13 March 2011
The effects of cell phones among the youth in the contemporary world and culture
Technology has transformed the way in which people live all around the world. Many functions of life, such as long distance communication, have been affected since the early invention of cell phones. These mobile devices assist us with our daily activities and have made it easier to manage all aspects of life. In the past, significant inventions such as email, television, radio and the Internet, have changed the way we live. The cell phone has become a staple of life as it ensures a more efficient way of living for people on the go. These machines have provided a definite improvement in the way we communicate with each other, as well as in the speed with which this is done. That being said, cell phone communication also has negative aspects to it. People are losing the personal, face-to-face interaction that direct conversation requires. One can now literally be homebound and still ‘socialize’ with other people over the cell phone. Although cell phones bring solutions to society, they also carry many problems with them. While the invention of the cell phone has changed the world in which we live in a positive way, it can be argued that the extreme use of these devices is detrimental to society, particularly to the youth. Since we do not always hear about these negative effects that this problem brings, it is of the utmost importance that society becomes aware of the detrimental effects of cell phones. Many have said that these devices are so detrimental that they have formed a new addiction that can be compared to that of cigarettes or caffeine. Lauren D. LaPorta Writes in her article, “Cellular Telephones: A New Addiction?” that “As early as 2000, reports began to appear that suggested a link between the decrease in teen smoking and the simultaneous increase in cell phone use by the same age group-in essence, a substitution of one addiction for another” (LaPorta). Many would argue that a cell phone addiction is a lot better than a smoking addiction, but this does not eliminate the fact that the cell phone is becoming an uncontrollable addiction amongst the younger generation of today. This indicates that cell phones have terrible effects on the youth as it forms a new way of wasting ones money and time by staring into a 2” by 2” screen. Has society really sunk so low that people are willing to spend so much of their lives using a device instead of conventionally socializing? Have the simplest characteristics of life been forgotten? I believe that these effects have been allowed to escalate to the point where we are incorporating every part of our life into a handheld device that can fit into our pocket. The problems include falling and failing grades due to the constant use of the cell phone, which often takes the place of study, since it is so easily used. LaPorta writes that, “Some teens are so dependent on this device as a means of communication … and continue to engage in the behavior despite the negative impact on their functioning” (LaPorta). Therefore, she says, “The use of the cell phone under these circumstances may cause the exact problems teens are trying to overcome and lead to more social isolation and failure in school” (LaPorta). Although cell phones have negative effects, we still find ourselves relying on the fact that we cannot live our lives without them. As a result, even though cell phones may be harmful, we still need them in our day-to-day living. This is highly arguable, as some believe that cell phones are totally detrimental and have no potential for the future or for academic use. In the case of studying and learning I agree with the fact that one can obtain certain positive effects from a cell phone and from texting. In the journal, “How can mobile SMS communication support and enhance a first year undergraduate learning environment?” written by Geraldine Jones, Gabriele...
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