The transport sector is not going through its best moment. Specifically for Uber, and more precisely for its ceased division of UberPop, which has just received a "poisonous" gift for Christmas. After three years of battling in the courts, the CJEU has given its final resolution on the activity of technology in Europe. As expected, given what was announced by Attorney Spuznar a few months ago, the result has determined that UberPop is a company that must comply with the transport legislation in force in the European Union. A fact that, with the current system of the company in Spain, does not affect its future too much; the adjustment to the VTC licenses was already developed in 2016 following the model that Cabify had used since its founding in 2011. Thus, despite the opinion of the taxi associations, the reality is that the legality of Uber as of today is intact.
Company model dillema fixed, now another gap is opened up: will the ruling of the CJEU affect companies such as BlaBlaCar? In El Confidencial this question was already addressed and, now, BlaBlaCar responds to the possible situation at hand.
Everything started with a claim by CONFEBUS against BlaBlaCar as unfair competition; Following this, a similar situation to that of Uber was opened: which French technology company could it be? If it were a social network, its activity would continue as it is to date; If it is a company in the transport sector, it should, therefore, comply with the permits and laws in force in the country. Finally, the Commercial Court No. 2 of Madrid opted for the first option. Spent by CONFEBUS, José Andrés Díez, lawyer specialized in transport and Uber, explains to Hipertextual that the final view is likely to be celebrated throughout 2018, probably at the end. Will the ruling of the CJEU be taken into account in the case of BlaBlaCar? The reality is that I should probably mention this question.
As the popular proverb says: when your neighbor's beards are cut, put yours to soak. That would be the message that opponents of the different (and new) transportation models have taken as a basis.
For BlaBlaCar, the discourse continues to be based on the same pillars: it is a social network to share vehicles, over long distances, and the expenses derived from them. Car sharing is not a transportation model, it is a social activity through which individuals share the expenses derived from a journey they were already going to make, without profit. "They also add that" car sharing is not a transportation model. , but a social activity through which drivers and passengers share the expenses derived from a journey ", not affecting, therefore, the ruling of the CJEU.
The fight would enter precisely into the concepts of "social network", assumption that their opponents do not accept and "non-profit"; based on the idea that the established prices surpass, by far, the coverage of the trip. In fact, it is precisely this second point that could make the difference with UberPop and, therefore, not be affected by the ruling of the CJEU. "The underlying activity of Uber pop is a profit motive on the part of the drivers, this activity is organized (they look for the drivers, they provide the app), defined (they fix the prices and the characteristics of the service, control and service requirements) and facilitated (the offer would not exist if Uber and its app did not exist) for the company, explains Álvaro Zamácola, director of Business Development at BlaBlaCar, to Hypertextual.
With this attitude, on the part of BlaBlaCar, the journeys are more than assured from here to a time, at least.
José Andrés Díez, on the side contrary to BlaBlaCar, has a clear stance on what will come in the next few months in the legal terms. Regardless of the opinions, you have about the activity of BlaBlaCar:
"If we look at the result of UberPop, and until Europe and its countries do not make a regulation in accordance with the laws in force, the certain thing is that BlaBlaBar certainly has to comply with what was said by the CJEU, from a legal point of view, I think it's totally applicable."
Its position lies in the organization system of the French company; Like Uber, it operates in Spain and the rest of the countries of the European Union through a subsidiary. They use Smartphones and an application that puts passengers and drivers in contact with each other, who must also pay through it, which also regulates cancellation processes. With this, he states, "there is a 99% similarity." Something very different, he explains, would be if there was no commission charged for this activity.
It points out that the current activity of BlaBlaCar in Spain is due to a possible approval by the political weight. The option of adding stickers to cars that, at some point, operate as a shared vehicle would be a great boost to the activity of BlaBlaCar in Spain.
In short, they conclude, "BlaBlaCar has a problem." Two diametrically opposed points of view that will have to be seen before a judge.
The above article was written and published in Spanish and has been translated into English. Click here to read the original article.
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