Friends, Phones and Phubbing: Do We Have A Failure To Communicate?

Ever been out with a friend and halfway through your cosy little chat they stop to check their texts and emails? Well, you might be surprised to know that if so, you have just been ‘phubbed’.

What does this mean?  Well, apparently the word ‘phubbing’ means the following:

  ‘Snubbing others in a social setting by checking your phone‘.

In fact, recent research by advertising agency McCann shows that 37 percent of people now think it ruder to ignore a text than it is to ‘phub’ your friends.

Really?  I wonder what age-group this refers to?

There is no doubt that the way we communicate with one another has changed rapidly for those of us who grew up without mobile technology. The only kinds of telephone we had were the kind that plugged straight into the wall.

Burford, The Cotswolds Mar 2014 (20)We had one of those heavy, black telephones (the kind you now see in antique shops) but my friend had to use the telephone box at the end of her street.

We would arrange a time to talk and cram in as much as we could before either her coins ran out or my mum told me time up.

No such thing as free local calls, you see.

Needless to say we rarely talked on the phone with our friends ; we said all we had to say in person, face to face, at school.

Sounds archaic, I know, but least we didn’t have to worry about being phubbed.

When I moved to California in 1986 there was no internet or cheap, international calling plans.

So Mum and I wrote letters, great reams of them back and forth and we planned phone calls once every two weeks for one hour, budgeting for them as they were so expensive.

Letters from home were my lifeline.

It would be different today.  We would Skype and email, and what’s wrong with that?

Absolutely nothing!

Now Mum and I text and say ‘LOL’ (which we used to think meant ‘Lots of Love’ until my daughter put us right)!

What then of our use of mobile phones?  I’m as guilty as the next person of jumping to order when I hear a text come in, but when I’m out with a friend I really do try not to do this, unless I’m worried it might be from one of my kids.

Spending quality time with family and friends without constant interruption emanating from our phones shouldn’t be so hard to achieve, surely?

We’ve all witnessed couples who sit down at a table in a restaurant and immediately pull out their phones, bury their faces in them and communicate wonderfully.

Just not with each other.

What about the people who answer their phones when standing in the middle of a queue (usually at the Post Office, I’ve noticed) only to discuss where they are (“I’m at the Post Office!”) and where they’re going next.

While their phone friend might be fascinated to hear this, we mugs standing in line are not.

My first mobile phone was a clunky Nokia with a Union Jack faceplate to remind me of home when I lived in America.

Years later I graduated to a Motorola flip phone and I loved it.

Motorola Flip Phone - Hello Moto!

My Motorola Flip Phone – Hello Moto!

It didn’t take great photos but I could use it quickly and easily for calls and texting which is all I needed.

I dropped it more times than I care to remember but it always kept going.

One time, while walking through town shopping in the rain, the heel of one of my boots caught on the slick kerb of the pavement as I attempted to cross the road.

I went down like a ton of bricks, landed firmly on both knees, bum in the air.

Not a pretty sight.

My phone flew out of my bag, which had tipped upside down, and skidded into the middle of the road.

Of course this happened right in front of some workmen who were painting the outside of a department store.

“All right love?” came the concerned words of one of them as he rushed over to help me, but I was already up and standing in the middle of the road, dusting off my phone.

It still worked! Phew!

“No thanks, I’m fine!” I replied breezily as I limped off. Never mind my bruised and blooded pride kneecaps.

The point being?  Well, I was more concerned about my phone than anything else!

Is that normal?  I seriously doubt it…

Now I have a Smart phone, oh yes I do.  As some of you know I often post photos here from my Android.

I’ve only had it a few months and already the glass has shattered.

Smartphone??

Smartphone?? Before the glass broke…

I have to be careful.  I still can’t text as quickly as I could on my faithful flip phone.

One slip of the finger and I’ve ordered three books from Amazon, called emergency and sent money to someone I don’t even know on PayPal.

But it has its uses;  for one thing, believe it or not, I can use it for making calls.

Although I should confess to having a Facebook App and my very own iAquarium…

In summing up then, I do wonder, are we able to balance our ever-growing reliance on modern technology with the care and nurture of our personal relationships, face-to-face, taking time out to switch off and so escape communication overload?

I certainly hope so!

Today’s youngsters are born with a phone in their hand.  Second nature.  But does this mean that the way they communicate with one another is any worse (or better) than the way we of a certain, ahem, age/generation do?

Last year, when in California, I was with my daughter and her father at his place.  We were going out for the day to visit family and waiting for her to get ready.

While waiting, I became engrossed in something on my phone, although it couldn’t have been much as I wasn’t on ‘roam’ and I didn’t have any internet.

EH (ex-husband) was texting away on his phone…

When my daughter appeared to tell us she was ready, neither of us heard, lost as we were in our separate phone worlds.  Exasperated at being ignored, she blurted out, “Can you hear me? I’m ready!”

Oblivious before, we both came to looked up at her, wide-eyed and speechless.

‘Honestly!’ she huffed,  “It’s like dealing with a couple of teenagers, always on your phones!”  Obviously this wasn’t the only time this had happened to her…

Maybe it’s not the young who have the problem with communication after all.  Those of us who have had to adjust to this ever-changing world and the way we interact with one another might just have to be careful.

