No community consensus on abandoned vs stolen bikes?

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sparr
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No community consensus on abandoned vs stolen bikes?

Post by sparr » Sat Sep 26, 2015 11:13 am

On Wednesday in the middle of the event, someone leaves a bike unlocked near the man. Someone else takes it as their own. Most of us agree that this is not OK, right? This is "obviously" a stolen bike, and someone is going to have a shitty 4-5 days on foot because of it, and be out a hundred bucks they spent on their playa bike.

On Tuesday after the burn, while doing cleanup/LNT, someone finds a bike left in inner playa. They take it, or maybe they just take the lights. Most of us agree that this is OK, right? This is obviously an abandoned bike, and if it wasn't stripped or taken then it would be left for DPW to deal with post-burn, along with the other thousands of abandoned bikes.

Why can't we, as a community, draw a line somewhere in between these two days? As a newcomer, when I see someone "claim" an "abandoned" bike on Saturday or Sunday, I have no idea how I should respond to that. Are they stealing a bike, or are they helping clean up the event? If I saw someone steal anything else, any time during the event, I'd have no qualms calling them out on it and making sure the people nearby heard me. When I see a bike on Sunday or Monday or Tuesday that I'd like to salvage, how do I decide if I'm being a dick or helping by taking it? When I consider where/how to leave my bike[1], I'd love the line between "probably safe" and "probably not safe" to be a bit more well defined.

[1] I am speaking of considerations by less careful people. I, personally, lock my bike up. To something solid if possible. To itself if not. No one is going to accidentally rescue my bike,
Last edited by sparr on Sat Sep 26, 2015 11:21 am, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: No community consensus on abandoned vs stolen bikes?

Post by sparr » Sat Sep 26, 2015 11:16 am

Context from my personal experience this year: A friend of mine had their bike taken from inner playa on Friday night. I called someone out for taking an "abandoned" bike on Saturday. I saw many people stripping lights and decoration off bikes in inner playa on Monday, and I had no problem with that.
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Re: No community consensus on abandoned vs stolen bikes?

Post by BBadger » Sat Sep 26, 2015 1:23 pm

I generally consider any bike "owned" until Monday (at the stroke of midnight to be technical) when (I feel) the event is really "over" -- and in circumstances where there is clear abandonment. The latter criterion would be if there is any other property in the vicinity that could be considered owned. We've had a heap of stuff in our camp as a lost and found until Monday mid-day, when we did the final sweep and loaded the stuff up to take home; we wouldn't want scavengers picking through that pile.

Otherwise, I think this is just a case of opportunistic hippie-scavengers rationalizing their thieving. I especially think so when they're just in the business of stealing the lights, not helping with taking home a MOOP-bike.
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Re: No community consensus on abandoned vs stolen bikes?

Post by JohnEBGud » Sat Sep 26, 2015 1:40 pm

People know right from wrong. If you take something that doesn't belong to you without the knowledge and permission of the owner, it's stealing.

If I understand your question, you're asking at what point does property become abandoned so taking it is not considered stealing. I don't know the legal answer to that, but I propose that a practical answer is never. Let's take a default world situation. On the way to work everyday, you see a car parked along the side of the road. It looks abandoned. How long does it have to sit there before you can take it or strip it? The answer is never. The correct option would be to report it to authorities.

On the Playa, after the burn, taking it to lost and found or a bike collection point would be the correct thing to do. Stripping it of valuables and leaving it there for someone else to clean up is not an acceptable action. Same might even be true during the burn. I saw many abandoned bikes out on the deep Playa during the burn with no one or anything around. Perhaps they were abandoned in a white out, a drunken stupor or were stolen then abandoned. I think you can make an argument for leaving them where they are with expectation that someone will come back for them or an equally strong argument to take them into lost and found, where if they were missing or stolen, their owners would be more easily able to find them.
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Re: No community consensus on abandoned vs stolen bikes?

Post by CyanEssence » Sat Sep 26, 2015 2:06 pm

I am of the mind that the nicest thing to do is get it to lost and found, its owner's camp (if it is labeled), or take it, and post it on eplaya's lost and found (the shipping could be a pain I suppose).

