‘Is this normal?’: Debate rages over train passenger’s ‘disrespectful’ behavior

A picture of a Sydney commuter with his bag in the opposite seat despite passengers standing nearby has come under fire after it was shared online.

The tirade, which called the act “disrespectful,” backfired as netizens rushed to the commuter’s defense, claiming that public transport etiquette had changed significantly since the COVID pandemic.

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A frustrated commuter snapped the photo of the young commuter engrossed in his phone and shared it online on Monday, asking: “Is this normal?”

“(I) recently moved to Sydney and I often find this where people are standing on the (train) and then there are people who keep bags on the empty seats and show no desire to move the bags for someone to sit! ‘ They captioned the post on Reddit.

“I find it disrespectful and frustrating,” they wrote.

The question quickly sparked debate, and many on the platform were quick to note that social distancing behavior has changed the way we behave on public transport.

“It’s gotten worse because of COVID, people think it’s more acceptable to take up more space now,” one person wrote.

“The rules have kind of changed with COVID too. Most don’t choose that seat or the middle seat of three anymore, so the bag thing became a bit more normal,” wrote another.

“No one wants to be knee to knee with a stranger, especially post COVID. I’d rather be standing than sitting there,” wrote another.

“Seatbags are more common than ever. I suspect it’s about getting a COVID-proof buffer bubble. I would be uncomfortable being so close to a stranger who may or may not be an unvaccinated vector of the disease,” wrote another.

A young commuter has come under scrutiny for leaving his bag on the seat of a Sydney train, but many rushed to her defence. Recognition: u/bachodijan/Reddit

But not everyone defending the move called out COVID.

“I started this because as a young woman, sometimes random men would sit next to me when there was LOTS of other seating,” one person wrote.

Others on the platform, including Sydney locals, also viewed the commuter’s narrow chair as an exception to the seating rule on Sydney trains.

“This is the one seat I think it’s ok to put your bag on,” one person wrote.

“To be fair, that particular seat on the S-Bahn trains is an honest no-go. No one sits there if someone is across the street,” wrote another.

“People who choose this place know that it is the worst place. I would ask anyone else to move the bag except for this seat,” wrote another.

“If you sit there your knees touch and it would be a very awkward thing,” wrote another.

Many simply suggested that the frustrated commuter should ask if it was possible to transport the bag.

“Breed a pair and ask them to move them,” one person wrote.

“It’s ok babe use your words,” wrote another.

Horrifying moment when a train pulls into a parked police car with a suspect inside.

Horrifying moment when a train pulls into a parked police car with a suspect inside.

https://7news.com.au/news/is-this-normal-debate-rages-over-train-passengers-disrespectful-act-c-8577932 ‘Is this normal?’: Debate rages over train passenger’s ‘disrespectful’ behavior

James Brien

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