Case in point: There are those who consider ‘phubbing’ to be so rude that ‘youngster’, 23 year-old, Alex Haigh from Australia, started a ‘Stop Phubbing‘ campaign on the internet.

So perhaps there’s hope for us all.  Go Alex!

I do wonder though whether ‘phubbing’ could be the least of our problems.

About Sherri Matthews

Sherri has been writing full time since 2011. Currently working on her memoir, 'Stranger in a White Dress', she has been published in a variety of national magazines, websites and three anthologies. Sherri raised her three, now adult children, in California for twenty years and today, lives in England’s West Country with her hubby, Aspie youngest, two cats, a grumpy bunny and a family of Chinese Button Quails. She keeps out of mischief blogging, gardening, walking by the sea and snapping endless photographs. Her garden robin muse vists regularly.
This entry was posted in Current Affairs, Friendship, My California, Travel and tagged , , , , , , , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

95 Responses to Friends, Phones and Phubbing: Do We Have A Failure To Communicate?

  1. Heyjude says:

    Excellent post Sherri – you had me chuckling all the way through. I’m not a huge phone fan though so you won’t catch me phubbing anyone. The only reason I have one is because my children worried about me being out and about without one 🙂 And I still use (rarely) an old Nokia with a keypad, and 2MB camera. Daughter gave me an old Samsung, but after accidentally phoning half a dozen of her contacts that she’d left on the phone and being unable to work out how to delete them, I went back to the Nokia. Dunno what I’ll do when the battery finally dies 😦

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    • Sherri says:

      Sometimes those old faithful phones are the best. I loved my Motorola, I had it 7 years and hated having to give it up when it finally gave up the ghost. I’m still getting used to my Samsung…hope your Nokia lasts a long time!! Glad this gave you a chuckle Jude. Hope you are enjoying the sunshine 🙂

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      • Heyjude says:

        I had a flip Motorola too, which I loved dearly, sadly that was stolen when we were mugged in Windhoek 😦
        Been back to the garden I have just posted about to see the wisteria and peonies. Only took 300+ photos! Think I can get a decent windows post as well 🙂 Such a beautiful day, I wish it could stay like this until November.

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      • Sherri says:

        Oooh, so sorry about that, how awful being mugged, hope you were alright…
        Looking forward to seeing all your beautiful photos Jude, what a beautiful weekend we’ve had, let’s hope for the week ahead too! Will be over to your place later…catching up…as always 🙂

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  2. I’m pretty sure “phubbing” is the symptom of the problem.

    It’s the same problem, just more obvious than when you’re at a party talking to someone and he’s scanning the crowd looking for a more interesting person.

    If the problem is not caring enough about the person we’re with at the moment, maybe the solution is to train our brains to stop thinking about what’s on the other side of the fence or what’s next, instead of what’s right here, right now, right in front of us.

    Very thoughtful post, Sherri.

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    • Sherri says:

      Thank you Tracy. I’ve had that happen to me at a party and it’s so rude. I think this is definitely the problem, not genuinely listening, or caring to listen, to the person you are with at the time, and missing what is right in front of you by looking across the room at the next best thing for fear of missing out. Or something like that…

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  3. Great Post Sherri,

    I do think that, in many ways, although technology is bringing the world closer together, it ‘s also dampening down people’s personal communication skills.
    So Sorry to hear about your horrible fall – why does that sort of thing always happen in the most embarassing place?!
    Emma 🙂

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    • Sherri says:

      Thank you Emma and yes, this is certainly what I hoped to convey, that although technology is great and has its many uses for us today, I do worry about the way we seem to have more problems communicating on a personal level because of it.
      Ahh…you are very kind, and yes, my knees really hurt for a few days but I felt like such an idiot which was the worse thing to endure!! Very embarrassing indeed 😉

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  4. Really enjoyed this post Sherri, it brought back memories and made me think! I grew up without a phone – that was me, standing in the phone box at the corner. Then when I was at uni, I’d go to the phone box to ring a neighbour and he’d get my mam so we could have a chat. I love the convenience of a mobile but I do hate feeling as though I’m contactable all the time and I’m really tardy at answering texts. That doesn’t mean I’ve never phubbed anyone, but I don’t do it often – and definitely not over a meal. I wonder why it is that we can seem so much keener to connect digitally than in person.

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    • Sherri says:

      Thank you Andrea, I’m glad you enjoyed it! Ahh those, those good old days of having to use a telephone box eh? I too to remember having to make a few calls from them, reverse charges, to my mum, when I needed picking up from somewhere!!
      I know I’ve ‘phubbed’ people now and then, completely unintentionally, and I hate doing it. I do try not to answer my texts when with people but I almost made the mistake of ignoring one once from my daughter, not knowing it was from her, and it was an emergency situation. Since then, I always do check but if it’s just an normal text I wait to answer it until later. I do wonder about this too, communicating digitally certainly does have us on the hop… 😉

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  5. Rachel M says:

    A very entertaining post, Sherri. Who got your money on PayPal? Did they reject it? I hope it wasn’t a lot of money.

