Judge orders Uber to cease all operations in Spain →

December 10, 2014 |

The precautionary measure was taken by the judge without hearing the arguments of Uber, given that the company is based in the US tax haven of Delaware. The judge’s writ also instructs telecommunications and electronic-payment firms to stop processing transactions for Uber in Spain, as well as no longer hosting its software and applications.

Ouch. This could be the beginning of the end for Uber in Europe. If the rest of European courts follow suit — and they often do — they’re going to have a hard time turning this around.

Personally, I’m conflicted. On one hand, I’m not a fan of countries using legal measures to hamper innovation and limit competition, and I feel tech companies face more than their share’s worth of legal troubles. On the other hand though, Uber is a particularly sleazy company: no insurance of any kind for their drivers, no respect for their users' privacy, you name it. It’s hard to feel sympathetic towards them.

Of course, this may be news today, but disruption always wins in the end. Even if it takes a while, it’s simply inevitable. A service mostly like Uber will probably exist sometime soon and become the new normal. But it won’t be Uber, at least not in its current incarnation. And I may be wrong, but I believe that’s a good thing.