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The growth of courier services, dedicated to food delivery, has in some markets become dominated by companies that began with on-line car and driver hire services, often mis-named "ride hailing." Their power in the market has enabled them to define the terms that they demand in contracts with food providers (often called, but often not, "restaurants"). At the pointy-end of such services is, in a significant number of markets, Uber, a company which has, since inception, displayed a disregard for local laws in countries which it has entered. It has also been widely criticised for the terms it imposes on the drivers and motorcycle riders it engages. As this case shows, it has also displayed a willingness to impose unfair contract terms on those it does business with.

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California's Attorney General Xavier Becerra and San Francisco's District Attorney George Gascón will host a press conference to announce a USD148 million, multi-state settlement with Uber over a 2016 data breach. That's all a bit prosaic. This is the extraordinary story behind it and it is anything but prosaic. And it is, at least in part, the middle of the beginning of the end, as CEO, of Uber's founder Travis Kalanick.

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