Being Elmo in Times Square
After a spate of arrests and bad publicity, the costumed characters who pose for tourist photographs in New York’s Times Square in the hopes of a cash tip have formed an association to preserve a livelihood that has come under increasing scrutiny.
Elmo and Cookie Monster have long delighted young viewers on TV’s “Sesame Street,” but the recent antics of New York street performers dressed as the beloved characters have drawn the ire of city officials and now the show’s producers.
Sesame Workshop, which owns the rights to Big Bird, Ernie and the assorted puppet monsters on the 45-year-old program, said in July it was drafting plans to stop performers who dress up as the characters from appearing in Times Square, where they pose for photos with tourists and then demand tips. – Wire reports