Not much point to Boston's parking-meter app if the meter maids just ignore it

Guy paid for parking, still got a ticket

Mike Cauley shows us the $25 ticket he got at 9:33 a.m. today for parking on Comm. Ave. in Allston despite having used the city parking app to pay for parking between 8 a.m. and 10:02 a.m.

15/16 cars had tickets. No checking of payment via the app. Technology should add convenience not be troublesome



    Free tagging: 


    Vehicle owner should check

    By on

    Vehicle owner should check the information they entered into the app...most likely didn't change the State from Ma to NJ...

    The mobile app really needs

    By on

    The mobile app really needs an integrated "appeal a ticket" feature.

    If you could photograph the ticket and submit with your transaction, that would make so much more sense.

    It does, sort of. I don't

    By on

    It does, sort of. I don't recall the details of the interaction, but I had my plate in the app set incorrectly. Got a ticket and used the in-app help email to get the ticket cleared.


    By on

    I once had to go all the way downtown to appeal a ticket for this situation where I had made no error. No idea why the initial appeal wasn't approved.

    it's simple

    Ya gotta understand, it's simple, there's the job of writing tickets and there's the job of forgiving tickets and there's the job for making sure that both of the other jobs have done enough work to justify the job for making sure.

    they're betting

    that people pay the fine rather than contesting the ticket. also, isn't there a fee for contesting the ticket? win/win! ka-ching! F--- you, pay me!

    No fee

    for contesting. At least for parking tickets, anyway. It can be done online and takes about 30 seconds, but still doesn't make this any less annoying.


    By on

    There are many meter men in Boston too.

    I was going to point this out

    By on

    I was going to point this out but you beat me to it. Of course car people problems I tend to ignore since I do not drive.

    Go radical

    By on

    I say stage a radical assault on gendered language, and declare that meter-persons of any sex will be called meter maids, an ancient and honorable term. I mean, who uses "maid" to mean a virginal female anymore, anyway? For that matter, the virgin part was never a job requirement (as far as I know), so the term was inexact all along. Let's just seize it and put it to better use. Geese and ganders, all the same sauce.

    The most accurate term is

    By on

    Revenue Agent.

    "Gosh darn it Merle. We's got to go move the pickup 'fore them Boston revenuers come and tag it".

    Every time the cops assure us

    By on

    Every time the cops assure us that they've stopped enforcing illegal quotas, a whistle-blower like Adrian Schoolcraft gets sent anonymously into a mental institution and harassed for years after he's forced out of his career.

    There absolutely is a quota, get real. Cops want trust, they need to do better than repeating nonsense a dozen times. We're dumb, not brain-dead.

    I don't think anyone believes

    By on

    I don't think anyone believes the police when they claim to have ended quotas - we all see that the final days of each month are full of speed traps (I use this term to include any revenue-based sting, whether targeting speeders or something else).

    Quotas are illegal, case law thanks to Newton patrolmen

    By on

    Newton Patrolmen fought and won the moving violation quota issue years ago. Quotas are illegal. Most cops would rather not write fines that enrich the insurance companies. The State Police prefer "eight for eight" but that could be handling a car crash, disabled motorist or giving directions on an eight hour tour, not necessarily eight citations. I'm not sure about parking tickets but agree with the earlier comment that the state of NJ on the ticket could be a factor. Also, having dealt with low-bid geobase computer systems, I wonder if the system doesn't recognize West Commonwealth as a street? "West" is listed on the receipt but not the ticket, which may be enough to fool the system.

    Maybe it was a mistake.

    By on

    I cannot imagine this is really about "profiting". Meter maids are still human. Maybe it was new/really old time employee who didn't know about the app.

    At least the app provides a great record for what appears to be a pretty reasonable dispute! :)

    ...then again, NJ plates.

    How in the world did 15

    By on

    How in the world did 15 tickets or more get written all in a row without the issuer thinking "huh, something must be wrong here"?

    Wal-Mart expects a higher level of cognition from its greeters. The person responsible needs to never be issued a shiny badge again.

    Management failure

    Maybe it was new/really old time employee who didn't know about the app.

    What kind of lame-assed excuse is that?

    Whoever let a parking enforcement officer loose with a ticket book, without ensuring that that parking enforcement officer was adequately trained, wasn't doing his or her job.

    Simple Programming Issue

    Meter readers use handheld devices to print out the tickets.

    If the plate is in the system as having a payment, the hand held devices should be programmed such that they cannot write a ticket.

    Annoying yes, but it's No big deal

    By on

    This happend to me once, just dispute it threw the website on the ticket. Include the transaction number from the app, explain what happend and they'll "forgive" the ticket.

    Still, there are some people

    By on

    Still, there are some people who will just pay any ticket because they (incorrectly) think that appealing will cost them a vacation day at work or a fee. Some people will assume that, despite paying the meter, that they did something wrong and deserved the ticket.

    Then there's the tickets that get lost - to the wind, by the driver, by the appeal reviewers - and then you get a notice in the mail saying your bogus ticket is now double and there's no way to appeal it.

    Deleted that "cr"app....

    off my phone. Could never figure out if meter registered that I had paid the fee. There was never any change to the meter to say the space had been paid for even though my phone said otherwise. I figured what's the use.

    lol the actual meter isn't

    By on

    lol the actual meter isn't supposed to register a change, the app doesn't communicate with the meter. How would you even expect for that to happen? You don't enter the meter number into the app, you enter the zone, and a given zone has probably over a dozen meters. Not to mention, there are still the old-school meters out there in some of the app zones.

    Excuse me but when you drop quarters...

    In the meter you know you're covered for parking. What's the point of the app if it doesn't show you're covered on the meter, where it counts. I mean, am I wrong?

    And to have to follow up with City Hall after the fact for being ticketed when you were actually covered via the app is a most egregious backwards waste of time and resources.

    The point

    The point is that you can actually move around with your paid parking within the area you are parking in.

    Theoretically, you pay for a legal space in the zone. If you get coffee one place and then go pick up your dry cleaning, you should be covered so long as you stay in the zone.

    I've done this before (not in Boston) where I parked and went to a store, then moved into a newly vacant space to load up my purchase.


    By on

    You can get them sent to an email address proving you paid up for the time frame you entered on the app.

    It's not that big of a deal. And now Brookline, and I believe Cambridge, accept payment though the Boston Parking app. I've never had an issue.

    That section of Allston?

    By on

    That section of Allston? Meter maid probably assumed the cars parked there were from the night before, who had been out at bars and did the responsible thing by walking/getting a ride home. They probably assumed that none of those drivers had the wherewithal to add time to their meter in the morning.


    By on

    I think these smart phones and apps are just a passing fad, just like the internet. They will both be forgotten when the next big thing comes along...

    Assembly Row

    By on

    has another app to download. It takes zone AND space no. when you enter your car info etc..

    Not to take the parking clerks side but.....

    By on

    In almost all these cases, the fault lies in the app user failing to enter their information correctly. If they put in the wrong state, or transpose two digits, then they will get a ticket. Which makes sense when you think about. You cannot, and should not expect the parking officer to manually check each car against every single plate currently registered in the app, and weed out human error.

    While 'XX 1234' and 'XX 1324' are "close" as far as humans are concerned, they are completely different as far as the app can tell.