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No Need to Turn Off Cell Phones

Bad Advice: It is fine to leave the phone on the table and no need to turn off cell phones at a meal, as many people enjoy using their phones to show pictures as part of the conversation.

Debunked: The author misses the point. First, the type of meal will determine this answer. Having the cell phone out at a work lunch is fine, but for a social gathering? The answer is almost always no. The author argues you might want to share a picture. Go for it! Nothing wrong with that. I personally don’t have enough will power, though. If the phone is in my hand, I am tempted to check the latest message, so I keep my cell in my purse. Addressing a more serious point, why would we leave the phone on the table and allow ourselves to be interrupted by receiving and answering text messages? Doing this throughout the meal keeps you from being present and in-the-moment with your tablemate. Would you do this if having dinner with your boss? If not, then why not? If the answer is it would be disrespectful, then shouldn’t we give our friends the same consideration? Our time together is precious. Let’s not squander it.


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