A survey shows that a lot of Germans are in favor of zones with smartphone bans
Smartphones bans in some zones: When shopping or going to a restaurant with friends, many people keep squinting at their cell phones. But that gets on the nerves of most Germans, as a survey by the Hamburg BAT Foundation shows.
BAT Survey uncovers a surprising appetite for smartphone bans in some zones in Germany
According to a new survey, the majority of Germans feel too dependent on social media. In a representative online survey commissioned by the BAT Foundation for Future Issues by British American Tobacco based in Rotherbaum, 55 percent of those questioned supported the statement: “In my free time, I am more dependent on social media (Facebook, Instagram, etc.) than 75 percent of those aged 18 to 34 agreed, compared to only 32 percent of those over 55.
When shopping or in restaurants, 57 percent of all those surveyed would like areas with smartphone bans and no internet access in order to have the full attention of those around them or not to be distracted themselves. However, among younger people between the ages of 18 and 24 and among singles up to the age of 49, only just under half of those surveyed – namely 49 percent – are enthusiastic about offline zones. In the 65+ generation, the idea is welcomed by two thirds (66 percent).
People should be given discounts in restaurants if they opt to NOT use their phones
“Likes, comments and reactions to one’s own postings act like a reward,” explained the scientific director of the foundation, Prof. Ulrich Reinhardt. Many are willing to prepare and beautify their own lives on social media accordingly. “That not only costs time and nerves, but also often leads to stress and dissatisfaction,” said Reinhardt.
Everyone would love to have the full attention of their fellow human beings and not to be constantly distracted by the infuriating Selfies and constant checking of phones. In the USA, England and Australia there are discounts in some bars if guests do not use their smartphones. Reinhardt can also imagine such offers in Germany.
A life without a smartphone: Are we dependent on the smartphones?
In two studies, one in 2014 and one in 2018, philosophy professor and author Ron Srigley offered his students to give them extra credit if they lived their lives without a smartphone for the next nine days by handing it over to him. He came up with the idea because he saw his students’ performance suffer under mobile technology. If his students agreed, he confiscated their smartphones and asked them to write about their experiences during that time. What came out is impressive:
▶︎ They paid more attention to the people around them. What’s even more interesting is that they noted how often people would quickly pull out their phones to avoid conversation when making direct eye contact.
▶︎ Better conversations with family. Participants in the experiment noticed a significant improvement in the conversations between them and their family.
▶︎ They felt more afraid. What if I need to call an ambulance or even get kidnapped or attacked? Since the invention, we have had much less contact with strangers, whether to ask the time or just for directions, we prefer to look at our display first.
▶︎ Your productivity increased. In a life without a smartphone, one is much more focused when doing important things and works faster, more concentrated and more efficient in general, they describe after the experiment.
▶︎ They loved being less disturbed. The never-ending stream of news, no matter how irrelevant, never allows for a truly deep thought and shortens our already short attention spans.
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