Culture

West Coast cell phone users not as rude as the rest of you

My favorite neighborhood wine and cheese shop here in San Francisco has an unspoken rule: yakking on your cell phone on the premises is the quickest way to get you kicked out.

I've never seen it happen, but, in the spirit of Machiavelli, regulars both fear and love the place because of it. Some may find the owner's decree a bit odd, but a recent survey regarding cell phone etiquette may explain this as more of a regional understanding than the quirk of a grumpy shopkeeper.

Samsung conducted a nationwide survey of 1,000 cell phone users over age 13, and the trends are either disturbing or inconsequential, depending on your own wireless communication customs.

So, who are the most considerate cell phone users? The survey results say it's us West Coasters. Sixty-five percent of us feel it's absolutely inappropriate to make or receive calls in questionable settings--a restaurant, class, business meeting, movie theater, or in the midst of a private conversation or on a first date. Sixty percent of Southerners, and 56 percent of Midwesterners and Northeasterners feel the same way.

However, one of every three Americans say taking a call in a restaurant is perfectly acceptable. (Now, obviously there are different factors at play here--if you're an agent power lunching at The Grill in Beverly Hills or a politician at The Capital Grille in D.C., overheard cell phone conversations are just part of the scenery, right?)

And one in 10 think answering a cell phone on a first date is totally fine. Um, note to men: don't be That Guy. However, it's the easiest way to show her you're just not that into her, if that's what you're going for.