The Treehouse + The Cave

The Treehouse + The Cave: Bent MetroCards <body><script type="text/javascript"> function setAttributeOnload(object, attribute, val) { if(window.addEventListener) { window.addEventListener('load', function(){ object[attribute] = val; }, false); } else { window.attachEvent('onload', function(){ object[attribute] = val; }); } } </script> <div id="navbar-iframe-container"></div> <script type="text/javascript" src=""></script> <script type="text/javascript"> gapi.load("", function() { if (gapi.iframes && gapi.iframes.getContext) { gapi.iframes.getContext().openChild({ url: '\x3d9561264\x26blogName\x3dThe+Treehouse+%2B+The+Cave\x26publishMode\x3dPUBLISH_MODE_BLOGSPOT\x26navbarType\x3dBLACK\x26layoutType\x3dCLASSIC\x26searchRoot\x3d\x26blogLocale\x3den_US\x26v\x3d2\x26homepageUrl\x3d\x26vt\x3d455617431721372491', where: document.getElementById("navbar-iframe-container"), id: "navbar-iframe" }); } }); </script>

Monday, January 10, 2005

Bent MetroCards


The Post is reporting today that the MTA has begun modifying the subway system's turnstiles so that they will no longer give free rides to those who know how to bend their expired MetroCards in a particular way. As that group of people includes myself, and occasionally a bent MetroCard is my only ticket home from the bar, I am understandably sad that an era of quasi-legal free transit is over.

It'll take them a while to finalize their testing though, so we may very well have a few more free rides left during this period of twilight. I recommend bending the magnetic strip on your expired MetroCards a little over three-quarters of an inch from the right-most edge (between the C and the A in Card). Swipe 3 times, and on your 4th swipe you should be let through (if you've done it right).

If the above instructions fail you, and they likely will (it takes practice), you can learn the way I did. Just start picking up as many bent cards as you can, eventually you'll see the consistencies.

Via Gothamist

Blogger Daniel thought:

Sounds like the punishment for this offense has been increased dramatically, so I would be careful about doing that if I were you..I personally have never seen the people offering $1 rides but the newscasters on our local stations keep telling me that I have before..ok Rosanna Scotto, whatever you say.

May 19, 2005 at 10:27 PM - Comment Permalink  
Blogger Andy thought:

The fact of the matter is that for folks with the 2 bucks, it's far easier to buy a MetroCard than to bend their way home; so they do. I do too. It's the reason that "swiping" is such an isolated problem for the MTA.

People like me are a anomaly for the authorities; most people abusing this limitation of the MetroCard system are doing so for profit, to make the money they need to eat (or drink) that day. I do not. I consider my knowledge of this exploit to be an intellectual curiosity, an entertaining hack, not a criminal asset.

I buy monthy passes for convenience, and therefore have only ever "swiped" for the sake of knowing I can do it, knowing that I understand how the system works. I've relied on this knowledge only occasionally, in the instances that I literally cannot purchase a MetroCard.

Frankly, trying to circumvent the system is more trouble than it's worth. The method I descibe above is by no means perfect, nor are any of the other methods that I've seen outlined online. All of the techniques take a lot of practice to master.

That practice is certainly worth it to provide for yourself, it's just not worth the trouble for me.


May 20, 2005 at 4:30 PM - Comment Permalink  
Blogger Andy thought:

One more tutorial.

May 20, 2005 at 5:00 PM - Comment Permalink  

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