In a civilised society mobile users are supposed to follow certain basic manners/ etiquettes. Comment.
If mobile phones and motor bikes are the metaphor of an upwardly mobile generation, they are equally a nagging nuisance and nightmare if used uncaringly and unscrupulously. Just as road users of all hues and hypes are supposed to follow certain road rules for their safety and smooth movement of traffic, in the same vein mobile phone users have to observe certain basic etiquettes. A parliamentary panel that went into the entire gamut of mobile phone use observed that mobile phones had become a menace in India due to its improper and indiscriminate use as most consumers were either unaware of basic etiquettes or did not wish to follow them.
The Committee on Petitions of Parliament gave its observations on a petition, seeking reasonable restrictions on the use of mobile phones in educational institutions, places of worship and similar other public areas that required silence and solemnity. It is highly unethical as well as unpardonable to suffer and tolerate instances of mobile phones ringing in high volume in public halls, condolence meetings, lectures/seminars, cinema halls, religious assemblies, auditoriums, crematoriums/graveyards and at places of worship. All this shows the low level of basic cell phone manners among consumers. The Panel Report observed: “Counselling users on cell phone manners has not been conceptualised on a professional level in India. In the US, the month of July every year is observed as ‘cell phone courtesy month’ to encourage ‘unmindful’ consumers to follow polite and considerate usage and be more respectful of surroundings.” The panel ruled out a blanket ban on its use in public places. In case of higher institutions, students and teachers could use the mobile phone during free time in non-prohibited areas. No doubt, a mobile phone is helpful for an attendant in hospital to communicate with relatives of a patient, but a complete ban on its use by doctors and attendants in operation theatres, intensive care units and areas where expensive medical gadgets are kept is a ‘must’ and no laxity on this count should be condoned.