I am not for or against a place banning laptop use. I think the business will face the consequence of their choice by either profiting through more turnover, or suffering from alienating a group of customers. Obviously as a laptop wielding customer, you will be able to find a coffeehouse somewhere that will suite your needs.
Stephen you said "Coffee, after the morning shift, is an entirely social kind of a business." Which is why I like the idea of limiting laptop use to certain hours.
Although a this is a small sample, in going to Three Layers, a person using a laptop on a Saturday night taking up an entire table for themself could be a problem considering the number of people there and the size of the space. However, when I went Wednesday after Art Walk, around the same time I was there on a Saturday night, there was plenty of space for the people there occupying a whole table for themself and their laptop.
Whatever the feeling on this, the business has the choice in the matter, and will feel the repercussion.
Are you thinking about banning laptops in your coffeehouse, lucas? Or is it just general advice to coffeehouse owners?
When I go out at night, especially for dinner, I generally go out with a large group of people (5 or more) Of course, they are the new media, social networking types, with plans on staying out for most of the late night and early morning. When we go out, we generally end up spending pretty generous amounts of money throughout the course of the evening.
Weve spent many many conversations planning dinners and drinks at places that have wifi.
In the urban core, there are only a few that offer it.
The ones that do offer free wifi are the only ones that are succeeding.
Cafe's that offer free wifi:
Five Points Coffeehouse
Chamblin's Book Mine
La Nopalera San Marco
Cafe's that didnt:
Waafa and Mike's
interestingly, from the first list, only the Five Points Coffee Shop closed in the interim. It was replaced by Tapa That (which also provides WiFi)
The second list wasnt so lucky. Only Waafa and Mikes is still open.
Carmon, Matthews Market, Corner Brasserie and Worman's all closed.