Thursday: 24.March.2005

Cell Phone Etiquette

Had a conversation today on the topic of cell phone etiquette. Why is it, when two people have a face-to-face conversation in public, it seems perfectly natural? Yet when one person talks on a cell - say, in a restaurant, for example - it seems distracting, annoying, rude even?

continued

Since you're hearing only half the chatter, you'd think it would be less annoying. But, try as I might, it's difficult for my ear to avoid eavesdropping. And the harder I try, the worse it gets.

My brain automatically tries to decipher what the other person is saying. The unheard half of the dialogue becomes an irresistible puzzle. Where does this natural Sherlock Holmes comes from? It can't be noisiness, cuz I really don't care what they're saying. Actually, I wish they would go away. Vaporize. But if someone is having a heated argument, that's another story. I wanna hear every word. =D

Now if I'm the one talking on the cell, I see nothing wrong. I simply keep my voice low, to avoid broadcasting personal business. But if someone else does the same, err, how rude. The first of the Ten Cell Phone Commandments is:

Thou shalt not subject defenseless others to cell phone conversations. When people cannot escape the banality of your conversation, such as on the bus, in a cab, on a grounded airplane, or at the dinner table, you should spare them. People around you should have the option of not listening. If they don't, you shouldn't be babbling.

Interesting they list this one *first*. I've given it some serious thought, and my theory as to why this is so annoying is: We already have enough voices in our heads. =) Similar list posted here and here.

Google search for the terms: cell phone etiquette

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Posted by Rad at March 24, 2005 10:39 PM

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