Monday, August 18, 2008

The Proper Way to Use Technology

"Technology is a queer thing. It brings you great gifts with one hand, and it stabs you in the back with the other." -C.P. Snow, the New York Times (March 15, 1971)

The September issue of Real Simple magazine had an interesting article. They asked technology etiquette experts (yes there is such a thing!) what is acceptable or just plain rude when it comes to using today's newest gadgets.

I want to know what you think. I thought I'd post a few of their questions over the next week and (after I give you a chance to respond), let you know what the experts say.

So, what do you think, "Is it OK to talk on your cell phone when you're ordering food, getting your hair done at a salon, making a transaction at a bank, etc.?"

(question and responses taken from September 2008 issue of Real Simple magazine. Article was titled "Manners 2.0 and written by Katie McElveen)

12 comments:

Laura said...

At a fast food restaurant at the drive-thru, it is okay. Inside the fast food restaurant, pause talking and move the phone away from your ear to give attention to the person taking your order. The exact same goes for the bank unless it is a long transaction inside the bank, then hang up. For a nicer restaurant like Chilis or anything better than fast food, don't talk on the phone when ordering. As for getting your hair done, I never get mine done. It has been almost a year. So to me it is something VERY special and talking on the phone is not permitted.

Brooke said...

What a pet issue of mine! Having spent years in retail, I can't tell you how many times people have ended up paying at the counter in the middle of a conversation on their phone, and I felt like I was being rude asking them questions (things that were my job), interrupting their conversation! Like this [in a whisper so as not to interrupt her all-important phone conversation about the boy she likes]: "I'm sorry, but your card says to see ID?" and so on.

I just think it's disrespectful of those in the service industry, so I try to avoid it whenever I'm interacting with someone.

Jeff and Abby said...

Ohhhh..I gotta say, rude, rude, rude. I'm hugely (is that a word?) anal about it. I've not read the article, so I may be sticking my foot in my mouth, but I think it's tacky to sit there and be on the phone in all of those instances. Especially when out to eat. So I guess it's a pet peeve of mine (can you tell?!?) Now I just need to find time to read the article!

Busy Mom said...

Absolutely NOT! I think it's rude to be speaking on the phone when you are doing business with someone else. We were in a restraunt one day at lunch with my mom and she was going to put my sister on the speaker phone so we could all hear her and I was like NO WAY mother! That is so rude. The people sitting around us DO NOT want to hear what she has to say. I'm kind like the others. Cell phones are great but they really can drive someone NUTS. Especially me...we don't have a land line and so anyone that knows that and calls me thinks I should be avaiable 24/7 to answer the phone and sometimes when I'm out and about it's just not respectful to answer that phone and that's what voice mail is for. Curious as to what the article says.

Christina said...

I think it is rude. I confess that I have done it before, but I try not to.

Kirsten said...

while I do find it rude, I am completely guilty of doing this. If I am directly (face to face) interacting with someone I do not talk on the phone, but if I am through any drive through I will often talk and then put the phone down while paying etc...

again, rude, but guilty

hubergal said...

definitely not! not a huge fan of cell phones, here.
~shar

Marla said...

I have been guilty, but am trying to let the phone ring and go to voicemail if I am at a counter, or with a clerk, etc. I actually have started leaving it in the car when I run in to do my errands. I can always check on which daughter:) has called when I get back.

Thanks, this has been a good reminder for me.

Mom

Ryan and Becky Weiss said...

I also think that it's rude. Like your mom I leave my phone in the car (or just don't answer anywhere in a store, restaurant, bank, hair salon, etc) because I figure that whatever it is can wait a few more minutes. I am not a slave to my cell phone! :)

Minders said...

I agree...rude. I think the worst is when you are with someone and they spend most of the time you're together on the phone with someone else...either cell or home phone. DRIVES ME NUTS. I had one person to this to me at their home and I finally just said I was leaving because I was so annoyed and figured there wasn't any use of me being there if they weren't going to talk to me anyway. (Seriously...they were on the phone at least 20-30 minutes from the moment I got there)

Sarah said...

Great idea Megan!

Hmmm...Yep, I'd say it's rude. Although, I know I've done it before...:)

Renata said...

I think it's rude to talk on your phone whenever you're having a conversation with someone else - even at the bank etc. If it's just an atm machine, then it's alright of course.