Wednesday, August 3, 2011

"Legion of Cell phone resisters..." by Shannon Rupp

The Tyee: B.C.'s home for news, culture, and solutions has many easy reads that are interesting, and unique. They can be found at on our News Feed. "Legion of Cell Phone Resisters: Count me in!" by Shannon Rupp is the 2nd article we've summarized from The Tyee.

It is becoming more apparent that people are tied to their electronic devices and especially their smart phones. My mother just last night spoke to me about how future generations growing up and it's not related to nature. She thinks there will no longer be people outside playing, but rather inside on the computer, or watching television. While attending the Book Summit 2011 in downtown Toronto this summer specialists were remarking on how reading at a young age makes the child more socially adaptable vs. someone who is on electronics all day. What does this mean for our world?

This article introduces us to two people who are boycotting technologt. It begins by discussing whether it's rude or not to ignore your phone? The answer is broken up into two parts: "the corporate ethics adviser said yes, everyone is obligated to be available to everyone else all the time; the legal scholar said no, one is entitled to set limits". The article goes on to say: "More than 75 per cent of Canadian households have cell phones, so it's clear our days are numbered". Personally when I lived in Ottawa for my undergrad I didn't even have a land line, we purchased basic digital cable because it was the cheapest and had it cut off in the winter because it was too cold to enter our back room. I only had my cell phone and highspeed internet. I wasn't glued to either, but I didn't really let my phone out of site either as it was my only connection to family and friends in case of an emergency. I do think that technology is getting out of hand and I try to limit myself to using it.

In this article we meet Robin Laurence, a visual arts critic in Vancouver who does not have wireless Internet at home, and is said to have only given into emailing and a voicemail service on her cell for work purposes. Robin does not use these features though, unless she is in a free wireless Internet area. This is a rarity. On top of being unlocked from the Internet Laurence does not have cable either. Her way of socializing is to go out every night rather than stay in with mimicked forms of social atmospheres such as facebook & twitter.

The other resister Rupp mentions is Greg Klassen, publicity and marketing directory for Winnipeg's Prairie Theatre Exchange theatre. Klassen remained phoneless until he was hired for a freelance job marketing a film festival. Aged 47 Klassen witnessed the younger generations texting away, but his main concern is, "[...] that they steal our concentration without actually helping us do the job at hand, which is his primary objection to cell phones". In my opinion there is a difference between productivity when you are exposed to facebook, your cellphone, and twitter vs. productivity when you aren't connected. For example, when studying and you need that two second break I think it may be useful to have different outlets. At the same time, while at work and trying to blog a summarization of an article it isn't helpful at all to continue checking my vibrating phone.

In the end everyone can reach you at any given time. Robin Laurence only calls out on her phone, and doesn't like when people are calling in. I agree with this. Personally, I have had many occassions where I've told my mom to let people know I'm busy or not home. I don't feel like socializing all the time, and frankly it's draining. I would never give up my cell phone but some days it is nice to ignore it.

To read this article in full click here.

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