Ola is one of India's most exciting start-up stories, rising from a standing start to a company valued at more than $1 billion in about four years.
But did the taxi-app company, the thorn in Uber's flesh in India, make a rookie error and steal a photograph from the internet to use as the home screen of their mobile app?
On Twitter, a Yahoo engineer, who works for the web company in Sunnyvale, California, has claimed that a photograph clicked by him was being by taxi service Ola Cabs on their app service on Apple and Android phones.
WTF! @Olacabs is using my photo for their iPhone app *without* my permission.March 17, 2015
The photograph that had been shared on Flickr was taken on the outskirts of Bengaluru by the user in early January 2012. The user has listed the photograph under a license that disallows some rights reserved on Flickr. These rights contain the conditions that this particular image cannot be used for commercial purposes without the photographer's permission. Flickr's terms also state that the appropriate credit for the photo must be provided, and specify if any changes have been made.
Praveen also claimed that 'a guy' had contacted him for the photograph for Ola's app service in September last year.
One guy got in touch with me for this pic (for their App) in Sept 2014.
Never hear back after I told him the price. pic.twitter.com/cgh0fFt3D2— Praveen (@holydevil) March 17, 2015
His tweet sparked several comments, before eliciting a response from the taxi service on Twitter.
@holydevil Praveen, we are checking this. Allow us to get back to you.— Ola (@Olacabs) March 17, 2015
This was then followed by Ola asking the user to message them directly to clear the matter. Ola has not responded to our request for a comment.
Update: Ola has promised to make it right, says Praveen.
Suggest a correction
So @Olacabs have promised to make it right and are working on it.— Praveen (@holydevil) March 18, 2015