Testing Tube Etiquette

By Rob Last edited 155 months ago
Testing Tube Etiquette

Take a look at this image. What do you see? Do you see a woman with tampon attached to the side of her head?

What do you mean 'no'?

Ok then, so it's a woman wearing headphones, something that, if you believe this Transport for London page is a 'turn off'.

Now TfL don't mean that in a sexual way (although we can definitely see why a woman with a tampon on her head would be a turn off), they mean it in an etiquette way, i.e. 'overloud headphones' on public transport are rude.

And why are they telling us this stupendously obvious fact? Because they're running a Tube etiquette poll (we seem to be big on polls these days don't we... at least if Bloc Party win this one as well then we know something is up).

The poll is basically a large list of irritable little things, from the obvious (getting onto trains before passengers have had time to get off) to the slightly more obscure (people with accordions), to the downright offensive (people who look like they may have an accordion at home).

The idea behind the poll is to help TfL "improve the passenger experience", although looking at their press reelase it would seem they regard themselves as pretty darn good already:

Climb onto any Paris Metro train, travel the Tokyo underground or board the New York subway and you might, just might, breath a sigh of nostalgia and wish that you were back in London, travelling on the dear old London Underground.

Why, you may ask, might that be? Well because a Parisian queue makes a London queue look like the Household Guards on parade; because in Tokyo they actually employ staff to ram more passengers onto the trains.

Nice to see TfL blowing their own trumpet on their website with absolutely no justification. Good work.

By the way, as we write this post the three most annoying things in the list are:

  • Getting onto Tube trains before passengers have had time to get off.
  • People who don't know how to say excuse me, please and thank you.
  • People who ask you for money.
  • Last Updated 01 December 2005