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Katharina Hone June 10, 2013

I like your analogy at the end between "no kids"- and "no laptops"-signs. But I would interpret it differently. I think in both cases, those who are putting up the sign try to point to something that is socially inappropriate. It is deemed inappropriate to have kids in a pub at a time when people start drinking and social interactions start to change. Similarly, it is inappropriate to have a laptop around - it disturbs the social interaction that is envisaged to take place. In the case of the laptop, maybe that is a bit anachronistic and the sign is put up by someone who wants the "good old times" back. But I can see the point for wanting a pub situation that is more social - not as in social media, but as in person-to-person social.

Mary June 10, 2013

The thing is, Katharina, I'm not at all sure that laptops on the dinner table are seen as being social unacceptable ... much in the same way as smartphones and iPads are not. If we take laptops to represent any mobile device, then I'm all for banning them from the dinner table... all of them. To me, someone using a phone when I'm in their company without expressly excusing themselves to do so (or better still, leaving the table/room to do so) is the epitome of rudeness. But then, I've been told I'm antiquated in my thinking.

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