Monday, 9 June 2008

SmartPhones, the Internet and Dinner Party Etiquette

Gone are the days when dinner party conversations drifted along, unchecked for factual accuracy, against a background of music from a CD on repeat that no one could be arsed to change.

Today, hosts and guests alike punctuate the discourse with Google-searches, songs and YouTube clips from their smartphones. If you're really lucky, a large flat screen and broadband connection will be made available on or near the dinner table for those particularly graphic clips or complex Wikipedia entries.

Is the art of conversation lost, or are these digitally-supported conversations actually more informative and rewarding than their analogue forbears? Should digital devices be hung up at the door like six guns in a Wild West saloon?

I have the feeling that I'd know the answer if I drank a lot less. By 9 o'clock it's all Mandarin to me.
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