It’s one thing to talk about fobbing off the press between your start-up colleagues. It’s another thing to forward that correspondence to the guy you’re talking about in a bid to down-play a story. That’s exactly what Uber Melbourne did by accident when responding to Fairfax over the UberX fines that broke overnight.
Last night, the story broke that UberX drivers in Melbourne were being fined $1700 under the Transport Act for running ridesharing services without a permit.
The Sydney Morning Herald’s Ben Grubb also went to write the story, and got more than he bargained for when he asked Uber Melbourne’s Simon Rossi for comment.
Rossi had been in contact with David Rohrsheim who runs Uber Sydney over the story before either of them had responded to the Fairfax comment. Rohrsheim encouraged Rossi to dodge the question and instead issue a pro-Uber response, adding that “if you give him just one sentence, Ben will publish it”.
Fair enough, but in providing that one sentence, Rossi is understood to have accidentally forwarded that media advice to Fairfax as part of the response. Whoops.
We reached out to Uber Melbourne’s Simon Rossi for comment last night, but we never heard back. Probably for the best. [SMH]