Uber, the livery cab service that is dispatched via mobile phone app or text message, has run afoul of the Taxicab Commission in Washington, D.C., which has crafted a draft set of regulations governing dispatched "sedan class" cars that would effectively shut Uber out of the market. Any new regulations will be finalized with the input of the City Council, which is showing signs of support for the upstart car service.
The Federal Communications Commission doesn't have a say in the matter, but Chairman Julius Genachowski and Republican Commissioner Ajit Pai are inserting themselves in the debate. In a speech Tuesday afternoon, Genachowski said, "There's a debate right now in Washington about rules that could discourage the innovative on-demand car service company Uber. Not hard to guess which side I'm on -- I'm on the side of innovation." Pai agreed, in the form of a tweeted reply that said that the new regulations would slow innovation.
The last time Uber was in the crosshairs of local regulators, Rep. Jason Chaffetz, R-Utah, expressed his support for the startup on Twitter, as part of an online campaign that led to a six-month moratorium on new rules for the service.