Any new advancement in technology brings a whole list of etiquette problems that need to be solved. Dealing with bad manners can be tough, so we want to know how you handle terrible tech etiquette from your friends and family.
Photo by Phil and Pam Gradwell (to be).
There are some obvious no-nos. Answering your mobile on a date is a bad idea (especially if you want a second date). But we’re all a little different in what we find acceptable.
For instance, my laptop usually sits on my coffee table. On countless occasions, friends have picked it up, popped it open, and started using Facebook, looking something up on Google, checking their email, or, on one (bizarre) occasion, actually loaded up Netflix and finished watching an episode of a TV show. This was without ever asking me if this was OK.
I think that people are increasingly seeing the computer — especially one in a living room — as an appliance as opposed to a personal device. It’s personal to me, because it’s mine with my stuff on it, but to a lot of people a laptop is just an internet machine accessible to anyone within reaching distance of it. [Your fault for not having a password, I reckon! — Australian editor]
It’s the same problem I’ve also had with tablets, and while I could certainly do a few things to protect my computer when I’m sharing it, I’m never planning on sharing it. It just seems to happen sometimes. So, my only resort is to scowl, and tell them that it’s impolite to grab my stuff without asking.
There are lots of potential minefields. Is a text message an acceptable way to start up a conversation with a new friend? Do you need to ask before using a computer? Is it annoying when people use phones at dinner? We know a lot of things about phone usage are annoying, but dealing with them isn’t easy.
Regardless of what you believe is good or bad etiquette, we want to know how you deal with the bad behaviour. Do you slap your friends and family on the wrist? Get mad and yell? Do you have a clever means to stifle your friend’s bad etiquette before it starts? Tell us in the comments.