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Uber a Driving Force Among NYC Riders
By: Jeannine Wheeler
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Everybody loves Uber, right? Not so fast, says a recent MediaMiser report highlighting Twitter sentiments and online news coverage in five US major cities, including New York, San Francisco, Chicago, Washington DC, and Los Angeles. Nevertheless, the privately held San Francisco-based ridesharing company has earned a steady stream of converts who say they don’t want to live without the ride-sharing app.

Notable findings of the MediaMiser's Media Analysis of Uber and Ridesharing in Five U.S. Cities include:
  • Uber Twitter mentions were highest in New York City
  • NYC media outlets published the most articles mentioning Uber
  • Uber sentiment was more positive among Twitter fans than among online news editors
  • Taxi industry friction and legal/regulatory issues were the top issues in online news features
  • Two Uber initiatives – UberEATS and Uber Spring Cleaning – helped drive positive Twitter sentiment
  • Of the five major cities in the study, The Washington Post ran the most Uber online news stories
Positive Twitter mentions by region were:
  • NYC – 66%
  • San Francisco – 43%
  • Chicago – 32%
  • Washington DC – 23%
  • Los Angeles – 23%
Positive Uber Twitter comments focused on:
  • #uberspringcleaning
  • #ubereats
  • Service-related initiatives
  • Retweeting positive news headlines
  • Retweeting celebrity endorsements
Negative Uber Twitter comments focused on:
  • Fare surges
  • Unsafe/rude/no-show drivers
  • Slow customer service response times (somewhat ironically during Uber’s two community service campaigns, which were listed as positive assets) 
Other findings include:
  • 93% of riders said that convenience was their No. 1 reason for using the service
  • 54% said they were very satisfied with Uber’s services
  • 52% said if Uber were to shut down in their city it would impact them deeply
Although Uber and other ridesharing companies have earned big social media followings and a lot of positivity, the MediaMiser survey indicates there is still some work to do to completely satisfy their ridership.

Study notes:
Online news articles from a select library of major news outlets in the five U.S. cities were collected between mid-January and late April, 2015. Twitter data was collected from mid-January to early May using Uber’s local Twitter accounts in each city (@Uber_NYC, @Uber_DC, @Uber_CHI, @Uber_SF and @Uber_LA. MediaMiser is an industry leader in media monitoring and media analysis, delivering turnkey solutions and unsurpassed reporting to every industry sector.

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About the Author
Jeannine Wheeler is a PR Director who has worked in three countries, including Russia, the US and the UK. She is currently Sr. Vice President of Pure Energy PR, a full-service boutique communications firm with a focus on the energy, healthcare, technology, construction, real estate & land development, tourism & hospitality and food & beverage industries. Jeannine is in the firm's Austin, Texas office.
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