BART Turns Off Mobile Phone Service At Station Because It Doesn't Want Protestors To Communicate

from the really-now? dept

With all the talk in the UK from politicians about shutting down mobile messaging services, it's worth pointing out that it apparently takes much less to shut down mobile service in the US at times. Jacob Appelbaum points out that BART -- the Bay Area Rapid Transit train system here in the California Bay Area -- apparently shut down all cell service at a station under the (false, as it turns out) belief that protesters were going to show up there:
As an added precaution, the agency shut off cellphone service on the station's platform. While Alkire said the tactic was an unusual measure, he said it was "a great tool to utilize for this specific purpose" given that the agency was expecting a potentially volatile situation.
That's really quite incredible, and I'm at a loss to see how that could be allowed. Because BART feared people protesting it literally shut down mobile phone service at its station? Since this particular station is underground, it has special equipment as regular cell towers don't reach the station. However, that shouldn't give BART officials the right to just turn off the service because they're unhappy that people might protest.

Filed Under: bart, free speech, mobile phones, protests, wireless
Companies: bart


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  1. identicon
    abc gum, 14 Aug 2011 @ 7:33pm

    Re: Provide transportation or serve as a meeting place?

    "BART's mandate is to provide public transportation"

    Does their mandate also include the termination of your life for no apparent reason?

    On November 5, 2010 Mehserle was sentenced to two years, minus time served. He served his time in the Los Angeles County Jail, occupying a private cell away from other prisoners. He was released on June 13, 2011 and is now on parole.
    http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/BART_Police_shooting_of_Oscar_Grant

    Wow, two whole years - the poor guy, he thought it was a taser huh.


    "any effort BART makes to assure continued service to the public would serve that mandate."

    Including but not limited to murder.


    "the court of public opinion is a ruse to lend legitimacy to mob mentality"

    Yes, the little people should stfu and take their pittance with out complaint because it could be so much worse.

    "More often than not, the mob tramples the civil rights of an innocent majority of bystanders"

    If by "mob" you mean the fascists, then yes

    "this kind of "protest" is an attempt by an interested few to disrupt the day-to-day activities of the indifferent many"

    Go back to sleep citizen, it will all be over soon. Nothing to see here - move along

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