Did Strava Kill This Rider?

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refthimos
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Joined: Fri May 25, 2012 6:02 pm

by refthimos

WinSuits wrote:
Which of you two is the lawyer?


Haha, good call. But I'm not a litigator, I just work down the hall from one (of several). I'm also fairly liberal, and believe government does have a place and role in governing society, but still believe we have to always start first and foremost from a principle of individual responsibility.

I have no doubt that the email alerts will be used as ammunition by the plaintiff's lawyer, but the funny thing about that is they are a direct result from Strava's users clamoring for such a feature - i.e. Strava gave its customers what they were asking for - and it strikes me (if the limited information that we have been given on the cyclist is accurate) that this is exactly the kind of feature that this guy was looking for.

If Strava is held liable here, then I could see a real trickle-down effect to a number of other social apps/communities. For instance, my "local" ski resort Mammoth Mountain has an app that keeps track of your top speed, vertical feet in a day/season, etc... Well what happens when someone chasing a record plows into a tree and hurts/kills himself or someone else? Essentially, are we going to outlaw any means of tracking performance in an activity where the activity itself includes some element of danger (which the participants in the activity assume whether or not they are tracking their performance)? Where do you draw the line between encouraging a cyclist to "safely" improve their best time over a route vs. doing so "unsafely?" I don't really think you can. It's the individual's responsibility, not Strava's, to make that distinction.
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ultimobici
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by ultimobici

Proof positive of Darwin being right.

by Weenie


refthimos
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by refthimos

ultimobici wrote:Proof positive of Darwin being right.


I don't think we need to pile on the dude for making a mistake - he paid the ultimate price. I consider myself a pretty careful rider, but I've done dumb $h*! before (I think we all have - some more than others) and there's really no need to be glib about a fellow cyclist's death.
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Tinea Pedis
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by Tinea Pedis

WinSuits wrote:Which of you two is the lawyer?

The irony of that and your user name is not lost on me :lol:


And Ozrider summed it up perfectly.

tranzformer
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by tranzformer

Those of you outside of the US don't realize the intricacies of our society and the fact that this case could very well stick based on past cases. Our society doesn't work the same as others (for better and for worse).

kulivontot
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by kulivontot

Pretty sure the car is what killed him. Amirite? People crash in races all the time. Even virtual races. You take that risk when you commit to speed over safety. It's ultimately your responsibility to make that choice regardless of what motivated you.

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icebreaker
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by icebreaker

What a pathetic comment on the development of US society.

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ultimobici
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by ultimobici

refthimos wrote:
ultimobici wrote:Proof positive of Darwin being right.


I don't think we need to pile on the dude for making a mistake - he paid the ultimate price. I consider myself a pretty careful rider, but I've done dumb $h*! before (I think we all have - some more than others) and there's really no need to be glib about a fellow cyclist's death.
Having looked at the road on Google Earth, it is evident that anyone booting it down that road at 10mph over the limit on a bike is somewhat challenged in the reasoning department. It is a winding, residential street with parked cars, concealed entrances a plenty. Asking for trouble. Sorry he died, but Strava are not to blame, he was.

sawyer
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by sawyer

Watch out Garmin! Time to amend the "race against a virtual training partner" advertising!

Come to think of it, what about this aero frame and wheels thing ... they mean more speed and we all know what that means. The fact manufacturers know the benefits are greater the higher the speed and YET still advertise that as the key selling point should be ringing alarm bells NOW!
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mrfish
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by mrfish

Strava is not at fault here. If you run your bike off the road or fall under a car in a time trial - A RACE - that's up to you as you are in charge of the brakes and gears, not the organiser. There is maybe a marginal issue here, as a race organiser would be liable if he organised a very risky race course. But again, the issue is one of expectations - if you are running a mountain marathon, it's not up to the organiser to put up barriers to stop you killing yourself by walking off a cliff. In my view this suit is in the same category as the people who claim that listening to rock music causes suicides, or watching videos on youtube makes you less responsible when you drive badly.

