Posts Tagged ‘AARP Magazine’

No Txtg @ Movies (No Texting at Movies)

October 6, 2010

Recently, I read an article about a theater chain in Arizona, Harkens Theaters, that started a campaign to stop texting while the movie is playing. The theater has posters placed throughout its lobbies requesting that patrons not send text messages during the movie. A moviegoer who was interviewed thought it is no big deal to text during a movie. Of course, management had another take on the issue, when the director of marketing for the chain stated that while many think by not talking they are being considerate, the glowing screen on a person’s mobile device can be a distraction to other moviegoers.

Well, that got me thinking. (Uh oh, you must be saying now.) Call me a crank, but what ever happened to going to see a movie and paying attention to what was going on the screen? Isn’t that the reason why people pay $8.00 and up for a movie ticket? Most people don’t have positions whereby they have to be in constant contact, so it won’t hurt to have the device set on silent or vibrate and not look at it during the feature presentation.

Multitasking may seem like an efficient way to do our daily tasks but quality both in terms of output and input suffers. In other words, that text you sent while watching the movie could end up being gibberish to the person who receives it, so you’ll have to call the person to explain what you just texted (much to the chagrin to your fellow moviegoers).

Research has shown that Americans see, hear or read 100,000 words a day. That means loads of information is being tossed at us and most of it is trivial. So how about paying attention to one thing at a time? Not only can a person make an intelligent choice as to whether the info is worth his or her time, but paying attention to one thing at a time is less stressful that paying attention to 20 things at once. You are less likely to forget something, waste time or get into an accident if you are focused one thing at a time. As we all know, forgetting things, wasting time and getting into accidents are very stressful.

After all, isn’t getting away from it all, at least for a few hours, one of the joys of going to see a movie in the first place? If so, why send a text during the movie’s good part?


Read, Katy, “May I Have My Attention Please?” AARP Magazine July/August 2010, pgs 28-31.