Mobile Phones – the Truth

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Mobile Phone Etiquette

1. Most important:

Avoid calling close to other people

Because of the proven harmfulness of mobile radiation it is not polite and considerate to use mobile phones in situations where other people have to be close to you. Therefore, we suggest you follow thesse guidelines:

Don’t call in situations where people cannot withdraw:

  • In elevators especially as the radiation is often very strong here
  • In queues
  • In restaurants
  • In meetings, conferences and lectures
  • In cinemas, theatres, music shows and similar
  • In all kinds of vehicles where you travel with others. This includes:
    • busses,
    • subways,
    • trams,
    • trains,
    • aeroplanes also after landing
    • cars

    You should be avoid calling and answering in vehicles, as the radiation is increased because the metal walls reflect it. See for example “Trains ‘trap’ mobile phone radiation” (BBC Health), quote:

    Research carried out by scientists in Japan suggests that using a mobile phone inside a train carriage could have serious health risks for other passengers.

Don’t call close to especially delicate people

If you are in doubt about these rules, you will certainly change your mind after reading our website carefully.

2. Some general recommendations

  • If you are speaking with a business contact or friend, it is very annoying if you reply to a phone call and start speaking with someone else about a matter that very obviously is neither urgent nor important. Go a few meters away, reply very briefly and say you will call later. And apologize to the person you are together with.
  • If you get a call from an important contact, while speaking to someone, don’t just start speaking. In stead, apologize and explain that you have to take this call and will make it as short as possible. And before you start speaking, go a few meters away.
  • Turn off the cellphone at lectures and other public performances.
  • Don’t wear the bluetooth device or earphone while speaking to others. Otherwise people will not know if you are really listening to them or the phone, which may cause bad feelings.
  • If you really have to reply to a call in a public place, speak quietly so that you don’t disturb others.

Some other etiquette guides

The links below have some good additional points. Unfortunately, not all of them are updated about the strong evidence of the harmfulness of cellphone radiation, which makes it important not to force people to get “passive irradiation” by being close to you during a call.

Copyright PSRAST 2011. You may quote or copy the whole text if you include a link to the source:

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