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Should cell phones be banned?


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#1 Alexandra

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 09:38 AM

Who says California is always the Trendsetter!!! Rockville, Maryland is proposing a ban on cell phones at performances. (A shock -- he's not talking about a cell phone innocently going off during the White Swan pas de deux, but making talking on cell phones during a performance illegal.

http://story.news.ya.../126/3745p.html


What do you think?

#2 dancermom2

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 09:55 AM

The NY City Council was throwing this about...they actually passed it but the Mayor vetoed it. Why? It was a question of enforcement. Who is going to be the enforcer and make the "arrest" of the cretin who is using the cell phone? It would become one of those laws that no one follows...sort of like the no jaywalking rule in NYC. People jaywalk all the time...even in front of a police car and no ticket is given out! It is sort of like the people who are told 10 million times not to use flash photography at performances and those darn flashes go off all over the place. Who is going to give out the ticket or grab the guy...will you have citizen arrests?

I am a strong believer that a better solution is to find technology that would make the cell phone not able to work within the confines of the theater. Sort of like a blocking shield. There must be some inventor out there who could invent this! ;)

#3 Leigh Witchel

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 10:10 AM

The other important thing is a verbal reminder to turn off cell phones before a performance. Much to my complete chagrin, the one time this ever happened to me was when I forgot my cell phone was on. Most people aren't doing this to be rude, they've just forgotten about it. I think the announcements at the State Theater have been pretty effective.

#4 Hans

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 10:11 AM

It would be nice if the ushers would enforce it.

#5 Alexandra

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 10:12 AM

Rockville cited enforcement problems, too. They have not met Susan Lively, once the leading Enforcer at the Kennedy Center. She was an usher there. Young woman, a good six foot three. She could sense a flash bulb going off 40 rows away and pinpoint the villain. She would then rush down the aisle, stand near the culprit and beam a flashlight on them. The Kennedy Center Opera House quickly became a flashphoto free zone.

#6 Xena

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 11:32 AM

Cell phone jamming systems have been tried
http://asia.cnn.com/...a.cellphonejam/

but its illegal in the US to use a jamming device.

Mobile phone etiquette is the answer...but obviously only the conscientious actually make an effort in this area.

Hands up who doesn't own a cell phone? I don't..and I'm able to live my life effectively.:P

#7 Alexandra

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 11:38 AM

I don't have a cell phone! I love it that there are times when no one can get in touch with me. :P

I think if anyone near me began talking on a cell phone during a performance I would not wait for either the ushers or the police.

#8 Giannina

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 12:54 PM

I don't have one either, to which my bewildered kids say, "Moooooom!"

Giannina

#9 Victoria Leigh

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 01:19 PM

Living without a cell phone today is as bad as being without internet access! You're in the stone age! ;) Seriously, I don't think they can be banned. People have them. Most people. They carry them with them because they always want or need to be accessible, for many reasons. However, having them turned on, in the theatre, is inexcusable :( I forgot once, but the announcement woke me up, fortunately. People tend to not listen to the same old, same old annoucements, so maybe some way for the the stage manager, or whoever does the announcing, to make that particlular message something different, or louder, or an afterthought that startles them, or something. Anything. If jamming is illegal, there is no other solution but that and vigilent ushers, as with flash photos.

#10 Calliope

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 01:23 PM

They could have a different dancer/performer in front of the curtain every night saying "please don't interupt my performance, turn your cell phone off, please"

of course, people still won't listen!
I saw a comedy performance and someone's cell rang, the comedien hopped off the stage asked for the phone and promptly told off the person who called :(

#11 Lolly

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 01:52 PM

Before each Prom at the Royal Albert Hall last summer, they played a very loud cacophony of ringing phones before the announcement to remember to turn them off. It was a big shock!

#12 Victoria Leigh

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 02:40 PM

Oh, that's good, Lolly! I like that idea :(

#13 Mel Johnson

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 03:37 PM

Then there's the variant on the big sign the late writer Jack Douglas used to have on his front lawn:

WARNING! TURN OFF YOUR CELL PHONE! VIOLATORS WILL BE CRUCIFIED! UPSIDE DOWN!

#14 BalletFlaMom

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 03:39 PM

I, too, am SHOCKED and AMAZED at "some people" these days! My daughter and I both have cell phones and always remember to turn them off at a performance, of any kind, we went to the Greater PB Symphony this past Friday and to a Ballet Florida performance on Sunday. At both performances cell phones were ringing, at the ballet, (during a particularly 'quiet' moment of - Jerome Robbins' In the Night) someone actually answered their phone and carried on a conversation 2 rows behind us for about 3 minutes - this despite the "sshhhh's" from those nearby.

I do, though love Lolly's Royal Albert Hall story, though I'm sure it wouldn't have any effect on most of the American theatre goers!
:(

#15 Leigh Witchel

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Posted 05 February 2003 - 05:04 PM

Hey, I "always" turn mine off until the night I didn't. . .A reminder is polite and useful. At the concerts where I did a pre-performance announcement, I offered that "we were coming to the audience participation portion of the program" and I turned off my cellphone. "OK, now everybody. . ."


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