Maybe I am wrong, but this seems like a pretty good idea:
An “experiment” which involved using homeless people as mobile wi-fi hotspots has attracted criticism, forcing the advertising agency behind it to defend itself.
A division of Bartle Bogle Hegarty (BBH) equipped 13 homeless people with 4G mifi devices in Austin, Texas.
It suggested the public pay $2 (£1.30) for 15 minutes access to the net.
Comments posted to the BBH’s site accused the project of being “unseemly” and “wrong”.
Members of Twitter asked “what has this world come to?” and accused the project of being a “gimmick”.
However, others praised the idea as being “inspirational” and a chance to create a “positive interaction between the public” and homeless people.
How is paying someone to distribute wifi access any different than paying someone to work in your food stand at SXSW for a week? I don’t see anything unseemly or wrong about it at all- they are providing a service and making some money, and I fail to see how it is different from a vendor selling t-shirts or bottled water.
And the fact that they are using homeless people seems to be better than what normally happens any time a big conference comes to a big city, which is basically they are cleared off the streets and penned up out of sight and out of mind. Again, maybe I’m wrong, but I just don’t get what is so awful about this.