Hello, I'm Right Here? Sorry, I'm Phubbing

You see it everywhere, people talking on their phones or pecking at the keyboards (maybe you do it, too).

But a new study has looked into what causes this behavior - known as 'phubbing' - and how it's come to be regarded as normal, according to newswise.com.

Research from psychologists at the University of Kent suggests people's internet addiction is leading them increasingly to 'phub' - and experience being 'phubbed' - in social situations. This, in turn, leads them to view this phubbing behaviour as normal.

The research, by Varoth Chotpitayasunondh and Professor Karen Douglas from the University's School of Psychology, identified a number of factors that were linked to smartphone addiction. These were Internet addiction, a fear of missing out and a lack of self-control.

Who knew?

 I tend to think people who do this when I'm around have better things to do, but isn't it interesting that it might be that they're afraid of being left out?

In 2011, author Sherry Turkle wrote a book called Alone Together, compiling qualitative research about “why we expect more from technology and less from each other," Time magazine reports.” Academics have tried to quantify the phone’s effect on society in the research lab, too. In 2010, social scientists from the University of Essex published a study about how the mere presence of a phone can hamper interactions with new people.

And it's still going on.

Studies have found that even just the presence of a smart phone when discussing meaningful subjects can be hazardous to relationships, "likely because opening up makes us feel more vulnerable and therefore more threatened by the prospect of a listener being distracted," the author states.

Phubbing has a much greater potential to hamper real-life connections by making people around us feel like we care more about posts than their presence.  Who hasn't felt like that?

There have even been campaigns to stop it, but as far as I can tell, they haven't been successful.  Oh wait, Ithere's my phone.  Gotta go. 


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