Short-lived platform transport services

This news item by Vice on the quick rise and demise of Revel scooters in NYC makes me think about temporarily as a theme that I’ve been interested in for a long time. As digital media technologies and urban culture intersect, we often see a mismatch between their temporal cycles. The fast-moving ways of the tech industry, with their extremely short cycles and aggressive grab-all strategies for taking over markets, is at odds with the much longer development and maintenance cycles of most urban infrastructures, such as housing and public transport. It artists that many urban tech companies simply do not have a long-teeth strategy that is sustainable and that considers maintenance. This quote from the article is illuminating:

The actual costs of running a safe and reliable shared transportation business that provides people a ride when they need it with minimal wait or inconvenience are almost always higher than what people are willing to pay for.

Link to original article on Vice >>

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