Then there are the people who wear their bluetooth headset all the time, so you can never tell if they're talking to you or to someone on the phone. Or the people who, for reasons nobody can figure out, use the speakerphone while they're walking around in public. (Seriously. What's that about?)
It has become very common to walk into a business and see signs posted that say "No Cell Phones" or "Please Turn Off Your Cell Phones." The understandable reason being, of course, that it's distracting and/or irritating to everyone else in the room if people are using their cell phones. I'm totally on board, and don't have a problem with the "no cell phones" policies.
My counter-argument, however, is that it's equally annoying to have to listen to someone have a disturbingly loud conversation with the person sitting in the next chair. Just because both of you are in the same room, and there is no phone involved, doesn't mean I need to hear every detail about how your date went last night, or what a jerk your boss is.
I'm not saying people shouldn't talk to each other. I'm just pointing out the irony that people make such a big fuss about people using phones, but don't complain so much about other loud or disruptive conversations. Let me give you an example:
One day my husband had dropped me off at the college library to do some homework while he and the kids went out. They came back a few hours later, and rather than park and get the kids out to come in and find me, he called me to let me know he was here. I answered the phone, and said (very quietly) "You here? Ok. I'll be right out" and hung up.
Just then one of the library employees happened to be walking by and said "You aren't talking on a cell phone... are you?" (He somehow managed to be weirdly threatening and condescending at the same time.) I just said "nope" and got my stuff together and left.
This wouldn't have been a big deal, and I probably wouldn't have thought anything about it at all, except that sitting at the row of computers directly across from me was a group of four or five students who had been having very loud, very distracting conversations the entire time they had been there. But apparently that was ok, because at least everyone was in the room, and nobody was using a phone.
I don't think anyone should get rid of their "No Cell Phones" signs. It's just that whenever I see one of these:
|No Cell Phones|
I'd also like to see one of these:
|No Loud Conversations With the People Around You|