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November 18, 2017
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  • Things I like to see: Innovating startups like Strava creating cool new things. Segments are the core of what makes Strava what it is.

    Things I don’t like to see: People not taking responsibility for their own actions. Anybody could tell you that descending fast is potentially dangerous, and nobody is forcing you to go for that KOM (KOD?).

    Strava has gone through a couple of rounds of funding, but they don’t have too many spare million dollars. It’s not like they’re a billion dollar company with a huge legal team on standby.

    • Way too many segments are being flagged now. GOOD, honest, proper, non-dangerous segments are being flagged as hazardous by either strava or some idiots. 

      This is seriously ruining strava for me. I can’t even compare my old results once it’s flagged.

    • Gmail2020

      Good point. Things I don’t like to see are frivolous lawsuits. Suing Strava is just yet another example in an endless list of ridiculous lawsuits plaguing the nation. I think perhaps it time we all join together and file a class action lawsuit against the American Bar Association. Since it’s the ABA who is responsible for law school accreditation, the ABA should be held liable for creating this insane environment wherein greedy (or starving) lawyers have the ability to file these kinds of awfully expensive nuisance lawsuits. Yes, it’s the ABA, with the help of their brethren lawyers in great positions of power (half of congress as well as the president of the United States are all lawyers) have created this “target rich” environment in America where lawyers can sue anybody anytime for any reason.

  • Last time there was a strava article on here (and when I first learned about strava) I made a comment that eventually, someone would die as a result of trying too hard to smash a downhill segment. I was quite surprised that they allowed descents at all at first, but like others I thought this was not stravas responsibility. 

    There is a downhill segment that I have gone for near where I live, and I have gone as fast as I could safely go, but even at those speeds I am a knifes edge away from death. After realising that, I decided not to go for that segment ever again. If i was to have an accident doing so, I would damn so hope that my family wouldn’t sue strava for my own mistake

  • Beau

    Strava just released new T & C’s 
    http://www.strava.com/terms

  • Guest

    Strava have just updated their Terms & Conditions

  • Slhaydon

    We are talking about paying the ultimate price for a race. Cones or no cones this could happen. It is a desperate attempt by the family (who were no doubt advised by a lawyer that it was ‘worthwhile$$$’) to pass the blame but the truth is it was an irresposible thing to do by this unfortunate rider. How does the driver who killed him feel?? Should he sue the bike company for making a machine that is capable of travelling at great speeds? Where does it stop?
    Perhaps if it was an organised race he would have also taken out a few other riders and caused even more injury / death. 

  • Rob

    Remember before Strava was invented – when there were no speed related cycling accidents whatsoever???

    …No? Oh yeah, thats right. Because stupid people will still do stupid things even without Strava turned on.

  • Happened

    You see it day in and day out along beach road, riders head down, bump up, trying to race each other.

    This morning whilst doing interval training along beach road, a group passes, and comments like “group passing, get over to the left, “get out of our way” were shouted! I was about 1 riders width from the kerb

    Old saying, if you are wearing a race number, you are not racing.

    • Anonymous

      ha, I think you’ve slightly mangled that saying!

  • Guest

    Here is one much closer to home.  Not a fatality (thank god) but a crash on a strava segment none the less..

    http://dieselread.wordpress.com/2012/06/18/just-in-case-you-thought-you-were-invicible/

  • justanotheropinion

    Kang should get real. Someone should sue him for being a human leech. Strava hasn’t created a  unregulated, non rule based competition peoples egos have. now POQ Mr Kang and please don’t feed the animal or make eye contact with him or others like him it only serves their ends. DEVO – Freedom of choice

    • Tim

      Strava with their clever play on Game Theory have in fact created a platform to compare and race.

      I am not saying they are responsible, I am saying it is demonstrably false to say they have not helped enable and foster it.

  • Robert Merkel

    One thing to keep in mind is that as a society, we protect people from their own recklessness all the time. 

    We have seatbelt and helmet laws, you need a licence to fly a plane (even over unpopulated areas), there are restrictions on how you can gamble, drink, take drugs, and so on.

    Nanny-stating it may be, but the general argument that adults should be allowed to do anything they want as long as it doesn’t harm others (and in this case, that doesn’t even apply – racing downhill poses risks to bystanders) has been lost long ago.

  • Robert Merkel

    One thing to keep in mind is that as a society, we protect people from their own recklessness all the time. 

    We have seatbelt and helmet laws, you need a licence to fly a plane (even over unpopulated areas), there are restrictions on how you can gamble, drink, take drugs, and so on.

