It is vital that we win over politicians to our cause if the taxi and minicab trade in London is to be properly regulated.
Yet whenever the LTDA does something with politicians to gain their support and raise the trades profile politically, many of those we are trying to win over suffer abuse from cabbies via twitter or other social media. It should not come as a surprise that this behaviour is not helping and that our enemies are using many of these tweets and comments to portray us as racist, xenophobes fighting competition.
Nothing is further from the truth; we are a forward thinking dynamic industry that is keen to embrace change and technology but one that is restrained within the confines of an archaic licensing infrastructure whilst our competitors are allowed to operate virtually unregulated.
Social media can be a powerful tool and I would encourage as many members as possible to use it, but to bear in mind that our competitor’s powerful PR and lobbying machine will be looking at ways to exploit everything you post.
This was evident in the recent ITV documentary ‘Taxi Wars’ where Uber managed to squeeze alleged tweets from taxi drivers into an otherwise truthful and damaging documentary about their activities and lobbyists, fortunately on this occasion I was able to dismiss the argument.