While travelling yesterday a poster at one of the train stations I was travelling through caught my eye. At the time I was working on a lecture about user interface and am currently very interested in the misinterpretation of instructions.

It's not OK to take a free ride

The intended purpose of the poster is obviously to encourage and remind people to purchase appropriate train tickets. A message which under the current social contract is entirely appropriate. However the choice of illustration strikes me as being poor. Car sharing, car pooling, journey sharing or historically hitch-hiking are surely equally valid forms of transport which also come with cost and environmental advantages to both the individual and society at large.

Now I understand that the intention of the poster is not to deter car sharing approaches but I fear that it also presents a less apparent revenue maximisation message. It is disappointing that they did not feel able to present this as a positive message, one that enables investments and helps to reduce ticket fairs.

Here is the complete video advert as well which for dramatic effects features a driver who apparently does not use his mirrors at all!

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