Uber continues to resist a motion posed by taxi companies for the ride-sharing firm to place cameras in its vehicles. The subject inspired length debate at a committee meeting held on Tuesday in Ottawa, which was held to discuss the cities plan to legalize and regulate the UberX service and other ride-sharing solutions.
Nearly 100 people signed up to the meeting and listening to Uber Canada’s Chris Schafer discuss the company’s plans and why it is not going to adopt in-vehicles video cameras. Schafer was first up at the meeting and said that the company operates in good faith and that the reason for video cameras is moot in terms of Uber’s model.
Schafer argued that the purpose of cameras in traditional taxis is to make sure drivers and passengers (mostly drivers) are safe in an environment where the two parties do not know anything about each other. Schafer said Uber is different because the passenger and driver have detailed information about each other before ever getting into a vehicle together.
The company operates a smartphone application that links passengers with freelance drivers in their area. Passengers and drivers have profiles and personal information stored on the Uber service, and both are also rated based on previous rides.
Another reason cameras are useful in taxis is because they can help find consumers who jump the ride without paying, something that does happen. Again, Schafer says Uber is different because all transactions are completed automatically through the app, so passengers and drivers never exchange money.
Rounding out his argument, the Uber Canada representative said that a city-commission report carried out by consulting firm KPMG did not recommend that Uber vehicles carry cameras.