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Seattle Times letters to the editor

March 3, 2014 at 7:04 AM

Ridesharing: Why haven’t taxi companies innovated?

This proposed legislation limiting the number of drivers for Transportation Network Companies (uberX, Lyft, Sidecar) is atrocious for the citizens of Seattle — although it’s good news for the old taxi monopolies [“Seattle City Council members approve driver cap on rideshare services,” The Today File, Feb. 27].

The reasons for these restrictions given by council members have been all over the map. Two come to mind:

• It allows the taxi monopolies a period of time to enter the 21st century. But why haven’t they done this before now? The technology has been in place for years. Even when (if) they adopt new tech, would this alter the dirty cabs, surly drivers, and generally bad service we in grossly underserved Seattle have had to endure?

• Second, it purports to further social justice. We already have one City Council member who is on record saying we need to protect the immigrant drivers of the old taxi monopolies. I have used the TNC services several times a week for almost a year now and all but one driver has been an immigrant.

Anyway, the council as representatives of the general public should ask themselves who they’re really serving.

Paul Gutowski, Seattle

Comments | More in Rideshare | Topics: Lyft, Paul Gutowski, Seattle City Council

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