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Re: Annoyance of cell phone use in public spaces

On Mon, 6 Aug 2001, Hannes Muesch wrote:

> (a) Overhearing phone users is more annoying than overhearing plain
> old face-to-face talk, and

(1:psychoacoustic) if there is only one voice alternating with
silence you have to keep readapting and reorienting to the voice,
- as with a noise alternating with silence it sounds louder
and you are more aware of its position relative to yourself.
(2:learned) with a 2-sided conversation we are used to the
pattern of intonation and expect an alternation of voices, so
hearing one side is unusual, therefore grabs more attention
(3:social) speech nearby after silence often signals that
someone is trying to open a conversation with you, so you have
to keep actively ignoring the social cue.

It could be that people don't talk any louder on the phone,
it just sounds that way. You may also find it annoying if,
like myself, you have a neo-luddite streak that enjoys
being annoyed at these things.  :-)


----------------------- /\/\/\/- -------------------------------------
    What luck for rulers that men do not think.     -- Adolf Hitler