    I’m one of those people who constantly has her head buried in her phone! It’s bad, I know. I’m just addicted to it and in fairness, I also have to keep an eye on blog comments I moderate so I always read these as soon as I can. If I ever find myself without internet access I suffer withdrawal symptoms 🙂

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    • Sherri says:

      HaHa! Thanks Rachel, glad you enjoyed it! I know what you mean about withdrawal symptoms. We are all hooked I think! And don’t worry about PayPal, I was writing tongue-in-cheek, it hasn’t actually happened, but I was trying to show just how easy it is to end up on a site without even knowing it with a Smartphone 😉

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  6. Great post, Sherri! Thank you for educating me on the proper word for such rude behavior. What a perfect word for a behavior that is an insult for those on the receiving end. I’m all for keeping up on the latest technology, but if you think the ping from your phone announcing an incoming text message is more important than the person standing right in front of you…you’ve got problems. Obviously, I’ve been on the receiving end of such low-class, ill-mannered behavior.
    On a lighter note…I hope you have a fantastic weekend! xo

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    • Sherri says:

      Sorry to hear you’ve been ‘phubbed’ Jill. I hoped to be able to convey here my thoughts on the way we communicate today and how we have changed because of it. Not least of all with our manners. I found it very interesting when I found out about the ‘Stop Phubbing’ campaign and that it was started by a 23 year-old! The young have been maligned too much I think and it’s good to know that good manners are appreciated across the board!
      Thanks Jill, we are and I hope you & DFD have a lovely weekend too 🙂 xo

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  7. I read your post with interest and dare I say some self-recognition. It is easy to be become addicted to our phones and instant communication. And there are times when it is a godsend to be able to communicate so instantaneously. So I’m going to protest commenter Jill’s gross generalization of anyone who checks a text while with other people as “low-class, ill-mannered.” If you’re waiting for confirmation that a child has made it home safely, or news about the downsizing meeting at your spouse’s workplace, or for your real estate agent to tell you whether the offer you made was accepted, there is nothing wrong with excusing yourself to glance at a text and perhaps send a brief reply. It’s polite to let people know in advance that you’re expecting an important text or call, but depending on the circumstances not necessarily required.

    Sometimes the ping on your phone is more important to you than the person standing right in front of you.

    Generally, yes, I agree we should not be checking our phones and texting when we’re conversing with other people. I once had a houseguest who texted (constantly!) throughout our conversations over the course of a weekend and it was quite disconcerting. So, if you’re not waiting for something important, yes do put the phone away or on silent.

    And if someone you’re talking to does check a text, let’s not rush to absolute judgment.

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    • Sherri says:

      Hi Marlene,
      I agree, it certainly is great to be able to communicate so conveniently, cheaply and instantaneously with modern technology.
      Absolutely, I’m sure we would all agree that if you are with someone and you are expecting an important or urgent text that you will have to take it and that is completely acceptable if you politely let the person you’re with know about it.
      In the case of your house-guest texting constantly like that though, well, that is true ‘phubbing’ and very rude!
      I certainly didn’t want to put my self above reproach and hopefully I didn’t! However, I used to ignore texts when I was with a friend, unless I was expecting something urgent as in the kind of scenarios you mention, but I made the mistake once of doing this, not realising it was my daughter and it was an emergency.
      Now, I do check my phone if a text comes in but the friend I’m with understands my reasons for doing so. Otherwise, yes, I agree, the phone should be on silent!! We are all rushed enough as it is so to be able to take proper time with one another is so important.
      Whether or not Jill replies to you, I hope she won’t mind me replying on her behalf as follows:
      I’m sure that Jill would agree with all this too. It is the rudeness of checking a phone just for the sake of it (true ‘phubbing’) that is the issue here and I’m sure that’s what Jill was referring to. She has obviously been on the receiving end of this ill-mannered behavior, as have most of us I’m sure, and knowing Jill as the extremely kind, caring and thoughtful person that I know her to be, I know she wouldn’t have rushed to judgement.
      Many thanks for your comment Marlene.

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      • Thank you Sherri, for your kind and considered response. Usually when a comment gets a bit under my skin I just let it go, but I felt the need to address this one. LIke you, I’ve missed a couple of truly important and urgent messages, and now I check my phone more often, too. I may not be expecting something urgent, but sometimes urgent issues sideswipe us. Who knows, maybe my friends think I’m ‘phubbing’ them!

        I’m sure Jill is a lovely person, and she was just using the language she did to make a point in her comment. For reasons of personal experience, it triggered a strong response in me.

        I appreciate the dialogue.

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      • Sherri says:

        No problem Marlene, and this is what blogging is all about, the dialogue! I hope that you had a good weekend 🙂

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  8. This post would be fabulous in a magazine and would hopefully educate all the phubbers and even better you would be doing it with humor. If newspapers were still popular I’d say this would be something I enjoyed reading in my local paper. Anyway……..I smiled from ear to ear all the way through it with a chuckle escaping here and there. Seriously try to submit this post somewhere! Loved it and I am the oddball that turns her phone off when out and about. Shocking even some of the senior citizens I know who always have their mobiles on. ❤

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    • Sherri says:

      Well thank you very much Diane! Haha, maybe I should send it in to our local Gazette…! I’m glad it gave you a chuckle, which is what it was meant to do, despite the issues I was trying to highlight and yes, glad you picked up on the differences between the generations!! And you are no oddball my friend…well, no more than I am, haha! Have a lovely weekend 🙂 xo

