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Texting in the "Magnited States of America"

Discussion in 'General Discussion' started by Juice, Jun 6, 2011.

  1. Juice

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    I fucking hate people who open their phones to text or check whatever during a movie. It's incredibly obnoxious and self-absorbed and completely pulls you out of the film. However, one theater in Texas stood by their policy to boot anyone using their phone in any regard without warning. Read the full story here.

    Additionally, as a bonus, the booted patron left a voicemail describing her displeasure with the theater:



    Focus: Discuss the story.

    Alt. Focus: Does this speak to a bigger problem in our society where politeness has been replaced by self-entitlement and absorption? Is technology a factor?
     
    #1 Juice, Jun 6, 2011
    Last edited by a moderator: Mar 27, 2015
  2. DrFrylock

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    We live in a multitasking society now, and much of politeness has historically been tied up in attention - if you weren't giving (X) your full attention, you were doing something wrong. Now I can shop for groceries and talk on the phone at the same time, ride in a car and listen to a book, watch a movie and text, look something up on the Internet while waiting for my food at a restaurant.

    Understanding that attention is a hot commodity, I try to demand as little as possible from other people. Thus, it's hard to be impolite to me, since I only need your full attention for 30 seconds to get my question answered and go. This is not the case with, e.g., some of my coworkers, who think nothing of bombing into my office and darkening my door for 45 minutes with stories of whatever. I feel a little bad when the background process in my head causes me to look back at my computer and answer a quick email, and try to tone this down because I know it's not polite. But fuckin' eh 45 MINUTES! SERIOUSLY.
     
  3. scootah

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    If some asshole is waving his phone around in the air, or talking on his fucking phone instead of leaving the cinema - I'd probably be in the front row of the lynch mob waving a pitchfork. But if they're discretely checking a message in their lap? Harden up princess.

    Like a lot of people - I have a job that expects me to deal with emergencies outside of business hours. If I get a message when I'm on call, no matter what i'm doing, I have to check it out. If I'm driving, I pull over. If I'm walking I stop. If I'm fucking, I appologize to the other person and I have to check it. I'm often not on call for weeks at a time, and can just crawl into a cave and not do anything for the week that I am, but I've been on 24/7 call for months at a time before. I'll leave the cinema if I have to call someone, or do something other than check the message, but I'll still check to see if it's important, or pointless crap before I leave the cinema.

    Lots of people have jobs with far more critical emergency response requirements than mine (I'm just a fucking computer geek) - and if a doctor, or a fire fighter, or even just the IT Guy who might need to fix up the payroll computer so that people get paid this week needs to check his message during a movie to see if there's a crisis or if he can enjoy the movie he paid for? Fuck it - it's not that big a deal. The social issue is that we're increasingly moving towards an expectation that people spend their entire life working - and that there's no such thing as personal time.
     
  4. Bryan

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    Whatever happened to the demure southern belle?

    What? Really? I've never even noticed people texting during a movie before. Of course I know it's going on, but it doesn't trigger my attention. It's not like I'm completely engrossed and thinking I'm on Pandora or in Gotham until my reality is completely shattered when some high school girl's phone lights up a few rows in front of me with a text message saying which friends' parents house they can drink underage at tonight.

    I do believe people in the U.S. are overly self-entitled and absorbed (and yes, attractive girls are a common offender), but this story isn't necessarily a symptom of that. I'm not familiar with the theater at all, but she was a customer who apparently wasn't familiar with the idiosyncrasies of that particular theater. She wasn't talking on the phone, just texting at most. She was thrown out without refund, and she called back to express her displeasure. I wasn't floored by her resounding eloquence, but I can definitely see how she would be pissed.

    I take the bus back and forth between NYC and my parents' house a few times a year, and in the beginning of the trips the driver always asks that people refrain from talking on the phone, and if they must keep the call short and brief. However, there's at least one passenger per trip who disregards this entirely (and it's almost always a black individual among a 75-80% white passenger population, I remember one time when it was a Chinese FOB) and talks up a lengthy storm. I don't really care because I can just plug in headphones and read a book, but I imagine there are people who would rather not be tortured by ebonic nonsense while they're trying to sleep. Now that's sense of self-entitlement and absorption trumping politeness.
     
  5. lust4life

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    This story has nothing to do with multitasking, and from the sound of her young voice and less than professional vocabulary and ability to express her views, I doubt she was going to be contacted to rush to the hospital to resolve a patient's subdural hematoma. She claims she used her phone as a flashlight because the theater was dark. No fooling, Sally! They turn the lights off when the movie starts!

    It was rude behavior. She was late to the show, and instead of taking the first empty seat she could see to minimize disrupting others, she increases the disruption factor and then gets pissed when she gets called out on it and has the theater policy enforced on her. Another member of the "Don't You Know Who I Am?" Club. Another example of the "Fuck you, it's all about me" attitude in the age of entitlement, an attitude that goes hand in hand with playing the victim when they get called out.

