Tuesday, March 13, 2012

Wanted: Human Internet Transmitters

Organizers Defend “Homeless Hotspots” at SXSW

" At SXSW, the annual tech startup conference in Austin, 13 homeless men are hanging around the conference center wearing white shirts that say "I'm _____, a 4G hotspot." Each is carrying a wireless internet device, and for a PayPal donation, will provide conference-goers with internet access for as long as they want. .

The men are part of a campaign called "Homeless Hotspots," devised by a marketing firm called BBH. It effectively debuted today, and started backfiring immediately.

The first person to flag the stunt as a little off was the New York Times's David Gallagher, who called the plan it "a little dystopian." Since then, the Internet's been aghast: The story has been both amplified and deprived of context, inspiring thousands of knee-jerk responses. It's really not going over very well at all."

Of course, there's no mention of the radiation risks.


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