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  9. “All right, love?” (what a wonderful expression…unfortunately, it’s not heard around here…)
    Phubbing. What a great word to describe choosing between the actual person and the electronic possibility.
    At a birthday luncheon, the guest of honor had one request: in lieu of presents, no cell phones. Since her sister knew that was impossible, she had all of us put our cell phones on the table; anyone who answered her cell phone during the luncheon had to pay $20 to the birthday girl. Want to guess what happened? 3 people had to pay up! Bless her heart, the b-day girl generously called the pregnant waitress over and told her she was paying for the lunches of the three soldiers having lunch at another table, gave her the $60 and told the waitress to keep the change for her baby. So it turned out to be a great day.

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    • Sherri says:

      Haha! Yes, that expression is heard around these parts, which is nice I admit. Although I expect it’ll get banned sooner or later… 😉
      What a wonderful story Marylin, I love it! Looks like everyone benefited, even those who didn’t expect to, not least of all the three soldiers having lunch and a great tip for the waitress! Not answering our cell phones is harder than we think and that is the point I was trying to make…modern technology is great but, as with everything in life it seems, it’s all about getting the balance right!
      Thanks Marylin! Have a great weekend 🙂

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  10. jennypellett says:

    Grrr… This is one of the worst things to come from this new technology – phubbing! I never knew it was called that but I’ve often been very rudely phubbed, brilliant post Sherri, I almost want to rant about it myself. Guess what – you and I have the same android phone. Mine gets very little use, it’s off during class time anyway and more often than not I forget to turn it back on, much to the exasperation of my son the other day when he managed to lock himself out of the house!
    I’ve often watched people in restaurants ignoring each other, preferring to use their phones … It has occurred to me that perhaps they are texting each other 🙂

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    • Sherri says:

      No, I didn’t either Jenny, I came across it on the internet and ran with it! I just knew so many of us, if not all, have been ‘phubbed’ at one time or another and so just had to add my two-cent’s worth 😉 You should rant about it…would love to read it!
      Well, I’m not surprised we have the same phone, what with all the other similarities…and I’ve had to get my kids to help me when I’ve done something stupid on mine and can’t get out of it…don’t ask, haha!!
      Oh dear…hope your son wasn’t waiting too long to get back inside…
      Haha…yes, I’ve had that thought too about texting each other…perhaps that is the new way after all!
      Thanks Jenny, glad you enjoyed it and enjoy this lovely, sunny weekend 🙂

      Like

  11. Mabel Kwong says:

    Great post. Phubbing. Finally I know what to call it. Sometimes when I’m out with friends, they’ll pull out their phone and text/stare at it – when we’re eating or even shopping. For context, we’re part of Gen-Y. The only time I pull out my smartphone and have a look at my emails and social media is when my friends have gone to the toilet, in the changerooms at shopping centres or just simply when I’m waiting for them. Hahaha, your daughter is funny, pointing out you’re the one engrossed in your smartphone. She’s right, though 😀

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    • Sherri says:

      Thank you very much for your feedback here Mabel, as a member of Gen-Y, this is very interesting to read indeed. You are obviously a very polite young woman but sorry to hear that you’ve been ‘phubbed’ by your friends too 😦 I’ve seen this with groups of people but, as I tried to convey here, it’s not always with the young!! As in the case with my daughter, and yes, rightly so, telling me and her father off. We deserved it, LOL 🙂

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      • Mabel Kwong says:

        Yeah, not pleasant at all to be ‘phubbed’. I don’t really know what to do when that happens – just stand/sit there, have a drink? Continuing to talk to my friend who is looking down at the phone seems rude to me. If I do, it will seem like I’m interrupting him or her. The last thing I want to do is pull out my phone and do the same…I already look at my phone so much when I’m alone 🙂

        I’m inclined to think you’re paying more attention to your daughter now 😉

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      • Sherri says:

        A difficult one, I agree Mabel…I’ve seen it many times when the one friend is sat there while being ‘phubbed’ and not knowing what to do with themselves…what is the answer? Hmmmm….and as for my daughter, well, yes, I make sure to give her my full attention… 😉

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  12. Oh, Sherri, I must confess and apologise. I was sat here sniggering (chortling) away while reading your tale about you falling over in the road. I’m a terrible person. I’m always giggling at such things, uncontrollably!! I do hope you’ll forgive me. I’m assuming you fell over in Britain, due to the “All right love” 😛 In front of workmen though, how awful. I feel for you there, I really do.