    Nanny-stating it may be, but the general argument that adults should be allowed to do anything they want as long as it doesn’t harm others (and in this case, that doesn’t even apply – racing downhill poses risks to bystanders) has been lost long ago.

    • TJ

      I guess that the 26,200 posting videos of “cycling downhill” on YouTube didn’t get this message.

    • JZCarr

      “We protect people from their own recklessness”.  The motto of government revenue collectors everywhere.

  • Aaron Smith

    This world has gone & getting more crazy. Taking personal responsibilty has gone out the window. Just because you’re in a race & some safety cones can be put in place, the fun police are still taking out descents in official races.

  • JC

    Sounds like a case for Jackie Chiles, Attorney at Law….who told you to put a balm on?

    • SRPHOTO

      You hit it right on the nail brother! 

  • HB

    Perhaps each KOM is a heart attack waiting to happen?

    I find this really sad.  Mr. Flint’s death is sad, but maybe he died doing something he really loved.  His family’s choice to take action against Strava is sad, because (in my view) this is misdirected grief. 

  • matthew emeott

    After reading this, i have instructed my family to sue my car’s manufacturer in the event i die while driving over the speed limit.

    • Anth73

      It’s a fair analogy but do remember that car manufacturers are prohibited from creating advertisements that encourage dangerous driving. Strava’s “race your mates” message may be it’s undoing in this tragic affair and their recent “uh-ho…you’re KOM has been broken” feature may not help it’s defense.

      I hope nothing untoward happens to Strava though as I find it a really useful training tool!

    • jules

       that’s a good point matt.

      i am nowhere on any Strava segments that even look like heading uphill, but for some reason i’m very high up on some of the downhill ones – including segments that take in shared paths.

      is it safe to race down shared paths? no it’s not, which leaves me with mixed feelings about threatening KoMs on them. but i would never consciously put anyone at risk to bag a Strava KoM and would always pull the pin if necessary, without hesitation. sometimes though, there’s no one else about and i’ll go for it.

      but should Strava even allow KoMs on shared paths? some of the times scare me – 40 km/h +.

      what if Strava added a Motorist option? can you imagine drivers bagging KoMs on the Kew Boulie? as a cyclist, i wouldn’t be pleased. i’ll bet it would be more controversial too.

  • R.M.

    Tragic as this incident is, blaming a program that simply allows people to share times and riding routes is utter bs. I mean, they may as well sue the inventor of the stopwatch while theyre at it. After all, theres nothing stopping me from telling my mates my new personal best on the local dh track… I dont need software of any kind to do that, and theres no telling that someone may or may not injure themselves trying to best it with a time of their own. At the end of the day, its as plain as the rising sun that trying to go faster and faster in almost any situation has an increasingly present risk factor. Every time we set off for a ride we are acknowledging this, and if we need some company to feed us this already blatantly obvious information then common sense is well and truly dead and buried.

  • Rocket

    handlebars come with brakes and are regulated by our brains if your going too fast squeeze please, sad that a recording tool is being manipulated by the ego, i hear it after bunch training about smashing the latest segment time and its always the guys that don’t race, remember it dangerous out there be responsible for your actions because that’s all that you can do

  • Tim

    A simple fix for this is eliminating KOD.

    Fixed.

    • Anthony N

      Why?  The rider is ultimately in control, Strava wasn’t alerting him to go faster, he would have been thinking, “I can’t wait to get home and download this!”.  In reality, he should have been thinking, “perhaps I should slow down a bit, there could be a car parked on the side of the road”.

    • Yup. Cotton wool is always the answer.

  • Notso Swift

    Proof Strava is evil

    • Anth73

      In your case they should introduce the KOBC…king of broken collarbones! ;)  How long before you’re back on self-propelled two wheels?

      • Notso Swift

         about 4 weeks, but problems with the skin may see a graft ;-(

        • jules

          give the skin time, if you can. i was told i would probably need a graft recently but it slowly grew back.

      • Notso Swift

         about 4 weeks, but problems with the skin may see a graft ;-(

  • JC

    Take it make a step further, sue the guy who invented the internet

    • GeeTee

      Or why not sue the guy that beat his KOD?  He triggered the action, Strava was the messenger.       Actually, some American lawyer might just have a crack …

      • Anon.

        Or sue the convection curents in the Earths core for causing plate movement and collisions thereby creating mountains which people can ride their bike down very fast – too fast in his case

        • Notso Swift

          or GRAVITY!

        • Notso Swift

          or GRAVITY!

  • TJ

    Are Americans so idiotic as to believe that Flint’s family and their young attorney really want “justice” rather than a simply a payout? Especially since their suit was filed just days before their statutory right to file would expire. One hopes Strava’s attorneys will take a lesson from Facebook – which has no doubt been sued numerous times by the families of stupid people doing stupid things in search of that perfect photograph to post. 

