Information addiction disruptive

Text messages, incoming calls, students leaving class during lecture, checking e-mail during class, watching movies and instant messaging. Sounds like a scene from "Gossip Girl" or "90210," right? No, unfortunately it’s from our classrooms on campus and is rude, distracting and disrespectful both to the professors who are trying to help us and to other students who have to tolerate it. True emergencies aside, there is little that can’t wait another hour or so.

The majority, if not all, of UH students have a cellular phone or laptop, but not everyone abuses the right to have them in the classroom. It is those who disrupt class to leave the room to answer a call every day – sometimes multiple times per class – or the ongoing text messaging that distracts others from listening with the incessant clickety-click of typing on tiny buttons.

Or how about students who watch movies in class instead of watching film clips being shown by their professor? These, along with constant e-mail-checking, game playing and online shopping during class time are reasons enough for some to consider whether to make the campus buildings as Wi-Fi-accessable as they are.

Ouch, right? That was a tough shot. Classrooms and computers go hand-in-hand in these technology-driven times. Students have every right and need to keep updated, just not during class time, unless the class calls for it. Our classrooms are filled with students from all walks of life – newcomers fresh out of high school, students who waited a while, part-timers who work regular jobs, parents with kids in school, grandparents discovering something new or reviving an old passion and some who are going to school so they don’t have to do anything else. Regardless of the situation, few situations call for checking your e-mail during class or repeatedly text messaging during lecture. The big message here is recognizing boundaries

We all have our needs and reasons for doing it, but that doesn’t make it permissible when the professor doesn’t call you out on it. It is reasonable to say 90 percent of them see what’s going on, and none of them like it. For those who happen to miss it, it would be appropriate to assume they wouldn’t care for it either.

It is a harsh reality when you have to think about missing the last item available online at your favorite Web site or catching a bit of valuable information that could be on a coming midterm, but there are times when sacrifices must be made. Think about those annoying people who talk too loudly on their cellular phones in an area where a quieter noise level is preferred or that screaming baby ruining a special moment. Makes your skin crawl and your patience wear thin, doesn’t it? That is how some students are feeling.

Sitting on a bench enjoying the weather allows for ample opportunity to listen as students pass by, chatting and complaining about one thing or another. Sometimes it provides bits of information that are true insight into other people’s thoughts, putting it out there for others to think about, but most of the time, what they have to say is drowned out by the resonating clicking that seems to follow us all over campus.

MousaviDin, a communication junior, can be reached via [email protected]

Leave a Comment