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Uber Chief Caught on Camera Arguing with Driver


Travis Kalanick speaks to students during an interaction at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) campus in Mumbai, India.

Travis Kalanick speaks to students during an interaction at the Indian Institute of Technology (IIT) campus in Mumbai, India.

This is What’s Trending Today.

You can order a ride from Uber in nearly every major city.

Uber has drivers working in more than 500 cities on six continents.

While the ride-sharing service remains popular, 2017 is starting out as a difficult year for the company.

A story published Tuesday on the Bloomberg news service’s website has a video of Uber’s chief executive officer (CEO) arguing with his driver.

Travis Kalanick is the Uber official. Fawzi Kamel is the driver.

The video of the two men was YouTube’s most popular Wednesday morning. It was seen over 1 million times in 24 hours.

Kamel made the video in early February on the day of the Super Bowl, the championship of American football.

The Uber chief is shown sitting with two women in the back seat of Kamel’s car.

Kalanick and the women are talking about the company’s recent troubles.

The problems include Uber’s testing of self-driving cars and reports of workers making unwanted sexual comments. There also is a court case with Google based on claims that one Uber employee stole secrets about self-driving car technology.

In addition, some of Uber’s drivers and riders criticized Kalanick for agreeing to join President Donald Trump’s council of business leaders. Kalanick later resigned from the council.

On top of that, many drivers are not happy that Uber said they could earn a certain amount of money, but then reduced its fares in order to compete with services like Lyft.

At one point in the video, Kalanick tells the women he makes sure “every year is a hard year … if it’s easy, I’m not pushing hard enough.”

After the women leave the car, Kamel states that he has lost money because of Uber’s changing rates.

He says he lost $97,000 and is bankrupt because of Kalanick’s policies.

Kalanick goes on to say “some people … blame everything in their life on somebody else.”

The discussion does not end well.

Many people are reacting to the video of the argument. One of them is Kalanick, who wrote an email to Uber workers Tuesday night.

He apologized to Kamel and said he plans to get someone to help him lead the company. “I need leadership help, and I intend to get it,” he wrote.

The video has over 2,000 comments, too.

One person wrote he only earned $2.75 an hour as a driver for Uber.

Another wrote: “(this is) the exact reason I stopped driving for Uber.”

Kamel received praise for standing up to the Uber CEO when he had him in the car.

Jon Clay wrote: “you are the man, times a million!”

And that’s What’s Trending Today.

I’m Dan Friedell.

Dan Friedell wrote this story for Learning English. George Grow was the editor.

What do you think of the Uber video? We want to know. Write to us in the Comments Section or on our Facebook page.

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Words in This Story

council n. a group of people who are chosen to make rules, laws, or decisions about something

faren. the money a person pays to travel on a bus, train, boat, or airplane or in a taxi

bankruptadj. unable to pay debts

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