Uber’s Pricing Algorithm is Accused of Racism; Company Responds

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In recent days, the Uber app has gained prominence among internet users and the reasons are not the best. Canadian Adam Bomb posted a photo on his Twitter comparing the prices of a trip in the app between a white person and a black person.

To do the exact same route, the service charged US$ 32.58 for the white user and US$ 57.80 for the black user. “Just tell me the reason isn’t what I’m thinking, Uber.”

The company’s support page quickly responded to the tweet. “We appreciate your contact. Send us a DM with the phone number associated with your Uber account so we can help you.”

Response

The accusations have gained notoriety because of the current context of using algorithms, which has already posed similar problems on social networks like Twitter. In addition, in June of this year, researchers at George Washington University released a study indicating that there is a drive for carpooling algorithms that can drive up prices based on factors such as the race and age of passengers. Conducted in Chicago, the research took into account technologies from companies such as Uber and Lyft.

According to the press office of Uber, the values ​​applied differ for users and it is possible to check if the prices “are above” or “much higher than normal” when ordering a trip. “The price increase changes in real time and has nothing to do with the passenger’s identity. Uber is committed to being an anti-racist company and has no room for discrimination.”

On the official website, the company explains that “when many people request trips simultaneously in the same region, the price may be higher than usual to attract more partner drivers to the region”

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