SAN FRANCISCO (CN) - Uber bombards people with spam text messages to cellphones to try to recruit them as drivers, a class action claims in Federal Court.
Four named plaintiffs from three states, from Oregon to New Hampshire, claim Uber violates the Telephone Consumer Protection Act and invades their privacy on a massive scale.
Citing a Dec. 11 article in Vice, called "Uber's Text Message Spam is Driving People Crazy," the plaintiffs say: "People have been unable to get Uber to stop sending them text messages even after telling Uber multiple times to stop doing so."
One person complained of getting 42 text messages from Uber in two weeks. Another says Uber texted her at 1:44 a.m. and 4:10 a.m. on Christmas Eve.
Fourteen of 53 complaints filed against Uber with the FTC were for unsolicited text messages and calls, the complaint states, citing the Vice article.
Plaintiff Julie McKinney says in the lawsuit that she has never been an Uber member, driver or user, but that in December she received at least three text messages from the company about working as a driver. Such prerecorded, automated phone calls are illegal under the TCPA, McKinney says.
Lead plaintiff Kerry Reardon says she applied to be a driver, but decided against it. She says she has received dozens of automated text messages from a welter of Uber numbers, for which she has to pay, and which she cannot make them stop.
The plaintiffs seek statutory damages of $500 for each negligent violation of the TCPA and statutory damages of $1,500 for each willful violation. They also seek punitive damages and an injunction.
They are represented by Hassan Zavareei, with Tycko & Zavareii, of Washington, D.C.
Contact Arvin Temkar at [email protected].
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