Updated on October 15, 2015
The Dos and Don’ts of Mobile Phone Usage
Because mobile phones are a huge part of our lives, their use should be regulated. This is why mobile phone etiquette was created – to make sure each person uses their mobile phone responsibly and with respects to others. While etiquette is relative, as some people are more lax than others, here are some basic dos and dont’s that you should observe when using mobile phones.
- Do prioritise human interaction over your mobile phone. If you’re talking to somebody or are out with people, make sure you give them undivided attention. Nothing is more rude than talking to someone who keeps looking at their phone.
- Do put your phone on silent when inside the church, cinema, the library and other places where complete silence is necessary.
- Do call back when the line gets cut off if you initiated the call.
- Do resolve differences in person. Arguing over the phone is never a healthy thing.
- Do be mindful of time zones when calling international numbers. Afternoon here might mean midnight for the person you are calling.
- Do be aware of your surroundings. Sometimes, when you’re too preoccupied with your phone, you won’t even notice that you suddenly stopped in the middle of the pavement, effectively blocking people who are trying to walk past you.
- Don’t yell. Even if you are in a crowded place, the person you’re calling might not even hear the background noise due to sensitive and all they’ll hear is your loud yelling. If you must make a phone call, at least move to a quieter place.
- Don’t walk and talk. Not only is it annoying for the people walking behind you, when you suddenly stop, it is also a recipe for disaster. You can get into an accident if your attention is somewhere else.
- Don’t use your phone while driving. Aside from being an etiquette issue, using your phone while driving can be fatal. The number of road accidents due to mobile phone use is a testament to this fact.
- Don’t sleep with your phone next to you. Recent studies show that excessive use of your phone could cause problems to your health because of the radiation it emits. While most scientific studies conducted nowadays are divided on the issue, having your phone with you all the time is still considered unhealthy. Don’t be too dependent on your phone; you shouldn’t keep it on your person 24/7.
- Don’t use foul language. Since talking on the phone or sending text messages give a sense of anonymity, people are often more courageous and aggressive over the phone than in a face to face confrontation. Even so, watch your language – don’t say something over the phone that you can’t say in person.
- Don’t leave your phone lying around anywhere. It is an important tool which costs a lot of money, so take good care of it.
To be on the safe side, you should follow the golden rule. Think about what you like and don’t like about people’s behaviours when it comes to mobile phones. If you have pet peeves and dislikes about how people use their mobile phones, it makes sense that you also don’t do the same thing to people around you.