    Ad it certainly isn't limited to Gens X or Y. I see people of all ages pull this kind of crap, especially on planes, though I do think it's more pervasive among the younger generations. I wish more movie theaters showed this kind of enforcement.
     
  6. Disgustipated

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    I fucking hate annoying disturbances while watching a movie. I accept that people are going to rustle popcorn, cough and what have you. That's largely unavoidable, so you just suck it up. Silently texting doesn't rate as annoying for - I can block that out easily. Talking, wandering around, not putting your phone on silent - these are the things that will spur me into action.

    As for this case? This is more about following direction that the use of a phone. The story says she was given two warnings. She was in private premises, had been told the rules and given (at least one) further chance - two if the rules were clearly stated elsewhere. Whether you agree with the rules or not, that was a condition of her staying there. She breached that. Damn straight it was right to throw her out.
     
  7. kuhjäger

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    I think the reason people can't put down their phone to concentrate on something for more than a couple of minutes is because of addiction.

    I think in the coming years (if there aren't already some now) we will start to see studies that show that adolescents are actually having their brains re-wired by the stimulus and "hit" of an incoming text message, or Facebook notification. I know that when I get a text I can tell there is a small rush, sort of like when I am gambling.

    Not only that, I see that the people I know who are most addicted to facebook/texting send out the most texts or leave the most comments on other people's facebook pages, probably in an attempt to increase the messages they get from people commenting on their comment. They are setting themselves up for the score.

    Look at these people who send thousands of texts a month, upwards of hundreds a day. It is a repetitive task, that really has no point to it, and I can't imagine anyone doing that without some sort of reward, either a food pellet or a hit of dopamine.

    You might as well have told this girl she couldn't shoot up heroin in the theater and kicked her out.
     
  8. iczorro

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    People at work love to talk at me while it's clear I'm doing other things. As they are the ones being rude, I have no problem merely continuing to focus on what I'm doing and not even glance in their direction. Fuck them, I don't need to hear their petty shit.
     
  9. D26

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    I've had people bust out their phones while I'm in a theater. When the wife and I went to see Thor, some dude sitting in front and to the right of us kept breaking out his cell phone to text or check the internet or some shit. When you're trying to watch a movie in a dark theater, and a sudden flash of light comes up JUST in front of you, it is distracting. Fuck that self-entitled shithead.

    What Scootah is talking about is completely different than what this girl did. If someone is "on call," as a doctor or even an IT guy, that usually means just that: they're going to get a call. Their phone vibrates, and they'd either check the message (which is usually fairly quiet) or get up and leave to answer it. I've never really heard of people being "on call" and getting a text or having to text something out. It is rare (not saying it doesn't happen, but it is rare) that a text message is 'important.' If something is important, people call.

    People are self-absorbed and self-entitled, but we've brought it on ourselves. We raise kids to make them think that they're all special important special unique special snowflakes. Everyone is a winner. Thanks to social media and the like, they think everything they say is profound and important. This isn't necessarily bad, but what we FAIL to do is train them as to when it is appropriate. It is as simple as saying to a kid getting their first cell phone:

    It is inappropriate to text or talk on your phone in the theater, in a class, while you're driving, or while you're at the dinner table. It is also impolite to text while someone is talking directly to you.

    The wife and I already plan to have that conversation, and tell our kids that if they are caught texting during any of those times, they lose the phone. A little decent parenting can solve a lot of these issues, but quite frankly, parenting has gone down the shitter, too.
     
  10. Nom Chompsky

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    I don't really buy this girl's story. According to the theatre they asked her multiple times to stop texting, and at times she seems to acknowledge that. At the other times she seems to be saying that she didn't know about the rule, and in the beginning she seems to be saying that she was just "using her phone as a flashlight to find her seat."

    I don't mind texting in theaters, but if the theather is strict about it and asks you to stop, then you stop. Maybe you leave and demand a refund on your way out, but acting surprised when people enforce rules you knew about isn't entitled, it's just dumb.
     
  11. Nettdata

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  12. Trakiel

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    Sometimes I feel as though our society is getting ruder and less considerate, but other times I wonder if that perception is just a result of the change in social norms and that we're really just constantly changing one set of social expectations for another. Sure years ago everyone addressed each other by "sir" and "ma'am" and children were seen and not heard. However it was also socially acceptable to slap a pretty girl on the ass when you walked by or refer to the Thomas's as "that nigger family that lives down the street", so who can say if things are more civil or less?

    Frankly a lot of so-called "polite bahavior" is/was less about showing kindness and consideration to your fellow human and more about reinforcing social and class heirarchies.
     
  13. Guy Fawkes

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    I wish more movie theaters ruled with such an iron fist.

    A bright ass cell screen in the middle of a dark theater is annoying as fuck. If your kid was hit by a car and you rush out then it's understood. If you're LOLing with your BFF or checking Facebook every 3 minutes you deserve to be raged upon and thrown the fuck out.

