Monday, January 31, 2011

Come for the Impulse, Stay for the Safety

I've said this before and I'll say it again. People respond positively to impulses. "Hey, that looks cool! I wanna try that out." The most successful efforts to stimulate bicycling and pedestrian life is by appealing to emotion. As Jason Roberts echoed the other day in convo, by focusing on safety, most efforts and videos supposedly in favor of bicycling do more harm than good by pointing out how unsafe cycling often is. This video is one that appeals to emotion. Hey, isn't that cool.

Of course, this doesn't abdicate government's role in providing safety. It won't make anybody pick up a bike and start riding, but it will keep those riding. Otherwise, somebody might try it once, get nearly run over by an SUV whose driver is busy chatting away on their cell phone. They roll right through an intersection, making a right-hand turn, paying little heed to anybody else that might be on the road. And why not? The road is designed for them to turn off their brain.

Thanks to Howard at BikeDenton for passing this along via twitter.