Author: shah Date: Subject: [mW] [Fwd: wi fi e zombie nei caffè statunitensi]
Wake up and smell the coffee, wi-fi users
Coffee shops across the US are finding that offering free wireless internet
access to customers is leaving a bitter taste.
?There are times when 90 per cent of the people in here are surfing the
says Jen Strongin, co-owner of the Victrola Coffee & Art cafe in Seattle.
?It has really changed the atmosphere.?
Students of coffee-house culture call it the ?zombie effect? people staring
silently into their computers, oblivious to those around them.
Zombies are not only anti-social but also bad business. A single laptop user
can take up a whole table. It is not unusual for web surfers to eke out a
single cup of coffee for hours.
?We have people in here for six, even eight, hours without buying a thing,?
says Ms Strongin.
Her solution is simple: from now on the wi-fi network will be turned off
at weekends, the Victrola's busiest days.
The Canvas Cafe in San Francisco has taken the same step, restricting wi-fi
access to weekdays.
The upmarket Samovar Tea Lounge, also in San Francisco, turns its service
off at 5pm each day to prevent ?zombies? from crowding out early-evening
An alternative is to charge customers for wi-fi. But small cafes recognise
that free internet access is an important weapon in the battle against
which offers pay-as-you-go wi-fi in 3,500 of its coffee houses.
Activists at the Boston Wireless Advocacy Group hope to head off a wi-fi
backlash by encouraging coffee house owners to display wi-fi etiquette
Top tips include: ?Make purchases and tip?; ?If it's busy don't overstay
your welcome?; and ?Share a table.?
Besides, some customers are more attached than others to ubiquitous internet
access. At Buck?s Diner in Woodside, California, a favourite haunt of
Valley venture capitalists, the free wi-fi service is on all day, every day.
The high-tech clientele expect nothing less.
In nearby Portola Valley, the Konditorei cafe - immortalised five years ago
by tech industry entrepreneur Randy Komisar in his book The Monk and The
Riddle - follows the same zombie-friendly policy.
Armando, manger of the Konditorei café in Portola Valley, advises: ?Wi-fi
etiquette? Keep using it until we kick you out.?