Homeless Paid to Wait in Line for the iPhone

Covered the iPhone launch in Pasadena this morning and it was a scene like I’ve never experienced.

There are nearly 100 homeless people waiting in line – bussed in by a business man who promised them money in exchange for their place in line. Well, many of them never got the opportunity to buy the phone for some reason once they made it inside the store (it’s unclear why) and didn’t get paid by the businessman. He was planning on selling the phones overseas for a big profit.

Here’s the interview I did with one of the men who didn’t get paid for his efforts – which included waiting in line for hours outside the Pasadena Apple Store.

I had a feeling this would go viral, and it did. Here are some of the outlets that picked it up:

People In Pasadena Are Paying The Homeless To Wait In Line For Them At The Apple StoreA homeless man in Pasadena, California, was offered a great deal last night in front of the Apple Store as people were lining up to purchase the new iPhone 5S and 5C.The homeless man told Rich DeMuro of KTLA that a business man approached a group of 100 homeless people, offering to pay them each $40 to secure two phones on his behalf.

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Homeless Hired to Stand in Line at Pasadena Apple Store’s iPhone 5S Launch, Marred by ScufflesAs long lines formed outside Apple stores across the country today, tempers flared at one in Pasadena, Calif., where homeless people from Skid Row said they were bused in and paid to save spots on line – only to be denied their compensation.

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via Go
Dozens of Homeless People Hired to Stand in Line at Apple StoreOn the heels of all sorts of Tuesday craziness at retail locations stocking Grand Theft Auto V, there has been more mayhem yesterday and today at Apple stores delivering the new iPhone. One of the strangest scenes unfolded on the west coast in Old Town Pasadena.

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Homeless Scammed By Businessman In iPhone LineA homeless man who waited overnight outside an Apple store in Pasadena, Calif. for the new iPhones claims that the businessman who promised to pay him for his time didn’t follow through.

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Fight erupts in iPhone line at Pasadena Apple store (video)Robyn Beck/AFP/Getty Images People wait to purchase the new Apple iPhone 5S and 5C in the front of the line outside of the Apple Store at the Americana at Brand shopping complex in Glendale on Sept. 20, 2013. Police detained three people after a fight erupted outside a Pasadena Apple Store where a crowd waited overnight for release of the new iPhone.

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via Scpr
Here’s One Homeless Man’s Story About Being Paid To Wait In Line Outside The Apple StoreMan, asking a homeless person to wait in line for you to get a cellphone is itself quite questionable, but it takes a special kind of asshole to screw someone who already is down on their luck. Hope they get what’s coming to them.

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World’s Worst Person Hires Homeless People to Wait in iPhone Line, Then Doesn’t Pay ThemHomeless people, fresh from use as living Wi-Fi hotspots and coding-lesson recipients, are now being scammed by a rich Californian who promised to pay them to wait in line for new, golden iPhones, then left them with nothing.

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via Nymag

Here are the pictures I took from today’s event.