“Are BlackBerry users the new smokers?”

Well, people do seem addicted to these devices (cell phones too). What do you think?

"I have a new policy with my friends. I will not meet them in a restaurant or bar – holiday cheer notwithstanding – unless they promise to switch off their cellphones and BlackBerrys.

"It’s embarrassing to impose such sanctions. It seems discourteous. Yet I feel like I have to speak up. The idea of a ban came to me after dining with an old college friend. I was confiding something, when it dawned on me that he wasn’t even listening. He was staring down at his lap, instead.

"’What are you doing?’ I asked, feeling dismayed.

"’I’m sending you an e-mail,’ he muttered.


"What is the behavioral equivalent of this socially sanctioned and business-approved use of gadgetry? It’s like having a dinner party guest pull out her crime thriller to read while she slurps up your pasta. It’s like a man striding 10 feet ahead of his lady companion when they’re out for a stroll, or someone firing up a cigarette in an elevator."

The annoyance & rudeness aside, can this in-your-face technology be healthy?