    As for this whole technology thing.. I hate how obsessed we all are with technology. Always under our bloody noses! Though, I am guilty of this myself sometimes, though nothing compared with others of my age/generation. There could be a balance, if people stopped being so obsessed, though I am afraid I am rather a sceptic when it comes to this matter. We have become slaves to technology, as opposed to we being the masters over it, and that will most likely be a huge downfall of mankind’s in future years…

    There’s my happy thought for the day 😉

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    • Sherri says:

      Oh Jenny Jen Jen, laugh away!! When I told Aspie D she laughed her head off and still thinks it’s hilarious… 😉 No sympathy whatsoever, haha!! Yes, it was in our town, right here…lovely, not… 🙂
      You are so right, it really is about getting the balance right. I’m a firm believer in ‘moderation in all things’ but is this achievable in today’s culture? I don’t know…and yes, this is just what worries me too, that we are slaves to technology rather than masters of it. Very well put!! We really don’t know or fully understand the full implications of the way we will be affected by it all, especially for you young ‘uns who’ve grown up with it. (I’m doing a post about social media and Facebook next week as a follow up to this, I’m on a roll baby, haha!).
      Thanks for your happy thought, and yes, I am smiling…!! Have a wonderful weekend my friend 🙂

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      • Haha, oh I’m forever laughing at my mother. I think that’s just how mother-daughter relationships roll 😉

        On a roll indeed! Look at Sherri Poppins teaching us all such valuable lessons.. I’d expect no less 😉
        On a serious note though, it is a bit of a worry, yes. I kind of fear for the younger generations to be honest. I saw something on the news the other day that was saying no one hand writes anymore because we always use keyboards, and I found that so desperately sad 😦 Technology is actually making us go backwards in developing as a species, not progressing us!!

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      • Sherri says:

        HaHa! Well, you know how it is Jenny Jen Jen, I’m so full of…..wisdom 😉
        But yes, it is a worrying thing indeed.
        I hope you enjoyed the wonderful weekend and have a great week ahead… I’ll be over to you shortly… 🙂

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  13. Loved this post Sherri. It certainly has hit a chord. I’m not a phubber (I’m afraid I am so deaf I can’t hear when texts come in and often don’t hear the calls either) but I do have a friend that phubbs me all the time and I really do find it annoying. I’ll have to join Alex Haigh’s site. I remember a number of years back I was referreeing a tennis game and looked down at the seat beside the court to see four young friends sitting. All were texting on their phones, not one word was uttered between them. I wondered if perhaps they were texting each other having lost the art of oral communication.

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    • Sherri says:

      …as I love your comment Irene! What a great point, and yes, perhaps those four young friends were indeed texting one another. Perhaps this is the true modern way of communicating and oneday we will stop talking altogether… Still, look at me! I’ve been told off by my daughter, haha!!
      I’m sorry to hear you’ve been phubbed so often by your friend…it is very annoying. Maybe you could ‘phub’ her back…just kidding…sort of…
      Have a great weekend my friend, it’s hot and sunny here, like summer… 🙂

      Like

      • Enjoy your hot sunny day Sherri – I have just woken to a grey light rainy English day, but I do have work to do and then an afternoon of dancing planned so it doesn’t matter. Cheers Irene (and a little face with a smile that I just can’t seem to get working with this search engine),

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      • Sherri says:

        Dancing? How lovely! I love dancing! Hope you had a good weekend Irene! Here we are and it’s Monday, so once more I’m playing catch up. The price to pay for being outside all weekend enjoying our ‘summer’ and first bbq of the season!
        Let’s hope it’s not the last, but with our great British weather one never knows so we have to take our chances!
        Be over to your place shortly…and hope you get your smiley faces working (although I don’t know how to do hearts etc. that others use!) 🙂

        Like

  14. Noreen Watts says:

    Very entertaining! It is pretty true as unfortunate as it is…. I find myself fighting the urge to answer my texts when I shouldn’t. I try to keep it on vibrate and ignore it.

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  15. simplyilka says:

    I didn’t know the word ‘phubbing’ (and the spell check doesn’t seem to know it either.) But I have added it to my vocabulary 🙂

    You post had me really nod a lot. Thanks Sherrie 🙂

    Like

    • Sherri says:

      You’re welcome Illka…glad you enjoyed it and yes, ‘phubbing’ was coined as a phrase by the ‘Stop Phubbing’ internet campaign. Another thing about our modern world – we keep getting new words to add to our vocabulary!!! I just hope we can all keep up… haha!
      Have a great weekend my friend 🙂

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  16. I wish I could sit here and say that my kids are guilty of this and that it must stop but sadly, I am just as bad! My name is brickhousechick and I am a ‘phubber’. It’s been 2 seconds since my last ‘phub’. In my defense, I don’t answer the phone when I am with someone else but I do tend to check my texts. I tell the person first and excuse my behavior, especially if it is something I am waiting on. But…I need to do better. I know there are bigger problems out there but this is a matter of courtesy. {feeling shameful}.

    It’s so darn addicting though! So funny that your flip phone survived all that hardship and your smart phone is already injured. Ever since I dropped my smart phone down the loo, I sport a nice waterproof case that protects it from all elements. If only it protected my from ‘phubbing’. 🙂

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  17. Sherri says:

    Oh Maria, your great comment did make me laugh! ‘My name is brikchousechick and I am a ‘phubber’!! Haha! I’m sure you’re not a real phubber though, especially as you tell the person you are with that you are checking for a reason. We all do it! It’s the way of our modern world and I think I was just trying to show how we have all changed in the way we communicate. For instance, here we are blogging! Who would have thought? (I’m on a roll now, next up a post on social media and Facebook, LOL!!)
    A true phubber is rude and ill-mannered, and checks their phone for no proper reason and ‘snub’s the person they are with in favour of checking their phone. Something else altogether!
    I know, can you believe it? I had my flip phone all those years and it never cracked, but Aspie D tells me that Samsung’s are renowned for the glass cracking. I need to get a cover too.
    Glad your phone survived being dropped down the loo…wow, amazing!
    Thanks Maria…have a great weekend 🙂

