Uber President Quits After Allegedly Deciding Series Of Scandals Were Just Too Much

Tyler Durden's picture

Jeff Jones, the former Target CMO who joined Uber less than a year ago as President of Silicon Valley's priciest 'decacorn', is leaving the company, according to Recode.  Jones is reportedly exiting as the company deals with a flurry of recent controversies, including allegations of sexual harassment and an embarrassing video that surfaced last month of Uber CEO Travis Kalanick berating an Uber driver.  Kalanick also recently announced a search for a COO to help him better steer the ship, though it's unclear whether the layering of the executive management team affected Jones' decision to leave.  Per Recode:

Jeff Jones, the president of Uber, is quitting the car-hailing company after less than a year. The move by the No. 2 exec, said sources, is directly related to the multiple controversies there, including explosive charges of sexism and sexual harassment.

 

Jones, said sources, determined that this was not the situation he signed on for, especially after Uber CEO Travis Kalanick announced a search for a new COO to help him right the very troubled ship.

 

That was not the reason for Jones’ departure, sources said, even though it meant that Kalanick was bringing in a new exec who could outrank him. Instead, these sources said, Jones determined that the situation at the company was more problematic than he realized.

Uber

 

Jones spent much of the beginning of his tenure as president meeting with drivers and attempting to address the concerns of the people that serve as the face of the company.  In the earlier months of his tenure he penned a letter to drivers saying, "It’s clear that there’s much we can be doing better. Listening is where we get our best ideas, because they come from you, the people using Uber every day."

Of course, any goodwill that was potentially built with drivers through Jones efforts was likely quickly erased by a 3:50 video posted last month by one driver who captured his heated exchange with Uber CEO Travis Kalanick on video and subsequently shared it with Bloomberg.  The conversation started off with the driver complaining that Uber was "raising the standards, and dropping the prices" and culminated with Kalanick storming out of the car after condescendingly telling the driver to "take responsibility for his own shit."

 “Bullshit.  Some people don't like to take responsibility for their own shit. They blame everything in their life on somebody else. Good luck!”

 

Of course that latest mishap, just added to what has already been a relatively rough couple of months for Uber which has included everything from patent infringement lawsuits to sexual harassment charges to Kalanick being forced to resign from Trump's business advisory council.  Per Bloomberg:

In December, Uber pulled its self-driving cars off the road in San Francisco after the California Department of Motor Vehicles said they were operating illegally without an autonomous vehicle license. In January, more than 200,000 people uninstalled their accounts, and #DeleteUber trended on Twitter, after the company was accused of undermining a New York taxi union strike protesting President Donald Trump’s refugee ban. On Feb. 2, Kalanick reluctantly left his spot on Trump’s business advisory council to appease the company’s liberal-leaning employees and users—not to mention its many immigrant drivers. On Feb. 19, a former software engineer at Uber wrote a blog post alleging that she had been propositioned for sex by her manager and that when she’d taken the issue to human resources, an HR rep had said that he wouldn’t be punished, in part, because he was a “high performer.” On Feb. 23, Alphabet’s autonomous car company Waymo sued Uber and its self-driving car company Otto, accusing an Uber employee of stealing trade secrets by downloading 14,000 files onto an external hard drive. On Monday, Uber’s head of engineering resigned after the company said it learned that he had faced a sexual harassment complaint at Alphabet, his former employer. He denied the allegations.

Uber has not yet confirmed Jones' departure.

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red1chief's picture

No more Uber, only taxis. Uber is not much cheaper, and the abused drivers are cranky.

DontGive's picture

This is the begining of the end for Travy-boy. Hope he took some chips off the table, before the unicorn takes a dump.

Stuck on Zero's picture

By quitting he'll be able to sell stock, options, or whatever because the clock starts ticking on his stock lockup.

hope_talk's picture

I'm making over $7k a month working part time. I kept hearing other people tell me how much money they can make online so I decided to look into it. Well, it was all true and has totally changed my life. This is what I do... http://bit.ly/2jdTzrM

Seasmoke's picture

But they speak English and smell better.

ebworthen's picture

Uber - a lawsuit or two away from being a memory

LetThemEatRand's picture

More proof that these rotating CEO/executive types are just part of an overpaid club.  He was no doubt offered huge sums of money to come helm Uber, but when he figured out it would require actual work (and not just recommending that more product be sourced from China and employees hired on a part-time basis), he decided to leave.

runnymede's picture

Unicorns uber alles.

