11 January 2014

Zimbabwe: 8 Rules of Mobile Phone Etiquette

WhatsApp, WhatsApp, WhatsApp. For most teens right now, not being on WhatsApp is like being dead and buried, you might as well not be living in this century. But a lot of people, including grown-ups, have poor mobile manners and they do not realise it. You too could be letting your mobile turn you into slob so read on.

First of all, when in places like church, funerals, meals and other such occasions, turn off your phone or put it on silent and do not answer any calls. If you really have to take the call or message, step aside and keep the conversation very short.

Secondly do not text on your phone while talking to someone else, unless you have excused yourself to briefly attend to an urgent message. Ignoring real people who are with you so that you can fiddle with your phone makes you look arrogant.

Thirdly, there is time and place for everything including phone calls and messages. Unless it is an emergency do not call or text a person who has not given you permission to do so after seven in the evening and before eight in the morning.

Fourthly, just because it is over the phone that does not mean that you should forget your manners.

Even if you use shorthand to type a message, keep it as polite as you would in real life. In the same vein, do not shout out loudly unless the other person really cannot hear you.

Fifthly, there are some private matters that should not be spoken of in public places. It does not matter if the people around you are strangers who may never see you again, they do not need to hear about you sordid personal affairs. And speaking on the phone is not an opportunity to show off.

Sixth point is that you should always answer your phone politely even if you do not recognise the number. Greet the person then say something like, "Who am I talking to, please?" instead of "Who are you?"

Seventhly, profile updates and other posts should not irritate other people. Does it really matter to anyone that you bought a new cap?

Make sure that any updates that you send or tag other people on are of interest to them and not irritants.

Finally, the person who has called has the right to tell you their message. Do not hijack a call and force the caller to listen to you. If you had something to say, you should have called first.

These are just a few rules to help you get your mobile skills polished.


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