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
    out_of_the_blue, 12 Aug 2011 @ 3:40pm

    "shouldn't give BART officials the right to just turn off the service because they're unhappy that"

    Mike, AFTER you've lectured me on using exact terms, I'm going tell you to LEARN THE DIFFERENCE BETWEEN "RIGHT" AND "POWER".

    BART does NOT have the right to, only the power. I'm sure you'd find that it's another unacccountable quasi-gov't corporation. In any case, you'll find that you've no way to even complain, let alone sue, that'd just be throwing money away. You're just one person against a giant corporation, regardless that probably everyone in the city feels the way you do: concentrated power ALWAYS trumps the general interest.

    So what are you going to do when corporations and gov't are both out of control and in cahoots? YELL LIKE HELL in no uncertain terms, and don't accept their terminonolgy, else you're sure to lose.

    You're no firebrand revolutionary, Mike. I wouldn't follow you into a doughnut shop.

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