Seasmoke's picture

The speed is starting to increase to jump ship.

Don Pancho's picture

My one day as uber driver - Drove around for 4.5 hrs, El Paso crap traffic in summer, got one ride, google maps totally screwed up pick-up location, took 1 hour to find the bastards, drove them about 1.5 miles and make about $3.50 after uber got their cut...No thank you...I am sure there are plenty of greater fools though...YMMV...

Dr. Engali's picture

Ahhhhh, poor guy. I hope his golden parachute doesn't collapse under its own weight.

DarthVaderMentor's picture

Yahoo, Uber....Next? Twitter, Apple and Fake Book.

These are nothing but sweet talking snake oil salespeople who are good hypocrites of the Good ole' boys club who have a huge ego cause they've gotten away with everything. Their prime qualification is similar to that of a politician: Sweet talking backstabber who will throw anyone under the bus for a few pieces of silver, or worse, just for the fun of it.

Hitler was much more moral and better than most CEOs. At least he signalled his intentions and didn't lie through his teeth about it to fool the customers.

 

OCnStiggs's picture

Don't forget Solar City and Tesla.

DarthVaderMentor's picture

This type of behavior IMHO has been explicitly analyzed as a good business opportunity and obliquely sponsored by the fat cats living off student loans at Harvard University for decades.

"Why Be Honest if Honesty Doesn't Pay?"  by Amar Bhide and Howard H. Stevensom, both professors at Harvard Business School

Harvard Business Review, September-October 1990, Pages 121-129

"Treachery, we found can pay. There is no compelling economic reason to tell the truth or keep one's word- punishment for the treacherous in the real world is neither swift or sure."

Sudden Debt's picture

Those Uber drivers don't pay taxes.

Those Uber drivers don't pay taxi fees.

Those Uber drivers stole other people's jobs.

 

No mercy for the entire uber community.

I hope it goes bankrupt.

indygo55's picture

My son drives Uber and they get a 1099. Believe me they pay taxes. 

eatapeach's picture

They can earn more just working for Uber, anyway

FreedomGuy's picture

All drivers pay taxes.
No one "owns" the driving job any more than any other job.
Negativity has a way of coming back at you.

Whopper Goldberg's picture

I used to drive taxi in the early 80;s in Omaha, 

The taxi cost me 300 dollars a week to lease which included insurance and dispatch service.

Had to be paid every Monday by noon. 

I could make 300 easily in 2 days.  then the rest of the week it was all cash and MINE.  (no taxes either)

They didn't care if I worked or not,  as long as I had the 300 on Monday.

Great gig for a while and close to being your own boss as possible.

BTW , I was never broke.   I could wake up at 2 in the morning and pick up a quick 20 bucks and go back to bed if I wanted.,

pigpen's picture

Make SF great again. Kill adtech media advertising model. 

 

This needs to be a populist movement esp in bay area. 

 

2017 is year advertisers realize ad spend is waste of money esp digital.

 

Nobody trusts Google, FB, Twitter and Snap numbers. They need to allow 3rd parties to measure the effectiveness which is nil.

 

Advertising is tax on stupid and non tech savvy. 

 

The demo digital advertising wants to target ( wealthy and educated) have opted out of advertising. The mouth breathers who remain don't have much value. 

 

Let's make bay area more affordable and destroy the adtech bubble. 

 

Desktop: chrome plus ublock origin or brave

 

Mobile: iOS use brave 

 

Mobile: Android Firefox with ublock origin or brave.

 

Whitelist ZH and if you need to use apps access via browser - no ads.

 

YouTube via browser - no advertising.

 

Get people involved to use adblockers. Let's make this a populist movement.

 

Your attention span will appreciate it.

 

Instead of protesting Google and FB buses, people should organize mass adblock movement.

 

Atomizer's picture

Wasn't the last outbreak about new fee's for black automobile's? Never have used this service. Have established relationships with Taxi drivers. They come to house and take me to airport. Once you have their mobile number, it's easy to schedule, pick up to and from. The fucking Uber app is a utter joke. 

MuffDiver69's picture

They go after lemonade stands run by little kids, but this business model with all the inherent flaws from screening of drivers to inspections of vehicles was supposed to fly...The licensed Taxi business is what it is and needs reform in many areas, but it does allow the customer some standards, no matter how small they may be many times...

