Leaked document suggests Uber wanted to “weaponize” taxi research


The latest development in UberGate comes, once again, from BuzzFeed, which got hold of an internal Uber document that outlines an investigative plan. In this case, however, the target is not journalists but the taxi industry.

The strongly worded sheet, which is part of a job application process for a “Director of Research and Rapid Response,” tells the reader to dig up facts on the taxi industry that can be “weaponized.” The applicant’s task is to develop a six-month research plan on Uber itself and on the opposition. Once hired, the candidate will work with the communications team to “disseminate” the information.

An Uber spokesperson told BuzzFeed that its definition of “weaponize” meant “distilling sometimes dense or lengthy information (e.g. 75-page research reports, political contribution reports) into factual, bulleted points.” That’s the first time I’ve heard the word weaponized used in that way, and it gives the entire document a tone of attack. Merriam-Webster’s…

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