When Screen Time Turns Against You
You know not to leave your phone’s ringer on in the theater, but are you unintentionally phubbing (phone + snubbing) among friends? As mobile technology becomes more prevalent in our society, it becomes easier to commit a faux pas with your mobile device, annoying or insulting others around you. Since this technology is still relatively new, proper etiquette hasn’t caught up. Here are a few examples of bad mobile behavior that makes you stand out – and not in a good way!
Phubbing & Other Examples
One of the most common instances of bad mobile manners, phubbing involves paying more attention to your mobile device than the friends in front of you. Sure, everyone glances at the new text that just showed up, especially when anticipating an important contact. If you’re paying more attention to your device than your companions, you’re essentially snubbing them in favor of your phone, or phubbing. If you do need to handle something that’s really time sensitive, excuse yourself to take care of the issue and then come back into the conversation.
Cranking up the volume
Seriously, you can get a basic Bluetooth headset at Target for under $10 at this point. You shouldn’t have the volume on your mobile cranked up in public, where it can interrupt other peoples’ conversations and phone usage. Sure, your smartphone may go to 11, but that doesn’t mean everyone else wants to hear it.
Blocking the view
At large events, concerts or other performances, it’s really tempting to shoot a little video or take a lot of pictures. The people behind you also paid good money for their tickets. Keep your phone below head height unless snapping one or two keepsake photos. Be courteous and not block the view of those around you. Plus you don’t want the piracy police knocking at your door.
Mobile Doesn’t Mean Mobile
- Driving. A mobile device means you can take it everywhere, not that you should use it anywhere. If you’re driving, keep your eyes on the road and off your device. Set up your hands-free connection before starting your vehicle. According to the U.S. Department of Transportation, 10% of fatal crashes, 15% of injury crashes, and 14% of motor vehicle crashes in 2015 were reported as distraction-affected driving.
- Walking. Every day pedestrians get hurt by distracted walking. Bumping into walls. Stepping into traffic. Falling down stairs. Yikes!
In a U.S. Report article, they cited a study by the National Highway Traffic Safety Administration. The study showed that pedestrian deaths increased. There’s even a new term for pedestrians using their smartphones while walking – pedtextrians. If you’re not paying attention to the dangers around you… like moving vehicles… then it’s no surprise the rate of accidents is on the rise. Put your phone in your pocket or purse and watch where you’re going.
By keeping these tips in mind, you’ll be able to avoid inadvertently phubbing or otherwise committing a mobile faux pas. How will you react next time you’re phubbed or otherwise encounter poor mobile etiquette?
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