The entire internet model needs to be yanked back from these monopolistic tech thugs who are completely out of control..Bezos needs to be fucked up the Ass..

DeathingerStar's picture

Jeff Jones catches bus out of Uber. 

Cardinal Fang's picture

I drive my own ass everywhere.

When I travel, I rent a car and drive my own ass everywhere.

I have 'Ubered' many times due to traveling companions doing so.

Seemed to work OK for the client, but don't know how those fuckers make any money.

The cone of uncertainty as to where/when/if we were gonna get picked up was a little too wide for my self sufficiency requirements.

I am not comfortable delegating my transportation requirements.

Mazzy's picture

Uber drivers probably make about as much as a LuLaRoe "consultant".

Westcoastliberal's picture

Does Uber do any vetting on whether or not their drivers carry COMMERCIAL auto insurance?  I'll bet 98% do not due to the cost, which means if you're a passenger you're on your own.

Lumberjack's picture

Sen. Feinstein, When Asked About Getting Trump Out: ‘I Think He Is Going to Get Himself Out’... includes video...

http://www.mediaite.com/online/sen-feinstein-when-asked-about-getting-tr...

Flashback:

http://dailybail.com/home/senators-husbands-firm-cashes-in-on-crisis.html

Mazzy's picture

Not much savings for customers.  Drivers make less than minimum wage in many (and probably most) cases after expenses as an "independant contractor" are tabulated.

Transportation has costs.  It has always had costs whether it is a boat, a plane, a train or a horse drawn carriage.  Walking on foot has a cost (gotta eat).  The trick is to calculate distance+time versus calories spent (energy efficiency) and operating costs....regardless of mode.

 

 

GooseShtepping Moron's picture

Uber is but one example of a very pronounced modern trend of trying to squeeze more revenue out of a system by strip-mining the design margin out of its capital assets, including its human assets.

So someone is sitting around eating cornflakes one morning and all of a sudden is struck by this big, brilliant, butt-fucking idea. "Hey!!!", he fairly screams to himself, "Most cars just sit around in parking spaces all day long not moving anyone. Why don't we find a way to correlate willing drivers with people who need rides and charge for the service? In effect, why don't we monetize the idle automobiles? Sure, it seems a little far-fetched, but we can pull it off because we have, like, technology and efficiencies and stuff. This is fucking brilliant. I'm gonna be a CEO and pitch my IPO to Wall Street and make a killing!"

The problems, of course, are manifold. In the first place, there is no natural demand for this service. There are already plenty of ways to get around town, and before Uber came along most people weren't loitering haplessly on street corners wondering how the hell they were going to get from A to B. Therefore, in order gin up demand for the service, it had to be pitched to customers as something new and exciting. "Try Uber because it's different and disruptive! Get with the information age!" That might work for a while, but in order to retain customers Uber would have to offer something that the competitors could not: either lower prices, better service, superior reliability, luxurious perks, or at least ease and convenience of use.

Apparently Uber has failed to deliver on any of these. Besides which, the company has acquired a reputation for being unsafe. The job of an Uber driver is a magnet for pervs, weirdos, and those unable to get a more conventional job. Not the kind of person you want knowing where you live and what your wife and kids look like.

Furthermore, if you want to wax philosophical about it, the whole concept of Uber contains a fundamental misunderstanding of how property works. Men are driven to acquire property in order to enhance their own freedom and power. At bottom, we would all like to retain control of our own cars even if they do sit idle most of the time. Nobody wants to rent out his ride to a faceless corporation for a few bucks and take on the burden of driving some stranger around on top of it. It is a small step from that to "From each according to his abilities to each according to his needs." What's next? Do you want to store your food in my refrigerator? Sleep in my bed? Shit in my toilet? Hey, why not come over and fuck my wife while you're at it? What the heck, I'm not doing it right now. This is all socialism, nay prostitution. And Travis Kalanick is a car pimp.

Property in the real sense is that which you hold as an inward possession and grow into. It is not something you monetize. And Travis Kalanick has no right to profit off my car and my driving in any case. To badly misquote Captain Spock, "I hate to disappoint you Travis, but they are not the hell your cars."

