Mobile Etiquette Getting Worse, Survey Says

If that person next to you on the train, gabbing away on her cell phone while typing away on her laptop, seems to be getting louder and more irritating—you aren’t alone. Mobile manners in America are getting worse, according to a study.

A recent survey of 2,000 Americans conducted by Intel Corporation (NASDAQ:INTC) and Ipsos found that 75% of respondents feel mobile manners are worse now than they were a year earlier, and 91% report seeing someone ‘misuse’ their mobile device in the past year.

The top pet peeves reported were using mobile devices while driving (73%), talking on a mobile device loudly in public places (65%), and using a mobile device while walking on the street (28%).

Intel spokesperson Jessica Hansen said that  mobile etiquette is often a gray area due to how people perceive their own manners. Nearly all of the respondents (92%) said they felt they had good technology etiquette.

“We think we do the right thing, but it’s a self-perception issue,” Hansen said. “We aren’t taking into account others around us. There is a proliferation of devices and we haven’t yet figured out how to use them.”

Nearly all of the respondents, a shocking 91%, said they have seen someone use a mobile device in a taboo place, such as while driving (56%), in a public restroom (48%), in a movie theater (32%), and on their honeymoon (9%).

Even more disturbing, 24% of respondents said they had seen someone using a laptop while driving.

This type of technology misuse is also angering many people, in what the study is referring to as a “new form of road rage.” The survey found that 74% of people feel that this poor mobile etiquette has created a new form of public rage, similar to road rage. Also, 65% of people reported they feel angry around those misusing their mobile devices.

Hansen said that many expressed a desire for improving mobile manners, which is promising.

“There is a desire for people to understand how to use these devices most effectively,” she said. “Some establishments like restaurants and pharmacies are starting to post whether you can or cannot use cell phones, and airlines are starting to create policies. It’s not just the way you use it, its how it’s affecting others around you.”