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Kim's column

Kim’s opinion: Uber and Lyft drivers livestream passengers without their consent

Privacy is elusive in these days of connectedness. Your browser searches are cataloged, cameras are identifying your face, your phone is tracked by GPS. And it’s mostly legal.

You’ve heard the news story about a St. Louis Uber driver who set up hidden cameras in his car and secretly recorded, and then live streamed, his riders. Think that’s a privacy violation? Think again.

The entire question hinges on a legal issue: When you get into an Uber or Lyft car, do you have what the law would consider to be a reasonable expectation of privacy? Most attorneys will
break this question into two parts.

First, since the driver can hear and see what passengers are saying and doing, there is no privacy to begin with. The driver can also video the passengers for their private records, in case there’s a legal issue later.

But livestreaming is another, more thorny issue. The law varies from state to state. If you decide to sue a driver, it will be a long and costly legal battle.

The bottom line: Never assume you have privacy anytime you’re out in public.

Hear Kim’s take on this issue.

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