Does The Mobile Phone Take Away Our Ability To Make Our Own Decisions?

from the I'd-like-to-phone-a-friend,-please... dept

Mobile phones are often touted for their ability to make people safer and more secure, because they’re able to call people whenever needed. However, there’s the other side of this coin as well, with some suggesting that this constant ability to reach out and touch someone from anywhere, means that we’re becoming less self-reliant. You no longer need to decide which movie to rent, what food to get or what color shirt to buy, when you can quickly call up someone else to find out what they think. This also leads to situations where people go hiking without properly preparing, knowing they can always call in for a rescue. Of course, some of the article sounds like Luddites pining for the past: “I was taught how to change a tire so I can get a spare on and get to a garage. But who changes a tire now? You just call AAA.” There are plenty of things that you could complain about today along similar lines. That doesn’t necessarily mean it’s a bad thing. If technology helps people not have to learn things like that, and lets them call in an expert, isn’t that more efficient? I don’t want to have to learn how the plumbing works in my house — it’s why I hire a plumber. Yes, it would be nice if I did understand it, but I feel there are better things to be done with my time — like calling people up to see if I should get the green shirt or the red shirt.

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Comments on “Does The Mobile Phone Take Away Our Ability To Make Our Own Decisions?”

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Simon (profile) says:

Of course

We are all also the “someone else” who gets called up to GIVE our advice. Seems like a good thing to me – I don’t have a good eye for fashion or colour, so I ask someone else which shirt I should buy. OTOH, my friends trust my taste in music, so they ask me which CD they should buy. Seems more like we’re becoming reliant on each other, rather than on advertising.

thecaptain says:

No, the CELLPHONE doesn't

Our society does.

We do not prize have knowledge. We have become a society of useless, clueless sheep. The few who CAN get things done are more than happy to charge the majority of morons who can’t/won’t/don’t want to take the time and effort to learn.

That’s why I made tons of cash in school doing computer jobs that most users could (and many DID) learn with just a bit of listening and reading. I was popular because I would always try and teach my customers about what I did and I would tell them that they could save money and time (what did I care, I didn’t need that much money at the time…I prefered having a satisfied and more knowledgeable customer). I’d say a third of them learned and never paid me again for the same service. Another third had trouble learning but eventually got it after a few calls. The last third simply said “I can’t be bothered to learn about that stuff” and I made a ton of money off of them.

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