As a result of our contact with the West, we Filipinos have also inherited some of these Western memes. There's good manners in the dining table and right conduct in a cinema. There's even phonethics for using mobile phones.
What I was amazed to find out in my travels abroad that there is a form of escalator ethics. Filipinos tend to hog escalators. We are a pretty laid back bunch of hobbits and when we go on the escalator, we stand on the step like we owned the whole contraption.
In Australia, New Zealand and UK, there are signs in escalators that say something like
PLEASE STAND ON THE LEFT (or RIGHT, as the case may be).
In short, there's a fast lane for escalators too. And this is very much the norm in the escalators in the mass transit systems.
In Schiphol Airport in Amsterdam and in the HK International Airport, they also have these horizontal escalators to help tired travelers rush to their gates. These also have fast lanes.
In most cases, these escalators have signs. But when there are no signs present, the conduct is so ingrained in the locals that they tend to stand on the right side.
In our country, if a couple gets on an escalator, they will occupy both lanes. In the other countries where fast lanes are implemented, the couple will stand in single file, so that the left lane is kept free.
Escalator ethics reflects, too, on how we drive cars in highways. Prior to NLEX enforcing the fast lane, many drivers -- cars, jeeps, buses and trucks -- drove slowly on the fast lane, when this should have been kept free for overtaking. Thanks to strict enforcement, more drivers are now aware of the fast lane. However, on some occasions I still encounter a few slow vehicles on this lane.
Wanna know where there is no concept of fast lanes at all? Just try EDSA, Quezon Avenue, Katipunan and Commonwealth Avenue. Come to think of it, the vehicles there do not have a concept of LANES in the first place.
It would be easy to implement a fast lane in our escalator. We simply ask malls to start putting up signs to reserve the left lane for people in a hurry. Asking the SM and Ayala chain of malls pretty much covers most of the land and this ethic can then be propagated to the escalators at LRT-2 (the Aurora line), the airport, and other public places.