing business models. eBay, PayPal, and many others. There is no reason why old-fashioned world orders have to persist just because they're there. I've had a fair experience in disruptive payment technologies, and most people are happy with that because they don't like banks.

My purpose in relaying this story was just to illustrate that the taxi industry in France has some thugs amongst its members. I didn't expect the string of posts that followed. But it's all fair comment, interesting to see the prevailing sentiment. I disagree with some of the posts, and I'm replying specifically to you because you have a good summary, not for any personal reason.

Uber itself is the real thug in this situation, hellbent on undermining - on a worldwide basis - licensed, insured, trained, and (especially!) unionized drivers by soliciting workers who are often inexperienced, uninsured/underinsured, unlicensed for passenger carriage, and sometimes even undocumented in the countries where they're living.
We would have to examine the definition of 'thug'. To my mind, people who over-turn and set fire to cars are thugs. Uber, nor its drivers, have done that. But as a result of this violence, approximately 70 individuals have had their cars damaged or destroyed. That is out and out thuggery.

These Uber drivers are - at least in the US - offered no jobs: they are lured by promises of thousands of dollars of potential monthly income yet deemed by Uber to be "independent contractors" - which relieves Uber of all responsibility both in case of accident and for the payment of the employer's share of social charges (yeah, we have a limited number of those even here). The onus is completely shifted to the driver for liability in the event of an accident. When anything bad happens, Uber, the great friend of the "Sharing Economy", just throws its hands in the air: "Who, us? Not our problem."
This is common in many industries. IT, for example. It allows programmers to work best to their skills, seek out the most attractive work, and better organise their lives. Take holidays when it best suits them, work harder when they need more income.

This is just another ploy to destroy stable employment for those who have paid their dues and learned their trade, another smokescreen purporting to be "user-friendly" that is actually thrusting us further into a dog-eat-dog environment for the benefit of the wealthy and the self-absorbed iPhone-addicted young.
And one that clearly meets the requirements of millions of people ...

Everyone with whom I was having cocktails tonight in Manhattan was cheering at the sight of the French taxi drivers demonstrating against the Uber cars, whose drivers are equivalent to scabs in a strike.
Yet Manhattan is one of the biggest source of Uber income in the world. Go figure.

On a personal note, albeit from this side of the Pond: trust me, Uber isn't about "sharing." I was brutally knocked off my cane and into the street on a rainy night recently as I attempted to hail a cab that a threesome of Millennials thought was their Uber car. And when it turned out not to be, they didn't make the slightest effort to pick me back up off the ground. Fortunately, the cabbie who had avoided hitting my prone body got out and helped me to my feet and into his cab. The Millennials vanished...in search of their Uber, no doubt.

So, Uber and its passengers..??? They are, to my mind, evil incarnate.
A dreadful experience, and I'm sorry to hear of it. But why this is Uber's fault is completely beyond me.

But of course, I respect the differing opinions of others.

And as for Courtney Love... no, wait, never mind: anything I said would be immeasurably snarky [gnaws on fingers in mouth...].
As we all do. As for Miss Love, I had no idea who she was until I read Ever's comments. I'd be quite happy not to hear of her again. She was just part of the story.
 

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Discussion Starter · #13 ·
It's not illegal to protest in France.

Uber is illegal in France, they are still operating here and in fact are ramping up those operations. Uber pays taxes in the US, not France.
How do you figure it doesn't pay French tax? Uber is a registered SAS company in France (539454942), with its registered address as Park West Bridge, 11 Rue de Cambrai, 75019 Paris.
 

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Discussion Starter · #14 ·
On the subject of employee or contractor, I just came across this amusing quote in my law studies (it's 2:30am, and I've just submitted a test paper).

In one recent case, the issue was whether a pizza delivery driver was an
employee or an independent contractor. One side argued that, because he paid for
his own gas and used his own vehicle, and could use whatever route he wished, he
was an independent contractor. The other side stated that servers in the restaurant,
admittedly employees, also were not told which way to go between tables to deliver
their orders, and used their own shoes. The driver was simply a “waiter on wheels.”
That phrase found its way into the opinion.
1 See Iames v. Murphy (1995), 106 Ohio App.3d 627, 666 N.E.2d 1147.
 

