With ride-sharing services Uber and Lyft being forced out of Austin, Texas, due to new, burdensome regulations, an unregulated black market for ride sharing has begun to thrive. As the Federalist reports:
Tens of thousands of riders and drivers are now connecting through Facebook and Craigslist, sidestepping onerous city regulations passed late last year aimed at traditional ride-sharing companies like Uber and Lyft that required drivers to be fingerprinted, among other things.
When a ballot proposal that would have replaced the city ordinance failed, Uber and Lyft left town as promised. Since May 9, there have been no ride-sharing services available in this city of almost a million people. Getting around town has become almost impossible unless you own a car.
“We went from having at least a system in place where drivers were screened and vetted–and they were being monitored all the time, and you could give feedback and report problem–to now a black market solution that’s really taken over the city,” tech entrepreneur Joshua Baer told Time Warner News Austin.
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