Uber Is Using A ’90s Toy To Protect Its Drivers

Photo: Courtesy of Uber.
Uber, which markets itself as “everyone’s private driver,” could easily be rebranded as “everyone’s designated driver.” Many of us use it as a smart solution to getting home when sloshed, and that’s an actively promoted part of the brand’s mission. While that's good news for us, it's not always beneficial for Uber drivers. Assaults from drunk customers are “one of the profession’s main risks,” according to The Guardian. So how does the company plan to protect its drivers while continuing to chauffeur around the overly served? Two words: Bop It. Or twist it. Or pull it. Bop It, the competitive game of many a '90s childhood, has long been known to transfix kids with its loud, interactive commands, and music. Turns out, drunk people might be equally transfixed: Uber is currently experimenting with leaving Bop Its in the back of Uber cars during rides. The hope is, that much like you at age 10, the drunken passenger will focus on the Bop It — and not on annoying or threatening the driver.
Photo: Courtesy of Hasbro.
“An intoxicated rider who is engaged in something interesting is less likely to be irritable and aiming aggression at the driver,” Joe Sullivan, Uber’s chief security officer, told The Guardian. This isn't the first time Uber has experimented with ways to reduce aggression in riders. While Bop Its are being dispatched as a test in Charlotte, NC, mirrors are being added in Seattle area Ubers. (Apparently, if you can see your drunk self being a drunk fool, you're more likely to exhibit self-control.) If you get a chance to try a Bop It-equipped Uber, let us know how you like it. Playing with one of our favorite '90s toys sounds way more fun than stalking our ex on Instagram after a night of too many G&T's.

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