Amid rumors and dubious posts, netizens call for #BoycottJoyRide

Gaby Baizas
Filipinos online raise eyebrows at JoyRide's introduction in the market for motorcycle taxis, given a number of suspicious posts from apparent bots and endorsers

MANILA, Philippines – Motorcycle ride-hailing firm JoyRide is getting flak online, with netizens calling the company out for seemingly suspicious online behavior from apparent bots and endorsers.

JoyRide was introduced by the government on Monday, December 23, as one of two new players in the motorcycle taxi industry, after it announced a cap on bikers plying the cities.

The cap threatened to take away jobs of 17,000 bikers from Angkas, the Philippines’ dominant motorcycle ride-hailing company. The hashtag #SaveAngkas trended worldwide last Saturday, December 21, and Angkas drivers, commuters, and supporters also staged a protest the day after.

Angkas bikers may be absorbed by the new companies, said Antonio Gardiola Jr of the Land Transportation Franchising and Regulatory Board (LTFRB), adding this would ensure a “competitive market” and avoid a monopoly by Angkas.

But since JoyRide’s introduction in the motorcycle ride-hailing market, netizens have grown suspicious of the company’s motives and its attempts to gather endorsers for the firm.

One of the most notable figures who’s been promoting JoyRide include Twitter personality Senyora, whose tweet has since gotten backlash furious netizens. 

 

 

Actress Johanna Kiray Celis was also slammed for endorsing the ride-hailing service, especially as she expressed her support for Angkas earlier this month.

 

Netizen Jam Ancheta also posted about several alleged bots recommending JoyRide for their “safe rides” and “caring drivers,” despite the service only starting operations on December 23.

Several netizens also posted a rumor – that Senator Bong Go is involved in JoyRide. The company had to release a statement declaring that Go is not its owner nor is he associated with it.

Seeing netizens’ suspicions towards JoyRide, the official Angkas account on Monday tweeted about its commitment to the bikers.

Dito sa (Here at) Angkas, we vest our bikers. Not our interests. #SaveAngkas”

Here’s what other netizens had to say about JoyRide:

What do you think? Let us know in the comments!  – Rappler.com

Gaby Baizas

Gaby Baizas is a digital forensics researcher at Rappler. She first joined Rappler straight out of college as a digital communications specialist. She hopes people learn to read past headlines the same way she hopes punk never dies.