Digital Manners Matter When It Comes to Mobile Technology


Use In New Bern and Across the Country

UScellular Offers Appropriate Phone Use Tips for National Cellphone Courtesy Month

Have you checked your phone on a date, during a movie or at a place of worship? If so, you are not alone on what some people deem here in New Bern and nationwide as “unacceptable” phone use. A recent UScellular survey indicated that 60% of people deem a place of worship as a place or situation where phone use is inappropriate. Using your phone while on a date and in a movie theatre were next at 52%, followed by dinner with family and friends (40%) and a special event (36%).1

While these numbers seem high, 8% of consumers surveyed said they believe there are no places or situations where they would not use their cellphone.

“During the COVID-19 pandemic, phone calls, texts, video chats and overall data usage have spiked as New Bern residents rely on devices to work, complete school assignments, shop, game and connect,” said Jeremy Taylor, UScellular’s director of sales for Eastern North Carolina. “This increase also has given way to a heightened awareness of common annoyances related to mobile technology use among family members who spent months cooped up together at home, as well as with people we encounter when venturing out in public.”

July is National Cellphone Courtesy Month. UScellular offers the following tips to help mobile technology users mind their manners:

  • Softer sounds: Sounds can travel from room to room at home and beyond the recommended social distancing parameters in other settings. You should set ringers and vibration patterns on low and be mindful of your own voice volume when you take phone calls or video chat. Consider investing in Apple AirPods, Samsung Galaxy Buds or other types of headphones when gaming, joining a virtual meeting or streaming content.
  • Checks and balances: A survey revealed that on average, Americans check their phone 262 times per day – that is once every 5½ minutes!2 It can be difficult to resist the urge to constantly check notifications, status updates and incoming messages. However, this is distracting and inconsiderate when in the presence of others.
  • Phone flubs: It is never appropriate to talk or text while driving. You also should avoid talking loudly on your cellphone while riding public transportation or in a waiting room, so you don’t disturb others.
  • Misstep: UScellular’s annual survey revealed that 44% of people have walked into someone or something while on their phone – up from 33% in 2018. It is a good idea to stop walking, look up, obey the laws and be attentive when using a wireless device.

1UScellular online survey of 1,000 people from Nov. 18 to Dec. 4, 2020.

2Cell Phone Behavior in 2021: How Obsessed Are We?

By Melissa McIntyre, Public Relations Counsel