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How Cell Phones Affect Social Behavior

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    The world has advanced too fast, that most of us act like we need technology in our daily lives. Cell phones have changed from a device used for emergencies to an everyday necessity. The downside – people can’t seem to communicate. Face to face talking is much, much difficult. It is easier to text someone to talk about a serious matter, or probably even ask someone out. No one can argue that teenagers, or even you children, spend a large amount of time talking to people they are not with, at the expense of those who are actually there.

    I can’t say I’m any better though, I usually just text someone to apologize instead of dealing with that face to face guilt. This is ridiculous, how a little gadget can completely change the way he live. It has a great effect in how individuals are interacting with society. Some of these include social isolation, a change in the concept of time and space (Fortunati, 2002), lack of face-to-face interaction (Thompson and Cupples, 2008), social absences and dependency (Reid and Reid, 2004), a negative effect on grammar, and increased social anxiety (Tully, 2003).

    The Change of Space and Time Simple gadgets and devices are always trying to make life easier and bring friends and family closer together. Since the 18th century, the phone has been in a fixed location, usually in an office, school, or home, and you would have to be in that location where the phone was in order to be able to receive and answer incoming phone calls. With the development of technologies, instead of sitting there and waiting by the phone, the answering machine was created, which allows you to access messages from missed phone calls when you return to your home or office.

    Cellular phones have taken this concept and spun it around on itself (Corbett, 2009). With the continuous development of phones, people are able to remain in close contact with their family and friends regardless of where they are in the world. In addition to keeping up with social relationships, individuals have also been able to increase productivity with their work because they can be hundreds of miles away from the office, and still have instant access to their e-mail, documents and contacts wherever they are (Tully, 2003). There is no longer a disconnection.

    Social Isolation As mentioned above, phones are the main reason on why teenagers are becoming more socially isolated. Needless to say, over 25% of Americans have no meaningful social support at all – not a single person they can confide in; and about 50% of all Americans report having no close friends outside their immediate family (Llardi, 2009). People are so entertained on their mobile devices that they sometimes forget that they actually need to communicate face to face with the people around them to practice their social skills.

    Cell Phone Dependency As the years go by, cell phones are becoming increasingly popular among the general population. More and more people are getting them for themselves. In having a cell phone, teenagers, specifically, are becoming reliant on them everyday to keep in touch with their friends in their social networks. Today, about 45% of people aged from twelve to eighteen have a cell phone in the United States (Leung, 2008), making it one of, if not the, most popular way to communicate with other people.

    While phones have become less of a status symbol and more of a fashion statement, they have also made an unspoken social dependency (Corbett, 2009). Leisure boredom is a reason of teens’ social dependency to cell phones. When they are bored with their current situation, they are more likely to be found texting, making phone calls, surfing the internet from their phones or playing a mobile driven game (Corbett, 2009).

    Once there is an element of boredom, his or her attention is immediately drawn to his or her cell phone device for an instant connection to someone, somewhere. However, when people seek out entertainment to avoid boredom, just like with anything there are appropriate and inappropriate times. This concept translates over to cell phone use as well; people will use their cell phones at appropriate and inappropriate times, simply to satisfy a social urge, want, or need. Conclusion Our society today is based on technological advances.

    Technology as a whole will always have an effect on the way that individuals functions in the society, and while there has not been a lot of research on the effects of cell phone use, it will always have both positive and negative consequences. Cell phones in their small time in existence have changed the way in which people are interacting with each other. They have provided ways for people to stay connected on a new level that does not depend on space or time, but is readily accessible at anytime, anywhere.

    While it has provided a new way to social networking and interactions, the change in the space and time has also had a negative effect as well. Most of us have likely experienced a time where we have been in the presence of someone who is on their cell phone in some form of rude behavior that lacks respect for the people around them. Cell phones have changed the way that individuals socially interact. Individuals are communicating more through text messages and cell phones than they are face to face, changing our social environment.

    We became so focused on our cell phones and less aware of our social surroundings, missing out on possible new social interactions.

    Works Cited Page

    Corbett, Alexia. “Cellular Phones Influences and Impacts on Social Interactions and Interpersonal Relationships. ” Web. 2009. Fortunati, Leopoldina. “The Mobile Phone: Towards New Categories and Social Relations. ” Information, Communication & Society 5(4):513. 2002. Leung, Louis. “Leisure boredom, sensation seeking, self-esteem, and addiction: Symptoms and patterns of cell phone use. ” Mediated Personal Communication. 359-381. New York, NY: Routledge. 008. Llardi, Stephen. “Social Isolation: A Modern Plague” Psychology Today. Web. 2009. Reid, Donna J. and Fraser J. M. Reid. “Text or Talk? Social Anxiety, Loneliness, and Divergent Preferences for Cell Phone Use. ” CyberPsychology & Behavior 10(3):424-435. 2007. Thompson, Lee and Julie Cupples. “Seen and not heard? Text messaging and digital sociality. ” Social & Cultural Geography 9(1):95-108. 2008. Tully, Claus J. “Growing Up in Technological Worlds: How Modern Technologies Shape the Everyday Lives of Young People. ” Bulletin of Science, Technology and Society Web. 2003.

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