Smartphones and technology have become such ingrained elements in our lives. They change the way we interact with the world and have made all sorts of things that much more convenient. In a recent article, Bianna Golodryga reports the recent trend of adoptions through Facebook, YouTube, and other social networking sites. In another article, Bianna Golodryga notes the application of GPS to finding a date.
So, technology is pretty awesome, and reporters like Bianna Golodryga are sure to cover even more stories about new and creative uses for your smart phone. However, mobile phones have created some notable problems with etiquette.
Rethinking Tweets and Status Updates
Yes, that man is wearing a ridiculous shirt and, sure, it might be funny to you and others, but it’s not necessary for you to broadcast it to your Twitter feed. Social networking has been great in sharing ideas, conversations, and interests, but it also gave us the ability to instantly snap and share people’s fashion faux pas and minor social blunders. Taking a picture or talking about another person’s “mistakes” is not gracious or polite.
When you feel the need to tweet or update your status at another person’ expense, ask yourself if it’s your business or if it’s your story to tell. Use your better judgment. Sharing shouldn’t mean infringing on someone else’s privacy.
Hanging with Friends
When you’re hanging out with your friends or family in real life, keep your phone in your purse or pocket. As a society, we seem to have trouble living in the moment without broadcasting every little thought or action to the world. It’s okay to just enjoy being with a person in real life.
Think of it this way: if you’re eating dinner with your boyfriend or girlfriend, constantly checking your phone to update your status or send texts shows that the person you’re with just isn’t important. It’s impolite and keeps you from properly enjoying your time. Send that text, tweet, or email after the date.
That goes for any meeting or get-together. Make a habit of not touching your phone when you’re out with people. Of course, emergencies happen, so if you really have to take a call, excuse yourself and go somewhere private.
Generally, it’s a good idea to keep your phone on silent when you’re in class or in a business meeting. If you’re expecting a call, put your phone on vibrate and excuse yourself when the call arrives.
Your ringtone is your prerogative, but understand that what’s funny or entertaining to you probably isn’t to fellow passengers on the bus. Use your common sense, and avoid using an obnoxious ringtone full of swearing. No one wants to hear that.