NYC Officials Decide It’s Finally Time To Shame People For Sitting With Their Legs Spread Apart On The Subway

No spread here; these folks are doing it right. High five! (litherland)

No spread here; these folks are doing it right. High five! (litherland)

The last time I checked, the average person is not six feet wide, and thus doesn’t need anywhere near that amount of room to sit on any given surface. And yet, there are those who have been ticking off their fellow riders since the dawn of time by having the audacity to spread their legs as far to the side as possible, thus either preventing others from sitting or making the people on either side uncomfortable at the level of touching. Finally, New York City’s authorities are spreading the message that enough is enough.

There should be room for everyone, says the Metropolitan Transportation Authority, as inconsiderate manspreaders and backpack wearers should be more aware of the people around them while in transit, an MTA spokesperson told BuzzFeed News.

Part of the campaign will target those folks — yes, women do it too, probably — who fling their legs wide on the seat, despite the lack of a need to maintain stability and balance by way of making your body into a triangle shape.

(Idea drummed up by Boss Meg and Me for a potential PSA: [Photo of a bike seat]: “IF YOU CAN SIT ON THIS, YOU CAN SIT NORMALLY ON A BENCH FOR 25 MINUTES.” You’re welcome, MTA.)

Although leg spreading is “an issue,” the spokesperson said he hadn’t gotten any actual consumer complaints. That’s because we’re all just silently hating in our minds, you see.

Another target of the courtesy campaign will be people who don’t take off their backpacks on the train, which can often lead to unfortunate bumping, smacking and otherwise unwanted contact with fellow riders.

“I believe that you ought to get them off the back and onto the floor so they don’t hit people when you make an inadvertent movement or the train comes to a sudden stop,” MTA board member, Charles Moerdler told am New York.

“When you get to the hard-core violators and courtesy doesn’t work, then you have to take enforcement action,” he added.

The campaign will focus on other courtesy issues as well, with signage and perhaps train announcements. It’s replacing the current slogan, “courtesy is contagious,” because if there’s one thing New Yorkers love, it’s things that are contagious on the subway.

New York Subway Officials To Shame People Sitting With Their Legs Spread [Buzzfeed News]

Want more consumer news? Visit our parent organization, Consumer Reports, for the latest on scams, recalls, and other consumer issues.