I recently moved from UK to Switzerland. It has been an enlightening experience. In the UK and US you are treated as if you are an idiot with a criminal tendency. In Switzerland you are treated as a sensible adult. I started noticing little things like the ticket seller in the station giving you the ticket before you give him the money, then I noticed that in Switzerland there are rather fewer notices telling you 'danger hot beverage' and 'beware of the cliff - falling off it may cause injury or death'. In the UK health and safety has gone so far that I am not able to make simple risk assessments for myself, for example I cannot take my 2 kids to the local pool without another adult. Whereas in Switzerland there are no such restrictions and kids aged 5-6 years old are educated to assess risks, for example by learning to walk to school on their own.

I do think we all need to get back into the habit of making risk assessments from an early age, rather than attempting to avoid all risks and then blame others when we get it wrong.

sawyer
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by sawyer

Are Specialized potentially culpable in the event of an accident because they have advertised their products as beneficial to racing on public roads?

MrFish - totally agree. Not long before the whole of the UK is wearing hi-viz tabards. Never mind that the nation of fatties is set for a long-term declining standard of living, as long as the health and safety aspects are covered...

It's totally rampant. An air-conditioner in an innocous corner of my office can't be taken more than a few inches from the plug because to have a cable stetched a few feet along a wall (not across a floor) is considered a health and safety risk.

Must go don my tabbard ...
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Frans
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by Frans

If you think about it, Strava is like the Guiness Book of Records writ small.

Has Guiness ever been sued? What about all the folks who went over the falls in a barrel who didn't make it?

I think the person who said Strava should sue their lawyers for being crap is correct. Everyone knows the rules of the game, if you don't do good due diligence on your potential liabilities, shame on you.

claus
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by claus

> It is a winding, residential street with parked cars, concealed entrances a plenty.

Hmm, you looked at South Park Dr? It's not a "residential street" (the street is even closed for about 4 months every year), and there are only two corners for which you have to brake because you can't see far enough ahead.

Cars are only parking next to the street during tourist season or on "nice" weekends when the parking lots are full. During the week it's rather empty and you can easily see when a car wants to exit a parking lot.

sawyer
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by sawyer

claus wrote:> It is a winding, residential street with parked cars, concealed entrances a plenty.

Hmm, you looked at South Park Dr? It's not a "residential street" (the street is even closed for about 4 months every year), and there are only two corners for which you have to brake because you can't see far enough ahead.

Cars are only parking next to the street during tourist season or on "nice" weekends when the parking lots are full. During the week it's rather empty and you can easily see when a car wants to exit a parking lot.


In that case it's all Strava's fault.

Too late for this poor chap, but hi-viz clothing can save the world I tell you.
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by Weenie


refthimos
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by refthimos

Frans wrote:If you think about it, Strava is like the Guinness Book of Records writ small.


This exact analogy occurred to me last night. Strava, like Guinness, publishes the athletic (and other) achievements of persons around the globe. But in the case of Guinness, they determine the categories, e.g. fastest speed ever on a downhill bike. In contrast, it is Strava's users who determine the categories (in this case, segments) and then the user base goes about seeing how they fare in those categories/segments. Strava is not creating dangerous categories/segments, its users are. Moreover, if the user base views a created category/segment as dangerous, Strava includes functionality to allow the user base to determine this. Finally, Strava allows its users to hide segments, so if you don't want to see categories/segments that you individually seem "dangerous" or otherwise undesirable, then you are free to hide them.

Strava is just like Guinness in that it provides information to its users, who may or may not be inspired to act by such information. But unlike Guinness, it allows its user base to 100% control and determine what information it provides, and allows both the community and individual users to control what information is presented to them.


The email notifications (that you have lost your KOM) have some people seeing red, but let me ask you, if I go mountain biking with my buddy on a Sunday, send him an email on Monday ribbing him about how he needs to get his arse in shape after I dropped him on the last downhill, and on Tuesday he goes out and rides that same trail beyond his ability and tragically dies, should I be sued by the family for causing his death? I sure hope not. And while the email notifications may be playfully worded, they are essentially just another form of information sharing, which is the entire premise of Strava.
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