A professional “line waiter” receives money for waiting in line on behalf of someone else. A “line waiter” (who waits in line) is the same as a “queuer” (who waits in a queue). “Line waiter” has been cited in print since at least 1983, when it referred to an industry in the Soviet Union. In 1990s, the Washington (DC) version of a “line waiter” was when people held places for lobbyists at Congressional hearings.
In the 2000s, the popularity of Apple’s consumer electronic products created many lines at Apple stores. In 2011, Samsung advertisements parodied the Apple Store line waiters.
(Oxford English Dictionary)
Etymology: < queue v. + -er suffix.
A person waiting in a queue.
1921 Sunday State Jrnl. (Lincoln, Nebraska) (Electronic text) 24 July, The street fakirs and beggar musicians have discovered that the pleasure bent queuers are gold mines of charity.
1948 ‘J. Tey’ Franchise Affair xxii. 260 This was fare that not even the most optimistic queuer outside the court had anticipated.
1960 V. Jenkins Lions Down Under xv. 230 Some queuers..had been waiting from 3.30 a.m.
1976 Times 10 June 10/3 He watched a senior army officer walk straight to the head of a long taxi queue. The tired queuers grumbled curses.
The Study of Economics:
Principles, Concepts, and Applications
By Turley Mings
Guilford, CT: Dushkin Pub. Group
Free Enterprise in the Soviet Union
At the lowest level of this hustling industry are the “line waiters,” people who will wait for hours in line to buy meat or some other scarce merchandise for customers who can’t afford the time but can afford the “line waiter’s” fee.
The Breakthrough Factor:
Creating a Life of Value for Success and Happiness
By Henry Marsh
New York, NY: Simon & Schuster
The lady answers, “Oh, I’m a professional line waiter. I’m being paid by someone to stand in line for them.”
New York (NY) Times
Among the Not So Well Heeled of Gucci Gulch
By FRANCIS X. CLINES
Published: June 12, 1997
The first benefits of the proposed 1997 tax cut began trickling down through the economy early this morning when the $10-an-hour professional standees arrived to hold places for the $300-an-hour lobbyists who would not show up until hours later for their seats in the big tax-pie hearing room.
‘’We hear he’s having problems rounding up his own Republicans,’’ said one paid line-waiter, Andrew Eiva, a Bosnian-American volunteer at the Washington office of the Bosnian Government.
By Roger LeRoy Miller
Reading, MA: Addison-Wesley
Adam Goldin loves working as a “line waiter” because he gets paid for “doing nothing.” His job is to arrive early in the morning on Capitol Hill to hold places for lobbyists who must attend congressional hearings.
Apr 3, 2008 - 12:02AM PT
Question of the Day: Is Jobs Using ‘Scarcity Illusion’ to juice iPhone2 debut?
By Carleen Hawn
Thursday, April 3 2008
1. I think they are using “Scarcity Illusion”. Apple knows its customers very well. I’m one of the early adopters, or as someone once told me a “professional line waiter”, so I usually try to nab a highly sought-after product on launch day.
Samsung Outs Second “Line Waiter” Ad For Galaxy S II – [VIDEO, HUMOR]
POSTED BY ARRON ON 09 DEC 2011 @ 5:45 PM
You have to give it up to Samsung – using Apple Store line waiters as one of its own selling points has got to be one of the boldest marketing stunts in the book.
Apple Creates New Job Category: Professional, Like, Line-Waiters
Submitted by Tyler Durden on 09/21/2012 11:36 -0400
Some have argued that iPhone 5 will single-handedly save the world’s economy (as we ‘discussed’ here) and indeed it seems an entire new category of employment has been created thanks to the pathetic desperation of so many needing the new ‘old’ iPhone. As Bloomberg BusinessWeek reports, among the thousands of people expected to wait for hours outside of Apple’s stores today, at least a couple hundred of them will be paid just to stand there. TaskRabbit appears to be the pre-emptive winner in ‘arranging’ these ‘waiting-in-line’ deals as one ‘queuer’ stated “I am a professional line waiter.”
Of course, the conspiracist would wonder aloud whether these crowd-fillers and line-waiters are indirectly ‘purchased’ to create more buzz by the demigod itself. Nevertheless, what an inspiration these Americans are: “I’ve done other waiting-in-line things. I think it’s going to end up being, like, my specialty.”
New York City • Workers/People • (1) Comments • Friday, September 21, 2012 • Permalink