The Pew Research Center has just published a report, “Americans’ Views on Mobile Etiquette,” studying the discrepancy between where Americans feel cell phone use is appropriate and how their behavior reflects and contradicts that.
The study surveyed 3,217 adults, only four percent of whom said that mobile phone use during church or a worship service was acceptable – the lowest approval of eight situations ranging from walking down the street to family dinners to meetings.
As a general proposition, Americans view cell phones as distracting and annoying when used in social settings — but at the same time, many use their own devices during group encounters.
When asked for their views on how mobile phone use impacts group interactions, 82% of adults say that when people use their phones in these settings it frequently or occasionally hurts the conversation. Meanwhile, 33% say that cell phone use in these situations frequently or occasionally contributes to the conversation and atmosphere of the group. Women are more likely than men to feel cell use at social gatherings hurts the group: 41% of women say it frequently hurts the gathering vs. 32% of men who say that the same. Similarly, those over age 50 (45%) are more likely than younger cell owners (29%) to feel that cellphone use frequently hurts group conversations.
To read the report’s full findings, click here.