Lyft, Uber suspend driver for live streaming passengers

St Louis Uber driver live-streamed hundreds of passengers

This week, a driver in St. Louis has reportedly been suspended by Uber and Lyft for recording and broadcasting hundreds of his rides live on Twitch. Sometimes passengers' homes and names were revealed. Anonymous viewers online often commented on riders' conversations and left sexual or offensive comments about female passengers' bodies.

"I feel violated", one anonymous passenger told the Post-Dispatch.

The 32-year-old super-voyeur Jason Gargac fully took the grossest advantage of Missouri's one-party consent laws, which allows one party to record a conversation without the other person's consent.

He said that at first he had informed passengers that he was recording them, but the videos felt "fake" and "produced". Missouri is among the states that require only one party to consent to recordings.

Gargac did have a small sign on a window that stated the vehicle was equipped with recording devices and that "consent" was given when entering the auto, but most passengers did not notice it and he never informed them about the streams.

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Almost all of the driver's roughly 700 rides in the St. Louis area were recorded online, according to the St. Louis Post-Dispatch.

If passengers did notice the little camera mounted on the windshield of Gargac's vehicle, the newspaper reported, he told them it was for his security. "I'm embarrassed. We got in an Uber at 2 a.m.to be safe, and then I find out that because of that, everything I said in that auto is online and people are watching me". He asked a Post-Dispatch reporter to not use his full name in the story, to protect his privacy.

"I try to capture the natural interactions between myself and the passengers - what a Lyft and Uber ride actually is", Gargac told the Post-Dispatch. His Twitch channel is no longer hosting any videos and has been suspended. Only the companies involved or the legislature can take action to change that. Like other Uber and Lyft drivers who stream their passengers' journeys on Twitch's In Real Life section, he initially informed customers about the livestreams. "Recording passengers without their consent is illegal in some states, but not Missouri". "I don't think I would want to be filmed without my permission, or even knowledge", Samantha Soto said.

"Particularly if there was something very private and embarrassing released about them", he said.

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