Volume 92, Issue 61

Friday, January 15, 1999

intruder alert


Technology misuse has gone too far

More student debate needed

Technology misuse has gone too far

By Sabrina Carinci
Gazette Staff

It seems as though more and more technology is quickly entering the lives of the young and the old – and both are taking it too far.

The fad, which started a few years ago with the increasing trend of the cellular phone and pager, was intended to make the lives of business people much easier. The technology, however, is increasingly being used in the art of annoying others.

While dozing off in a line at the bank the other day, I was suddenly startled by the thunderous sounds of an annoying ringing phone.

A man standing at the front of the line allowed his phone to ring a number of times, it seemed purposely, so that everyone in line would know how "important" he was. When he finally answered the digital alarm, everyone in the room could not help but hear him discuss plans for the evening with a friend.

Upon his turn for approaching the teller, this individual stood in front of the counter and completed his call before handing his bank book to the obviously annoyed employee.

The following arguments are simple. First, is it possible a person could be so very important that turning off the phone to complete simple everyday tasks like updating a bank book is made impossible? Secondly, if a person would rather talk on the phone than go the bank, then why not just use the phone at home – it's cheaper.

Of course it cannot be denied that one of the greatest things to come out of the increasing popularity of portable phone technology is the brilliantly created advertisers shown in movie theatres.

In an attempt to remind people to turn off their phones and pagers, a man, only seconds away from dying in the electric chair, is saved for a few more moments when a ringing phone interrupts the scene. The phone, however, turns out to be that of an audience member.

As creative as some of these ads may be, they seem to confirm the idea that the latest advancements in technologies, which were at one time being used by the modern business person, are mostly being used by youngsters who can't even afford to purchase cigarettes. Since a lot of youngsters rely on summer job income and parent allowances, why not just save the $30 monthly cost and purchase a Gameboy?

The newest Fido digital phone, for example, comes complete with changeable faceplates and game files. The fact companies are creating digital phones with the option of playing games indicates they are trying to market these technologies to an increasing younger crowd – and they're winning.

After all, how many corporate business professionals have been spotted playing Snake on the way to work?

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Copyright The Gazette 1999