Picture this; you are sitting in church, so engrossed with the reverendÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s preaching when suddenly, the silence is shattered by the shrill ring of a cellphone. With a horrible ringtone too, might I add.
The owner rifles around for the offending device and, depending on their manners, either cuts the line and puts their phone on silent or bows their head to whisper Ã¢â‚¬Å“hello, ndili mu church, ndikuyimbilani ndikatuluka.Ã¢â‚¬Â ( IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢m in church, IÃ¢â‚¬â„¢ll call you later.) Like a magicianÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s rabbit trick, your concentration vanishes into the thin air and you struggle to get back to what is being said.
You might even be slightly irritated with the person who was not so considerate as to take care of their mobile phone before entering the house of the Lord. This is just one of the many offences of cellphone etiquette that a lot of us commit every day.
A letter from one of our readers reminded me of how so many of us forget our manners within social settings and end up being a nuisance to others. The cellphone, it seems, is one of those things that seems to give people an excuse to behave badly.
Take, for example, a person in a social setting; sitting among a group of people, but glued to his or her phone. S/he continuously punches the buttons, scrawling or smiling at the screen at intervals and giving the overall impression that they are bored with what is going on around them.
A word of advice that was given to me by someone very dear to me which I wouldnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t mind sharing is: Ã¢â‚¬ËœItÃ¢â‚¬â„¢s rude to be busy on the phone when you have company. DonÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t get on facebook, twitter, mixit or any other social networking site when people are making conversation. If you have to take a call or respond to a text message, excuse yourself and make it brief.Ã¢â‚¬â„¢
Another cell phone offence a lot of people commit is talking or texting while driving. They might even go further by browsing the Internet while driving. While multi-tasking is very efficient, do we really have to compromise on our own safety and that of other innocent road users through something so insignificant as a phone-call or text that is not even urgent?
CanÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t that wait until we pull? If we are always on the go and need to be on the phone all day every day, wouldnÃ¢â‚¬â„¢t it be more practical to invest in a hands free car device?
Loud, lewd ringtones and message alerts that irritate everyone around the vicinity of your phone, conversing in an extremely loud voice or forgetting to switch off your phone before an extremely important meeting are just a few of the many things that make cellphone users become a nuisance within social settings. Read our tips on avoiding this on page three of our supplement and spread the word!