Canadians are really, truly terrible at using their cell phones, and they know it.
That's according to a survey conducted by Leger for PC Mobile. It found that 75 per cent of the 1,336 respondents admitted to breaking social etiquette with their phones, while almost two-thirds (63 per cent) said the issue is growing worse, according to a Tuesday news release.
Statistics that were of most concern in the survey were listed as follows:
Thirty-seven per cent admitted to using their phones in the washroom:
Thirty per cent admitted to texting and walking at the same time:
Twenty-two per cent admitted to driving and texting:
Twenty per cent said they made a phone call without using hands-free technology while driving:
Almost 23 per cent of people in the study said something bad happened to them while distracted by their phones, the most common being running into people or hitting a post or wall, the news release said.
The survey isn't alone in raising concern about phone use in the bathroom. A 2013 survey of 1,000 people in the U.S. found that 59 per cent of respondents had used their phones in the bathroom, News.com.au reported.
And more recently, a worker in Calgary wrote into The Globe and Mail's "Corporate Governess" advice column and asked whether it was improper for him to take an important call while he was on the toilet.
The answer? "Just don't do it."
The column quoted microbiologist and University of Toronto professor James Scott, who said that "there are lots of bacteria and viruses that transmit through fecal-oral route, which is self-descriptive."
Scott added, however, that the possibility of bacteria on a device making you sick is "still hypothetical."
Elsewhere, businesses are taking steps to reduce mobile phone use and increase interaction among their customers.
Vancouver bar Score on Davie has installed optional lock boxes for cell phones, while the keys are left with bartenders.
People can retrieve their phones, but they have to buy a round of shots for their group or receive some other penalty first.
Canadians do, however, appear to be tackling the problem of mobile phone overuse on their own.
Two-thirds of participants in the Leger survey now set rules in their families when it comes to using mobile devices, whereas only a third did so in 2012.
Almost half of respondents limit their family's time on phones, while only one-third did that two years ago.
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