The Homeless of Austin Become Wireless Hot Spots During SXSW [VIDEO]
Okay this feels like it's wrong. A lot of cities I America do not have the proper resources to care for it's homeless population. And at the same time a lot of cities have spotty wireless coverage. A marketing company called BBH wants to kill two birds with one stone by turning homeless people into wireless hot-spots. They give them the equipment, and a t-shirt identifying themselves.
Then, when you see a person in an "I'm a 4G Hot Spot" shirt, you can donate money by PayPal to connect to their network. And all the money goes to the homeless person. (At least someone is thinking , we all know you can't just hand cash over to the homeless because the liquoir stor or drug dealer is going to get dibs on that!)
They will be testing the program with 12 homeless people this week at the South by Southwest arts and technology festival in Austin, Texas. Has it stirred up criticism about the treatment of homeless people? Of course but in forward thinking cities like Austin where the homeless are reaching epidemic numbers there has to be a way to tackle the problem of homelessness in general. Some people think it's an 'innovative' idea and that's what the festival is about. But is it exploitation? The 12 test subjects include someone displaced by Hurricane Katrina, a woman who escaped an abusive marriage, a parolee, and a man celebrating 18 months of sobriety. I for one hope they clean up and do something responsible with their money.