By Kaycee Ikeonu | United States
Bird and Lime, two popular e-scooter ride-sharing companies in Santa Monica, could be banned in the city, depending on the outcome of a meeting that will occur this Tuesday at 5:00 PM, local time. The decision arose after a small committee decided to give the e-scooter market share to two car-based corporations, Uber and Lyft.
The Bird team compared the decision to “giving Exxon and BP Oil a monopoly on Solar power”. Basically, this means that these two car-based corporations are simply not as efficient, sustainable or popular as Bird. Moreover, neither Uber nor Lyft have any experience in the e-scooter business, which is another reason both e-scooter companies find the possible decision appalling.
The proposed decision has not been popular amongst Bird and Lime users. There have been various protests all over west L.A. against the decision. Lime, for example, emailed its customers, asking them to go outside City Hall right before the meeting to protest the possible ban. Bird, as well, has started various petitions, which could potentially influence the decision.
This isn’t the first time that the companies have faced threats. Bird and Lime have both been bombarded with safety concerns. Critics say that most riders ride recklessly: that most of them don’t wear helmets, they ride on the sidewalks and ride double, even though the e-scooters are meant for one. There have also been various reports of near-accidents or legitimate accidents like the one described here.
Bird and Lime e-scooters as of today, August 14th, have been disabled. They might never be turned on again, depending on the outcome of the meeting.
So who do you support, the vote of the consumers, or the bureaucracy of this small committee?
To let the city of Santa Monica know what you think, please click here.
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