    Seriously though, the risk-reward tradeoff is inherent to every action that each person takes. There is ample legal precedent about this – the classic one being a woman hit by a fly ball at a baseball game (no damages awarded, due to the fact that anyone attending a ball game should know that fly balls are an inherent part of the game). Strava is not the one that makes that decision to undertake any risky activity, and should bear no more responsibility than Facebook, Twitter, Youtube, the local pub or another place where people boast of their accomplishments.

    That said, if someone takes my KOM…

  • Anonymous

    Different reason to apply the old adage, if you want to race – then pin on a number and do it properly.

    And, even when you’re racing, you rely on your competitors to race with their brain engaged and they (quite reasonably) expect the same from you. Many things in life have a dark side. Look at Darth Vader. Eventually he saw sense and converted back. Given time, the Strava abusers out there who survive will make sense of it all.

  • Michal

    I hope that common sense will prevail and Strava doesn’t get sued. On another note a couple days ago Taylor Phinney has clocked 114.4km/h downhill. May we all arive safe from our rides and enjoy Strava as well!

  • Michal

    I hope that common sense will prevail and Strava doesn’t get sued. On another note a couple days ago Taylor Phinney has clocked 114.4km/h downhill. May we all arive safe from our rides and enjoy Strava as well!

  • Michal

    I hope that common sense will prevail and Strava doesn’t get sued. On another note a couple days ago Taylor Phinney has clocked 114.4km/h downhill. May we all arive safe from our rides and enjoy Strava as well!

  • My only thoughts are will they go after the bicycle manufacturer for enabling “flint” to take part in such “obvious” dangerous non-race. But why stop there. I am sure the Helmet is at fault, The maker of the car for not making a cyclist safe car and lastly the City for making a dangerous road and one that kills you when you hit it hard. Such failures on all their parts to protect us from ourselves.

  • how pathetic can you be to sue strava for this? after all everybody is resposnible for his or her own actions…. but thats just how it is in the US – sue McDonalds, because coffee was hot – oh, what a surprise! stupid ….

  • Skatteredsieds

    kim’s fate was in his own hands, but strava has made millions of dollars by fostering competitions where you win by breaking the law, putting lives in jeopardy in the process. if this was an application for automobile racers, would people be so quick to excuse strava of any responsibilty?

    • Just to quickly add to your first point, Strava hasn’t made a penny from its service yet. Obviously the longterm goal is to turn a profit, but not at this point of the business:

      http://www.cyclingtips.com.au/2012/02/strava-from-the-beginning/

      • mattb

        true, but success, or lack thereof in business should not alter the case.  They are trying to make money out of it (but that’s irrelevant also).  Otherwise you could only sue rich people, not negligent people….although I don’t think Strava are negligible….

        Can you sue someone who organises illegal drag races? same thing I would think

    • Anthony N

      I’m glad CT posted the link to his Strava story, it’s a shame some facts are getting in the way of your awesome story.

  • Selt

    Granted that Kim is at fault here; but the ridiculous aspect of Strava having downhill segments that could encourage this sort of behavior needs to be held to account.  We need to realise that the world changed sometime ago with relation to resposibility of action so Strava should follow suit or end up on the scrap heap.  I know the flip side is riding up hill fast may invoke a heart attack so the story never ends….  Strava should meet half way and remove dangerous downhill segments; lets face it we aren’t professionals at this stuff.. (I know some of us think we are :) )

  • Ed

    no one forces you to use strava – as with anything you should undertake an activity within your fitness limits and level of competency.

    not even lionel hutz would take this case

  • Thinker

    Interesting piece of litigation.

    It makes you think: what if someone had an accident doing the Ricketts Point Challenge?  Would Cycling Tips be liable?

    http://www.cyclingtips.com.au/2009/10/ricketts-point-challenge/

    (Obviously, it’s a climb, not a descent, so the risks are smaller.)

  • Remember, it’s not just roadies using Strava and mountain biking’s going to be pretty boring if you simply banned anything with a descent because of an unfortunate accident.  What’s next – suing the people you’re riding with cause they egged you on in a little sprint?

    I’d be pretty upset if they did remove it cause whilst I’m vying for the slowest times on many of the peninsula descents I can track my improvements – isn’t that what’s Strava’s all about?

  • MrT

    You should clock the KOM’s an KOD’s on small, out of the way backstreets, in the early hours of the morning when there’s no traffic, like I do.

    But you need to take responsibility for your own actions ffs. Only in the USA!!

