Stop Phobbing

Today I’ve got a chance to visit professional speakers event. I went full on practicing my ‘asking questions’ skills to collect some inspiring stories. I also found a piece for my #heartspotted Instagram project. Everything went well until the moment when I found my interlocutor constantly checking his phone. For the moment I got stuck being hit with realization that even professional speakers may not be so professional when speaking face to face.

Why do we have an urgency to check our phone in the middle of the conversation? A research has been done on this phenomena and it showed that the more often check your phone the less happy the other person will be satisfied in the relationship with you. 22.6 percent of the participants said that the act has caused relationship conflict, and 36.6 percent reported depression. Today I learnt a terms for that, and that would be phobbing.

Phobbing comes from the combination of two English words “phone”, and “snobbing“. The term was introduced in May 2012, by Melbourne-based advertising agency called McCann. McCann has launched the campaign where a number of lexicographers, authors, and poets were asked to describe the “phobbing” behaviour. The term has appeared in media around the world, and was popularized by the Stop Phubbing campaign created by McCann.

Take a note:

  • An average restaurant will see 36 cases of phobbing per dinner session;
  • the majority of phubbers use their phone to make a status update;
  • phubbing has been labeled by etiquette advisors as “the end of civilization”.


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