Local transportation agencies are tracking e-bikes and e-scooters: They aren’t Big Brother

A trip to the grocery store, a long bike ride through a park, a stroll through our neighborhoods. These are the precious trips we have all come to look forward to during the recent stay-at-home orders. 

These moments – like our pre-pandemic trips to work, school and restaurants – paint an intimate portrait of our daily lives.  And this is precisely the information that the government wants to collect from you.  

A world where you know where a person begins and ends a journey, the route they took to get there and the time they arrived, can seem intrusive when applied to a child being watched by a parent, but is altogether bone-chilling when applied to Californians being watched by their local governments.

Currently Los Angeles, and a number of other California cities are requiring rented mobility devices – those e-bikes and e-scooters you see on streets and sidewalks – to share real-time location data on all of its users as a condition to receive a permit to operate.