How we’re a nation of hypocrites when it comes to mobile phone etiquette –

Meanwhile almost half (48 per cent) confess to talking on a phone on a train or other confined space.

And 53 per cent of those surveyed acknowledged they have been guilty of writing emails or text messages largely in capital letters – seen as the internet era’s answer to sending letters in green ink.

The habit of text walking has become a major source of ire around the world in the last few years since the advent of full internet enabled smartphones.

A series of studies have highlighted the risk of accidents from people failing to look where they are going, in addition to the general annoyance from blocked pavements and initiatives have been introduced in several countries to curtail the practice.

A bill being debated in the US state of New Jersey has even proposed making texting while walking  – or “distracted walking” – a crime punishable by a fine or even a short prison sentence.

Earlier this year staff at Utah Valley University responded to the problem by the pragmatic – if tongue-in-cheek- introduction of a “texting lane” for phone-absorbed students in corridors and staircases.

Similar schemes have even been tried in cities, although the first such reported case, in Philadelphia, turned out to be an April Fool.

Jokes notwithstanding other cities followed suit including Antwerp in Belgium, where a network of designated text walking lanes were marked out through pedestrian areas across the city last year –partly as a publicity stunt for a local mobile phone company.


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