27 October 2016

Woman spotted charging her phone at MTR station socket

If your mobile phone ran out of battery, would you charge it by plugging it into a wall socket in an MTR station?

That’s exactly what a Putonghua-speaking middle-aged Chinese woman did.

An 80-second video showing the woman charging her phone in what is believed to be the Lai King MTR Station has gone viral on social media and given rise to harsh criticism from netizens.

Some angry posters said the woman’s act was selfish, as she hadn’t bothered to pay for a portable power bank, and public resources aren’t for personal use.

One called it theft, urging action from Hong Kong police.

Some other netizens wondered if the MTR had done anything, as the woman might have violated an MTR bylaw.

As neither the MTR nor the police have commented, it isn’t clear whether it is a legal issue or just a matter of civic-mindedness or the lack of it. 

Meanwhile, there are special outlets set up in some malls and at Hong Kong International Airport where members of the public are welcome to charge their phones.

Some netizens urged MTR to extend the free mobile charging services to all stations.

However, plugging one’s rice cooker into a socket in the airport’s public area, as a man from Shandong province did earlier this year, may be going too far.

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