Cell Phone Addiction: The Good, The Bad, The Ugly

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Cell Phone Addiction: The Good, The Bad, The Ugly

Heather Flarey

CMST 1545

March 2014

Think About

  • Do you sleep with your cell phone next to you in bed?
  • Are you constantly checking your phone?
  • Do you take your phone to the bathroom?
  • Do you have anxiety about being phoneless?
  • Are you unable to turn your phone off?
  • Do you worry about your battery running low?


You probably have a cell phone addiction

The Good

  • Serve as a convenient way to stay connected
    • parent/child
    • businessmen/clients
  • Facilitate connection during an emergency
    • car accident / stuck on side of the road
    • child / elderly safety
    • voice command / single push dialing
  • Ability to perform tasks your computer can
    • emails / documents / banking
    • GPS / calculator / flashlight / fitness

The Bad

  • Social Media
  • Dehumanize the dynamic of human contact
  • Never – Ending Interruption
    • classroom / work / movies / on a date / family dinner, etc
  • Problem? – We don’t get the immediate facial or voice feedback we get from face-to-face conversations

The Ugly

  • Exposed to many bacteria and viruses
    • 2011 University of London did a study on 390 cell phones
      • 80% - had more than 18 times as much harmful bacteria than was found on a toilet seat
      • 1 in 6 phones carried the fecal bacteria E.coli

On average: 25,000 germs per square inch lives on a cell phone

The Ugly

  • Texting and Driving
    • Reaction times of cell phone users slows dramatically increasing the risk of accidents
  • Virginia Tech Transportation Institute (VTTI) Study
    • A texting driver is 23x’s more likely to cause an accident
    • Drivers took their eyes off the road for an avg. of 23 seconds

23 seconds would be 4.5 football fields = 540 yards
Without looking at the road

The Ugly

  • United States Department of Transportation
    • 1,600,000 accidents per year
    • in 2012 – 3,328 deaths caused by cell phone use
    • 421,000 were injured in crashes involving cell phones
      • 9% increase from 2011 – 387,000
  • As of December 2012 : 171.2 Billion text msgs are sent in the U.S. every month

“If you put a 20yr old driver behind the wheel with a cell phone their reaction times are the same as a 70yr old driver with out a cell phone, it’s like instantly aging a large number of drivers.” – University of Utah Psychology Professor David Strayer

“Same as driving after 4 beers” – National Highway Transportation Safety Administration

Final Thoughts

  • Cell phones provide several benefits but can also have significant life changing consequences
  • Use your cell phone responsibly
  • Turn your phone off one night a week
  • Enjoy your outings, don’t let time slip away from letting your phone take over

When was the last time you checked your phone?
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