Police: Stop listening to music on the T

Transit Police report 25 cases since Jan. 1 of electronic devices being stolen from T riders, in particular, Apple devices and on the Red Line.

Although that number is not much higher than the 23 thefts reported in the same period last year, police say "Apple picking" has become a thing - and that of the 25 thefts, 15 have been on the Red Line.

People sitting or standing near subway doors are particularly vulnerable to the grab and dash crowd as trains pull into stations, police say.

Police offered some tips, including trying to stay off your phone altogether except to report a crime or emergency, try not to listen to music on the T, but if you must, ditch those distinctive white Apple earbuds for buds of a different color.

Also: "Be alert for staged distractions."



    Free tagging: 



      Because there is nothing better to listen to on the Red Line than the loud roar of the old trolleys as they roll through the tunnels, and the SOB story guy when he gets on at Kendall.... Please, let me be alert and paranoid at all times on the Red Line while I grind through my daily workday routine. How about iPhone users just stop being idiots?



      The people around you don't want to hear your music being blasted over the noise of the old trains. It's more annoying than the roar.



      YES! oh gosh I *hate* this.

      I don't know who thought that listening to your bass-y hip hop song thru your 30 dollar Net10 phone and its 1/4" Membrane Speaker was a great idea, but it needs to end.

      Actually The T can kick people off for that (or give tickets), as they DO Have a policy about people listening to devices without headphones (its a hold over from the late 70s/early 80s when those large boomboxes were popular with the young urban crowd.)


      Citizens: Do your fucking job, MBTA Police

      Hey, here's a shocker: stop hanging out in your stations and POLICE YOUR SYSTEM. Or we'll start policing it for you. Folks: get your stun guns and pepper spray. Little punks will think twice about stealing an iPhone after they get a face full of mace or tasered in the balls.

      Also, what do we have to do around here to get a ticket slapped on people who park in bus stops?

      They're marked "TOW ZONES", but when was the last time you saw a cop do anything more than just pull up behind someone and blip their siren/lights to get them to "move along"?

      I don't want them to fucking "move along", I want you to ticket their selfish ass. Between MBTA Police, Boston Police, and BTD, why is this even an issue?!


      they have the technology to

      they have the technology to brick a stolen phone or find it and take pictures of the robber. But they refuse to help because they make money on replacing the phones.

      Google about how Apple has replaced people's phones, for free, stupid things like dropping it while drunk, and think about how much money they make replacing the phones.

      Google about how Apple has remote wipe built into current iOS versions.

      Google about the myriad iOS apps that let you snap a photo of a potential thief. Here, I found one for you.

      In fact, just google and do some research before you comment.

      It's been known for years the

      It's been known for years the T has one of the worst rider:cop ratios going. Yet....(1) Where is the effort to fix this?and (2) How could you expect them to perform better than they're staffed to do?

      I guess handing out drivers licenses to illegal aliens is more a more important issue than having a realistic sized T Police Dept.

      I've seen some of their beat

      I've seen some of their beat up vehicles, I'd call some of them anything but "fancy". They have the staffing to respond to incidents, and, some daily train riding groups. If i need them i hope they're not responding via a red line train which may, or may not, make it there. Again, you expect too much from what little staff is provided.

      Based on my observations as a daily rider

      it's pretty clear to me that the real issue here is the fact that most phone and music player users feel the need to openly display their devices instead of more discreetly using them - for example, placing them in their pockets instead. It's this obvious visibility, plus the general lack of situational awareness that somebody having "digital hash" coming out of their ears (i.e. overdriving their cheezy earbuds with excessively loud volume) has, that makes people like this an easy mark for thieves.



      I have an ipod, and I don't use the provided headphones for two reasons..

      1. They suck for sound
      2. Since those white earbuds are a dead giveaway that you have an iPod/iPhone (basically you're telling would be robbers that yes, you could very well have an iPod/iDevice/iPhone, so come rob me!)

      And I won't even discuss the idiots who use the iPAD or LAPTOP on the subway? (outside of the "is it really that important for you to work for that 10 minute ride"). You're just asking to be mugged.

      (I love my technology as much as the next guy but I would NEVER use an ipad or laptop on the train, I'm not THAT addicted to my computer)


      'asking to be mugged'?

      Sorry, but no. Making oneself a more likely target for someone else's assholery, perhaps, but a mugging is the fault of no one but the mugger and the mugger alone.