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No worries, Bellthorpe: I don't take comments/responses personally, particularly when they are politely and respectfully conveyed. If I did, I wouldn't post on an open forum (or mayber I'd just grind my teeth privately and pour another Jack Daniel's...).

And as I said originally, I understand that others disagree about Uber and its ethos. However, from my perspective, and that of many people I know (even here in trendy Tribeca, the heart of the most soulless aspects of American capitalism), Uber exhibits thuggish qualities because it purports to be part of the mythical "Sharing Economy" while at the same time undercutting the labor rights of the people it intices to work with it and engaging in duplicitous pricing schemes so that its fares - allegedly more advantageous to its clients - exceed by multiples the fare of a taxi during peak hours or life-threatening weather events (don't have the citations, but as they say, you can google it - it was something of a scandal here in scandal-plagued Manhattan).

Moreover, its very sense of "exclusivity" and "cutting edge" allure attracts as customers the kind of people who would deliberately and willfully knock a senior citizen to the ground because they believe that their entitlement to have priority to, well, EVERYTHING supersedes the right of any other human being even to exist: welcome to that "Sharing Economy." I didn't add in my original post that as they were pushing me over, the Millennials shouted, "That cab's an Uber, lady - you wouldn't know what that is. We called it; it's ours." You are who you patronize, in some respects, and you are also who patronizes you: Uber is as Uber-users do, I'd say. So do I blame Uber? Oh, who knows: I blame everyone who encourages bad behavior, and Uber thumbs its nose at the law, which to my mind promotes, well, thuggish behavior.

I am an unabashed supporter of unions and workers' rights, and this almost universal notion that we should set everyone loose to compete on an individual basis is appalling to me. Your view seems to be (and I apologize for oversimplifying) that it works well for individuals in the IT sector; my view is that it accounts for the dismissal of many US workers who are being replaced wholesale in favor of essentially "domestic outsourcing," where an Indian company is hired as a "consulting firm" and brings in a slew of untested, lower paid H1B workers from the subcontinent who are then trained in their jobs by the dismissed US workers - clearly not a question of the current workers' lack of skills, since they're doing the training. (Disney was the latest to pull this stunt, although I believe they may be rethinking it now that national media have trumpeted the plan across the US).

Anyhow, it is, as usual when I post, very late here and I am once again exhibiting my tendency to ramble. I appreciate and respect your view, but I truly think that Uber is just another example of the Me First, Knock 'em Down economy. They don't do right by their workers, they don't respect the laws of the countries in which they operate, they imperil riders who are not appropriately insured in the event of an accident...hmmmm, have I missed anything...?

But the pleasure of this forum is that we can engage in thoughtful disagreement.

Best regards,
Newyorkaise

PS Yeah, me either, I don't know much about Courtney Love, but geez, when I visit Paris one of my friends always schleps out to CDG to meet me (even if it's only to ride back on the RER with me while I'm jetlagged). If she's just getting some unlicensed Uber driver, maybe she should reconsider her agent.
 

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French taxi drivers are thugs? It would seem to be that there is a vicious streak in the French make-up. Anyone recall, the episodes of lorries loaded with live sheep being waylaid and many set on fire with the sheep still in them to be burnt alive?
 

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French taxi drivers are thugs? It would seem to be that there is a vicious streak in the French make-up. Anyone recall, the episodes of lorries loaded with live sheep being waylaid and many set on fire with the sheep still in them to be burnt alive?
Or the stretching of steel cables across the entrances to French Channel Ports, thus preventing ingress and egress to shipping containing live animals/humans. Come off it people, its another case of " French Bashing". The Unions organise similar childish pedantic operations in Spain. Seen it in real life, dumping tons of tomatoes, cucumbers, offal outside the local Ayamiento ? ( is that right Balders?). I have no time for Unions in this day and age, Dinosaurs, the last remnants of Communism, haunts of the socially unacceptable, disaffected idle. Union leaders, shop stewards, all disliked by both the employers and the general public , all carving out great salaries on the backs of their misguided membership.

