Thursday, December 07, 2006


Mobile phone etiquette has become an important issue with mobiles ringing at funerals, weddings, cinemas, and plays. Users often speak at increased volume which has led to places like book shops, libraries, movie theatres, doctors' offices, and houses of worship posting signs prohibiting the use of mobile phones, and in some places installing signal-jamming equipment to prevent usage (although in many countries, e.g., the United States, such equipment is currently illegal). Some new buildings such as auditoriums have installed wire mesh in the walls which prevents any signal getting through, but does not contravene the jamming laws.

Transportation providers, particularly those involving long-distance services, often offer a "quiet car" where phone use is prohibited, much like the designated non-smoking cars in the past. However many users tend to ignore this as it is rarely enforced, especially if the other cars are crowded and they have no choice but to go in the "quiet car". Mobile phone use on aircraft is also prohibited, because of concerns of possible interference with aircraft radio communications, although the airline Emirates have announced plans to allow limited mobile phone usage on some flights. In a similar vein signs are put up in UK petrol stations prohibiting the use of mobile phones due to safety issues. Most schools in the United States have prohibited mobile phones in the classroom due to the high amount of class disruptions that result from their use, and due to the possibility of photographing someone (without consent).

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