Thursday, May 16, 2013

Cellphone mania – a process of addiction

I have a humble request to people who call me on my cellphone:

Ask these simple questions to yourself before calling.



  • 1. Is this call really important? Can my questions be answered through text (SMS or Email) ?
  • 2. Is this call so urgent and important that I cannot wait for a few hours to get a reply?
  • 3. is there a possibility that the receiver of the call may find it inconvenient to answer the call?
  • 4. Are the topics of discussion of a specific nature that we cannot leave any record in text form ?

I was experiencing a reduction in hearing ability on my left ear for a few years. Meanwhile, my wife happened to mention about Prof Girish Kumar from IIT Bombay who is doing a lot of research on health hazards of mobile phones and mobile towers.
The most important conclusion was that mobile phones have an impact on our health!

As the hearing problems increased, my awareness about mobile phones also improved a little bit. I started observing the calls I make and the calls I get.
Then I realised (to my dismay) that 90% of the calls I made were just out of habit– everything I wanted from these calls could be communicated through text and the reply could also be communicated effectively in the form of text.
Example: During June I get a large number of calls asking the dates of our yearly Design Degree Show. The best example of how text can be and should be used in cellphone communication!!

The next angle is the question of patience. A student of mine called me recently to ask about the price of a particular font. I said that I am not a font vendor and I cannot answer such a question so fast! After a few days I heard that he was calling many other "font specialists" with the same question. 
A clear case of impatience. 
If he had taken the web addresses of font vendors and spent about 15 minutes on the web, he could have found the price of that font from all the vendors selling it. Later, he told me that he was a victim of the "Hurry - i dont have time" culture perpetrated by the big digital products manufacturers.

We have one hour to spend on facebook and twitter. But we dont have time to send a query on email or sms and give the receiver a few hours to reply!!

My ENT doctor conducted some tests and told me that he gets lots of patients from the 16-25 age group. he says listening to music with the earphones is also harmful to the ear.

Lots of cases are reported in newspapers about young people trying to cross railway tracks while listening to music through earphones and losing their lives. That is another side effect of cellphones and iPods!!!

I wonder about this: Is there a slow conditioning process happening around us that all of us are becoming slaves of the cellphones and smart phones ?
Why am I checking my email every hour on my phone?

Look at people switching their cellphones on immediately after a plane lands!

Did anyone die because someone didnt switch on a cell phone on time?



some related links

http://articles.timesofindia.indiatimes.com/2013-05-13/mumbai/39227423_1_hearing-loss-mobile-phone-cell

http://www.theindependentbd.com/index.php?option=com_content&view=article&id=152615:excessive-mobile-phone-use-may-be-hazardous-to-health&catid=129:frontpage&Itemid=121


https://plus.google.com/+timesindia/posts/75MFKkj4JeK



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