Uber pushes for rule changes by using drivers as mail couriers

Uber is no stranger to using grassroots campaigns to push for pro-ridesharing regulation, but it just took things one step further: it's turning its app into a political activism tool. If you live in St. Louis, you now have an UberLetters option that sends old-school paper mail to the Metropolitan Taxicab Commission in hopes that it will allow the lower-cost UberX tier in the city. Once you've written your plea, you hail an Uber car that drops it off for free. It's an unusual move that will only last for a day (you have until 4PM on July 7th to act), but the company argues that these makeshift couriers are virtually necessary. The MTC only accepts public comments through fax or physical mail, so Uber couldn't just ask supporters to email their feedback.

It's hard to say if the campaign will work, and you might be irked at seeing advocacy in Uber's hailing app when you're only concerned with a getting a quick trip across town. However, we suspect that Uber sees this as a relatively mild gesture in light of the backlash it faces over its rule-bending ways in some other countries. Here, at least, it doesn't have to worry about hiring guards to keep drivers safe.

[Image credit: Justin Sullivan/Getty Images]