The dispute involves the guys who stand near 34th Street and 5th Avenue and hawk tickets to an Empire State Building virtual reality ride. They wear uniforms of the company that runs the ride, and they have been an almost constant presence on the block for years. But only recently has their presence drawn police action.
While there may be legitimate concerns that the vendors prey on tourists who think they're buying entry to the Empire State Building tower and then discover they've only purchased the access to the video version of the view, the problems caused by the vendors sound pretty paltry:
Many in the community say they’ve had to avoid Fifth Avenue between 33rd and 34th streets whenever possible to steer clear of the vendors. Local residents, building managers and office workers had repeatedly complained of harassment by vendors, whom they accused of blocking sidewalks, accosting tourists and driving neighbors nuts with their constant ‘Going up?’ pitch.
DNAinfo has more details of this wild NYC ride.