In brief: A round-up of today's news
An airline's “shameful” treatment of disabled fliers, a Berlin landmark is disappearing, location-based "check-in" services may be losing their cool and more. Here are the stories travellers are buzzing about:
Australian airline Jetstar apologies to disabled passengers
Yesterday, a Jetstar flight in Auckland denied boarding to two wheelchair-bound passengers. They were told they couldn't fly unless each one had a caregiver. Unfortunately for the airline's public relations department, the passengers turned out to be stars on New Zealand television who are also high-profile activists. The country's disability issues minister condemned the airline's action as "unacceptable", and the airline has apologised, said The Sydney Morning Herald.
From Foursquare to Fearsquare
"In 2011 check-ins are going to go the way of the eight-track tape and disappear," said Mark Watkins, CEO of the inspiration website Goby, in a popular post for ReadWriteWeb. Foursquare, Facebook Places, and other location-based services for mobile devices have been a craze for a while now. These tools let you tell friends online when you've arrived at a restaurant or other popular attraction. But the number of times users checked-in last year declined on average, and anecdotal evidence says the services are losing popularity. In related news, new UK site Fearsquare uses public data to tell you how many crimes have been committed at the places you've visited.
In Berlin, a cultural institution is about to vanish
Der Spiegel interviews some of the 80 artists who are the last squatters of Kunsthaus Tacheles, a tenement with cult status as makeshift artist studios in Berlin's Mitte district. Last week, half the artists accepted a buyout from investors. After the fall of the Berlin Wall, artists took over the derelict complex and turned it into an arts compound. Investors now want to build a shopping centre.
The mega retweet
We scour Twitter to highlight a standout travel tweet.
"Best part of the Memphis airport is serve-yourself booze in the SkyLounge. Tottering to plane shortly."