(Closed) Love affair with our phones – rant

posted 7 years ago in Etiquette
Post # 47
558 posts
Busy bee
  • Wedding: October 2014

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@Carolsays:  And you are falling prey to the fallacy that the plural of anecdote equals data.  There is no data that says smartphones are inhibiting the ability of young people to interact face to face, or have meaningful relationships, or have friends.  There are anecdotes, and people who feel alienated by the behaviour of others.  And a lot of waxing rhapsodic about how college campuses twenty years ago had people interacting with one another and everything was lovely and wonderful and people made friends without any difficulties.  That’s not data, either.  That’s a perception, stated by you as someone who has a bias in reporting — you dislike smartphones.  And much like medieval folks who claimed that the trend of book ownership would lead to a decline in reading aloud and therefore, no-one would be able to socialise ever again, you are looking at a perceived social consequence — decreased face to face interaction — and ascribing it to a technology you dislike.  Nevermind the power that smartphones have to improve the lives of others.  Nevermind that smartphones are the main source of internet connectivity and interaction with the wider world around the globe.  Nevermind that smartphones are responsible for other social net goods.  You dislike them, you dislike how some folks behave on them, it doesn’t fit your view of how society out to be and how people ought to behave, therefore, the technology is the problem. 

Also, are you really comparing texting to smoking?  That’s a strawman at best.  Yes, texting and driving is unsafe.  I don’t recall ever having made a statement to the contrary.  But I don’t think there is a widespread epidemic of people texting and driving and killing people.  According to the Dept of Transportation, the number is just over 3300 people in 2012.  The number for drinking and driving casualties, for comparison, is over 10,000.  While 3300 is obviously too many, I think terming the threat of texting drivers an epidemic is hyperbole. 

But this is clearly an issue that we are incapable of seeing eye to eye over.  And that’s just fine. 

Post # 49
2959 posts
Sugar bee
  • Wedding: May 2014

It has gotten to the point where I now clearly state in my syllabi that students are NOT allowed electronic devices of any kind in my classroom unless they have a documented disability where the use of one is required. I am serious – I toss people out of my classes for it. I also show a two minute video -the first day of classes –


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