On March 12th, the New York Transit Museum opened a new exhibition on a topic familiar to most urban dwellers: poor subway behavior. “Transit Etiquette or: How I Learned to Stop Spitting and Step Aside in 25 Languages” explores the visual methods that transit agencies have used throughout history to keep passengers from smoking, peeing, manspreading, littering, and other generally frowned upon metro crudeness. 

The posters, hailing from Barcelona, Brussels, Chicago, London, Madrid, Philadelphia, Rio de Janeiro, Taipei, Tokyo, and New York City, underscore an important message about our universal humanity—a reminder that we could all stand to be a bit more considerate on the subway. Here's a look at a few of our favorites, but be sure to check out the (free!) museum if you're in New York. 

Designed by Amelia Opdyke Jones, these "Subway Suns" posters were featured on the NYC subway for forty years beginning in 1918. 

This one calls out a whole slew of etiquette crimes, including the dreaded "Leg Pest" 

In the 1970s, Hideya Kawakita designed this poster series for the Tokyo subway featuring pop icon Charlie Chaplin and, uh, Hitler?

A culturally-timed poster for the London Underground from the 1980s

Blocking Bunny is featured in several 2011 Vancouver TransLink graphics

Translation: The Tram always has priority. Brussels


Images courtesy of the New York Transit Museum Collection