Smartphone addictions killing conversation

A Sunday Mail social experiment on the streets of Queensland found that more than three-quarters of people appeared blind to those around them, mesmerised by their phones.

It described how three friends meeting for lunch in a busy food hall spend more time on their phones rather than talking to each other.

Despite living many kilometres apart and looking forward to catching up, the three spent a large part of their lunch time glued to the phone.

But social commentator David Chalke said perhaps our digital addiction was just conversation in a different form.

“Those people on their phones are probably communicating with someone. We have never been more involved in conversation. It is just a very different type of conversation,” quoted him as saying.

Emeritus Professor Cindy Gallois from the Faculty of Social and Behavioural Sciences at University of Queensland agreed.

“We are communicating with more people than we ever did before and if we are doing it sometimes with our fingers on a keyboard isn’t that great too?

“Didn’t they say the art of writing was going to die?” he noted.

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