The Daily Gamecock

Uber announces new push notifications, 'What's My Name?' campaign inclusion in app

USC and Uber announced new safety measures including push notifications to remind users to check for their rides at a designated pickup zone and the inclusion of the "What's My Name?" campaign.

This was announced during a press conference Thursday morning in Russell House Theatre and the new safety features are now in place for Columbia. 

"Our goal is to make checking your ride before you get in the car synonymous with using Uber," said Andrew Macdonald, vice president for Uber's Americas Operations and Global Business Development.

In response to President Harris Pastides' "What's My Name?" campaign, Uber is adding a new safety tip to its website that encourages riders to ask "what's my name?" or "who are you here to pick up?" before getting into the car.

"These three words have the power to save lives and must become as automatic to every college student getting into a ride share vehicle as putting on your seatbelt," Pastides said.

All of these features are a part of Uber's new campus safety initiative, which focuses on awareness and education through in-app safety features.

The initiative comes in response to the death of USC student Samantha Josephson. Two weeks ago, Josephson entered a vehicle she mistakenly thought was her Uber and was killed.

"We must ensure nothing like this ever happens again," said Celia Cui, a member of USC’s graduate student association. "I'm proud that from this senseless tragedy, Samantha's memory has helped inspire these and future efforts to ensure greater safety."