Google reportedly fails to prevent people from stealing off free bicycles, available at its Mountain View, California headquarters each week. The company is known to maintain roughly over a thousand bikes, also known as “Gbikes” for each and every employee on its biggest campus. However, locals have started using their free hand and begun stealing the bicycles away.
According to a report published by Gizmodo, Google estimates that about 100 to 250 bikes go missing from its campus each week. The bikes have ended up being discovered at local schools, in random individual’s lawns or at the end of town’s creek. One even turned up in a TV commercial for the cosmetics brand, Garnier.
This observation was made by a Google employee. The locals have gone on to state that they feel free to rent a Gbike whenever it is convenient for them. Therefore, most of the individuals have ended up taking bikes for their convenience. “It’s like a friendly gesture,” says resident Sharon Veach, who often takes one of the Gbikes from train stations to home and back. “They don’t really want us to use it, but its okay if you do. You know, I rent it for a day.”
Mountain View marketer, Joseph Zidarevich said that everyone ends up stealing bikes, be it kids to grandmothers. The company has attempted at curbing these attempts of stealing by installing GPS trackers into the rides. They even plan on locking the bikes with an application.
The search giant plans on hiring a team of 30 contractors, whose jobs would be to search the region for its missing bikes. “None of these measures have helped Google even quantify the number of bikes that are actually missing,” the Gizmodo report added. “The Mountain View police have decided it’s not their problem, and when staff has attempted to intervene its led to mishaps like misidentifying a Google staffer as a homeless woman,” the report added.