Cultural Etiquette and International Protocol

Are You Dating Your Smartphone?

That is what it looks like. How often have you attended an event and noticed people standing off to the sidelines engaged with their Smartphone? Sometimes they even gather in small groups to text and simply ignore everyone else. Have you experienced this? Or is this you? Unfortunately, smartphones and other hand-held technologies provide people an escape route from interacting with the people around them. There have been numerous occasions when I wanted to approach someone but detoured because I did not want to interrupt their texting. Yet we attend events to meet people. Go figure! I am probably as dependent on my Smartphone for messages as anyone else; however, when I go to an event, I turn it off—unless, of course, I’m texting directions to the event. Please share your thoughts on the following:   (-Gloria Petersen)
1. So how do you react when you encounter someone texting instead of mixing?
2. Does this alter your impression of them? Do you ignore them? Or do you just go ahead and interrupt?
3. If you are the one engaged with your Smartphone, how do invite others to interact with you?

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