Thursday, February 19, 2009

Texting while partying -- make it stop

If you ever stand in the middle of a bar and just take a look around, it's amazing to see how many people have their noses buried in their iPhones, Blackberries, Sidekicks -- you name it -- with a look of concentration on their faces as their friends stare blankly at the nearest TV.


If you're out at a bar, you're there to socialize with your friends, dance, shoot some pool and have a good time -- why text? You're with the people you want to be with, right? But by staring at your little screen instead of talking to your friends, think about the message that's sending:
  1. They're not interesting enough.
  2. You'd rather be somewhere else.
  3. You don't have the basic social skills to carry a conversation.
Or, consider the girl who's out with her friends for the always popular Girls Night Out. Problem is, girlfriend spends most of the night in the corner texting her boyfriend at home. Why bother coming out at all?

Texting should be reserved for coordinating logistics -- "Meet me by the DJ booth," "Running late," or if your boyfriend really needs to know, "I'm leaving in 20." Or for emergency situations (e.g. in an attempt to shoo off unwanted approaches, you whip out your phone and pretend to start texting).

But, as a friend of mine says, "Texting should be considered the same as secondhand smoke in that we are all unwilling victims."

39 comments:

Anonymous said...

AMEN, sister! Preach!

Anonymous said...

"Texting should be considered the same as secondhand smoke in that we are all unwilling victims."

So true - whoever came up with that is a genius.

Anonymous said...

Yes! I can't stand it when I go to dinner and my friends place their cell phones/blackberrys on the table...poised for texting. Although sometimes I do the same thing.

Anonymous said...

I agree we all text too much, but in a loud bar, text is sometimes the only form of communication. How am I supposed to tell my other friends that the group has changed locations? How am I supposed to make alternate plans if it is so loud that it is not possible to speak on the phone?

Anonymous said...

Sarah,

how is my texting at a party bothering you?

If i want to text at a bar I will. Bottom line.

seriously, is this the only thing you can find to write about?

Anonymous said...

Ummm, I think she just explained why your texting bothers her.

Anonymous said...

texting is for losers

Lance said...

If I were hosting a party that was that blackberry infested, I might insist as Lloyd did, that they leave their keys and BB with the keymaster.

I enjoyed my BB while I had one. But I also knew when to ignore it.

Anonymous said...

"I agree we all text too much, but in a loud bar, text is sometimes the only form of communication. How am I supposed to tell my other friends that the group has changed locations? How am I supposed to make alternate plans if it is so loud that it is not possible to speak on the phone?"

i think she said this was OK.

Anonymous said...

"Sarah,

how is my texting at a party bothering you?

If i want to text at a bar I will. Bottom line.

seriously, is this the only thing you can find to write about?"

glad you hated the article enough to stop and post a comment.

Anonymous said...

This is about people who have full board conversations via text. It's ok to shoot a note here and there, but leave it at a note. And then, try, um I don't know.. talking to your friends.

Ed Hardouchey said...

Dorks and douchebags text other frinds or business associates when they are surrounded by bar hotties.

Lift your heads, look around and turn off the Crackberry!

Anonymous said...

I had a girlfriend who used to drunk text me every now and then when she would go on pub crawls with some of her other girlfriends. It was fun to watch because as the night progressed the texting became more and more slurred... and far funnier. We had some major chuckles about it the next day.

To me texting is what it is... I personally hate it, but so what, let others do what they want.

Schoon said...

Instead of criticizing Sara for doing her Job why not make a suggestion for something you'd like to read. I for one enjoy her columns and will continue to read when I see them posted. You're just Jealous that you don't have her job :-).

Anonymous said...

We put keyboards on our telephones so we can type on them and put Dragon Speak on our computers so we don't have to type on them. What's wrong with this picture? I have one of those new modern phones. I can talk on mine, I don't have to type.

Raul said...

Couldn't agree more with the insanity of texting. It's amazing how many people stand around in bars and type away. Not just for a minute or two, but all night. What can be that important? This is what I envision:

Crazy Girl: Where u at?
Girlfriend: Forum
Crazy Girl: Is Steve there?
Girlfriend: Haven't seen him.
Crazy Girl: I hate him.
Girlfriend: U need 2 move on. Crazy Girl: I know. I know. He's probably w/that @*#%.
Girlfriend: Steve = loser!
Crazy Girl: Miss u!
Girlfriend: Miss u2!
Crazy Girl: Luv u!
Girlfriend: Luv u2!
Crazy Girl: Gotta go. Think I see u know who!!!

Gare said...

I wasn't texting, I was updating my Facebook page:-)

Anonymous said...

taoh give me a brea, how could someone else texting possibly bother you in a crowded bar? You must be really bored to even notice

Anonymous said...

Thank you Sarah for finally writing about this topic. I couldn't agree more!! I can't stand when all my friends stand around and text their boyfriends. Is it really impossible for a couple to spend a few hours without communication?

Anonymous said...

I'll stop when sarah stops:
1. Glamorizing the epicentre- seriously I hope she's on their payroll

2. Complaining about the most inane things. Like "VIP is so0o0 boring" and "I hate it when people text while I am in a club"

Anonymous said...

Sign 'O the Times, Baybee! Sign 'O the Times! Oh! Gotta respond to this, hold a sec...

