Mobile manners: The 7 rules of cell phone etiquette
by, 04-01-2009 at 12:37 PM (15731 Views)
by Rose Laden
Cell phone use is on the rise. Take a look around the next time you’re waiting in line to see one of the 1.2 billion cell phones that were sold throughout the world in 2008. The omnipresent mobile device is here to stay, giving users the power to communicate in ways that, until recently, seemed unimaginable. Multi-tasking has taken on a whole new meaning, as consumers grocery shop while paying bills, conduct business on the train and make appointments while waiting for appointments.
As we navigate our face-paced word, we have the responsibility to use our cell phones in a polite manner, something that is clearly escaping us. According to the Emily Post Institute, “89% of Americans say that they encounter people using cell phones rudely, while only 8% of Americans admit using their cell phones in a loud or annoying fashion.” Here’s a guide to help bridge the divide between what we think we’re doing and what we’re actually doing.
1. Keep your voice down.
Yes, we can hear you! Cell phones have sensitive technology that blocks ambient noise to callers on the other end of the line, so there’s no need to shout in noisy areas. Using a bluetooth device or earpiece will let you hear the amplification of your own voice if you’re having trouble gauging your own volume. Nobody wants to be this guy:
2. Do not take a call in a restaurant or other social situation,
especially if you have company. Like the movie theater, restaurants are beginning to put restrictions on cell phone use. Rebecca R. Hastings, the director of the Information Center at the Society for Human Resource Management was quoted on 20/20 saying "Right now, cellphones are the cigarettes of this decade. It's an addiction. And just like cigarettes are banned from some places, so are cells banned. I think we'll see more organizations take a firmer line." Your first priority should be your present company. If you are expecting an important call, let your companions know this prior to taking the call in question.
3. Administrative and service personnel are people too.
Do use your phone while purchasing items in stores, picking up prescriptions or arriving for checking in for appointments. Not only is it incredibly rude, but using a mobile device significantly hinders the ability of the person with whom you are interacting to do their job effectively.
4. Be considerate of your surroundings when using your phone.
Never use your phone anywhere the lights are turned down or silence is expected. This means movie theaters, shows, public performances, churches and libraries. If you must use your phone, walk to a bathroom or other secluded place and keep the conversation short.
5. Always turn your cell phone to silent for weddings and funerals.
This should be self-explanatory, but needs to be addressed. Many wedding guides now suggest including a line in the program reminding guests to refrain from cell phone use during the ceremony.
6. Avoid using inappropriate language in public places.
If you wouldn’t say it in front of a child, than don’t say it in public space. The last thing a parent needs is their three year old asking about the “ass-less chaps” you were yelling about.
7. Do not text and drive.
There is no text message worth risking your life and the lives of others. A recent study conducted by AAA found that the risk for a car accident increases by 50% for those who text while driving. Just say no.
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