If there’s a silver lining to having your bikes stolen, it’s the growing anti-theft network.
Cyclists are banding together digitally to help fight bike crime. Online tools can be exceedingly effective for not only getting the word out but getting the bikes back.
And then there’s the social aspect to it. Once I posted my loss on one list, I started hearing back from friends and associates all over. Most of them are connected with the bike culture, but I also got pinged by non-biking folks.
Jenny Oh’s San Francisco-based site is particularly wired. It seems that clubs, shops and bloggers are plugged into Jenny’s Google group. I heard about it from Epicenter Cycling in Santa Cruz, posted my sad tale, and within minutes was hearing from bike compatriots all over the Bay Area.
I also blogged here on BikeIntelligencer, of course. And tweeted. And linked to Facebook’s BikeIntelligencer page.
Mountain Bikers of Santa Cruz hosts a bike theft page as well, with lots of great tips. But beware: I followed each and every one, and my bikes still got stolen. A shop friend told me he locks his 4 bikes together INSIDE his apartment with a New York Fuhgettaboudit lock under the assumption that there’s no way 4 bikes would fit through a doorway.
The gold embroidery of the silver lining to bike theft: The sympathy factor. It’s a good feeling to know so many people have your back. Plus it just boosts your chances all that more of your bikes being found.
So far, nothing yet. I’m checking Craigslist and eBay. My friend Dave Smith at ShuttlesmithAdventures.com has the local posse out. All the shops I know are keeping an eye out as well for a fully tricked Pivot Firebird and Ibis Mojo SL.