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I don’t oppose the London Underground’s WiFi plans

I’m not a Londoner anymore. I live in Marlow, Buckinghamshire. However I’m in London most days so I feel I have some right to stand up and be counted here.

Have a read of this:

Some 55 per cent of 950 people questioned said they did not want Transport for London to go ahead with the programme, which was announced by Mayor Boris Johnson last week.

Of the opponents, 48 per cent cited concerns about privacy, including the potential for other passengers to see sensitive data over their shoulder. A further 31 per cent said they were worried that increased use of smartphones and laptops on the tube network would encourage thieves, and 14 per cent said it would make journeys more stressful.

via Londoners ‘oppose tube WiFi plans’ – Telegraph.

Clearly, the folk doing the survey spoke to a bunch of heathens.

Concerns about privacy? Privacy? That’s a stupid one. Ultra stupid. Privacy? Really?

Oh please. If that’s a valid concern, then we should rip out WiFi from every railway station in London. We should descend upon McDonalds and rip out every WiFi transmitter in every one of their restaurants. Yeah. No. Ridiculous.

And what’s this about ‘encouraging thieves’? Oh come on. People are ALREADY using their devices on the Underground. It’s just a flipping arse that you can’t actually *do* anything meaningful with them.

Just how many people are going to get more stressed by the introduction of WiFi on the Tube? 14% people actually specified that as a concern?

Presumably these are the same people who are worried about going on holiday to ‘somewhere foreign’ and are concerned about the possibility of the sky falling down.

By Ewan

Ewan is Founder and Editor of Mobile Industry Review. He writes about a wide variety of industry issues and is usually active on Twitter most days. You can read more about him or reach him with these details.

One reply on “I don’t oppose the London Underground’s WiFi plans”

Ewan, for some years now the Telegraph has been chasing the Daily Mail in a race to the bottom of spurious, set-up-to-infuriate ‘surveys’. Pick a polarising subject, preferably with a class / age / religious perceived gulf. Ask loaded, either-or question. Publish and watch the click-throughs.

In this case, it’s the perceived gulf between those who use mobile devices happily, openly and frequently, and everyone else who can’t be bothered / afford one / understand Facebook et al.

Cue comments like “People that find being out of touch for a few minutes problematic are plain sick and often behave antisocially when they use their phones in public”

And who ‘commissioned’ the survey? a voucher website, who have nothing at all to do with the issue, and don’t even mention this amazingly important social insight anywhere that I could see on their site. Was it a deal between the Telegraph and the site to drive traffic? Did the site act alone and the TG get sucked in to promoting their URL?

This, sadly, is what passes for ‘journalism’ in the UK nowadays. No insight, no research, no follow-up, no comment from insightful people in the mobile or social media industry. Just angry ranting.

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