So much for good karma: you try doing something nice for people and what do they do? They steal your bikes. Or at least, that’s what’s happening to Google.
Yep, the company setting the standard for corporate-perks is paying for it, estimating up to 250 of their 1,100 “Gbikes” (scattered throughout Google to help employees traverse the endless campus) are stolen each week.
The gall of some people
Launched in 2007, Google has gone hard on their bike-friendly initiative: in 2015, they created a $5m grant to develop more bike-forward cities, and turn their home city of Mountain View into a commuter-friendly mecca.
That said, they didn’t expect citizens (unaffiliated with Google) to repeatedly take their Gbikes out for a spin whenever they so well please.
While the $300 cost of each bike is a drop in the bucket to Google, the sheer volume of missing Gbikes is concerning — some winding up in people’s yards, at the bottom of creeks, even on the roof of a local Sports Pub.
But there are some new sheriffs in town
The company has now hired a team of 30 freelancers to scour the community for “hot” bikes. They’re also reportedly testing GPS trackers, and locks that allow Google employees to access bikes exclusively through their phones.
Google wants their bikes back, and they’re willing to send the Dirty 30 to the edge of the… err… Mountain View to find them.