Some seemingly abandoned bikes are probably being looked for. As JohnEBGud said, drunken stupor, white out... I also know of someone who dropped their bike when called to deal with an emergency medical situation on an art car - they jumped on while the art car was driving to ESD (to give CPR) and lost their bike in the process. Fortunately, no one had claimed this bike (which may have seemed abandoned to others), and they found it 12 hours or so later.

I also wonder how many of those bikes left on the playa are left because they were stolen earlier in the week, and left because the thieves didn't care to take them home, and the proper owner had no clue where it went.

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Re: No community consensus on abandoned vs stolen bikes?

Post by lucky420 » Sat Sep 26, 2015 2:16 pm

JohnEBGud wrote:People know right from wrong. If you take something that doesn't belong to you without the knowledge and permission of the owner, it's stealing.

If I understand your question, you're asking at what point does property become abandoned so taking it is not considered stealing. I don't know the legal answer to that, but I propose that a practical answer is never. Let's take a default world situation. On the way to work everyday, you see a car parked along the side of the road. It looks abandoned. How long does it have to sit there before you can take it or strip it? The answer is never. The correct option would be to report it to authorities.

On the Playa, after the burn, taking it to lost and found or a bike collection point would be the correct thing to do. Stripping it of valuables and leaving it there for someone else to clean up is not an acceptable action. Same might even be true during the burn. I saw many abandoned bikes out on the deep Playa during the burn with no one or anything around. Perhaps they were abandoned in a white out, a drunken stupor or were stolen then abandoned. I think you can make an argument for leaving them where they are with expectation that someone will come back for them or an equally strong argument to take them into lost and found, where if they were missing or stolen, their owners would be more easily able to find them.
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Re: No community consensus on abandoned vs stolen bikes?

Post by Ratty » Sat Sep 26, 2015 2:29 pm

On WEDNESDAY morning after the burn at the stroke of 12am bikes are moop. (Maybe it was Tuesday morning when I saw them and talked to them.) They will be picked up by the designated team. Before that, you are a thief. Are you a thief after that? I don't know. I guess it depends on the bike. Take a worthless piece of poop home and you're a hero. Tie an $800 trike on your car and maybe not.

Now. On the other hand. If you leave before that, all bikes in your camp are your responsibility. You should take them to the lost bike drop. (I can't think of what that is called.) Lost and found no longer takes bikes.
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Re: No community consensus on abandoned vs stolen bikes?

Post by theCryptofishist » Sat Sep 26, 2015 3:55 pm

If I remember the rules correctly, the people who put on the event don't want you to take bikes you don't own home even after the event ends. If nothing else, it leaves one central address/organization for people to deal with when they are looking for their missing bike.
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Re: No community consensus on abandoned vs stolen bikes?

Post by tamarakay » Sat Sep 26, 2015 3:58 pm

When this discussion was had last year Trilo said the official stance is taking a bike from anyone at any time is considered theft. Even Tuesday or Wednesday after the event.even if it looks abandoned.
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Re: No community consensus on abandoned vs stolen bikes?

Post by some seeing eye » Sat Sep 26, 2015 4:57 pm

http://burningman.org/event/lost-and-found/
No bike is considered lost until the event is over. From Monday to Wednesday post-event, lost bikes can possibly be recovered at the Yellow Bike Camp (5:30 & A). You must arrive in person and prepared to give a detailed description in order to claim a recovered bike. After Wednesday, unclaimed bikes are donated to various nonprofits.
Don't bring a good bike, don't take a bike that isn't yours, always use a good lock, don't lock a yellow bike, label your bike with your name, camp, contact info, don't fret if you lose your bike. - That is the real community consensus on bikes.
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Re: No community consensus on abandoned vs stolen bikes?

Post by Elderberry » Sat Sep 26, 2015 6:45 pm

If what I saw this year just at and around our camp, this had to have been a banner year for people just abandoning their bikes. Four bikes were left at the perimeter of our camp and I could see another five that had been abandoned at the porta-potties. This was on Monday. And some of the bikes were pretty nice. (One I think was a rental based on the tag/licence plate? it had) But that is so inconsiderate if you ask me. Two wheel moop.
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Re: No community consensus on abandoned vs stolen bikes?