  • Steel

    I know with these things that everyone loves to hop into the lawyers. It’s a national sport. But while some of them are no doubt money grubbing arsehats, there are some that wish to hold those who a responsible, even if just partially, to account. In our society, this helps to improve things – see Ralph Nader and unsafe at any speed to better understand what I’m talking about.

    Anywho, my concern here is that if you take Strava out, this just goes onto Facebook, or some other social media forum. It may not be as sophisticated with segments and the like, but it’ll exist in some form. You’re not going to stop people competing for stuff like this on the internet, so to try to find those that facilitate this activity (whether overtly or not) liable is moving into fairly dangerous territory.

  • Guest

    Hard to say what is right, in the UK and elsewhere you can be done for incitement to racial hatred, yet surely they could use the same argument that the individual who may act on their words/encouragement is solely responsible for their actions. Stava could be looked at inciting others to break the law when downhill sections require you to break the speed limit to do so? Although in the US I would have thought freedom of speech would trump most things.

  • Anonymous

    I was reading w*ight-w**nies a while ago, and decided to make my bike lighter. I got the lightest brakes i could find! I rode them for a while, and found that my stopping power wasn’t as good. Sure, it was interesting if I came to a red light, but I would eventually come to a complete stop.

    Then I was reading the site again, and someone had a lighter bike than me! Oh how I fumed! I got a sharp knife and whittled away at my brake pads, saving weight. I drilled lots of holes in all the metal throughout the brakes calipers to save more weight! Finally, I had the lightest bike again. Riding was fun,  I noticed a few times I crapped my knicks going down a hill, or a pedestrian or car appeared in front of my, but damn my bike was light. 

    1 Day ago, I saw an even lighter bike than mine! I think I’ll just take off the calipers and save that weight. Besides, if anything happens to me, its not my fault right?

    • Steel

      Dude – that’s just a fixie bike. Once you’ve removed the brakes you will be re-accepted into Fitroy and Brunswick society.

  • Anonymous

    SO, let me ask you this – a site goes up and tracks you’re car speed and gives you segments.   The faster you are in any given segments, the higher you go on the leader board.   Every car magazine writes about this new site and proclaims that it made a race without an actual race.

    Some idiot tries to get back his segment and speeds in the road and goes over yellow and white lines.   He kills himself and someone else.

    Is anyone here going to argue that the site doesn’t have SOME responsibility in this scenario.

    You anti-legal people need to get a perspective, as does any idiot who actually uses STRAVA.   You want to get faster, go find someone faster and get dropped.  Rinse.  Repeat.       

    • Anth73

      You make a valid comparison velomonkey but undue your good work with “as does any idiot who actually uses STRAVA”. I use strava to help with my training. It’s helped me understand my anaerobic threshold and power, and how they have improved over time in my racing and training. I don’t care much for the leaderboards themselves anymore. 

      Best not to generalise strava’s user base. Sure there are idiots who will take whatever risks they feel comfortable with or employ whatever tactics to move up the leaderboard, but not all of us are like that. It is a useful training tool like TrainingPeaks and GarminConnect used in the right way. Misused, as with many things, and it can cause harm.

      • Anonymous

        Fair enough, but then again I wouldn’t be me if I didn’t negate my own point by being a first class jerk : )

    • Anthony N

      That behavior is happening without a site encouraging, America doesn’t rack up 44,000/year traffic fatalities because of a site promoting competition, people are dying daily regardless.  Ultimately, the driver is in control all the time.  Topgear could probably be blamed by some for people’s driving antics, but at the end of the day, it comes down to the driver at that moment in a time.  

      • Anonymous

        False dichotomy, Anthony N.  By your logic and example the Gumball Rally should just be allowed to go on and they have no responsibility since “the behavior is happening without a site”  – sorry.   The person in question specially did the decent because of the site.   

        Oh, and as someone who had a father die in an auto accident, yes, people are dying daily – but some people are dying needlessly.

        Your topgear example is way off base.

  • Frenchy

    Once again our litigious society gets in the way of innovation and progress. Personal accountability is lost.

  • Bracks_ashat

    Well I guess this is what happens in America. Someone dies, and you sue whoever indirectly caused your death.

  • Rod

    I like in the USA and I agree with almost everything that has been said.  I think it’s completely absurd that people do not take responsibility for their own actions.  It is extremely unfortunate that someone died while trying to take back his KOM, but  at the end of the day it was his decision to ride before his ability on that downhill.  I think part of the problems is the U.S. has four lawyers graduating for every one engineer so I’m assuming they are making work for themselves.    

    • Rod

       beyond* not before

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