      That said, I do boggle at what the laptop set can possibly accomplish in such a short and distraction-packed span of time as a T ride takes...


      *yawn* anon


      Didn't your momma ever teach you some street smarts? Like "don't flash your cash in public"? It's just common sense...

      Yeah same principal applies here. Don't flash your valuables in public.


      Do you ride much?

      The red line and orange line trains themselves are impossibly, ear damagingly loud already.

      I use noise-cancelling earbuds so I can hear people talking, let alone my music, but any ambient music would have to be played at 80dB in order to be heard at all.

      Yup. I use the T fairly often.

      I mostly use the Green Line, which is a short distance from where I live, but I do occasionally use the Red and Orange Lines, as well. The Red Line can be awfully noisy at times, as can the Orange line, but the Green Line seems not as bad in that respect.

      Music on the subways

      I am a believer of like cures like. I listen to heavy metal on the subway almost every day, especially black and thrash metal. Their anger calms me.

      I try to keep it down but the train is so loud that I have to turn my headphones up to compensate.

      As a frequent user of the

      As a frequent user of the Ashmont line, I'd be interested in knowing what time of day most of these thefts occur, and average age of the victims. I'm an older guy who for the past 8 years has worn expensive noise-canceling cans when listening to his iPhone, and even though I find myself falling asleep (sometimes near the doors) nobody has tried to lift them yet. Am I doing something wrong?

      They'll Have To Pry The Earbuds Out Of My Cold Dead Ears

      One of my greatest joys is listening to house music while riding on the Ⓣ. The newer generation of Apple earphones are a great improvement from the earlier ones. Besides the sound being a lot better, they don't block as much of the ambient noise.

      Sometimes, when my mixtape is just right, it'll seem to be synchronized with the sounds of the trains; things like the door chimes, the rhythm of the wheels, the ventilation fans coming up to speed; and especially when the train traveling under the harbor between Maverick and Aquarium is bouncing in perfect time with the music.

      I'm certainly not going to take up a seat; I'd much rather stand up and dance! The energy of the music moves my body, but it's perfectly counterbalanced by the movements of the train itself. With the visual eye candy of lights and motion, I'm transported off to a much higher plane. If I'm standing on the center platform at Park Street Under as two trains arrive right on cue, it'll send chills up my spine!

      I cherish my commute on the Ⓣ, thanks to my wonderful DJs and their fabulous, skilled mixing:

      Love it!

      Not a big house fan, but I can get on to this at times.

      it'll seem to be synchronized with the sounds of the trains; things like the door chimes, the rhythm of the wheels, the ventilation fans coming up to speed;

      Somewhat OT: I noticed when I was in Berlin that the U2 Album "Achtung Baby" contains a number of sounds that are somewhat peculiar to the transit system in Berlin. (Until the End of the World starts off with an "S-Bahn leaving the station" noise!)

      Old news but good for my hearing aid stock

      Apple picking has been going on since Adam, Eve or Steve first pressed play on a subway. Perhaps it is a seasonal thing? Real apples in Fall and fake apples in Winter?

      I do notice men and women still walking around yammering at the cell phones at night perfecting their vulnerability. No matter what the gibberish of conversation the subtext is, "Hit me and steal my phone." No one argues that they are directly asking to be robbed. But they effectively volunteering to be a target. Don't want to be robbed or mugged? Don't volunteer to be a target. Not a guaranteed, but a thug is simply a predator looking for an easy target. Young woman walking alone in the dark, talking on cell phone, oblivious to environment is a tasty target for a predator who wants to eat.

      But to everyone who plays their devises loud enough for others to hear the whine? Thank you. The damage you are doing to your ears makes my hearing aid stock worth more and more. The ringing that you will hear for the rest of you life? Think of it as your personal continuous musical note played just for you 24/7/365.

      Here is a novel idea

      Maybe the TRANSIT Police should start actively patrolling the TRANSIT system instead of sitting in their cruisers all shift. When is the last time you've seen a transit cop on a subway or patrolling a station outside of downtown crossing? Never

      alot of criminals get in free anyway

      One sucky thing is when lowlifes loiter by the gates where you put your payment card in, then they push through right behind you after you pay and the gate opens... the alarm buzzer sounds, there is no one around to do anything about it, and you just paid for a scumbag's trip one the who is probably going to do more crime. This has happened to me twice recently, it must happen alot. We can be aware to not let people do this. Don't confront the people if they do this though. In any case the T really doesn't do anything about it either.