Sarah Malsin Nir, reporting for the New York Times:
Behind the Golden Arches, older people seeking company, schoolchildren putting off homework time and homeless people escaping the cold have transformed the banquettes into headquarters for the kind of laid-back socializing once carried out on a park bench or brownstone stoop.
There’s an element of the “everyman’s Starbucks” to this article, but it’s more than that. People will always find places to socialize. If owners of the private spaces don’t like it, then we as a society need to consider investing more in public spaces where everyone is welcome.