Legend has it that phone booth stuffing was popularized by a group of 25 South African students who managed to cram themselves into a single booth in 1959. As word of their exploit spread, other colleges couldn’t help challenging it.
Rules for the challenge varied from college to college. Some required everyone be totally inside the booth, some allowed legs and arms to stick out, while others just required more than half a person’s body be in to count. In England, where the practice was called “telephone booth squash,” they required someone be able to make a successful phone call once the booth was fully occupied.