Mazzy's picture

The only guy I know who became successful made zero money off of Uber itself and went into the thing knowing that he wouldn't.  What he did do was use Uber to gather a customer base, gave out his cell number, and become a "gypsy cabbie".  Since he began work VERY early he could beat out other part-timers for the early afternoon rush where as other drivers wouldn't be able to start until 5 or 6 PM.

Not bad, and tax free....as it should be anyway.  What he does with insurance is none of my business.

Of course, it's just a side gig, but if you're smart about it you can learn a couple routes, figure out who/where is profitable and make it work. More honest than welfare, that's for sure.

roddy6667's picture

If Uber drivers used tax software like TurboTax to fill out their Schedule C for their Uber job, they would quit immediately. Most drivers don't realize that they are just borrowing money from the equity they have in the car. Depreciation from mileage is something you don't see in your wallet until you go to buy your next car.

LeftandRightareWrong's picture

$50k car is less than a $1 mill medallion

roddy6667's picture

Neither one is a good investment, if you are the driver. An investment group can buy a bunch of medallions and run the cars 24/7/7 and make good money. That's a differrent business than driving.
The best deal is to be an Uber driver and give out business cards to happy customers who make profitable trips on a regular basis. This would be things like runs to JFK from Manhattan, stuff like this. The people call you direct next time and you put the whole fare in your pocket, tax free.
Uber is just used as a method of finding high-profit customers for your gypsy cab.

LeftandRightareWrong's picture

"one example of a very pronounced modern trend of trying to squeeze more revenue out of a system by strip-mining"
Valeant? 

gregga777's picture

Not just Valeant, it applies to all of the Criminal Crony Capitalist pharmaceutical CONporations.  

Last of the Middle Class's picture

Ultimately the holy grail for Uber is the driverless car. Simple plan really, overtake the taxi industry with massive VC investment and a snappy sounding corporation to get everyone who is cool on board then pull the dirverless car scam just ahead of the taxi industry and profits will go through the roof. This is the MOST massively funded profits are just down the road bullshit propaganda the tech industry could possibly dream up backed with no real science whatsoever. Shit Tesla is still beheading drivers and crashing and into road barriers in Dallas. Not happening guys, I'd bail ASAP on this "future profits" scam. At a minimum, every road, dirt and otherwise would have to be repainted every two years in order for the software to work, which it doesn't and it won't. The real race is to develop the software before word of how badly the "driverless" project is going leaks out. It's a turd, a turd, a turd.

LeftandRightareWrong's picture

Will be interesting to see if he still demands his "exit" package.
He could say he was "forced" to quit. 

Vardaman's picture

He only left cause the Uber experience makes him a good fit at Vivid, where money is actually being made...

ghengiskhan's picture

The only question I have is: Why is there an organized effort to discredit Uber?  From the perspective of these news agencies the amount of time they are focusing on Uber doesn't make sense financially for them unless someone is paying them to do so.  I mean anyone who uses Uber regularly knows it is a very well designed service.  I can have an Uber anywhere in my city in less than 5 minutes, I can choose the vehicle type and even approve of the driver while being in constant contact with them as I watch the vehicle move toward me on a map in real time.  Lyft is the only service that comes close and it's garbage.  So what we have is the only company with a highly efficient distributed logistics management model leveraging the current technology under attack for petty managerial and staffing problems.  I think this conspiracy to discredit them is part of a multi-year strategy to lower the cost of acquisition.  Perhaps a Defense contractor knows they will need this tech and absolutely needs to license or aquire it (I know of a handful of defense contractors operating with tech that is marketed to function as well as Uber but they absolutely do not and the Army, Navy and Marines are going to figure it out very soon).  A few million dumped into the fake news cycle spin doctors and maybe it drops the price or even softens up engineers to leak the code.

besnook's picture

one reason may be the taxi business has been a notorious hangout for organized crime because of the money laundry opportunities. the cab business has finally organized against them.

besnook's picture

kalanick makes the mistake of thinking the riders are his customers when the drivers are his real customers. no drivers mean no callers. he better learn how to take care of them or he will lose to his competitors including cab companies.

Shpedly's picture

Fuck Uber! I love my sunshine yellow, curry scented cabs. Thank you very much!

RyeWhiskey's picture

Uber is lying globalist pos. Their app is on 24/7 tracking you no matter you agree to tracking or not.

DarthVaderMentor's picture

Looks like he created his own scandal to bail out of a sinking ship?