Uber is reportedly telling drivers in New York to stop displaying its rival Juno’s homescreen in their cars during rides or they risk being deactivated by the ride-sharing platform.
Juno is a relative newcomer to the New York market, and, after launching earlier this year, is reportedly up to 20,000 rides a day while positioning itself as a more driver-friendly app, which Recode attributes to fueling Juno’s growth.
According to Recode, which cited a text from Uber, at least one driver has been deactivated for “displaying advertising of other ride-sharing companies while on Uber trips,” which Uber noted is in violation of the Taxi and Limo Commission Rule 80-15G, which prohibits advertising to passengers.
Further, Recode said the Independent Drivers Guild, which calls itself an “organization working to protect, support and connect New York’s independent drivers,” has received hundreds of reports of these warnings in last two months -- with 10 reports of actual deactivations.
“We’ve discussed illegal advertising with our regulators and will continue to educate drivers and riders when appropriate,” an Uber spokesperson wrote in an email. “We take deactivations seriously and warn drivers to follow all TLC rules. Drivers are free to use any app at any time as long as they comply with our terms of service and TLC rules."
Uber would not comment further on what it said it believes is “ongoing enforcement investigations by the TLC".
Uber also said it could not speak to the TLC’s interpretation of what advertising is, but said it “confirmed that advertising rider discounts and telling passengers to ask drivers about the discounts was indeed illegal advertising.”
Uber also noted displaying advertisements of discounts for other apps while on an Uber trip, encouraging riders to download or use other ride-sharing apps, collecting personal information from riders for the purpose of signing them up to use another app and sharing promo codes with Uber riders for other ride-sharing apps are all in violation of its terms of service.