An Uber Eats customer has gone hugely viral and divided opinion after slamming a driver he said asked him for gas money to deliver his food
- A Chicago-based lawyer said his Uber Eats driver asked for gas money to complete his delivery.
- The customer turned to Twitter to complain about the incident, sparking an intense debate.
A lawyer sparked controversy on Twitter after he said his Uber Eats driver asked him for gas money to deliver his order.
On May 31, an account appearing to belong to Exavier Pope, who owns a law firm in Chicago, according to his Linkedin profile, tweeted screenshots that he said were from an online interaction with an Uber Eats driver after he ordered food from the app. In the screenshots, the man purported to be Pope's delivery driver said that didn't have enough gas to deliver the food, asking Pope to send him some money through the mobile payment service Cash App.
— (@exavierpope) May 31, 2023
Pope tagged Uber's customer support account in his tweet, and went on to share a number of other apparent screenshots, accusing the driver of being "unprofessional," and of "harassment" for calling him multiple times and saying he would call the police. According to the screenshots, the driver eventually made it to the destination, but Pope said he was no longer comfortable accepting the order from him and asked him to leave.
Pope shared a screenshot of a plastic bag outside a doorstep, writing, "He's finally left it on the ground outside like trash. Mmmm tasty."
— (@exavierpope) May 31, 2023
The Uber Support account responded to Pope's tweet, saying the alleged behavior was "definitely not OK," and telling Pope that a member of the support team would be following up with him on his complaint.
"It definitely was a harrowing experience and something I do not want to experience again a person coming to my home pressuring me for money. My lawyer brain is active on this," Pope wrote in his response to the company.
Pope's initial tweet received 2.9 million views and 1,361 quote tweets, and it hugely divided opinion among Twitter users over whether it was appropriate to publicly launch a complaint against the driver.
—Ashton Pittman (@ashtonpittman) June 1, 2023
Some users expressed sympathy for the delivery driver, saying he works in a profession with notoriously low pay, and that it should not be a huge inconvenience for a customer to send him a few extra dollars for gas. Many users said they felt more criticism should be directed at the company for not paying their workers higher wages, and that they did not feel Pope should have tweeted his complaint as it might put the individual driver's job at risk.
"Don't be a dick to low-wage workers," one user wrote.
Other users sided with Pope, saying they felt it is a driver's responsibility to manage the amount of gas in their vehicles, and that they did not think Pope was in the wrong for trying to safeguard himself from a potential scam.
—Qualia (MK) (@these_qualia) June 1, 2023
Last March, Uber announced a temporary fuel surcharge of $0.35 to $0.45 on each Uber Eats order, aimed at helping drivers with rising fuel costs. At the time, Insider reported that some staff were disappointed by the fee, describing it as "woefully inadequate" for covering their additional fuel expenses.
Representatives for Uber did not immediately respond to Insider's request for comment.
In a statement given to Insider via Instagram messages, Pope said he feels it is common for customers like himself to turn to social media to resolve customer service issues, and that while negative remarks framed his tweets as "elitist," his actual intentions were to complain about a potentially "dangerous" scam.
—alex marshall (@alexjkmarshall) June 1, 2023
"You can empathize with people in need or workers and at the same time prioritize your safety and expect companies you deal with to ensure that is paramount," he told Insider.
In his statement, Pope also said that he has received a number of threatening messages which have included offensive slurs as a result of going viral on Twitter, saying he believes a number of accounts that directed negative remarks at him were bots.
In recent months, customer service disputes have been drawing huge amounts of attention on social media, sometimes resulting in significant recompense for people who have gone viral with their complaints. For example, in May, a TikToker who said she lost thousands of dollars on a bad tattoo consultation experience sparked a huge response, leading online users to flood the tattoo artist with negative reviews. The TikToker said that after going viral, she was offered a free tattoo from a California-based artist instead.
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