Metro statement on Transit TV monitors on buses

As our bus riders may know, video monitors on Metro buses went dark earlier this month.

Metro is looking into various uses and programming for the Transit TV screens.

Thanks for your patience and we will post updates when we have more information.

Categories: Policy & Funding

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31 replies

  1. Use it to display real-time connection information as buses approach intersections and display alerts.

    This would be, honestly, one of the most useful uses for these screens — many riders don’t have access to this information and we all wonder about it constantly. Wouldn’t it be nice to see the data we all need every day available right in front of us?

    • At one point the screens displayed a map of the surrounding area as the bus moved along. But connection information would be very helpful. I use the app for that all the time!

  2. I have never been enthused about these TVs being on the bus. I actually dragged himself down to the Metro Board meeting where the contract to put screens on the buses was on the agenda to request they not approve the item. I objected that it would add to the noise that already assaults you on the bus (people chatting on cell phones, the annunciator for stops, etc.). And even brought copies of a news report from Milwaukee that proved contrary to assertions by staff that putting TVs on buses in other cities had been done without controversy that actually there was a division of opinion, at least there. The agency claimed it would be entertaining while providing revenue. So the Board ignored me and approved the item. The original provider had some interesting segments and dubious looking ads. The second company had some nice news segments etc. and puzzles/contests but very few ads. I kept wondering “how do they make any money off this?” So now the agency is rethinking what to do with the monitors. I vote to expand the security monitor experiment that was previously posted about on this blog. That seems like a good use for them.

  3. Wow. You guys can make sooooo much $$$$ with these monitors. Advertising. Let’s take your most used line assuming it’s the 720. Get people to advertise like coca cola or Pepsi call Disneyland or whatever, you can promote your services safety and so forth. Bottom line is passengers would rather watch a TV spot on a bus than read the advertising on the bus.You can reach more people than an advertiser could buying a reg TV spot. Take it and run with it.

  4. Let them go dark. Take them out. You are already spending tax dollars to “look into this” item and decide what to do.

    If the bus driver asks a passenger to turn off a radio that is too loud. All the passenger has to do is point to the cult Transit TV and ask “How about turning that down?” And if someone reads this and says “Well the system (cult Transit TV) has a volume control that the driver can adjust.” that is another joke. Does not work.

    And how is the bus driver going to hear an approaching emergency vehicle with siren going with the cult Transit TV blaring away on the bus. Interfering with the bus driver ability to hear and respond to external noise.

    MTA is addicted to cameras, tracking devices and listening devices.

  5. Use it to promote ads for small businesses as each bus stop. So let’s say a bus is approaching a bus stop and there is a restaurant or dentist near that bus stop. The monitors can play an ad for that. It’ll help small businesses and will show riders that they can go to new places that they didn’t know about just by public transit.

    Brings is ad revenue to Metro, helps small businesses, spurs the local economy, and helpful for transit riders. That’s how tax dollars should be spent, not stupid fake and cheesy ads that look like bad renditions of Super Mario Bros.

    • Japan does this along with automated bus stop announcements. They go like “the next bus stop is so-and-so. Are you looking a for a Valentine’s Day Gift for your special someone? Drop by at so-and-so, for all your gift ideas, steps away from the next bus stop. The next bus stop is, so-and-so.”

  6. Keep them QUIET! We are already bombarded by SO much noise on the buses, why does Metro insist on blaring even MORE noise into our ears every single day?! If you’re not making SIGNIFICANT revenue off of these, there is no point in having them. They should be silent and only show TRANSIT-related information (with no noise), such as: map of the bus’s current location, information on bus lines one can transfer to at each approaching major intersection/stop, including the upcoming arrival times of the next buses one can connect to.

  7. Take ’em out. If you must keep the monitors, mute them. Show ads, transfer info, puzzles, maps, whatever. Just turn off the noise! They are so loud that it’s difficult for me to hear my own earbuds when they’re on. And FWIW, each time the monitors annoy me, I look around the bus…and I have never, ever seen a single person looking at the monitors.

  8. In my country of Japan, we don’t have TVs onboard buses. What we have instead are digital displays that shows how much to pay depending on where you got on and where you’re getting off.

    In Japan, we do things differently. We get onboard the bus from the back. This way, the back of the bus fills up first instead of bus drivers constantly reminding people to “move back” all the time.