    I'm as guilty as anyone to checking my phone at inappropriate times but my younger sales guys are the worst. They don't turn their phones on silent in customer meetings and a couple have actually started laughing at some amusing text and quickly typed out a responses. They were thoroughly chewed out afterwards.

    Now I warn everyone going into a meeting that their phones had better be off. Also that I better not see anyone checking anything either. We're here at THIS customer to close a deal. Worry about the other customers, your friends, and whatever funny video someone wants you to watch as soon as we're in the parking lot.

    Twice I've taken phones away like a goddamn school teacher. They're work phones so they fall loosely under my control. I thought one of the poor fucks I took it away from was going to have a meltdown. He stopped by my office every half hour to see if he could get it back. Every time it was a different reason. I'd tell him that no customers had called and that I wasn't reading his texts or listening to any of his messages.

    Shortly after lunch he leveled with me that his girlfriend got extremely upset if he didn't respond to her texts right away. Even during work hours? Yes, even during work hours. Sure enough she had texted him about twenty times and she was pissed.

    Kids are getting cell phones at younger and younger ages because their friends all have them and it's the best way for a parent to stay in touch. I can only imagine how their brains are being fucked up though by having instant access to everything and needing to access it every 2 minutes like a fiend. Fucking crazy.
     
  14. Nom Chompsky

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    I have one of the best/worst inappropriate cell phone stories, I think, of all time. Spoilered for darkness. If you get depressed, it's your own fault.

    Nearly two and a half years ago, my brother was killed by a drag-racing driver while we were on vacation in Jamaica. There aren't sidewalks per se, just dirt patches on the side of the road, which is where he was waiting to cross. The driver, who I believe may have been under the influence, swerved onto this patch. None of this is germane to the story, it's simply background to suggest how spectacularly illegal the entire thing was.

    The next morning, an officer came over (there were about 20 of us there, btw) to discuss what would happen legally going forward. To begin with, he didn't inspire much confidence. It is hard to take a man seriously when he is dressed like Brendan Frasier in Dudley Do Right. But we listened anyway.

    Until his phone went off in his breast pocket.

    If you were working, and giving news to a recently bereaved family, you might turn off your phone for those few minutes. But perhaps you are too important to be without service for that time. I understand.

    I would assume that you'd put your phone on vibrate while working. It seems less egregious than ringing going off in the middle of important conversations, but perhaps you don't like the way the buzzing feels against your nipple. I'm stilling giving you the benefit of the doubt, Jamaican mounty.

    Surely if you have it on loud, your ringtone is something subdued and professional. A basic ringing noise that signals that you are taking the proceedings seriously and wish you could just turn the damn phone off. Duty calls, however, and your ticklish nipples proclude vibration.

    But no, Carribbean palace guard. You decided on a song. I would assume, being a reasonable man myself, that the song would be something plain, boring even. Perhaps you find ringing harsh and interruptive. You could well be right in this.

    What song is that? Is that Marvin Gaye's "Let's Get it On?"

    Fuck you, my good man.
     
  15. Crown Royal

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    If people are texting in the theatres I go to, then it's unknown to me. Usually if a phone goes off, the guilty party either shuts it off immedietly or runs out the door with it like it's a nerve gas bomb. No reason to get mad at that, shit happens. Of course, go to the movies enough times and you're going to get those occasional fresh hells that feel it's they're God-given right to sit five rows directly in front of you, spike their extra large theatre drinks with a mickey of Fireball Whisky and blab to each other as loud as they feel like it BECAUSE IT'S A PUBLIC PLACE AND I HAVE AS MUCH RIGHTS AS YOU DO BLAH BLAH GRIPE GRIPE YAMMER YAMMER...

    You see, this is why they made Swedish Berries in the first place. You can mash them into a sticky creepy goo, you can throw them accurately and they cut through the air well. They're also as tough to get out of hair as gum. You're welcome, slut.
     
  16. TX.

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    Alt. Focus: Does this speak to a bigger problem in our society where politeness has been replaced by self-entitlement and absorption? Is technology a factor?[/quote]

    Maybe. I don't go to the movies a lot, but this doesn't happen very frequently when I do go. It seems like the offender is usually a suburbanite mom or old person who most likely forgot to put their phone on vibrate. It doesn't piss me off if their phone rings and they are obviously fumbling to turn the sound off as quickly as possible. It pisses me off if it happens repeatedly or if they answer their phone and have a five minute conversation. That's just irritating to everyone around you.

    We had a thread about this a while ago, but I have a bigger problem with people texting while in the middle of class, a conversation, or checking out at a store. If I'm talking to someone on the phone and I walk up to a cashier I'll put the phone down or ask if I can call them back in 5 minutes. When I see people who seem to be constantly texting or talking...I don't think it's self-entitlement necessarily. But, it's definitely self-absorption. One of my biggest pet peeves is people who are completely unaware of others or their surroundings. It takes very little energy to stop for a second and consider how your behavior is affecting the people in your immediate area. I'm sure I've been guilty of talking too loudly or being rude, but I try to remember that nobody else wants to hear my conversation.