It’s hard to know what happened to YouTube user caseyneistat before he was ticketed in New York for “not riding [his] bike in the bike lane.”

He says he received a $50 fine. He certainly deserves to be fined for his failure to punctuate and capitalize, but not for leaving the bike lane for his own safety. Or is there more to the story?

I really wanted to give the guy the benefit of the doubt, but then…

Jackactivism quote

Yes, he actually says that to the officer in the video. The voice of the smug cycling martyr. And that’s when the benefit of my doubt slipped away.

Of course he deserves to be presumed innocent, and he has the right to fight the ticket in court. Instead, it appears that his strategy is to embarrass the officer and/or the City. The tactics of someone without a legal leg on which to stand.

I’ve heard of a one-man critical masshole in my own town who is waging a campaign of provocation against cars, buses, and the city government. And this is in a Silver Level Bike Friendly City. If you want to turn motorists against you–and turn back progress–this is how you behave.

New York’s bike infrastructure and progress is in a delicate state, and making headway–at least it appears so from here, 2000 miles away. Cycling issues are already on the public radar. Very much so. Forcing a confrontation at this point is hardly necessary.

This is good for a cathartic laugh, but is he doing more harm than good for the cause of cyclists in New York?

Update: Commute by Bike interviewed Neistat about his video, and our reaction to it: "˜Nobody gives a s*** about concise political  arguments'

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