Should Boston’s buskers be required to get permits? Josh…

Should Boston’s buskers be required to get permits?

Josh Reynolds for The Boston Globe Entertainers who pluck guitars, dance, or juggle long knives may one day need to dip into their tip buckets to pay for a permit before performing outdoors in Boston.

‘Silver Steve’ and south-east Queensland’s expanding…

‘Silver Steve’ and south-east Queensland’s expanding busking scene

“Silver Steve” Hollis gives the busking profession the thumbs up. Photo: Chris Hyde It may not be the most active job going around, but life for a human statue is much more animated than many would think.

Public Space fights in Dublin and Indiana

Public Space fights in Dublin and Indiana

Public space culture war

Busking Noise and Street Art censored
Struggle to optimize public space

Public space is every which way these days. It is vertical, horizontal and inside out. Agreeing on a standard of weights and measures to better regulate public ambiance is daunting at best.

Out goes the bad and in comes the good; we hope

public space Zombieart-smallspaces-indianaWho should say what goes up on a wall that is in outdoor public…

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Taipei modernizes street performer regulations

Taipei joins a host of other world-class cities in making street performer laws more representative of its cultural needs reports Taiwan Today

New laws include permit issuance with a point system and designated public areas for performance. Violations will attract point penalties with licenses revoked once a total of nine has been reached. Fist fighting and chaos noise, littering and failure to provide proof of permit are all subject to point violations.

Law is subject to a city review in mid May. There are now currently 1,170 registered street artists who will be permitted to perform in 74 designated areas,


To Amp or Not To Amp

That is the question for cities all around the world as street performing and regulating street culture finds its way on the government issues list. Even as the public’s view of street performing has been evolving from public nuisance to public asset the excessive noise in areas of heavy busking continues to draw criticism. Amplification is the biggest target and has been banned only with a great deal of protest from performers and also some merchants and community groups.

Stephanie Pilon Stephanie Pilon video of an acoustic performer in Byward Market Ottawa Canada

In Ottawa, the Ottawa Citizen reports that the performers in the prime performance area of Byward Market are themselves divided on the point of amplification. Understandably they break down along highly predictable lines with non-amplified performers having no problem with the no amplification law and those who need amplification being understandably upset.

Sarel Alafi Sarel Alafi Street acrobats and dancers such as the troupe pictured in this video also performing at ByWard Market will be totally out of business if the anti amplification law is enforced. Do you think that the large crowd enjoying this performance are being bothered because of the amplification?

A lot of times the problem is possibly a matter of musical taste and not the actual volume of the performance. as with this amazing guitarist  featured in this video by bigsugar999 bigsugar999 If you love loud virtuoso guitar playing while you shop or dine however if you are looking to get a little peace and relaxation or are the merchant who wants to clearly hear the customer talking in the store where this musician is playing, it could be a problem.

The solution in many places cities like Copenhagen Denmark, York UK and Raleigh North Carolina among others is to find places where amplification is appropriate desired and workable. We hope Ottawa will find the compromise it needs to advance in street culture regulation.