July is National Cellphone Courtesy Month – Tips on Proper Etiquette

US Cellular DisclosureIt’s a rarity that someone doesn’t have a cellphone these days, and most have smartphones where they stay up to speed and connected through their many social media channels. I for one would be one of them – I have twitter, facebook, and instagram just to name a few that I stay active on, and continually engage regularly and often on each. I love that these social media channels allow me to stay connected with not only my following, but also with family and friends from near and far. We can stay in touch easily! However, we need to take a moment and realize that  there are people right in front of us, and it’s important to stay engaged with them and not always be going to those that aren’t in our presence when it comes to social interaction. This seems to be a struggle with many with cellphones and even more so with smartphones – there’s always a temptation and something to engage you. Lets take a moment to talk about some Cellphone Etiquette during National Cellphone Courtesy Month & statistics that might surprise you.viewer

  • A Pew Research survey found that 67 percent of cellphone owners find themselves checking their phones for messages, alerts or calls – even when they don’t notice their phone ringing or vibrating.
  • According to a recent U.S. Cellular survey, 37 percent of users say others get upset with them for phone use, while 63 percent say they get upset at others for phone use. (Between Nov. 15 and Dec. 2, 2013, 500 nationally representative online interviews were conducted among smartphone users in partnership with Maritz Research)
  • 63 percent of users 18-34 think it is rude to be on your phone while talking to someone else, while 57 percent think it is rude to check while dining.
  • Among adults 55-64, 82 percent think it is rude to check your phone while talking with someone else, and 80 percent think it is rude to check while dining.
  • 63 percent of people believe that no one gets upset at them for their phone use.

Do you agree with the above statistics? I agree that it’s completely rude to be on your phone while talking to someone else and definitely while dining.  Sadly I’m one of the 67 percent that do find myself checking my phone even if I’m not alert, I know my iPhone 5s will alert me, but if I’m bored (or think I’m bored) or without my kids, I’m continually looking.  I’d also say I definitely do get upset with others when they’re continually on their phone when it’s not an emergency, but I do agree some people may find it rude of me for always having my phone in my hand or with me at all times.

Cellphone Etiquette to help you me courteous of others.After all your actions are a great example to others. If your family enjoys their cellphones a little too much, have a family meeting and set up some ground rules to help establish being more courteous to each other and those around you.

  • If gathering with friends and family, make a note to put the phones away. Engage with those around you, and later take time to catch up on social media or talk to your friends not with you.
  • Adjust screen brightness prior to entering a dimly lit space, such as a restaurant, recital or school play. This allows you to use the device to take photos or use social media without disturbing those around you.
  • Put your phone on vibrate when in meetings or social gathering when it might distract others. Did you know the Samsung Galaxy 5s actually quits ringing just by flipping over the device?
  • If for some reason while with others you need to be on your phone, explain the need to be.
  • Set the cellphone aside during dining – I don’t think anyone enjoys when someone is on their phone while eating with others. We have a no phone or answering during meal time rule at our home.

What would your tips be? It’s not always easy to find the best balance when using your cellphones, they definitely create great moments and help families stay in touch and connected, but can also be a nuisance to those right in front of us. If you’re having a hard time setting up rules with your children, check out the Parent Child  Cellphone Agreement that you can download for free from U.S. Cellular to make the guidelines easier for both of you. You can even visit one of their free cellphone workshops to help get your phone set up, or learn more about it to help you be more courteous of others.. you may not even know the features your phone has.

I look forward to reading your comments!

  1. Denise Taylor-Dennis

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