This Week In Rideshare: Self-driving, Minneapolis, and Teens.

3 min readMar 1, 2024


The revolution that wasn't, more threats from Uber and teens get a lift. LegalRideshare breaks it down.


Self-driving was basically “promised” in 2016. So what happened? The Week reported:

There are a whole host of reasons that the dream of a self-driving revolution hasn’t yet come to pass: cost, the slow evolution of the required technology, and a lack of public trust to name but a few. Perhaps the biggest, however, is safety. Humans are generally good at dealing with the unexpected; but machines must be “taught” to behave in certain ways in certain situations. How should a car with no driver respond if it sees, say, a rock in the road that may or may not be a paper bag?

The industry says that self-driving cars are up to seven times less likely to get into crashes leading to injury than normal cars. After all, AI isn’t susceptible to a temptation to drink and drive, and won’t get tired. But a series of high-profile accidents have dented confidence in such claims.


Here we go again. Star Tribune reported:

The Minneapolis City Council has resurrected plans to raise wages and expand the rights of Uber and Lyft drivers — and the companies have resurrected their threats to leave town if those plans move forward.

The battle, strikingly similar to one that played out last year, sprang anew before a Minneapolis City Council committee Tuesday. The subject of a public hearing was a proposed ordinance that would pay drivers a minimum of $1.40 per mile and 51 cents per minute while transporting riders on any trip within the city limits, among other guarantees.

Since the battle played out last year, both Uber and Lyft have instituted a $5 minimum payment to drivers for all rides and have committed to other standards. They’ve also upped their local lobbying and PR campaigns. Uber, for example, hired a local PR firm and the firm circulated a letter this week signed by nearly 150 local drivers supporting not the Minneapolis proposal, but a New York settlement that set minimum pay and other protections, such as paid sick leave.


Uber has rolled out teen accounts in California with added safety. NBC Bay Area reported:

When a teen requests an Uber, the parent or guardian will get a notification and will be able to track the car in real-time.
Only the highest-rated, most experienced drivers are allowed to accept teen requests, and Uber does annual background checks on all drivers.

Teens will get a PIN that they’ll have to provide to the driver in order to make sure they’re getting into the right car. And there will be an audio recording of all rides, encrypted for their privacy but available in case the teen or parent needs to file a report of any kind.

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