Wednesday, November 29, 2017


 We love our phones.

The managing editor of The WEEK, Theunis Bates, said Americans feel their relationships are being phubbed by a seductive third party -- not another person, but a smartphone. I looked up phubb; it's phone & snub spliced together.

Researchers at Baylor University surveyed 140 people and found that  almost half had been “phubbed” by their partner, that is, snubbed by the partner checking social media, news, or texts on a phone, According to 70 people, phone overuse is causing conflict with their loved one. 

"Phubbering" was also mentioned a few weeks ago in The Washington Post in an article by Stanford University psychologist, Emma Seppala who described how many couples are struggling to balance their  love for each other with their love for their iPhones and Androids.

Managing editor Theunis Bates said: "I’ve been both a phubber and phubbee‚ so I get why this habit is so infuriating and yet so difficult to stop doing. We’re social beings who crave connection, but facetoface communication can feel passé when there’s a whole world to observe and interact with on our gadgets. Tap a screen and you’re rewarded with an always updating stream of photos from family and friends, tweets from the president, breaking news, and videos of skateboarding cats. Dipping into that stream lights up the pleasure centers in our brains—the same ones activated by recreational drugs—so we keep going back for more."

Wow! What a warning! When I'm shopping, I see it happening -- everyone's talking on the phone while I'm trying not to bump into anyone, or checking pot holes in the sidewalk and the street.

Hey, heed Theunis Bates and Em! Command yourself -- sing that ugly awful word P H U B B E R E E inside your brain, and plunk down your device.


Carola said...

I observe the phubber phenomenon everywhere but it doesn't affect me. My husband and I both have old-fashioned flip phones and only use them for phone calls. And in the community where we live, everyone smiles and greets each other when our paths cross.

Jo Davidson said...

I liked your very last comment...