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Uber and Lyft Face More Gridlock in California Due to Regulator’s Decision

California regulators have deemed the companies’ newest “charter-party carrier” services illegal. UberPool and Lyft Line offer discounts to passengers who choose to share a ride with a similar destination.

It seems like every week there’s a new headline pitting ridesharing companies like Uber against regulators or lawmakers or taxi drivers or the Federal Republic of Germany or whomever they’ve recently found ways to tick off. Often, these squabbles are connected to the launch of controversial new services. Lyft and Uber both employ dynamic business strategies that depend on keeping things fresh. But continuously shifting gears doesn’t always sit well with the folks tasked with making sure you’re complying with the law.

In the case of the story linked above (as reported by Liz Gannes of Re/Code), California regulators have deemed the companies’ latest “charter-party carrying” ventures illegal:

“This conflicts with the way both UberPool and Lyft Line are run, which is to match together similar ride requests that come in at a similar time, and charge each party a reduced amount in return for sharing.”

Gannes makes the good point that these companies tend to operate in a “shoot first, ask questions later” kind of way. Again, that’s just the sort of thing you do if you’re looking to get into it with regulating bodies, in this case the California Public Utilities Commission. Why they, specifically, seem in the business of regulating ridesharing is beyond me. But each of the company’s legal teams now has yet another headache to deal with on top of the myriad migraines from every other legal challenge they’re dealing with.

Read more at Re/code

Photo credit: thetruthabout / Flickr

For more about companies with dynamic business strategies, check out this clip from the Big Think interview with Columbia Business School’s Rita Gunther McGrath:


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