Reflection

The Etiquette of Using Cellular

Don’t

1. Continuously calling people if they don’t answer

Why some people insist in calling my cell phone continuously more than three times without leaving any voice mail. In one case, someone called me TWELVE times in a span of less than an hour. It wasn’t important nor was it urgent. He just wanted to see if I am at home. But seriously, if you call someone and he didn’t answer his cell phone leave him a voice mail. Insisting on repeatedly calling him will not force him to answer if his phone is turned off, or he is busy, or he is sleeping, or any of the other million reasons why he is not able to answer his phone.

2. Consider public places as your living room and make multiple calls

While setting in my favorite place in town (i.e., Panera Bread) minding my own business a middle-aged woman decided to call everyone listed in her phonebook. Not to be surprised by the cost of her calls, some phone carries provide free calls between their subscribers. In each conversation call she asked about kids, work, family, etc. For those who were lucky enough not to answer her call she left them about 60-seconds long voice mail.

3. Interrupt a conversation to answer your cell phone

Some people answer their phone calls during a conversation without hesitation or even saying “excuse me”. What is it in cellular conversation that makes it more important and more urgent than any normal one-to-one civilized conversation?

4. Talk for ever

If you plan to talk for more than 5 or 10 minutes ask the other person if he is free or if he has time for a long chat.

5. Forget to turn off your cell phone in worship places

Without being judgmental, if you decided to change the ring tone to some loud rap music or to a song by a sexy Lebanese voice MAKE SURE to turn off your cell phone before you enter the mosque.

6. Answer your phone in a movie theater

Seriously, why you want to answer the phone in the theater? Try one of the following: 1) not to answer the phone, 2) send back a text message, or 3) go out and answer the phone if it is more important than you enjoying the movie and not disturbing others.

Do

1. Lower you voice or step away when speaking on your cell phone in a public place

If you want to make a phone call or answer your phone, in a public place, there is no need that the entire people around you to hear your conversation. Be advised that people tend to raise their voices when speaking on phones. In addition, if you are in a public place what make you think that anyone care about your phone call. If you are with a group and want to answer your mobile excuses your self for couple of minutes. This way, you can speak freely and not interrupt the other people in your group.

2. Ask to use your mobile (in some situations) – no harm in asking

If you are in a formal meeting and you are expecting an important call tell your boss that you may receive a phone call during the meeting and you have to answer it. This way your boss will value your courtesy of appreciating his time by asking permission to answer your phone (even if your call was just a plan to where to spend the evening with your friends).

One day, I was at one of the coffeehouses here in town enjoying my coffee under the sun. I was studying with few books and papers scattered all over the table. I was the only customer setting outside the café. A young lady came and set in a table near me. After sometime she told me that she is going to make some phone calls and she hopes that her calls will not disturb me. I smiled and told her no harm. I was so amazed by the magnitude of courtesy this young lady has.

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