manspreading-spread

It’s called “manspreading”—when some men in public take up way too much damn space.

Women—or, really, all people with some level of manners—have been complaining about this phenomenon FOREVER.

After so years of bystanders being squished to the side by wandering man-knees, this is one city’s way of doing something about it.

The city of Madrid has posted bold graphics inside its transit vehicles, next to the common Department of Transportation ones like “No Smoking” and “Please give up your seat to the elderly.”

¡Ahí está! Madrid’s “No manspreading” symbol.

The Metropolitan Transportation Authority in New York worked on an ad campaign back in 2014 to combat manspreading. Some subway trains in Seoul, South Korea, now feature little heart-shaped orange stickers on the floor to remind people where their feet are supposed to go.

Some men will argue that if a woman, or anyone else, wants the man to move his legs so they can sit down, they can simply ask. But they shouldn’t have to. I’m never thrilled when graphics have to step in where common sense should prevail. Symbol forms can educate and inform. Then there are other symbols that demonstrate how stubborn and uncivilized we can be. The manspreading pictogram is more a symbol of the lack of empathy we can have for each other. What other symbol forms are you needing today?

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