Lyft, Uber Pledge To Cover $10,000 Fees for Drivers Who Violate Texas Abortion Ban

Harri Weber

Harri is dot.LA's senior finance reporter. She previously worked for Gizmodo, Fast Company, VentureBeat and Flipboard. Find her on Twitter and send tips on L.A. startups and venture capital to harrison@dot.la.

Lyft, Uber Pledge To Cover $10,000 Fees for Drivers Who Violate Texas Abortion Ban

Lyft and Uber will cover the legal fees of any drivers fined for violating a Texas abortion law.

The two California ride hailing services waded into what has long been a divisive issue a day after the Supreme Court allowed Texas to pass a law banning most abortions in the state. The Texas law threatens anyone who helps women obtain abortions. That includes drivers, who face $10,000 fines.


Lyft CEO Logan Green called the ruling an "attack on women's access to healthcare and on their right to choose." And in response to the legislation, Green said Lyft has "created a Driver Legal Defense Fund" and would also contribute $1 million to Planned Parenthood to "ensure that transportation is never a barrier to healthcare access."

Uber CEO Dara Khosrowshahi followed Green with a pledge to also cover drivers' legal fees.

"Drivers shouldn't be put at risk for getting people where they want to go. Team @Uber is in too and will cover legal fees in the same way. Thanks for the push," Khosrowshahi said on Twitter.

Conservative members of the highest court voted 5-4 to allow Texas' law to take effect, and Republicans in six other states are reportedly weighing similar bills.

Tesla CEO Elon Musk has said he "would prefer to stay out of politics," but other tech companies have jumped into the fray.

Shar Dubey, CEO of Texas-based Match Group, said the company has set up a fund to assist employees and their dependents should they need to travel outside of the state for care. And firms like Google and Facebook could be compelled to hand over sensitive user data under SB 8, Protocol writes.

Many of the metropolitan markets that ride-hail businesses depend most on are liberal hubs. In a 2019 filing, Uber disclosed that almost a quarter of its global bookings came from just five major cities. Three of those metropolitan areas — Los Angeles, San Francisco, and New York — rank among the most liberal big cities in the U.S.

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Genies Wants To Help Creators Build ‘Avatar Ecosystems’

Christian Hetrick

Christian Hetrick is dot.LA's Entertainment Tech Reporter. He was formerly a business reporter for the Philadelphia Inquirer and reported on New Jersey politics for the Observer and the Press of Atlantic City.

Genies Wants To Help Creators Build ‘Avatar Ecosystems’

When avatar startup Genies raised $150 million in April, the company released an unusual message to the public: “Farewell.”

The Marina del Rey-based unicorn, which makes cartoon-like avatars for celebrities and aims to “build an avatar for every single person on Earth,” didn’t go under. Rather, Genies announced it would stay quiet for a while to focus on building avatar-creation products.

Genies representatives told dot.LA that the firm is now seeking more creators to try its creation tools for 3D avatars, digital fashion items and virtual experiences. On Thursday, the startup launched a three-week program called DIY Collective, which will mentor and financially support up-and-coming creatives.

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Here's What To Expect At LA Tech Week

Christian Hetrick

Christian Hetrick is dot.LA's Entertainment Tech Reporter. He was formerly a business reporter for the Philadelphia Inquirer and reported on New Jersey politics for the Observer and the Press of Atlantic City.

Here's What To Expect At LA Tech Week

LA Tech Week—a weeklong showcase of the region’s growing startup ecosystem—is coming this August.

The seven-day series of events, from Aug. 15 through Aug. 21, is a chance for the Los Angeles startup community to network, share insights and pitch themselves to investors. It comes a year after hundreds of people gathered for a similar event that allowed the L.A. tech community—often in the shadow of Silicon Valley—to flex its muscles.

From fireside chats with prominent founders to a panel on aerospace, here are some highlights from the roughly 30 events happening during LA Tech Week, including one hosted by dot.LA.

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LA Tech ‘Moves’: HyperDraft Taps LegalZoom Exec

Decerry Donato

Decerry Donato is a reporter at dot.LA. Prior to that, she was an editorial fellow at the company. Decerry received her bachelor's degree in literary journalism from the University of California, Irvine. She continues to write stories to inform the community about issues or events that take place in the L.A. area. On the weekends, she can be found hiking in the Angeles National forest or sifting through racks at your local thrift store.

LA Tech ‘Moves’: HyperDraft Taps LegalZoom Exec
Photo by James Opas | Modified by Joshua Letona

“Moves,” our roundup of job changes in L.A. tech, is presented by Interchange.LA, dot.LA's recruiting and career platform connecting Southern California's most exciting companies with top tech talent. Create a free Interchange.LA profile here—and if you're looking for ways to supercharge your recruiting efforts, find out more about Interchange.LA's white-glove recruiting service by emailing Sharmineh O’Farrill Lewis (sharmineh@dot.la). Please send job changes and personnel moves to moves@dot.la.

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