Queen's University

The Phone Stack game confronts social issues: Queen's University professor

2012-01-26

Queen’s University social media experts Sidneyeve Matrix and Neil Bearse are available to comment on new The Phone Stack game designed to help people curb their annoying habit of constantly texting and checking message when having dinner with friends. To play the game, everyone at the table is asked to stack their phones at the start of the meal. The first one to pick theirs up, also has to pick up the dinner bill.

“The Phone Stack game is a lighthearted way to confront an awkward issue: mobile netiquette,” says Dr. Matrix, a film and media studies professor. “Whether driving or at the dinner table, in the boardroom or the bedroom, our always-on digital gadgets encourage multitasking. The cumulative effect of a digital day filled with constant beeps, pings, and flashing indicators is that we offer each other our continuous partial attention, at best! Phone Stack encourages us to break our crackberry-esque habits, albeit briefly, to focus on friends.”

“Undeniably, mobile phones have redefined connected convenience. However, it is important to also recognize how easily they can interfere with traditional face-to-face interactions,” says Mr. Bearse, Associate Director of Marketing for the School of Business. “In most cases, email can wait.  You can't catch up on your mealtime conversation or enjoy a restaurant's quiet ambiance when you're back at the office. We're all learning how to cope with an always-on connection to our social networks in our pockets. Sometimes, we just need a reminder that it's still possible to foster connections when your phone is switched off.”

To arrange an interview, please contact communication officers Anne Craig at 613.533.2877 or anne.craig@queensu.ca or Michael Onesi at 613.533.6000 ext. 77513 or michael.onesi@queensu.ca at Queen’s University News and Media Services Department in Kingston, Ont., Canada.

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