ttc fare evasion

People are making spoofs of the TTC fare evasion ads and they're hilarious

Along with this morning's six-hour subway delay and last week's viral video showing an enforcement officer pepper spraying a passenger, the TTC's new anti-fare evasion ads are one of the most-talked about things related to Toronto's public transit system right now.

The commission started rolling out a ramped up fare evasion campaign last year, and the new multicoloured ads that have been plastered in and outside of vehicles are really not sitting well with some commuters.

The posters give examples of bad excuses for not paying one's fare, like "probably won't get caught" and "forgot to pay," and come on the tail of a report recently issued by the transportation body bemoaning the $70 million it lost due to fare evasion last year alone.

Unfortunately for the TTC, the new ads are giving off more aggressive, condescending vibes than "we're hemorrhaging money, please just pay your fare" vibes.

As select users take to social media to simply complain about the new campaign, others have taken a more creative and humorous approach to their criticism, crafting their own versions of the ads to take jabs at the TTC rather than at riders.

Some joke about the fact that transit in Toronto is constantly delayed and that the new contactless Presto systems rarely seem to work, saying things like "'TTC is usually on time' — Actually it is not. It is false advertising and it is against the law" and "'Probably Presto will work' — Chances are it will not" in styles that mimic the real signs.

Improved version of the TTC anti fare evasion ads from r/toronto

Others show different TTC staffers snoozing on the job, with phrases like "'No big deal' — Actually it is. It's sleeping and it's unprofessional" and "Smile! You're on nappy time camera" imposed overtop.

TTC's massive campaign of shaming its ridership is deplorable. Let's see how they like it. from r/toronto

While some residents have called the spoofs "hilarious and so on point," others don't take much issue with the TTC's new campaign.

"If you're not paying your fare, you're not considered part of ridership. You're a thief, and should be shamed appropriately," one Reddit user said in a comment.

"The ads aren't shaming the ridership - they are shaming fare evaders. People that are stealing a service that they know that they have to pay for. I'm OK with shaming them," another added.

Yet another Redditor had a more balanced approach to the whole issue: "I'm actually ok with both the fare evaders and the unprofessional TTC employees both being discouraged from engaging in these actions. In the end, the rest of the city wins when each side cleans up their act."

The fare evasion posters also haven't been the only fodder for TTC spoofs.

One Torontonian created a fake service disruption notice after this morning's train derailment, saying it was caused by "several hundred fare inspectors accidentally board[ing] the same car at the same time" — obviously a reference to the TTC's increase in fare inspector numbers.

It's good to see that amid all of the TTC drama, Toronto transitgoers are still maintaining their senses of humour.

Lead photo by


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