Ahhh, cell phones.  Remember when they were a convenience for emergency only?  But now, we call, text, take selfies, watch movies, check social media; we check them constantly.

Here’s when your phone should be tucked away and silenced to show that you have manners and respect others:   

  • Any time ANYONE is speaking into a microphone – the theater, church, synagogue, funeral, wedding ceremony, remarks following dinner, seminar, concert, etc.
  • Especially in the theater – the light from your phone is very distracting.
  • While dining. Focus on those people who are there with you.
  • On any form of public transportation.  You may find your life fascinating but the rest of us do not.

Texting, but not talking, is ok when you are:

  • Riding the bus or subway
  • Waiting in a doctor’s office
  • In a public place where your action won’t disturb the people around you, but conversation would.

Yes…that’s right, you aren’t the most important person in the world just because your phone buzzed, rang, or dinged.  Don’t discuss anything that the rest of the world has no business knowing, like what your doctor said about your infection, your Brazilian waxing appointment, or the argument you had with your boss after you didn’t finish your work.

Here’s what you say when your phone rings in public:  “May I please call you back?  I can’t talk right now.  I’ll call you (name time in minutes, hours, or days).”

About allthingsetiquette

Lynley Jones presents Behave! All things Etiquette, an interactive and hilarious undertaking that will help you how to navigate your world with style and confidence. All Things Etiquette is an endeavor to further society's niceties, build self-esteem, self-respect, and respect for others.
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