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  18. Sandra Proto says:

    Great post! I, too, get caught up in the madness (LOL;0)

    Like

  19. Love this post Sherri! Great reminder to all of us! I have to admit I have the tendency to check my phone when I am out on lunch with friends. Something I really need to stop doing! I am very happy to say that for the whole day today, I was offline. Whew. Not as hard as I thought,

    I just remembered one time when I fell flat on my face outside our office building because I tripped (while I was texting!) and guess what. My face was on the floor but my hands were raised up just to save my phone! Ugh.

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    • Sherri says:

      Thanks very much Jhanis and I had to laugh at your story because it sounds so much like mine! I tried to stop myself from falling and managed to put my hands down so as well as landing on my knees I also wrenched my wrists but I still was more concerned about losing my phone!!! Ouch though, I hope you were alright!! 🙂

      Like

  20. Denise says:

    I’ve never heard of phubbing as a term. I am of the generation where we joke about it but don’t do it, thank goodness.

    Cheap international calls are great for my family – emailing is not the same. I do miss phone covers – I thought I was so sophisticated as I tried to choose the best one.

    Like

    • Sherri says:

      Yes, phone covers were great! I also liked all my little trinkets I had hanging off my flip phone (loved the toadstool, Aspie D gave it to me!) but I can’t do that with my Smartphone! Isn’t it silly the things we miss… 😉

      Like

  21. My son does this all the time. I think the current generation see it as normal. Between my friends and me, we apologize and explain if we have to check email or see who is calling. A child, sick mother, etc. is an absolute must. If Gilt has a good sale on trays, I’d rather that message was taken a little later.

    Great post. When someone is talking on the phone in public, I’m often tempted to start answering back, as if they were talking to me, and loudly. “Wait…I’m at the Post Office too…and you sound so loud and clear…as if standing right next to me.”

    Yeah, I’m a little kooky that way. *Wink*

    Like

    • Sherri says:

      Thanks Renee! Yes, I know the feeling (there are definitely differences in the way the generations communicate) and haha, wouldn’t it be great to actually say that one of these days in the Post Office, or wherever? It really is so annoying but I would love to see everyone’s faces if that ever happened 🙂

      Like

  22. quirkybooks says:

    This post is really interesting, I have never heard of phubbing before, but at least I know what it is now. I think it is very difficult to get the balance right. If I am with a friend on a one to one basis, then I usually don’t reply to texts during that time, and I would normally have my phone on silent. Although, I may check my phone in the toilet and reply quickly to any messages – saying that I am with a friend and I will reply to them later. I also don’t like it, when I send a text or message and someone doesn’t answer me, as I think it is rude. I know they can’t always answer at the time, but they could get back to me. There is a great chapter in my new Break through the barriers of redundancy book, called G is for Great customer service begins at home, and it is about replying to messages as part of giving great customer service.

    Like

    • Sherri says:

      Yes, thank you Sandra, and you certainly do bring up some great points here too. It really is equally annoying when we don’t get a response to our texts or messages. I hate being put in the position of having to chase someone for an answer, so rude. Great customer service certainly does begin at home!
      Getting the balance right is definitely key. I just wonder though about those who really do see nothing wrong with pulling out their phones and just staring at it for no good reason when with a friend. I’ve seen youngsters particularly do this many times and I do worry how they will go on to communicate with one another throughout their lives.

      Like

  23. Mahesh Nair says:

    Such a lovely post! If I controlled Freshly Pressed, I would put this up there.

    The generational conflict when it comes to cell phones. My father hated me when I’d bought my first Nokia mobile phone (as big as a radio) in late 90s. He’d thought mobile phones would corrupt me. Today he has a smart phone, and he gives me every opportunity to get back at him (revenge sort-of for his 90s cynicism). How? Because he’s so engrossed in it at times that I believe mobile phone has “really” corrupted him.

    My mother has already been diagnosed with Cell Phone Addiction!

    Like

    • Sherri says:

      Well thank you very much Mahesh, wow, that is such a lovely compliment! I feel as if I’ve just been Freshly Pressed for real 🙂
      I love your family ‘Cell Phone Addiction’ story here, just great and really proves a wonderful point! Just goes to show doesn’t it…and yes, so much for that 90’s cynicism… haha 😉

      Like

  24. I hardly know my new friend since I bought it last August. I must peek out of the nest but I have it only for emergencies.
    I do however know people who phub without concern for who, where or when. ~(*_*)!!

    Like

  25. xerxeska says:

    I enjoyed your post thoroughly. I have one question, though. How were the workers able to paint an outside wall in the rain?

