The City Council today voted to ban a phone app that lets users notify other users of impending open parking spaces in Boston - and to back it up with fines of up to $250 per instance.
City Councilor Frank Baker (Dorchester), who proposed the ordinance, admitted that he doesn't understand "all apps," but he understands this one just fine. "They were trying to buy and sell city property, which isn't there's to buy and sell," he said.
City Councilor Matt O'Malley (West Roxbury, Jamaica Plain), who admits he loves technology - he's an avid Uber and Airbnb user - said Haystack is different because it involves public property, rather than private property. He said he would be willing to work with the startup to see if there were a way to use its service for the city's private parking garages and lots.
City Councilor Tito Jackson (Roxbury), another tech fan, said he was troubled by the proposal because he was not sure if Haystack was really marketing public property so much as information. However, in the end, he voted for it.