July 1st, 2008

National Cell Phone Courtesy Month

by Jacqueline Whitmore

July is National Cellphone Courtesy Month – an event I founded in 2002 with the intent to encourage the increasingly unmindful corps of cellphone users to be more respectful of their surroundings by using some simple cellphone etiquette principles. In honor of National Cell Phone Courtesy Month, here are seven tips to those who want to improve their cell phone savvy:

1. Let your voicemail take your calls when you’re in meetings, courtrooms, restaurants or other busy areas. If you must speak to the caller, use the e-mail or text messaging feature or excuse yourself and find a secluded area.

2. Speak in your regular conversational tone and don’t display anger during a public call. Speaking loudly or showing emotion may distract those around you.

3. Use your vibrate function or turn off your phone in public places such as movie theaters, religious services, restaurants, etc. Many wireless phones now have environmental settings that automatically adjust the phone and its features so you do not disrupt your surroundings.

4. If you are expecting a call that can’t be postponed, alert your companions ahead of time and excuse yourself when the call comes in; the people you are with should take precedence over calls you want to make or receive.

5. Avoid interrupting meetings, social gatherings or personal conversations by answering your wireless phone or checking your voicemail. Discreetly excuse yourself if you must take the call.

6. Use discretion when discussing private matters or certain business topics in front of others. You never know who is within hearing range.

7. When walking and talking on your wireless phone, be aware of your surroundings and remember to respect the rights of others.

For additional tips and more information about cell phone etiquette, go to Sprint’s website at http://www2.sprint.com/mr/consumertopic.do?topicId=260.

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2 Responses to “National Cell Phone Courtesy Month”

  1. SFMuni Lady02 on July 8th, 2008 1:35 am


    We were thrilled to learn of your cellphone courtesy initiative and could not agree more. Mobile manners are required for just about any public setting, not only in business, but in life. In fact, our blog regarding transit etiquette recently addressed cell phone usage on public transportation: See Etiquette Rule #2 at http://www.munimanners.com

    We support your efforts to bring civility into our ever-increasing technology-driven lives. With the rise in fuel costs and increased ridership, we hope you will support our efforts in bringing etiquette to mass transit — what we consider to be the new frontier. Since our start in May, we’ve received coverage from local blogs and online features in publications like the Chicago Sun-Times. We are read in 32 states and have traffic from 14 countries outside of the United States. Our movement is catching on as we all strive for a safe and courteous ride!
    SF Muni Ladies

  2. July Dedicated To Cellphone Courtesy - BIG FROG 104 on July 4th, 2011 5:27 am

    […] If you’re looking to brush up on how to be courteous while using your cellphone, here’s the full list of Whitmore’s tips. […]

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