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MonkeyParking Swings Back

Scott Lucas | June 27, 2014 | Story Tech World

Parking app MonkeyParking has swung back (monkey-related pun count: 1) against City Attorney Dennis Herrera's effort to shut it out of San Francisco. After Herrera demanded that the company cease its operations or face legal action, the Italian firm said that it found his attempt to be far less fun than a barrel of monkeys (2).

In a public statement, MonkeyParking CEO Paolo Dobrowolny called Herrera's efforts “an open violation of free speech" and defended the app. "I have the right to tell people if I am about to leave a parking spot, and they have the right to pay me for such information."

MonkeyParking is one of three mobile apps that allow users to exchange public parking spaces for money that Herrera has targeted under a city law that makes it illegal to sell or lease the city's streets or sidewalks. It's disruption gone bananas (4)! Herrera has likened the apps to a pack of chimpanzees descending on unsuspecting colobus monkeys (5), calling them "a predatory private market for public parking spaces."

Responding to MonkeyParking's claims, Herrera's spokesperson Matt Dorsey dismissed the argument faster than a Capuchin monkey shimmying down a tree trunk (6). He told the Chronicle that the company's justification was "wildly inventive verbal gymnastics."

“Let’s be honest," he continued, "It’s like a prostitute saying she’s not selling sex—she’s only selling information about her willingness to have sex with you. It’s semantic hair splitting — and it’s absurd." As absurd as a monkey wearing a tuxedo (7).

If the parking apps do not comply with Herrera's request to take their stinking paws off of San Francisco you damn, dirty ape (8) by July 11, he has threatened legal action, with penalties up to $2,500 per violation.

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