Are you a phubber?STOP IT!!

Posted: August 21, 2013 in General

There are few things in life that are more irritating.

You are mid-conversation with a friend and they check their phone and begin replying to a text or checking their emails.

But now, people everywhere are beginning to lose patience with the phenomenon known as phubbing: snubbing others in a social setting by checking your phone.
A Stop Phubbing campaign group has started in Australia and at least five others have sprung up in its wake as outrage about the lack of manners grows.

The campaign’s creator, Alex Haigh, 23, from Melbourne, said: ‘A group of friends and I were chatting when someone raised how annoying being ignored by people on mobiles was.’

He has created a website where companies can download posters to discourage phubbing and even placecards for weddings.
Phubbing is just one symptom of our increasing reliance on mobile phones and the internet which is replacing normal social interaction.

Research reveals that 44 per cent of us spend more than half an hour a day looking at our phones, eight per cent admit to checking it for three hours a day and three per cent say they spend five or more hours on their mobiles.

A third of Britons polled admitted to being phubbers and more than a quarter (27 per cent) said they would answer their phone in the middle of a face-to-face conversation.The survey also found that 57 per cent of Britons check their emails on holiday, compared to 32 per cent who didn’t and 11 per cent who weren’t sure.

A third confessed that they would answer the phone in a restaurant and 19 per cent said they would while being served in a shop.

The YouGov research comes after a supermarket checkout assistant in south London refused to serve a woman until she stopped using her phone.

The poll, for a Sunday paper, also found that 54 per cent of people checked Facebook, Twitter or other social media every day, with 16 per cent checking more than ten times a day.

An unsurprising 63 per cent of people carry their phone with them ‘almost all, or all of the time’, it found.

According to research by advertising agency McCann, 37 per cent of people feel it is worse to not answer a message than it is to ‘phub’ your friends.

Phil Reed, a professor of psychology at Swansea University who has studied internet addiction disorder, said many phubbers show symptoms of addiction to their mobile phone.

They also show withdrawal signs if they are not allowed to use their phones constantly, he said, adding that he does not own a mobile phone.

He said: ‘The internet and social media are good things up to a point but we have to control them. If you were talking to someone and someone else came up and you started talking to the other person without including the first person in your conversation that would be thought of as very rude.’

Professor Reed, who does not own a mobile phone, said: ‘We call it social connection; but it’s not.’

Many do not realise they are phubbing and are unconscious of the irritation they cause.

Rodney Collins, regional director of McCann’s Truth Central unit which carried out the research, said: ‘People do not appreciate the influence mobiles have had on their lives.

‘When it comes to inappropriate or rude behaviour, there’s not as much admission to conducting those behaviours in the UK as there are in other markets.

‘Only about 20 per cent of British people admit to phubbing, lower than in the U.S.’


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