Anonymous said...

Hey Anon 8:34, why don't you just *stop* reading?

Anonymous said...

Texting has it uses. Sometimes conversation is not possible. But I get the feeling that people hide behind texting because they are awkward and shy in social settings or really just have no social skills at all. Everyone under 40 has some degree of this affliction. People have forgotten how to talk to each other. We've all heard stories of couples who break up via texting (I just can't imagine.) This geezer thinks young people today are in many ways not as smart nor as accomplished as their elders, despite their facility with MS Office and Twitter.

Anonymous said...

Guilty as charged. My vice is watching football at a sports bar and then texting buddies who are doing the same thing in their respective city. It's not the same as watching our favorite teams together, but it keeps us more connected. I didn't realize it could be equated with a known carcinogen. I need to think these things through. :)

And lighten up up on the author. It's a blog, not the front page of the Sunday paper.

Anonymous said...

"How am I supposed to tell my other friends that the group has changed locations?"

here's an interesting concept....make plans and stick to them

Kelly said...

Texting at parties has come to be part of the experience. I don't think it is fair to paint with such broad strokes in this regard, for there are several justifiable reasons to text at parties/bars/clubs/etc:

Giving a friend directions
Trying to find someone in a crowd
Buying drugs

The list goes on. Not every person using their phone to text while in a social setting is committing anti-social sins.

Anonymous said...

I am not up to the typical stuck up Charlotte party girl standards, so what else is there to do? Text some buddys, check some scores, and maybe check my BoA stock?

Anonymous said...

Funny how us old-schoolers got (and get) along just fine socially, personally and professionally without texting AT ALL. I think texting is just dumb, it's far faster and easier just to make a phone call. Texting and/or talking on your cell while you're with others socially is just plain RUDE. But you kids nowadays, you just weren't raised right--or not at all.

Anonymous said...

Hmm. I never see anyone texting at the Uptown Cabaret.

Anonymous said...

Hahaha--dude, you are so right about Uptown Cabaret. No one ever texts there. Maybe these bars should spice up the wait staff? Sarah, tell all your friends at these bars around town to make it more fun and you may see less texting.

Anonymous said...

wow....no one said botty call

Anonymous said...

Well at least it was not in the Labor and Delivery room! That po'd me in the extreme. Cell phone use needs to have some "moral rules" oh wait...most people are forgetting or never learned.

Anonymous said...

Why hell yea. Damn straight mama. By all means sista. You know these idiots have the nerve to party and text and its deplorable.
They need to stick to texting while driving and causing the deaths of an estimate 10,000 people a year in America whil injuring another 50,000. Lets get our priorities straight. Never text while in a bar boozin it up but you can text all you like while driving on our roads.

Marty said...

Of course I'm merely twittering to all of my admirers about how much fun I'm having -- that they're missing out on. Twitpic photos attached. #nyahnyahnyah

Anonymous said...

Don't you realize I need to update my Facebook page, so everyone knows I'm partying at the hippest, hottest bar in Charlotte? I have 1,342 of my very best friends hanging on my Facebook status, and I have to make sure they all know I'm at the Whiskey Pit or the Vibe or the Blue Booger, or whichever club is the hottest this this weekend.

And don't you know how popular I am? I have cool friends all over town that I have to coordinate with. I mean, come on. You don't expect me to stay here all night with these dweebs, do you? I have to text my cooler friends down in Ballantyne, to figure out where to go next.

I'll make an appearance there, just long enough to get my picture taken for the newspaper's party page. And take a few self-portrait cell phone shots for my FB peeps - - again, got to make sure everyone in cyberland knows I'm a hip, happening, party time gal with hundreds of close, personal friends.

But soon it's time to move on to the real party with my WAAAAAY cooler friends up on the lake. So I've got to text them to find out where we're meeting, who's going to be there (because if someone who isn't cool enough worms his way into the group, I'm sooooo outta here.)

Seriously, did you really think I was out at a club to meet people and dance and have a good time? You said it yourself: the Blackberry is great for fending off unwanted attention. Trust me, I get a lot of that. How am I supposed to have time to create the illusion of having a good time when all these guys keep wanting to talk to me. If I wanted to talk to a guy, do you think I would have come out to a bar or a club?

Get real. It's all about appearances.

Anonymous said...

I think we as a society are becoming more dependent on our electronic gadgets and are less involved with the people right in front of us. It's sad really.

On a different note - sorry to go OT but, Sarah can you do a segment maybe once a month about what to do for nightlife when money is really tight (ie, who has cheap drinks, no cover - that sort of thing)? It seems we want to go out but, money is just so tight.

Anonymous said...

its a free country and i will keep on texting!!!! haha

Anonymous said...

Personally I have zero social skills, o I prefer just to sit at the bars and text people or surf the web on my crackberry. Not to mention these days the music is so loud noone would hear me talking anyway (because I hate yelling) :)

Anonymous said...

my best friend constantly texts when we hang out. I asked her to please stop and she said she wouldn't because she didnt want them to be mad at her? Couldn't she just tell them she had to go? Its rude and it makes people feel like they aren't good enough to be with. Thank you so much for writing this article, it is good to know that I am not alone. But if you really want them to know how you're feeling, start texting too! They might realize that it feels pretty bad to be ignored because you can't compete with an electronic device.