Last updated: 04:09 PM ET, Thu September 15 2016

Bad Behavior Leads To Major Change to NYC Wi-Fi Kiosks

Impacting Travel | Gabe Zaldivar | September 15, 2016

Bad Behavior Leads To Major Change to NYC Wi-Fi Kiosks

Photo courtesy LinkNYC

Those newfangled Wi-Fi kiosks dotting New York City, created with the aim of helping so many locals and travelers, will lose a key component of its technology because some throughout the city have taken to loitering around the area and, in some cases, openly watching pornography.

This is why we can’t have nice things, people.

The New York Times explains that LinkNYC will shut down the web browsing capabilities of its famed Wi-Fi kiosks. The Times explains that amid the normal banality of people using the kiosks to check diners in the area or to charge their device lay some other sordid acts that now has LinkNYC thinking twice about how much access should be granted.

The report states: “But they have also attracted people who linger for hours, sometimes drinking and doing drugs and, at times, boldly watching pornography on the sidewalks.”

Back in January, TravelPulse highlighted a new innovation that would evolve many of the archaic pay phones around the city into modern monoliths of innovation. LinkNYC would provide kiosks that would pump out free Wi-Fi to the area and also offer a solution for draining batteries or Internet queries locals and tourists might have.

Now rest easy, because the LinkNYC kiosks will still offer the promise of Wi-Fi and powering capabilities. The company is simply shutting off the Internet tap at its web browser. Like a freshman in college, we just didn’t know how to handle all the freedom.

The Times spoke with Barbara A. Blair, who is the president of Manhattan’s Garment District Alliance.

Blair explains, “People are congregating around these Links to the point where they’re bringing furniture and building little encampments clustered around them. It’s created this really unfortunate and actually deplorable condition.”

A general manager for LinkNYC states that the removal of web browsing capabilities is a temporary fix. And, perhaps, the option could actually come back to the kiosks with obvious tweaks to accessibility.

READ MORE: Uber Unveils Fleet of Self-Driving Cars in Pittsburgh

Hopefully, this doesn’t destroy what is a wonderful idea and an innovation that helps the modern city dweller and urban tourist as they maneuver throughout the day.

So many offices have website blockers implemented to promote productivity. We assume LinkNYC could do something similar to negate people from making the curbside their own personal living room as they watch streaming movies or TV shows.

And, obviously, it could prohibit access to those sinister parts of the web that we dare not speak of and, we once presumed, wouldn’t get free screenings on the streets of Manhattan. 

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