back to article Uber app expands in France despite govt opposition ... and laws

Taxi drivers in Nantes, Strasbourg and Marseille have been protesting after Uber announced on Monday that it would expand its Uberpop service to those cities. Alexandre Molla, Uber France’s director of expansion, told Le Monde that this was just the beginning and that “a VTC offer (voitures de transport avec chauffeur) would …

  1. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Uber shouldn't be too confident

    France is a nation where the locals are prepared to blockade ports/roads etc to make a point.

    Given the choice between letting Uber have a free (market) rein, and 1000 cabbies rendering the Paris road system immobile, which way would the authorities go?

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Uber shouldn't be too confident

      My experience with Paris taxis is that some of those cabbies couldn't find their own arse with both hands. 250 hours training? If so, it's a joke.

      The best outcome would be for them to go on strike, leaving the field open for Uber.

    2. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Re: Uber shouldn't be too confident

      Sounds like a win-win situation.

  2. Gordon 10

    Uber should thank themselves lucky

    That they have no livestock containing lorries that can be put to the torch.

    1. Schlimnitz

      Re: Uber should thank themselves lucky

      Missing a hyphen there?

  3. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    These VCs

    Financing this Uber thing (and much of the other rubbish that passes for "innovation" these days) seem to be utterly out of touch with reality.

    Ride sharing and better solutions for taxi hauling plus perhaps a better sort of part-time taxi service as found in developing countries is something very desirable. However, to paraphrase an old saying, Uber is not the answer.

    It is the question, and the answer is "no".

  4. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    Don't like rules and regulations?

    Create your own.

    Who needs compliance?

    Libertarian BS.

  5. Schlimnitz

    Might not be news to anyone else, but heard someone on the radio yesterday saying that Uber was pretty much like ride-sharing, except that instead of the driver deciding where they're going, it's the passenger.

    With that in mind, I wonder how well the French (and other authorities) seeking to introduce laws to shut down the one will manage to avoid hamstringing the other.

    That aside, I think that while Uber may not be the answer, current taxis aren't just pricing themselves out of the market, they're pricing the market out of existence.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward

      Problem for cabbies...

      Is too many aspiring cabbies. Most adults in the UK have a driving license and its a skill that can fairly easily translate into a job.

      Existing cabbies off all kinds see value in scarcity and lobby their regulators to restrict the supply of new entrants to the market. Uber etc are bypassing those authorities and offering people a chance to earn money.

      1. Anonymous Coward
        Anonymous Coward

        Re: Problem for cabbies...

        Uber etc are bypassing those authorities and offering people a chance to earn money.

        *Everyone* profits from scarcity - Just look at the pr0n in the 1980's, decent enough quality - there were even such a thing as "porn stars" earning millions, people even ripped videos, now, ... the product itself is reduced to nasty, poorly produced, "pink goo", very, very few can make a proper living from the business itself, the majority of profits comes from spam-vertizing, ad-ware, mal-ware and spam injection.

        Once enough "barriers" are lifted, the value of the good / service which was protected by scarcity giving the producers some pricing power, drops to whatever it costs to produce it in the cheapest place on the planet. Since profits are minimum, investment dries up and the product / service sort of bumps along the bottom of the pit and never recovers nor does it improve.

        Ûber could succeed and "personal transportation" will become shittier than anyone can possibly imagine, once competition squeeze out all the profit in merely driving, the money will be made up elsewhere - theft, fraud, extortion, selling illegal goods, et cetera. Fun times, surely.

    2. fajensen

      ... and except for the fact that there is a commercial transaction going on, not anything "pretty much like" something else.

      We can look forward to some sad stories of Über-car crashes where the insurance policy will not pay up because a business insurance policy is required. Laws are there to make these things simple and reliable due to past experiences and excesses. Well, if another round is what it takes then at least one can hope that many libertarians gets it ;-)

  6. boboM

    Typical French socialist style thinking: producer first, customer last.

    Nobody in France seems to think about what customers want. They have the most arrogant, incompetent, unfriendly taxis I've ever seen.

    Let the customer decide.

    Thank F*ck we live in the UK.

    1. Anonymous Coward
      Anonymous Coward


      Terrible trolling skills, need to hone those.

      While you're at it, you may want to look up "Bobo" in a Spanish dictionary.

  7. Anonymous Coward
    Anonymous Coward

    For once the Indians had the right approach

    This is what they did in India:

    Sign up every Plod for an Uber<whatever> account

    Call for car

    Arrest driver, impound car

    Repeat until uber gets the message that just ignoring laws is not a viable business model - no matter how popular the product. Uber are basically just the same as a drug cartel at the moment - they produce / distribute a popular product that just happens to be illegal. Whether or not that *should* be the case is besides the point.

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