Lyft slapped with FCC citation for deceptive marketing terms

The Federal Communications Commission (FCC) has issued a citation to ride-sharing service Lyft for a violation of the Communications Act of 1934. Specifically, Lyft has been cited for breaking rules regarding the use of autodialers and prerecorded messages in advertising.

One of the primary issues in this case is the lack of an unsubscribe option from advertisements, though Lyft claims to offer such an option in its terms of service. From the FCC citation:

As part of its investigation into Lyft's compliance with FCC regulations, FCC staff discovered that—contrary to the explicit representations in the Lyft Terms of Service—Lyft does not, in fact, provide "unsubscribe options" for consumers to follow. In order to opt out of receiving text messages from Lyft, users must search for opt-out instructions on the Lyft website's "help center," which is the only place they are available. Even then, while instructions for opting out of receiving texts can be found, no such instructions for opting out of calls are available. When a user searches "opt out" in the help center, a result titled "Stop Receiving Text Messages from Lyft" is returned.

Additionally, opting out of receiving text messages in this manner could prevent you from receiving security confirmation text messages from Lyft as well. Because of this the commission has determined that Lyft effectively requires all users to submit to marketing texts and calls in order to use its service.

This notice from the FCC only informs Lyft that they have been found to be violating the law. At this time, however, no action will be taken against the company. Instead, its behavior will be monitored, and if violations continue, fines will be imposed.

Source: FCC