A man is seeking 3,000 yuan in compensation from a Shanghai taxi company after he was refused a cab ride because the driver was waiting for another customer who’d booked through a taxi app.
The driver, working for Shanghai Jinjiang Taxi, told the Pudong New Area People’s Court that he had pulled over to wait for another customer who booked through the third-party taxi app Didi Taxi, Shanghai Daily reports.
Prosecutors argued that the driver’s actions were considered a denial of service, since the “for hire” sign was lit-up. Defense lawyers claimed that denial of service takes place only when a driver asks for the destination then refuses the customer.
The plaintiff, Yan, said he’d entered the empty vehicle and got into a fight with the driver, who refused to take him. He had to exit the cab when the booking customer arrived.
A verdict hasn’t yet been announced for the case, the first of its kind to enter the court. Taxi apps have proved popular but controversial in the city, as several complaints have come in over the year from customers who tried to hail empty cabs only to be ignored for other customers who booked them through apps.
To ease the problem, the Shanghai city government earlier this year banned all taxi-hailing phone apps during peak traffic hours in the morning and evening.