I travel around a fair bit. If I come out of an airport building tired, dishevelled and grumpy, I want a taxi. I don't


give a toss who is driving it. As long as the vehicle is roadworthy and clean and the driver gets me to a hotel at a fair price, then I am happy. You become a taxi driver, then you take your chances in life amongst those that want to avoid paying you fair share of tax. The French taxi drivers, along with similar people in other countries are, as usual, objecting to competition in a truly juvenile fashion. Instead of trying to improve their own service they knock others that " move with the times".

If you truly want to be abused by taxi drivers, then I suggest you all have a holiday in Bangkok, the taxi driving mafia are truly experts and leave the French drivers standing, mere amateurs in the art of rudeness and " couldn't care less".

I have dealt with taxi drivers all over the World. They are, in the main, doing what they do, because they enjoy shoving CASH in their bottomless pockets. Unaccountable in every tax system and impervious to any form of change. If a taxi operator gives me value for money they get a tip. If they don't, then I don't give a tip and I give them what I think the journey is worth. If you operate without a meter then you operating on dodgy ground and beyond the law.

Can anyone tell me what is the difference between ordering up a " take away" meal delivered to your house or elsewhere or ordering up a taxi on line ?

" Taxi". Fletch.
 

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Hi,
I don't know how Uber operates in USA or France - but here in Abu Dhabi and Dubai you first need to register with Uber and give them your credit card details.
You then download the iPhone app and use that to order a vehicle.
The technology part works very well and at the end of the journey you receive an email from Über with a receipt, breakdown of the bill, map of the journey route and details of your driver.
Über also deduct the fare from your credit card.
As you ordered the vehicle through the Uber app and paid Uber by credit card - then I would argue that my contract for that journey was with Uber. I would consider that the vehicle that took us was a paid sub-contractor of Uber and that Uber would be fully responsible for vetting them and ensuring they had appropriate insurance, licenses etc.
Über might be modern - but contract law has been around for a while!
I simply don't understand how they are getting round various laws in countries by claiming that they are just facilitators etc.
Cheers
Steve
 

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Linking animal violence with the taxi drivers is just nonsense. Might just as well link all Brits with fox hunting (apparently a priority for the Cameron govt) and who know what else. Suggesting that all unions are in some way communist is equally nonsensical.

Suggesting that a multi-national organisation is paying its taxes in France is only true insofar as income that comes directly into France, less of course all the head office expenses over which the French company will have no control, and extremely naïve.

IMHO comments based on extreme capitalism - which is, incidentally, unsustainable.

That said, I have no interest whatsoever in endeavouring to reason with those who hold such deeply seated values.

Uber is operating illegally in France. Unfortunately, those taking the greatest risk in that regard are the drivers. It appears Hollande has ordered the Police to impound vehicles and if they do I for one won't be losing sleep over it, especially since Uber is still recruiting massively and telling those interested not to worry about the possibility of vehicles being impounded, Uber "will look after it" - if you believe that, you'll believe anything.
 

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Linking animal violence with the taxi drivers is just nonsense. Might just as well link all Brits with fox hunting (apparently a priority for the Cameron govt) and who know what else. Suggesting that all unions are in some way communist is equally nonsensical. Suggesting that a multi-national organisation is paying its taxes in France is only true insofar as income that comes directly into France, less of course all the head office expenses over which the French company will have no control, and extremely naïve. IMHO comments based on extreme capitalism - which is, incidentally, unsustainable. That said, I have no interest whatsoever in endeavouring to reason with those who hold such deeply seated values. Uber is operating illegally in France. Unfortunately, those taking the greatest risk in that regard are the drivers. It appears Hollande has ordered the Police to impound vehicles and if they do I for one won't be losing sleep over it, especially since Uber is still recruiting massively and telling those interested not to worry about the possibility of vehicles being impounded, Uber "will look after it" - if you believe that, you'll believe anything.

And impounding private motor vehicles by a Government is not " state control". And Msr Hollande is not Socialist/Trotskyist etc. and France is not virtually Communist?
 
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