Free-riding Wifi at Coffee Shops

There appears to be a tendency at coffee shops, where one purchases a single drink (or perhaps even nothing at all) and sits at a table for hours- connected to the free wifi provided. Should wifi use be charged or regulated? A price to be paid for each hour spent? Or does the influx of customers attract even more to the apparently popular coffee shop?

And what of the single-drink-buying customers who sit for hours, hogging up chairs with their laptops and bags; leaving no room for additional rounds of customers who could generate more revenue? Is the marginal cost to the business of providing free wifi compensated by the large number of customers it attracts?

pull the plug

classic free rider

preventing free riders




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