YourTaxis.com.au, a new online hub for cab services in Victoria and a portal for users to submit feedback on their experience, has been declared a “social media fail” by thousands of Twitter users.
Along with launching the website, the Victorian Taxi Association (VTA) took to Twitter with the new @YourTaxis account, asking users to share their experiences with the #YourTaxis hashtag.
A still-flowing stream of vitriol followed, with the occasional positive comment drowned out by claims of refused fares, hygiene issues, threatening comments and physical assault.
Unsurprisingly, a new hashtag quickly followed: #epicfail. Responding last night, however, the VTA said the campaign has been anything but a failure.
“Social media is designed to offer the opportunity to engage directly with the community. YourTaxis has delivered exactly this,” the association said in a statement.
“The response on social media exemplifies the challenges we face as an industry and goes to underscore the motivations behind the YourTaxis campaign. To date, Victorian taxi customers haven't had a direct avenue to communicate with the industry.”
In fact, the websites for the Victorian Taxi Association offers a ‘contact us’ form, and Victoria’s Taxi Services Commission website features a ‘complaints and feedback’ button.
VTA chief executive David Samuel, who confirmed yesterday that the association would put greater focus on improving taxi services, said that the #YourTaxis campaign has gone as expected.
"The response online over the past 24 hours isn't anything we didn't expect. We asked for feedback and we got it. The good and the bad and everything in between” he went on,” he said.
"It also demonstrates the number of people that rely on taxi services and we want to make sure our service continues to meet customers' expectations in a period of rapid change.”
I was sexually assaulted by a cabbie. When I came out about it on twitter, cabbies threatened to bash me for supporting uber. #YourTaxis— Elizabeth DeLoria (@elizabethdanger) November 9, 2015
Driver picked us up, asked where we were going then screamed at us to get out because he didn’t want to go there #YourTaxis
— Ellie | 주혜 (@irrellievant) November 9, 2015
— Sophie Benjamin (@sophbenj) November 9, 2015
90% of all cabbies being on a hands free phone call. Not only unacceptable in other cus facing jobs, but dangerous/distracting #YourTaxis— Polly Maeve (@PollyMaeve) November 9, 2015
Waited for over an hour to be told the cab had been cancelled so I walked to the nearest train station #YourTaxis
— Sebastian Reivers (@sebbie314) November 9, 2015
— Matt Bell (@mbpowered) November 9, 2015