Legal Issues

by Mike Masnick




NYC Tackles Cell Phone Etiquette With Laws

from the it's-illegal-to-be-obnoxious dept

Of all places, I think most people would assume that New York City would be one of the last places in the world to outlaw any type of obnoxious behavior. However, they're looking at a proposed law that would fine people for using mobile phones (or letting it ring) at a performance. While I do hate it when people can't figure out how to turn their ringer off, legislating obnoxious behavior might be going a bit too far. I wonder if that means any of the various performances of symphanies using cell phones would require a special exemption permit...

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  • identicon
    Anonymous Coward, 31 Oct 2002 @ 11:28am

    No Subject Given

    Gimme a break. People who lack the smarts or manners to turn the ringer off during a performance SHOULD be fined AND sent to a mandatory attendance cell phone etiquette class. People with the colossal nerve to answer cell phone calls during a performance and then have extended conversations should have their phone confiscated, smashed to bits on the spot, fined and banned from attending public performances for at least 90 days. Hey, this is NYC, so legislating obnoxious behavior may be about the only way you're gonna stop 'em. Prevailing attitude seems to be "my phone, my right". Pftt! At $100+ per ticket for decent seats, I don't want to listen to some rude idiot whine or wax philosophically about "what a day I had.." Especially since they also seem to think it necessary to SHOUT so they can be heard over the music. Screw'em. (You obviously don't live here.)

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      argo, 31 Oct 2002 @ 11:52am

      Re: No Subject Given

      Whatever! Just because you are annoyed with the way someone uses their telephone does not mean that the local law enforcement has the right to step in and create laws and fines regarding cell phone use. In the theatre example, the theatre management should be responsible for creating an environment condusive to enjoying the show. If someone disturbs the show, then they have to leave. After this happens enough, the theatre will develop a reputation for being tough on cellphone abusers, and people will learn to be more considerate. Take your cellphone gestapo elsewhere, sarge.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        Anonymous Coward, 31 Oct 2002 @ 2:52pm

        Re: No Subject Given

        Ah, but as it now exists, management doesn't have the right to do anything about it.
        They can toss a patron for smoking in no smoking areas, but not for using cell phones.
        Most don't try and those who do get ignored, or worse, threatened (legally, not physically).
        Unfortunately many of the abusers are well-heeled with LLBs and JDSs being among the worst offenders. Welcome to the Big Apple.

        (BTW, for future reference, should sarcasm be in Italic, boldface or what?

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        TheCaptain, 1 Nov 2002 @ 9:28am

        Re: No Subject Given

        Have you ever seen what happens when a theater tries to throw out these *ssh*les?

        Instead of them "learning their lesson" and the disturbance going away, the disturbance gets turned up a notch as they (usually) loudly argue about personal rights and "its a free country" ad nauseum.

        No, the parent is correct, these repeat offenders not only will never learn, but will never change on their own because the core of the problem isn't a cellphone, its THEM, its the fact that they are rude, obnoxious asses and are proud of it.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          argo, 1 Nov 2002 @ 12:06pm

          Re: No Subject Given

          I don't buy it. Theatre owners have a right to kick out a cell pone user, just as a bouncer has the right to throw out an unruly patron. So what if the incident escalates. Do you think the other theatre goers are going to blame management? No. They'll scoff at the inconsiderate jackass that made a scene and got his ass booted out, and then they'll go on with the show.

          For me this issue is about principle. It is the management's responsibility to provide the appropriate environment, provided there are no dangers to the public. Let the police deal with the real problems.

          Even a**holes are people. If a**holes are treated accordingly, they will either learn or they will not frequent places that they have been humiliated.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

        • identicon
          John Josephs, 5 Dec 2002 @ 7:40am

          cellruders

          Your conclusion couldn't be more succinct.

          reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Annoyed, 3 Dec 2002 @ 5:29pm

      Re: No Subject Given

      Don't you think you have ever done something annoying in public? Don't go fining people because they annoy you.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      aaron mulkern, 19 Mar 2003 @ 4:42am

      Re: No Subject Given

      you are a fucking faget

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      sharron, 8 Feb 2004 @ 9:50am

      Re: No Subject Given


      I work at the airport in Houston,Texas--
      so I see every rude ass hole on cell
      phone you could ever imagine.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    LordSlakyr, 31 Oct 2002 @ 11:58am

    How would it be enforced without disruption?

    Would a police officer walk down the to the row with the offender with a little red flashing light on his cap, pull the guy out of his (or her) seat, and write a ticket?

    Or, I know, maybe we could have those futuristic little ticket dispensers that kick out a ticket everytime there is an offense. Put 'em on the back of all the chairs. What was it, Time Cop?

    Now, a law that allowed me to thump the guy on the back of the head -- that's justice!

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      argo, 31 Oct 2002 @ 12:09pm

      Re: How would it be enforced without disruption?

      if i were to run a theatre, gallery or library, i would wait until the time is appropriate, and have the person ushered out. maybe that means at the intermission, maybe it means at the moment of the infraction. no fines. no refunds. stay out. if the performance was in the second part, i think it would have to be a judgement call.

      the point is. it is ridiculous for cell phone use in public places to be legislated when it causes no danger.

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

      • identicon
        mango, 11 Feb 2004 @ 1:10pm

        Re: How would it be enforced without disruption?

        It is apparent that you do not run a theater. I work in a theater and there is no "appropriate" time to kick someone out. If someone is using their cell phone during a movie, though it is theater policy to remove rude guests from the theater, we still have to interrupt the other guests' moviegoing experience. However, we cannot allow a guest to continue to talk on their cell phones. If a law prohibiting cell phone use in a theater was passed, we wouldn't have to ruin anyone's experience and everyone would be happy.

        reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Ed, 31 Oct 2002 @ 1:31pm

      Demolition Man

      "John Spartan, you are fined one credit for a violation of the cellphone courtesy statute."

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      John Joseph, 5 Dec 2002 @ 7:37am

      Re: How would it be enforced without disruption?

      Love your conclusion!

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

    • identicon
      Anonymous Coward, 10 Oct 2008 @ 3:31pm

      Re: How would it be enforced without disruption?

      Demolition Man

      reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    Adiel, 31 Oct 2002 @ 2:44pm

    cilly cell fones

    it's pretty clear that if you act obnoxiously ANYWHERE that the owners of that place can throw you out or ask you to stop. but it makes no sense to let the state tell you how to act. there is no safety issue (such as talking on the phone while driving) at all. if you burp in a restaurant, can they fine you for ruining other peoples meals? no way. maybe the OWNERS will ask you to stop and the offended can complain. but you can't be taken to court for a burp. certainly not for letting your phone accidentaly ring at a performance.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]

  • identicon
    John Josephs, 5 Dec 2002 @ 7:35am

    cellphone ruders

    Their assholes! I think perhaps some of them still believe it must be chic to have a cellphone. I really don't want to know their business.

    reply to this | link to this | view in chronology ]


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