Atlantic Cities

Who Has Worse Subway Etiquette: Men or Women?

The battle of the sexes is, once again, spilling over onto the subway.

The Tumblr "Men Taking Up 2 Much Space on the Train" (which has garnered some recent media hits) has been posting photos shaming male passengers who widely extend their legs on public transit, along with sitters who causes unnecessary discomfort to the female passengers around them.   


Submission on mentakingup2muchspaceonthetrain.tumblr.com


Submission to mentakingup2muchspaceonthetrain.tumblr.com

This isn't the first time this issue has been documented online. In 2010, a Swedish blog called "Macho in Public" began collecting images of male passengers' wide postures. The blog's creator said she'd opened the blog with the intent of changing the world, telling VICE, "The fact that men get more space in classrooms, at board meetings, and so on, is part of a structural oppression that not everyone knows they're taking part in."

Similar Tumblr "Move the F*k Over Bro," has also been posting similar photos and countless messages of support and commiseration from women. Of course, some men who've seen these blogs are quick to defend themselves, citing largely physical reasons like having a bigger build. There was also a short-lived counter attack, "Move the F*ck Over Sis", highlighting situations in which women over-extend themselves on public transit.


Submission to 
movethefuckoversis.tumblr.com/


Submission to movethefuckoversis.tumblr.com/

This passive-aggressive battle isn't likely to have a huge effect on either gender's posture tendencies. But maybe, just maybe, it'll encourage us all to think a little harder about how much space we take up.

Keywords: Gender, Tumblr, Etiquette, Subway

Jenny Xie is a fellow at The Atlantic Cities. All posts »

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