    Like

    • Sherri says:

      Thank you very much xerxeska for dropping by and for your comment, I’m so glad you enjoyed this post!
      Ahh…well, you have a good point there! They were painting the outside of the building but were beneath the (large!) covered entrance and so out of the rain. They had ladders up at the front and I had walked around the ladder and it was that which caused my heel to catch on the kerb! Hope that clears things up for you 🙂

      Like

  26. y. prior says:

    fun post Sherrie – never heard of being phubbed – but one time while in Denver in 2011- my friend’s husband sat down – asked me a question – and then looked at his phone and scrolled it with his finger. He looked at it and looked back up at me – and then scrolled it again.
    I shook my head a little and looked around the table. My friend was eating or something.
    He did it again – and I said something like “Don’t mean to be rude, but do you think I am stupid?” He looked at me with a blank question face!#!@
    – and well, this multi-tasking of his may work with his mom, his mother-n-law – or with other girlfriends my friend has over to her house – but not with me. I nipped it in the bud right away – because what he did was not the same thing as being engrossed while waiting or some of the other things you note – instead, his aim at conversational multi-tasking was an insult (to me) and I let social graces go to confront it – (and if I told you the power job he had I wonder if it would change the mood- )

    anyhow, real quick like – I also thought that lol meant lots of love – ha! and wish it did – we need one for lots of love…. ❤

    and lastly, I recently wrote a poem titled "My first iPhone" because life changes with a smart phone – does;t it!! whew – it is like getting color in the rainbow.

    I also lined up photos of the 4 OLD phones that are sitting in a lined wicker basket in the laundry room. and Sherrie! Oh my gosh did you already write part of my story with the Nokia and Motorola – O_o and I loved my Motorola flip phone — was one of my favs ever – and also dropped mine many of times (although I do not have the fun story you humorously shared! – lol) but that company gets a a big gold star for one of the best phones ever made – and I heard the company was aiming for the highest quality ever with using glass and certain high end parts – which was novel at that time – and heard it also paved the way for the iPhone to have a certain quality – which has since declined in the iPhone and other brands of phones too (and is likely why your screen already broke) because not all glass is created equal and sadly companies skimp on important things –
    – ok…. just wanted to say – super fun post! 🙂 ~yvette

    Like

    • Sherri says:

      Well, firstly Y, what your friend’s husband did is so rude but sadly, all too common these days. That is true phubbing and I’m so glad that you spoke up, you go girl, I’m so proud of you! It’s so disrespectful. I hope that he changed his ways…hmmmm….
      And yes, LOL means laugh out loud, but we still use it for lots of love…nicer -)
      I haven’t read your iPhone poem, will come over to you asap and read it! I’m still not getting notifications of your blog so I come over when I can to try and catch up or through the reader, which I tend not to use. I also haven’t been able to comment on other people’s blogs and that has been a real pain, hoping today, after catching up with comments here I’ll be able to do it now..grrrrr…..
      Wow, great minds think alike! Did post about your Motorola and Nokia? That is hilarious! I actually planned a ‘phone’ post ages ago and was going to call it ‘I hate my new Smartphone’ LOL because I had just changed over from my dearly beloved Motorola and didn’t want to give it up! Seems we have both had the same experience! I was so fed up when the glass broke on my Samsung. My daughter has an iPhone but she said that the androids are notorious for the glass breaking on them. Maybe you and I need to collaberate on a post and call it ‘Bring Back the Motorola Flip Phone’!!!
      Great ‘chatting’ with you Yvette, and sharing our phone stories…I’ll be over to you very shortly, looking forward to it 🙂

      Like

  27. Hey, you have a pic of my phone there! The Motorola is the one I have inherited from husband who inherited it from son who inherited it from daughter who bought it in 2007. Or maybe 2006. I dislike the instant connectability of mobile phones and only take it out with me when dog-walking in case Finbar throws himself in the river and can’t get out.

    Like

    • Sherri says:

      Sounds like the phones in our family Jane, we’ve still got a few old ones floating around. Make sure you keep that Motorola, they are great, the best. Mine finally gave up the ghost and I was so sad to have to go over to a Smartphone…smart? Ha!! Still, I think you have the right idea by far… 🙂

      Like

  28. mumblypeg says:

    A brilliant, funny post which expresses exactly how I feel when people break off conversation to attend to the demands of their phones. However, I had similar rude behaviour some years ago, from one of my ex bosses which did not involve a phone. He asked me how I was, then proceeded to look over my shoulder around to room, he was not listening to me at all. I stopped in mid sentence and he never even noticed! Mobile phones are a wonderful asset for emergencies and keeping in touch but I fear many of us have become badly obsessed and forgotten our manners along the way. Love Mumblypeg xxx Have a great week

    Like

    • Sherri says:

      Yes, that is just as bad as phubbing and generally very rude, ill-mannered behaviour. I just don’t know why people have to do it. All about getting the balance right isn’t it? Thank you MP, glad you enjoyed this post and you have a great week too…much LOLS!! Haha… 🙂

      Like

  29. Thank you, Sherri, for teaching me a new word. I didn’t know ‘phubbing’ and probably because I’m still pretty much old-fashioned. I love my iPhone since I can check my email and be on the Internet whenever I’m away from home. But I am known for missing calls. If I meet someone, my phone is in my purse and on silent. I will check it for a text from my kids or husband. But I like to be technology free when I am with my family and friends. See you soon for another great post.