Post by tamarakay » Sat Sep 26, 2015 7:57 pm

Most were probably stolen during the week then abandoned.
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Re: No community consensus on abandoned vs stolen bikes?

Post by Molotov » Sat Sep 26, 2015 11:12 pm

Labor Day morning about 10 AM bikes littered the open playa near the ashes of the Man and Temple. By 3 that afternoon, I hardly saw any. I saw one DPW truck picking up yellowbikes, but there were a couple of box trucks roaming the playa, too. I suspect a lot of the "abandoned" bikes went into the back of those trucks.

Were these sanctioned clean up details, or merely profiteers seeking targets of opportunity? Who knows, but they definitely did the job. I'm surprised the cops didn't plant some "bait bikes" out there to snare some folks with a few more criminal charges.

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Re: No community consensus on abandoned vs stolen bikes?

Post by pink » Sat Sep 26, 2015 11:19 pm

We had two bikes abandoned IN our camp this year. In with our camp bikes. Nice line of bikes, deep in camp and two were leftover when all were claimed. What would you do with them?
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Re: No community consensus on abandoned vs stolen bikes?

Post by Simon of the Playa » Sun Sep 27, 2015 7:10 am

this is what you do with abandoned bikes.


duh.

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Re: No community consensus on abandoned vs stolen bikes?

Post by tamarakay » Sun Sep 27, 2015 7:42 am

We were told to wheel them out to the street. This was from a Dpw guy. Dpw would pick them up. Or, take them to the yellow bike address.
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Re: No community consensus on abandoned vs stolen bikes?

Post by sparr » Thu Oct 08, 2015 9:37 pm

JohnEBGud wrote:If I understand your question, you're asking at what point does property become abandoned so taking it is not considered stealing. I don't know the legal answer to that, but I propose that a practical answer is never. Let's take a default world situation. On the way to work everyday, you see a car parked along the side of the road. It looks abandoned. How long does it have to sit there before you can take it or strip it? The answer is never. The correct option would be to report it to authorities.
Sure, in the default world, technically that's true, but for items smaller than a car it gets socially fuzzy. Legally if you find a pair of sunglasses on the sidewalk you're obliged to turn them in to the police. Who does that? Almost no one, and very few people will look askance at you for keeping them. Is a bicycle more like sunglasses or a car? Depends on who you ask.
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Re: No community consensus on abandoned vs stolen bikes?

Post by tatonka » Thu Oct 08, 2015 10:02 pm

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Re: No community consensus on abandoned vs stolen bikes?

Post by JohnEBGud » Fri Oct 09, 2015 6:18 pm

sparr wrote:Sure, in the default world, technically that's true, but for items smaller than a car it gets socially fuzzy. Legally if you find a pair of sunglasses on the sidewalk you're obliged to turn them in to the police. Who does that? Almost no one, and very few people will look askance at you for keeping them. Is a bicycle more like sunglasses or a car? Depends on who you ask.
It depends on who you ask? Really? Bikes and cars are both transportation, typically cost over $100, tend to get reported to law enforcement when stolen, and are unlikely to be misplaced, lost, or forgotten. What do bikes and sunglasses have in common?

Regardless, are you telling me you'd be in moral quandary if you found a pair of sunglasses in a Starbucks as to whether to put them in your pocket or turn them into the cashier?
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Re: No community consensus on abandoned vs stolen bikes?

Post by sparr » Sat Oct 10, 2015 12:32 am

JohnEBGud wrote:[bikes] are unlikely to be misplaced, lost, or forgotten.
You apparently haven't been around Burning Man on Lastday...
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Re: No community consensus on abandoned vs stolen bikes?

Post by Simon of the Playa » Sat Oct 10, 2015 5:03 am

there is no community consensus on anything.

duh.




these threads are tiring and pointless.


seems to be a thing with the OP.
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