Wednesday, April 25, 2018

Does THIS make san Fransisco a shithole?

People Hate San Francisco’s Electric Scooters So Much They Are Vandalizing, Smearing Poop On Them.

When I was in downtown San Jose a week or two ago I noticed all of these scooters. They didn't seem to be causing that much of a problem yet. But it was sort of confusing because San Jose already has racks and racks of Lime bikes from Ford that are often just half used.  I've been watching this because I don't understand why Ford is in the business of bike rentals. It's gotta be a sign of desperation. Right?

And Facebook has been getting in a little trouble because their campus bikes were being just thrown in a nearby creek and they had to force facebook to go and fish them out.

So when this whole thing erupted in San Fransisco literally in the last week it made me laugh. Mostly because people can leave these things anywhere they want and don't necessarily have a way to find their way out of obscure areas where there isn't a high amount of traffic.

For instance when  I was in San Mateo last weekend I saw one of those rental bikes parked way back in a residential neighborhood. And my first thought was.... I wonder how long it takes before a rider finds this thing and puts it in a more populated area.

My second thought was - how is this profitable? I'd already seen stories about people in SF throwing these scooters in dumpers and trash cans. And can you believe these people raised 100 million in funding? I'm guessing those people will never get their money back. But at least we aren't China yet. You HAVE to go over and check out the pictures of all the abandoned bikes from similar schemes in China. It's breathtaking without any hyperbole. I don't understand how this can be financially possible in any way.

3 comments:

Capital of Texas Refugee said...

SF was a shithole back when a certain fictional Harry Callahan assisted fictional street thugs with their acquisition of information as to how many cartridges he still had in his revolver ...

"I gots ta know man, I gots ta know ..."

There are some companies trying this out in Berlin where the bikes aren't getting crapped on, but public opinion seems to be highly Germanic as expected: if there are bikes on the street, then there must be a dedicated place to park these bikes so they are out of everyone's way, and anything else is sehr nicht Gemütlich for the locals.

The Berlin bikes are interesting because up close and personal they appear to have some IoT stuff built into them for tracking and for payments. You unlock the bikes with a payment card and then the bikes charge time and mileage. Amsterdam (and even Rotterdam) does this better by having a more open bike culture where you can rent bikes easily, even if you're not a Dutch or EU resident. Still, I expect some of these companies will try to "improve" on what's already working.

I have a friend in SF who doesn't own a car, but he has a pretty decent bike. Anywhere he travels, he figures out a way how to rent a bike. He went to a hacker symposium near DFW once and got to learn how Texans in general are not very bike friendly.

But because these bikes are simply thrown around without any respect to people coming through that way, I suspect even he might be highly tempted to take a giant crap on a few just to send a message ...

she said: said...

"I have a friend in SF who doesn't own a car, but he has a pretty decent bike. Anywhere he travels, he figures out a way how to rent a bike. He went to a hacker symposium near DFW once and got to learn how Texans in general are not very bike friendly."

You guys are no fun. It would be a blast to see someone from SF transition to 100% humidity on a bike. I think the problem will resolve itself.

Capital of Texas Refugee said...

This is the "Big T" Texan attitude toward therapy:

My favorite word is "jackwagon", BTW.

When he mentioned the heat, I asked him if he thought Texas owed him a jelly donut -- it's a reference from the "therapist" in his role in "Full Metal Jacket".

:-)