The popular MonkeyParking app is going offline in the San Francisco area temporarily, according to its official Tumblr.
Last month, the city issued a cease and desist letter to the company, which lets users auction off the parking spaces their cars occupy to others looking for spots.
Now MonkeyParking says it’s taking time to evaluate its service and clarify its value proposition to “avoid any future misunderstandings,” the blog post says.
“Street parking is currently not a first-come-first-served process, but still a random-served one: you can go in circles for hours while a lucky driver can find a spot in a minute, right in front of you,” the blog, which was addressed to all “MonkeyParkers,” said. The city, however, doesn’t think it’s fair to auction off public property for private profit. MonkeyParking insists that the app simply helps users auction off information, though clearly the city isn’t buying it.
Not every parking app is going, however. CARMAnation relies on private driveways, and thus is unaffected by the city’s policy on public spaces.
“You cannot monetise public assets for individual company gain. Just because an app can be built, doesn’t mean it should be,” CEO and cofounder of CARMAnation told Business Insider in an email. “Our users share their PRIVATE available spots with one another. We aren’t looking to make a profit by taking advantage of the city or its residents.”
MonkeyParking, too, assures that not only is it working for the good of the people of San Francisco, but also that it will be back soon, it said on its blog.