Posted by Richard Willett - Memes and headline comments by David Icke Posted on 4 May 2024

The cafe that banned Zoom: Coffee shop owners outlaw laptops after remote workers demanded everyone be quiet for online meetings and sat nursing single drink for hours while they tapped away

A coffee shop has banned laptops after remote workers demanded everyone be quiet for online meetings while they nursed a single drink for hours at a time.

Remote workers typing away in coffee shops at all hours of the working day has become a regular sight since the pandemic but one coffee shop in Canterbury decided to take a stand against the new normal.

The owners of Fringe and Ginge say people working on computers was ruining the atmosphere of their cafe and since the ban people have started talking more and  they’ve ‘built a community.’

Alfie Edwards, who owns the business with his partner Olivia Walsh, said it was a ‘tough decision’ but has been ultimately successful.

He said: ‘I think what has changed massively in the dynamic and the way that people work. We had some really bad experiences with people, asking us to turn music off so they could do Zoom meetings.

‘Then we just sort of figured out it – this is not what it is about.There are so many places you can go and rent desk space, you can work in the libraries.

‘There are loads of places where they’re dedicated to people working – and they have cafes as well. Here, we just realised we wanted to take hospitality back, have it dedicated to just serving people and letting them have a nice experience.’

Mr Edwards and Ms Walsh set up the cafe in July 2020, shortly after the first Covid lockdown restriction was lifted during a high point for remote working as thousands worked from home or faced furlough.

But as time progressed and lockdown rules were removed, workers would spend hours hunched over their computers, typing away in silence.

Describing how the atmosphere changed since the laptop ban, Mr Edwards said: ‘It’s just so nice to have people who were previously strangers that now chat regularly.

‘To see people connecting, we’ve kind of built a community here.

‘It’s a neighbourhood hangout for a lot of people.

‘There are already many places where you can rent desks, or people can work in the library. We aren’t a big space and we’re social here – that’s a big part of it.

‘It’s just something we had to do, you don’t want upset people, but it was the right decision.’

However, other local businesses disagree with Fringe and Ginge’s approach.

Read More: The cafe that banned Zoom: Coffee shop owners outlaw laptops after remote workers demanded everyone be quiet for online meetings

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