Breakfast Briefing, 4.13.2017: Latest on Uber, United, Spicer, O'Reilly

Which of the four is having the worst week?

Dao lawyers start legal actions against United
Lawyers for David Dao, the Kentucky man forcibly removed from a Sunday flight from Chicago to Louisville, Kentucky, filed an emergency request in Illinois on Wednesday demanding United Airlines preserve video recordings and other materials from the incident, according to Reuters. Dao’s lawyers want the airline to keep surveillance video, passenger and crew lists, and cockpit voice recordings, according to the wire service. United said Wednesday that it is giving each passenger aboard Flight 3411, on which the incident took place, a refund. Dao’s daughter is scheduled to appear at a Chicago press conference today.

GOP congressman: Spicer ‘needs to go’
Rep. Mike Coffman (R-CO) said at a town hall in his district on Wednesday that White House Press Secretary Sean Spicer "needs to go" after comparing Syrian dictator Bashar al-Assad to Adolf Hitler at Tuesday’s press briefing, according to ABC News. House Minority Leader Nancy Pelosi (D-CA) has also called for Spicer to be fired, but Coffman is the first Republican member of Congress to publicly say so. Dewey Square Group’s Maria Cardona in The Hill: It’s too late for Sean Spicer’s apologies.


Uber sees Lyft drivers in Hell (the computer program)
Embattled ride-hailing company Uber used a secret program called "Hell" to spy on drivers from rival Lyft by creating fake Lyft accounts to track their movements in specific areas, according to The Information. The program also enabled Uber to see what drivers were using both platforms to pick up riders, according to TechCrunch. More bad news for Uber: The company is facing a $1.1 million fine in California for not quickly investigating or suspending drivers with intoxication complaints, according to the Los Angeles Times. And some good news: Uber is operating in Taiwan again, but only with licensed commercial drivers, via Mashable.

Murdochs think over O’Reilly’s job
Media tycoon Rupert Murdoch and his sons, Lachlan and James, are waiting for the results of an investigation by a high-powered law firm before making a decision on the status of star host Bill O’Reilly, according to The New York Times. The host of The O’Reilly Factor, meanwhile, is taking an unusually long spring vacation in Italy. Dozens of advertisers have stepped away from O’Reilly’s show since the Times revealed five women have received financial settlements after making claims of sexual harassment or other inappropriate behavior against the host.

Instagram COO in focus
The Wall Street Journal is taking a snapshot of former White House aide Marne Levine, who joined the Facebook-owned social media platform nearly two years ago and immediately began streamlining its operations. Instagram has doubled its user base in that time, according to the newspaper.

News to know on Thursday
Bloomberg: JPMorgan quarterly earnings shine. BuzzFeed: No fun Google pulls the plug on Burger King voice-technology stunt. NBC News: Fearless Girl sculptor says New York City is violating his rights with statue placement. 

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