21 January 2011

Texting and Walking and Falling and Suing...

This is the video that started off a trend. It had plenty of people rolling around on the floor laughing or in abbreviated speak ROFLMAO.

And, this is the response of the woman (albeit a beat-up of the interview she gave to Good Morning America on ABC), Cathy Cruz Marrero. Marrero is the unfortunate soul who was caught on the mall CCTV falling into a water fountain in the Berkshire Mall in Pennsylvania while she was texting her friend.

Now, it seems that Marrero has decided that it is probably worth trying to sue the mall where she fell into the fountain. It appears that Marrero and her lawyer, James Polyak, believe that they have a case to pursue because Marrero could have been seriously hurt and because the security guard did not organise for someone to come to her aid. The security guard was clearly too busy laughing to organise a call for someone to help, or was he. It is yet to be proven when the tape that appears on YouTube was actually made.

The YouTube version, at least to my technologically challenged brain, to be a mobile phone video of the CCTV footage. This could have been made 5, 20, 50 minutes after the Marrero fall. It could have also been made 2 or 3 days later. However, more research is required on that front. Nevertheless, watching the footage suggests that Marrero was not badly hurt as she gets out of the fountain and then high-tails it out of there. There is good reason why Marrero does this. She is an employee in a store that operates in the Mall. In any event, she did not hang around and wait for any assistance to be rendered.

The security guard that was on duty when the fall occurred has been fired.

The truth of the matter is that the footage should never have become public. But, that is the nature of the world we live in now. Technology ensures that much of the stupidity we get caught out doing or being a part of will one day makes its way online. Yet, how much should the mall management be expected to stump up for the footage making it into the public domain?

Unfortunately, for Marrero, and by her own admission, texting and walking at the same time can be dangerous as she has found out the fountain fall way. The reason she fell into the fountain was because she was not paying attention. For the mall to be liable for the fall means that the courts would have to accept that they have a responsibility to fence of fountains and place warning signs throughout the mall that it is dangerous to text and walk at the same time because you might walk into a fountain, or a glass door, or fall down an escalator.

Perhaps the answer is that malls ban mobile / cell phones. That is, when you come to the mall you have to check your phone at the "phone counter". You get a ticket and can reclaim your mobile phone on the way out of the mall.

There has to be a point where people start assuming more responsibility for their own actions, doesn't there?

Sometimes, though, your fifteen minutes of fame ensure that the spotlight shines on all of your past. Although the interview would suggest that Marrero's unfortunate spill occurred while texting a friend from church, it would seem that Marrero's past is not all angelic. As it turns out, Marrero is also involved in a court case where she has been charged and indicted for theft by deception. Marrero used a co-worker's credit cards to buy more than USD 6000 worth of goods from Target and Zales. Apparently, if found guilty, Marrero is to be sentenced to six months house arrest and required to wear an electronic monitoring device. I wonder if the electronic monitoring device is waterproof?


wcx said...

America, Land of the lawsuits!
- Opus, Bloom County (Berke Breathed).

afters she sues the mall, she will sue the maker of the mobile phone she was using that allowed her to walk and text at the same time. Then she will sue her provider who did not provide clear and written warnings.

Then some pious minister in some nameless country will consider it a sin to text and walk at the same time. Then said minister will ban the use of the mobile phones in malls!

hows them apples?

Rob Baiton said...

@ WCX...

Thanks for dropping by and leaving a comment.

Well, I had not taken it to the logical conclusion with respect to all the "suing" possibilities that present themselves in this case. So, thanks for getting them out there ;)

The "pious minister" is a nice touch that I had not even considered.

The apples must be sweet.

muebles lleida said...

It can't truly work, I believe like this.