Wednesday, August 26, 2015

News You Can't Use: Boundaries Shift in the U.S. on What Cellphone Use is Rude

If you're anything like me you have fond memories of the first time you were in some public setting and another unique individual crafted in God's image whipped out the old pocket phone and began speaking as if invisible soundproof walls immediately sprang up when they pushed the "on" button. It was a magical new frontier in personal atomization, to be sure, but we've come along way since then when it comes to electronic-assisted social retardation. You'll be excited to know that we've never been more open to someone loudly declaring "I'm at the store right now!" into the palm of their hand while you're forced to passively endure it.

Do you text or otherwise engage with a small screen during a social gathering?

A U.S. survey suggests you are not alone, even if you are annoyed when other people do exactly the same thing.

I guess the written text on a screen somehow didn't hear me answer in the negative, shattering the illusion that a story written several days ago is somehow interactive. On the other hand, pecking at tiny screens is now so pervasive we can safely assume everyone is carrying around a hand-sized Skinner Box, so we can at least celebrate that.

The Pew Research Center survey on shifts in what is acceptable in an always-wired world found 82 percent of American adults say that using cellphones hurt conversation in social gatherings.

"Man, I'm always wired! The future!" *spends next eight hours huddled in a cubicle listlessly interacting with grinding and groaning foreign-made technology*

Also this contradicts the premise of the article, but in all honesty I stopped carrying when the writer failed to somehow anticipate my own highly specific and eccentric life experiences.

But even more people - 89 percent - say they used their phones during their most recent get-together, including for texting, talking and for a photo.

Massive cognitive dissonance, the sure sign of a healthy mind.

"We're in the middle of this enormous social transformation where the rules of the road aren't clear and so they're constantly being negotiated," he said.

Let's pretend this banal selfishness somehow represents a fundamental shift in the human experience and not the same pathologies we've already had amplified via inner tubes and talk boxes. 

Cellphone use in social settings tends to be tied to the event itself, with 45 percent of people posting a photo or video of their most recent gathering, the survey showed.

Man, this party is great! Let me ruin it by going all Blair Witch Project. Hey dude, I kicked the map in the river!

A smaller number - 16 percent - said they turned to their small screen because they had lost interest in the group.

Crushing candy is more important than hearing your latest chemotherapy updates, sorry.

Some cellphone use is practical: while in public spaces, almost two-thirds of cellphone users look up information about where they are going or how to get there.

U.S. Americans, some don't have maps, etc.

Asked when cellphone use was "generally OK," 77 percent said while walking down a street and three-quarters said on public transportation. Five percent said it was usually OK at a movie theater.

But Spiderman just told you to turn that thing off. Great power, responsibility, am I right?

Cellphone etiquette became a policy issue in the United States in 2013 when Federal Communications Commission Chairman Tom Wheeler said the agency was considering allowing in-flight calls on planes.

Your "Royal Crown Cola" might be an explosive device, but feel free to bring on that bundle of red wires and speakers.

After criticism about passengers having to listen to neighbors during flights, Wheeler said he personally opposed in-flight cellphones and the decision would be up to airlines. 

Terrible ideas can still be shouted down, even in today's world.

Full Article.

Komment Korner

Nothing new here. Jerks are jerks.


I thoroughly support restaurants

I refused to set up voicemail so no one can leave one.

People are just so selfish and rude they use the phone even when it's blatantly rude and disrespectful.

Aaron Zehner is the author of "The Foolchild Invention" available in paperback and e-book format. Read free excerpts here and here. 

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