Uber, however, has failed to reduce car service costs, and it hasn’t meaningfully improved productivity. Far from revolutionizing the future of transportation, Uber has not solved any of the in­dustry’s long-standing structural problems.

mk kleinbl00


Devil's advocacy - this statement:

    Above all, Uber argued that its business model and technology were so innovative that it had created an entirely new industry (“ridesharing”) based on entirely new business concepts (the “sharing economy”).

completely explains this statement:

    Uber’s investors were always focused on the need to create the artificial market power that would allow the company to maximize the value of industry dominance. This meant that Uber had to achieve an explicitly political objective: the complete elimination of governmental oversight over taxi service.

The wink-wink nudge-nudge on Uber has always been "it's better to ask forgiveness than permission." They literally swamped municipalities with underemployed, mathematically-challenged side-hustlers such that a bunch of people with more time than money who willing to spend $100 a week to earn an extra $60 a week could scuttle the entire livery industry. It has never been about being more monetarily efficient than taxis - it's always been about cloaking the externalities more effectively than taxis. Anyone paying attention to Uber's business model has known this from the get-go. Taxis are expensive not because the drivers are getting rich or the medallion holders are getting rich but because the regulation is onerous. So what to do about the regulation? Bully it away. Yellow Cab can't do shit like that because they're a top-down hierarchy. Uber can do shit like that because they're just an app, man, they don't hire anyone all those drivers hired themselves!

The best part is if they did the sleight-of-hand right, they could convince "the street" that there was a business model post-IPO so that they could all sell out. And they did. And they all sold out. And now that they're a public company, everyone who didn't get some of that sweet, sweet Series A profit is gettin' all but muh market forcez on it without realizing that if you're buying stock from a broker you're the sucker.

posted 257 days ago