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Cell phone sickness?

Old Nov 19th, 2000, 02:32 PM
  #1  
sandi
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Cell phone sickness?

Have all you travelers out there noticed the European addiction to cell phones? Almost everyone under 40 has one attached to their ear, as they hurry along. Are we getting so busy that we can't even take a few minutes to ourselves without being in constant contact with someone (anyone?). And some concerts I have attended have been disrupted not one, but twice by the same cell phone ringing. THeir ought to be a law that it can be confiscated after one disruption. Any thoughts, travelers?
 
Old Nov 19th, 2000, 04:32 PM
  #2  
Paule
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It ain't just Europe anymore! I don't know about the rest of the U.S., but come to NYC, and I think that 9 out of 10 people have cell phones by now. And not just the under 40 year olds. And yes, last night I attended a concert where a cell phone did indeed go off. So thoughts? It IS part of our life, and I wish their was a required lesson in etiquette before phones are sold....but there aren't. Honestly, I thought the use in Europe (or Italy, where I saw frequent cell phone usage for the first time) was much more civilized (or is it that life in Europe just seems more civilized to me?).
 
Old Nov 19th, 2000, 05:28 PM
  #3  
Ed
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As advanced (retarded?) as cell phone usage has become in the US, I've seen nothing here that compares to much of Europe. Certainly Italy (esp. Rome) has much more use than in the US. Finland (Nokia?) leads the world, I think.

Reason? May in part have to do with the traditionally poor communications infrastructure in Europe. Their phone networks have been far behind the US for years, probably due the fact that the service was run by the governments. Even AT&T was far more aggresive than European PTTs. It used to take 5-10 years to get into the phone book in Paris. Perhaps even longer to get a phone book! New service could be arranged in as little as 1-2 years.

Things are much better in Europe in the last several years. Still, one suspects the new cell networks are probably more advanced and reliable, on average, than the traditional fixed networks.

Ed
 
Old Nov 19th, 2000, 06:34 PM
  #4  
andy
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I think the addiction to cell phones represents a general sickness that affects people today, people who feel disconnected, disquieted, and unable to feel at ease if they are not talking to someone, however shallow. What can be so important that must be 'on line' 18 hours a day, unless you are a reported covering a 'scene' or a 'pimp' trying to stay in touch with your girls, johns. What is wrong with a little quietude, a little breather from the rush of city life, the din of the everpresent crowd. I think we only THINK we need to say it all, talk all the time, etc. No one is that important. People should stop and listen to the beating of their heart, the music in their head, notice the aroma and flavor of life going on around you, and disconnect occasionally.
 
Old Nov 19th, 2000, 11:00 PM
  #5  
April
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Andy:
Right on! And I wish drivers would stop talking on them.
 
Old Nov 20th, 2000, 05:08 AM
  #6  
Patrick
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Speaking of drivers, would one of you Brits confirm the general understanding that it is illegal to drive and talk on a cell phone in Britain? We were told that is true, and wish the US could do the same thing. Of course, now I guess people are using those handless phones that just have a tiny microphone that hangs on a lapel and earphones, so they can drive and not be caught on the phone. We were in the theatre in London and saw a man sitting alone in his seat during the interval having an animated conversation with himself, then realized he must have been wearing one of those new phones. It's really getting frightening.
 
Old Nov 20th, 2000, 05:31 AM
  #7  
Paige
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I had never seen one of the headset cell phones till last year in the Frankfurt airport, early in the morning after an overnight flight. Tired as I was, I was very amused by the nicely dressed lady who was carrying on a conversation (with herself) while she shopped. She continued her conversation while she paid and I, still thinking she was wacko, caught the sales clerk's eye and smiled and she just ignored me. Weeks later I saw someone else do the same thing and finally figured it out. I wouldn't mind everyone in creation having a cell phone if they didn't have such annoying ringers! It seems everyone in Germany has the same tune picked out. Aaarrrgghhh!!
 
Old Nov 20th, 2000, 07:31 AM
  #8  
elvira
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If you understand the language being spoken, you'll find the Europeans' conversations are as inane as Americans' (it just sounds more sophisticated 'cause it's in a foreign language). Such gems as "I'm in the supermarche near the fruit" "I'm going into the metro station at Nation" are enough to convince me that the Parisians can no longer claim intellectual superiority.

The usage of cell phones is just another example of quantity over quality. A device that should improve communication among us has, instead, trivialized it.
 
Old Nov 20th, 2000, 08:30 AM
  #9  
Helen
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Sandi, have you noticed that they have a cell phone in one hand and a cigarette in the other? Maybe that is why they are so thin! Especially true in Italy. Happy travels - Helen
 
Old Nov 20th, 2000, 09:41 AM
  #10  
cheri
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Farenheit 451! Hurrah!
 
Old Nov 20th, 2000, 10:50 AM
  #11  
Christie
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As Ed mentions, the infrastructure network in Europe is much more conducive to wireless telephones than to the old-fashioned wireline ones. Can you imagine the havoc that would be caused by digging up major streets of Rome to install new wireline systes? This is why many Europeans now use their wireless phone as their only phone. (They do not have a fixed phone in their home.)

As far as I have heard, it is NOT illegal to use a hands-free phone and drive at the same time.
 
Old Nov 21st, 2000, 01:44 PM
  #12  
Fwhiteside
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Read in one of those "Little Book of Crap" life improvement type publications
( from America ) ......

"Talk on your mobile 'phone & drive or drink coffee & drive, but don't do all three".

You mean there are people that DO all three at once !?!?!?!?!?!?!?!

 
Old Nov 21st, 2000, 02:15 PM
  #13  
Julius
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This was not in Europe, but in the US. I saw a woman recently with a dog in her lap, a cigarette in her mouth, talking on a cellphone and trying to back out of a parking space, all at the SAME time. So help me God. Not funny but really sad.
 
Old Nov 22nd, 2000, 02:44 AM
  #14  
frank
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Patrick, I understand that hands-free phones are OK for driving in the UK.
Normal cellphones are illegal to use while driving.If the police notice you, they will enforce this.
Please note that recent studies indicate that most hands-free sets actually increase the amount of radiation absorbed by your head.
To counteract this, eat british/french burgers for the BSE content - spongy brains absorb less RF!
 
Old Nov 22nd, 2000, 06:49 AM
  #15  
Christie
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I seriously doubt that a hands-free kit would INCREASE the amount of radiation! Remember that the SMALL AMOUNTS of radiation are generated by the transmitter and antenna on the phone, and since the hands-free kit increases the distance between your head and these parts, it should therefore DECREASE the amount. (Remember: a hands-free kit if a small earpiece and a microphone that attach to the actual phone via a 2-foot long cord.) I've heard that 20/20 is going to show a segment on cell phone radiation on Thanksgiving evening. Perhaps we should all watch and learn.
 
Old Nov 22nd, 2000, 07:27 AM
  #16  
frank
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No, although it was thought that handsfree would reduce the RF, tests have shown that the headset cable tends to gather up the RF & rebroadcast it into your head.The exposure is higher by test.
These results have been well publicised in the UK.
 
Old Nov 24th, 2000, 01:54 PM
  #17  
jan
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I just attended a play at a local university last week and the following was printed on the front of the program..."Please turn your cell phones off during the play performance. If you are a Dr.or a parent expecting a phone call please check your phone in at the coat check booth. Leave your phone on and your seat assignment with the attendant. If you receive a call an usher will come to your seat and get you. If your cell phone rings during a performance an unsher will arrive to escort you from the auditorium." I thought this was a great solution to cell phone interruptions.
 

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