Welcome to Santa Cruz County’s Bicycle Courier Blog

I thought it would be great to have a place where Bike Couriers and Bike Riders could meet and talk, share stories, trade advice, and build an online community. I look forward to reading and writing our Courier stories, news, and comments.

Rick Graves

Tuesday, March 27, 2012

Who needs bike messengers?

One of my friends was having a conversation with some twenty-something techno wonks and the subject came up that he knew some bike messengers around town. The attitude around the table was universally contemptuous, “that's stupid,” offered one, “in this day and age aren't all messages digital? Who needs bike messengers?”
While I love the internet for the connectivity it offers my business, these whiz-kids are forgetting some of it's limitations. For starters communication on the web is very one way. It's easy to ignore a message you don't want to get, and for that reason alone there will always be a need for bike messengers to physically inform people that they are being sued or to make sure a legal filing gets done.
As we find out more about this new digital reality it's the human element that's missing. Just today there was a need for a clerk to get papers in our hands so that a little girl could be adopted by her grandfather after her parents death. If the superior court clerk didn't answer the phone and listen to the attorneys case as to why this needed to be expedited, if there wasn't a bike messenger ready to physically get those documents, they would be sitting in archives for 4-6 weeks as this little girl waits.
As it was we were able to get the job done that same day because of human interaction and physical requisition of documents. These things do not happen by email. In fact many counties are switching back from e-filing systems because of the cost of constant upgrades and unreliable software.
Also the web is subject to fraud. When you receive an email, you don't even know who you are talking to anymore. When you receive a document by bike messenger you sign for it and she tells you what it's about. There is a human being involved whose professional duty is to make sure that you receive the message. That is very important to the legal profession.
Also as mobile notaries, we bike messengers make sure that people are who they say they are, and when they are signing documents that they understand them and are signing under their own will. You don't want that done over internet. Remember all those robo-signings set up by the banks to fraudulently speed up foreclosures a couple years ago?
We deliver cookies, blood plasma, bone marrow, and biopsies. You can't fit any of those in an email, and when we deliver we give you a real smile not an emoticon. ;)
So who needs bike messengers? Everyone does!


Couriers East London said...

Few things can make you best like quality of service, punctuality, work ethics and attitude.

Dwayne Gretzky said...

Thank you for sharing these thoughts, Rick! My company has definitely found out the hard way in the past that our courier in Toronto is indispensable to our success as a business. I appreciate all the work you guys do.