Uber has started a petition to launch in Vancouver.
“So many residents are disappointed by Vancouver’s limited transportation options,” the company argues. “The Province of British Columbia, at the behest of the taxi industry, isn’t putting consumers first or thinking about how new innovations can create better transit solutions for all.”
Uber doesn’t seem to shy away from insulting both the taxi industry and the provincial government, painting them as villains.
“The taxi industry is hard at work to shut out innovators like Uber and preserve their cartel,” Uber says. “Why do a select few rich taxi owners get the sworn protection of government agencies that are supposed to serve the public?”
Uber’s petition, which so far has 4,000 signatures and climbing rapidly, urges Vancouverites to send a message to the Vancouver City Council, the Province of British Columbia, and the Passenger Transportation Board of British Columbia, worded (in part) as follows:
As someone who values choices in transportation, I urge you to welcome Uber in Vancouver and British Columbia. . . . I ask that you recognize the merits of new technological innovation and work with—rather than against—Uber to bring more transportation choices to Vancouver.
Uber tried and failed to launch in Vancouver in 2012 and since then has faced impossible barriers to entry, including threats to sue among other aggressive tactics. Of course, Uber in itself is a controversial company; critics say the company is growth-hungry and profit-obsessed at the expense of both drivers and passengers, and the company constantly makes outrageous claims like UberX drivers earning an average of $90,000 (traditional taxi cab drivers earn around $30,000 on average in the US), which are repeatedly debunked by actual Uber drivers.