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Editorial: Put the cell phone away

September 27, 2012
The Alpena News

Everyone knows there are rules of etiquette and decorum that one should follow in certain situations.

How many times have you been told to cover your mouth when coughing or show up in something other than jeans for a job interview?

We think it's time we establish similar norms for cell phone use and behavior.

Why is that when a cell phone rings these days, people feel compelled to stop their conversation with you and rush to their phone screen? Such behavior is rude, inconsiderate and self-centered. What they are saying to the person left waiting is that "you're not important" or "my time is more valuable than yours."

Or, how many times have you been in a meeting, a movie, or church and heard a cell phone go off? Worse, how many times have you been giving a presentation or leading a discussion, only to look into the audience and see several folks with their heads looking down into their laps and their fingers dancing over keys.

Communication is a wonderful thing. It is the glue that helps bind successful relationships and partnerships, and makes business and government work efficiently and effectively.

But communication, void of common respect, soon creates a sterile and emotionless environment. Admittedly at times we feel like dinosaurs in this brave new technological world, but even dinosaurs know the difference between right and wrong, common sense and basic respect.

Sadly, we see an erosion of all these basic foundations of good communicative skills and instead, a fast progression toward bland, boring and elementary forms of expression.

We're sorry, but "OMG" or "LOL" doesn't do it for us.

Let's put some good ol' R-E-S-P-E-C-T back into our cell phone vocabulary when it comes to other people.



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