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"A taxi wearing a moustache is still a taxi," says Carma COO

Commute pioneer says it's time to draw a line between legitimate ridesharing and neo-taxi services

SAN FRANCISCO, Aug. 7, 2014 /PRNewswire/ -- In the wake of recent announcements from Lyft and Uber, Carma is calling for greater clarity regarding Transportation Network Companies and the 'sharing' terminology they use, despite the fact that their drivers make healthy profits.

For example, the term 'ridesharing', which has been widely misused by Transportation Network startups, can only be legitimately used by a small number of companies which includes Carma. "If you are paying less than $0.56 per mile, you are ridesharing," says Lawrence Mulligan, Carma COO. "If you are paying above $0.56 per mile, you are sitting in a taxi - period."

Now, with the latest transportation network offerings such as Lyft Line and UberPool, the word 'carpooling' appears to be the next term in line for misuse.

"Commandeering the word 'ridesharing' was bold at best," says Paul Steinberg, VP of Business Development at Carma. "Now, Transportation Network Companies are sailing dangerously close to the word carpooling too, which is a step too far. The public isn't stupid. How is the concept of splitting a taxi fare with a fellow passenger any different to what traditional taxicabs have been doing for decades? This is taxi-pooling."

Carma is the world's first social transportation app, which matches users with nearby people who want to set up carpools. Users have the flexibility to drive or ride, depending on their daily preference, meaning the system doesn't rely on profit-making, for-hire drivers.

A simple price comparison demonstrates the scale of the difference in cost of using these services:

Carma price comparison chart

"Lyft invites you on its website to 'love your commute'," says Rob Power, Head of Marketing at Carma. "I'm not sure anyone would love commuting every day from Berkeley to San Francisco for example, at a cost of up to $22 for a one-way trip."

Carma Carpooling can be downloaded for iPhone or Android devices. For more information, visit www.carmacarpool.com

About Carma

Founded in 2007, Carma (formerly known as Avego) leads the world in carpooling technology, helping people team up to solve the commute. Headquartered in Cork, Ireland, with offices in Silicon Valley, Austin and Dublin, Carma's customers include cities, governments, and tens of thousands of individual consumers. For more on Carma, see www.carmacarpool.com or download the app from Apple's App Store or Google Play.

Photo - http://photos.prnewswire.com/prnh/20140807/134511

SOURCE Carma

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