    Like

    • Sherri says:

      I didn’t know it either Evelyne until I found out about it online! I’m the same as you, I do try to keep it on silent when with family or friends but do check it when given a private opportunity to make sure, especially from my daughter, in case a text comes in. Thank you, as always, for sharing your story 🙂

      Like

  30. longandluxe says:

    Dear Sherri,

    Awesome post and such a great perspective on a timely topic! Haha, I had never heard of “phubbing” but that’s so clever! I agree with you, the art of conversation is one every generation has to work at getting right and now with phones as tools, we can use them to enhance or obliterate relationships, minute by minute.

    Thank you for this important post and reminder, Sherri 🙂

    Sending you much peace and big hugs today ~

    Allison xo

    Like

    • Sherri says:

      So glad you enjoyed it Allison. Communication today has never been so easy yet I fear for what we might be losing in the process…
      Thanks so much, and I would wish just the very same to you dear one…peace and hugs right back to you .. xo

      Like

  31. mihrank says:

    Reblogged this on mihran Kalaydjian and commented:
    Friends, Phones and Phubbing: Do We Have A Failure To Communicate?

    Like

  32. Letizia says:

    I love that your mother and you thought LOL meant lots of love – I wish it did in a way!

    I miss writing and receiving letters. I still write and receive postcards, but it’s not the same. I’ve kept a lot of letters my grandparents wrote to me over the years and whenever I miss them (they passed on now), I love being able to read them. I hate to think that future generations won’t have this pleasure.

    Wonderful post!

    Like

    • Sherri says:

      I know, can you believe it? We thought that for ages LOL!!!!
      I agree with you totally about keeping letters. I still have so many too, including some from my grandmother and a few postcards from my granddad. It is sad to think that future generations won’t have this pleasure as you say. I wish we could change that…
      Thank you very much Letizia, I’m glad you enjoyed it… 🙂

      Like

  33. I’ve been guilty of many things, but phubbing hasn’t been one of them.

    Like

  34. thirdhandart says:

    A great post Sherri! I’m not guilty of phubbing, but it’s a very important topic to discuss. Glad you breached the subject 🙂

    Like

  35. TBM says:

    Phubbed … I learned something today. Usually I don’t do this. I’ll check emails if my friend or partner heads to the restroom or something. More than likely, I fire up my Kindle app (I have a hard time doing nothing). But I do get phubbed quite a bit. Maybe I’m just not popular enough and I don’t really like to text or talk on the phone. Is there a word for reading a book instead of talking to someone? I’m guilty of that.

    Like

    • Sherri says:

      I can’t imagine you phubbing anyone TB. I do the same as you, check my phone when my friend goes to the loo. So far as reading a book instead of talking to someone…..hmmmmmm….you could call it ‘bubbed’ as in book-snubbed, but that doesn’t really have the same ring to it does it? 😉

      Like

  36. lilkaraphael says:

    I’m glad to hear I’m not the only one who feels this way and thought LOL meant lots of love as well. The development in technology has pushed social skills and etiquette beyond the scope of most people, at least here in the states. I vividly remember life without cell phones at the beck and call. We managed to get along just fine…imagine that!

    Like

    • Sherri says:

      Ahh…well, we live and learn! It was my daughter who told me about LOL and thought it was hilarious that we didn’t know what it meant!!! We still use it for Lots of Love though… 😉
      Yes, how on earth did we manage before cell phones? Imagine having to have a conversation without constant interruptions…I do worry for the way we are headed so far as everyday common manners and respect go. Thanks so much for your great feedback, Lilka, always a pleasure to ‘converse’ with you…especially knowing that we won’t be phubbed!!! LOL 😉

      Like

  37. tieshka says:

    Hey Sherri- I’m a bit behind on my reading and posting on WP- and you have been quite busy! This a great post. Just last night the kids and I were out with the old babysitter and she was texting away at the dinner table. I am so against ‘phubbing’… thanks for adding the term to my vocabulary! With that being said every once in awhile I find myself sitting with the kids at the dinner table checking things on my phone. It is definitely tricky! But I must say manners should always come first………….

    Like

    • Sherri says:

      Don’t worry Tieshka, I’m catching up always!!! Thanks so much for taking the time to read this post. You obviously know all about ‘phubbing’! I don’t think there are many of us who haven’t been ‘phubbed’. It is hard to get the balance right, no doubt about it. I know I’m certainly not above reproach!!! Hope you are enjoying a great Memorial Day Weekend 🙂

      Like

  38. willowmarie says:

    love this! just a note: my son and I solved the LOL problem. We text LUL- means love you lots.

    Like

  39. Jarvis says:

    Great opinion!
    there are campaigns launched to stop smartphone addicts snubbing others by checking their mobiles, including “Stop Phubbing”, ”Coca Cola Social Guard”.

    But my team try to do it more acrimonious to make people face the issue.
    The series of activities are all based on an assumption: If people keep phubbing each other, what’s the future of communication?

    Imagine this : You are mid-conversation with friends checking their phone. Have you ever notice what they say in response to your question?
    “Uh-huh””Hmmm”
    Short, simple, and meaningful.
    That it is— Mobilish, a language from smartphone, and also, the most effective way to talk. With just one word, you can express thousands of meanings and emotions.
    We create a online language center and release the longest commercial .

    Let’s see how it works : http://www.mobilish.co/en.html

    Like

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