The Onion is so wildly popular because its satire often nails down what we really think. An article published about Uber (UBER) on the site today is no exception.
The piece, titled “New Uber Update Allows Users To File Lawsuit Against Company Directly In App,” details a fictitious new feature on the app called the “Sue Us” button. The article—which appears to be the most popular on the site currently—points out the very true fact that complaints and even lawsuits directed toward Uber happen a lot, saying this update will streamline “one of the more common interactions” between the company and its users.
“We’ve listened to the community, and we’re excited to introduce a feature that will make bringing litigation against us—whether for sexual harassment, racial profiling, or aggravated assault—as quick and easy as hailing a ride,” reads the phony quote attributed to Uber co-founder and CEO Travis Kalanick.
The article also goes on to say you can track your lawsuits progress just as you can your ride and that if you lose the case, Uber will automatically recoup its legal fees from your synced credit or debit card.
This Onion article may not come of as jokey as others like “Scientists Warn All Plant Life Dying Within 30-Yard Radius Of Ted Cruz Campaign Signs” and “Man’s Garbage To Have Much More Significant Effect On Planet Than He Will” but that’s simply because the issue it’s touching on is all too real. The crimes the fictitious Kalanick quote lists as examples of what sparks litigation against Uber seem to happen every other day. Many made our list of “Uber’s 10 Worst Actions,” which included shady business deals, threats and lies in addition to the re-hiring of drivers known to be dangerous and the alleged slut shaming of female passengers who reported being assaulted by their drivers.
Since we published that list in February, we’ve reported on several alleged assaults by Uber drivers. In late April, a Hawaii driver was arrested for raping a teenage passenger. His 16-year-old accuser said that after leaving a local mall and dropping off her friends first, the driver started making wrong turns, eventually pulling over and attacking her. Just last week, an Uber driver was charged for strangling his student passenger at their drop-off location—a dorm parking lot on the University of Delaware campus. Days later, it was found that another driver who was charged with attempted murder (among other things) had an extensive criminal background, raising serious concerns about the legitimacy of the company’s background checks, which don’t even require prospective drivers to be fingerprinted.