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Uber Now Offers ‘Silent Treatment’ Option for Users

So, the Warriors only won two points against your favorite team, the Trail Blazers last Tuesday. And yes, your spirits are down and you’ve decided to completely drown your sorrows with tequila and some bad conversation. So now, you’re flat-out drunk and don’t fancy a chat with your Uber driver, right?

Well, if you live in the United States, then you’re in luck, because Uber has just released a premium service that will force drivers not to talk to you.

According to Techradar, Uber has a new feature in its app that allows users who use luxury Uber services like UberBLACK or UberSUV to tell drivers they’re not in the mood for some small talk. Just look for the ‘Quiet Mode’ option in the app and click it. Or still, if you fancy a bit of conversation with a complete stranger, then you can click the ‘Happy to Chat’ option (and perhaps make a friend as well).

Techcrunch reported: “We’re looking to create more differentiation between the premium products and the regular products to encourage more trips,” Uber Product Manager Aydin Ghajar said. Quiet Mode in particular “is something that people have been asking for for a long time,”: and talkative drivers have been the subject of plenty of comedy sketches.

“Degrading and dehumanizing”

Despite showing a lot of consideration for riders who just want “to chill,” some see this move as “degrading and dehumanizing” for Uber drivers. As BBC wrote from a Twitter post:

“I have issues with it. What it says to me is that wealthy people can buy their way out of interacting with the poor, who aren’t worthy of their attention,” said the post.

Lifestyle coach Felicity Morse was worried about the how this can affect daily interactions.

“Life is going to be seriously hard if you can’t ask someone for some quiet or let them know you’re at capacity,” she wrote on Twitter. “I have so been there but a button is not actually going to help in the long run. Next we will all have twenty badges on ‘don’t talk to me today.'”

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