The BlackBerry Brush-Off: Ranking Digital Age Rudeness

The XX Factor
What Women Really Think
June 11 2009 4:59 PM

The BlackBerry Brush-Off: Ranking Digital Age Rudeness

My favorite part of this week's crack up of the New York legislature is Governor Patterson's plea, "Think of the lobbyists!" My next favorite part is that Tom Golisano, the businessman who seems to have prodded two Democratic state senators into flipping to the GOP and instigating a Republican takeover, says he got mad at the Dems after a meeting at which Senate majority leader Malcolm Smith couldn't take his eyes off his BlackBerry . Ah, the BlackBerry brush off. I think I'd put that at the top of a list of digital age breaches of etiquette. As in:

1. Constant BlackBerry distraction during one-on-one meeting. Extra black mark if over lunch.

Emily Bazelon Emily Bazelon

Emily Bazelon is a staff writer at the New York Times Magazine and the author of Sticks and Stones


2. During meeting or lunch, answering call on cell phone, and talking for more than 30 seconds (unless it's your spouse or the babysitter).

3. Talking loudly on cell phone while everyone else in the room is trying to have a conversation. Which is what people do when they get together.

4. Typing audibly during phone call because you are, no not recording the every word of the person on the other end of the line, but answering someone else's e-mail.

5. On the phone, silently checking e-mail so that when the person you're talking to asks a question, a long pause ensues. At the end of which you have to say, "Ah, what did you just ask me?"

Other nominations?



Smash and Grab

Will competitive Senate contests in Kansas and South Dakota lead to more late-breaking races in future elections?

Stop Panicking. America Is Now in Very Good Shape to Respond to the Ebola Crisis.

The 2014 Kansas City Royals Show the Value of Building a Mediocre Baseball Team

The GOP Won’t Win Any Black Votes With Its New “Willie Horton” Ad

Sleater-Kinney Was Once America’s Best Rock Band

Can it be again?


Forget Oculus Rift

This $25 cardboard box turns your phone into an incredibly fun virtual reality experience.

One of Putin’s Favorite Oligarchs Wants to Start an Orthodox Christian Fox News

These Companies in Japan Are More Than 1,000 Years Old

Trending News Channel
Oct. 20 2014 6:17 PM Watch Flashes of Lightning Created in a Lab  
  News & Politics
Oct. 20 2014 8:14 PM You Should Be Optimistic About Ebola Don’t panic. Here are all the signs that the U.S. is containing the disease.
Oct. 20 2014 7:23 PM Chipotle’s Magical Burrito Empire Keeps Growing, Might Be Slowing
Oct. 20 2014 3:16 PM The Catholic Church Is Changing, and Celibate Gays Are Leading the Way
  Double X
The XX Factor
Oct. 20 2014 6:17 PM I Am 25. I Don't Work at Facebook. My Doctors Want Me to Freeze My Eggs.
  Slate Plus
Tv Club
Oct. 20 2014 7:15 AM The Slate Doctor Who Podcast: Episode 9 A spoiler-filled discussion of "Flatline."
Brow Beat
Oct. 20 2014 9:13 PM The Smart, Talented, and Utterly Hilarious Leslie Jones Is SNL’s Newest Cast Member
Oct. 20 2014 11:36 PM Forget Oculus Rift This $25 cardboard box turns your phone into an incredibly fun virtual-reality experience.
  Health & Science
Medical Examiner
Oct. 20 2014 11:46 AM Is Anybody Watching My Do-Gooding? The difference between being a hero and being an altruist.
Sports Nut
Oct. 20 2014 5:09 PM Keepaway, on Three. Ready—Break! On his record-breaking touchdown pass, Peyton Manning couldn’t even leave the celebration to chance.