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article imageStarbucks to stop unexpected consequences of offering free Wi-Fi

By Business Insider     Jul 18, 2016 in Internet
Customers will soon no longer be able to watch porn at Starbucks. The coffee giant will soon block explicit websites, reports CNN.
"Once we determine that our customers can access our free Wi-Fi in a way that also doesn't involuntarily block unintended content, we will implement this in our stores," a Starbucks spokesperson told CNN on Friday.
"In the meantime, we reserve the right to stop any behavior that interferes with our customer experience, including what is accessed on our free Wi-Fi."
The new policy comes after years of pressure from internet-safety organization Enough is Enough.
"We are pleased by Starbucks' decision to make its stores safer for families and children by pursuing an effective Wi-Fi filtering solution," Donna Rice Hughes, president of EIE, said in a statement.
"We are hopeful that in the very near future, Starbucks will be filtering their coffee and their Wi-Fi, both nationally and globally."
Starbucks' decision comes on the heels of McDonald's decision to implement a filtered Wi-Fi policy in corporate locations. Other chains that have agreed to filter Wi-Fi include Panera Bread, Subway, and Chick-fil-A.
Customers streaming pornography isn't the only unexpected consequence Starbucks has faced since the chain began offering free Wi-Fi in 2002, when many people still relied on Ethernet cables at home to access the internet. Wi-Fi played a key role in turning Starbucks into what the company calls a "third place," where people can socialize, work, or relax outside of the home and office.
Other developments have been less profitable for the chain.
Starbucks locations have become hubs for homeless individuals, as a place to sleep, use the bathroom, charge electronic devices, and access Wi-Fi, a fact that has become a source of annoyance and discomfort to some customers and employees. As an increasing number of entry-level job applications require online applications, wireless access is more important for poor and homeless customers than ever before — and Starbucks has become a go-to place to access it.
This article was originally published on Business Insider. Copyright 2016.
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