    When we board the bus from the back, we retrieve a ticket called “seiri-ken.” There’s a stamp put on there noting which bus stop number you got on.

    At the front of the bus, there is a digital display showing how much you’ll pay when you’re getting off at the next bus stop, depending on where you got on. Where you got on is written on your ticket so you know how much to pay when you get off.

    When you get off, you get off from the front of the bus.

    You can see how it’s done here
    http://youtu.be/LkTsD_kfdpU

    I think that’s what Metro should do. Stop showing TV and use the same monitors to show fare information. It would be much more fai that bus fares change depending on where you get on and where you get off. You can use these monitors to do the same thing like Japan where they show how much to pay.

  9. It’s nice and quiet without Transit TV.
    But if you decide to bring it back – please make sure the VOLUME is way down. Sometimes the TV volume is so damn loud, that it’s beyond annoying! Also – I think just having it in English is fine. (or, if MTA decides to use other languages – then don’t just concentrate on Spanish. Use Chinese, Korean, Russian, French, etc.) 🙂 But seriously… having the TV speak just plain English (and in LOW VOLUME) is more than enough!

  10. Transit TV is pointless. It just adds noise to the environment and doesn’t help riders. Changing the screens to show bus wait times for upcoming transfer points would be very useful, especially given the design of the LA bus system.

  11. For the love of god please leave them off. They are loud and annoying and make it hard to hear announcements and stop notifications. If you do turn them back on at least make them silent.

  12. whatever replaces Transit TV should be completely SILENT! There’s already enough chaos on the bus. all we need is more noise.

  13. No music should be playing on those screens. It should be transit related. Like they do on the CAT transit in Las Vegas. It shows a diagram with a all the stops thar are coming up displayed. It calls out points of interest. Everything related w the commuters route info.

    I found it very helpful when i used their system especially when ur not familiar w the area. We get commuters everyday that are not regular commuters that will need that info to make their commute much easier. It might even be gd for us. It might reduce questions. Maps, diagrams & visual items help w the commute.

  14. I’m so glad that the new buses don’t have them yet. I’ve heard that they don’t generate that much revenue anyway, and most of the time, they’re on way too loud (Once, a bus driver yelled at the passengers to turn off the radio. When nothing happened and the music continued, he yelled again. A lady at the front then told him, it’s the TV. At the next stop, he shut the bus off, and when he turned it on again, the TV was off, so he didn’t yell again.)
    If the TV’s need to be turned on again to generate revenue, can they be on mute and use captions? Or that FM Transit TV radio channel as audio? The TVs are too loud, and sometimes even drown out the stop announcement! Finally, I think the content has gradually moved to become less family friendly; it has stuff that probably isn’t rated PG and young children do ride buses.

  15. Several times when I have been on a Metro bus that has those transit tv monitors; even when they were working no one that I saw was even looking at them.

  16. Transit tv is so so so irritating. After listening to out for an hour without a choice to turn it off, I feel the need to take out my anger. Anyone who approves it should be required to listen to out on transit 2 hours a day 5 days a week.

  17. Transit TV was one of those “let’s talk about it for with endless useless meetings and discussions about it at taxpayer expense for decades” which is what people wanted back in the 1980s, and just when they got finally to do it by the 2000s, the technology has moved to where people started having their own smartphones and entertainment devices.

    Whatever Metro does is slow. Transit TV would’ve been space age and great to have back in the 1980s. By today, meh. I can watch more interesting stuff like Mythbusters from Google Play on my Android tablet. Why be force fed with linear entertainment when I have my own personal on-demand entertainment device?

  18. Transit TV generated very little revenue for Metro – maybe the cost of a bus a year. I would rather pay an extra five or ten cents per trip than listen to that annoyance. Good riddance, even if I did enter a contest occasionally.

  19. Hahaha, I guess Metro finally wised up and dumped something that was so lame, cheap and cheesy. Even LAUSD telecommunications classes had better production values than Transit TV did!

  20. Add me to the list of people who are happy to be rid of the tv’s on buses. Our senses are assaulted in all too many places. Metro will never attract non transit dependent riders if you increase annoyances. And, of course, you need to respect transit dependent riders.

  21. I enjoy NBC 4 clips…the worst of those beats is the three guitar chords and drums for Safety Zone and the piano in Explore your mind. There is good information in the features though.

  22. Good riddance. Worst programming EVER. A complete nuisance and waste of time. Insipid and trivial.