Online Privacy & Tech Etiquette

Brush up on your tech communication skills and stay up to date on privacy so you can make the most of your smartphone, the Internet and social media.

At Work, With Clients & Friends

According to a 2014 Pew study, 77 percent of respondents thought it was OK to use a smartphone while walking down the street. In contrast, 80 percent of respondents consider smartphones off-limits in certain settings including family dinners, movie theaters and meetings. 

From Pew Research Centre. Americans' Views on Mobile Etiquette. Accessed October 29, 2015.

Have and Communicate a Clear, Work-related Purpose 

 Whether you are with colleagues or a client, be considerate and let others know why you are using your phone during their time with you. It may be to check a fact your colleague has said, to bring up a document to view together or to look up a drug a patient asked about. It's as easy as describing what you are doing. You may even find it helpful to show a client or colleague what you are doing on your device.

For example:  "Excuse me, Mr. Doe, I am using my phone here to check for any interactions between the drugs you are taking."

Pull Over

 Speed and smartphones don't mix - whether you are driving to your next appointment or walking briskly down the hall to your next meeting. If you must take a call or text while on the move pull over first - park on the side of the road when driving or move out of the way to the side of the hall or a quiet area when on foot. 

Set Notifications and other Noises to Silent

 Make sure any typing noises or loud alerts are turned off. Whether you are at work or out in public, hearing someone typing loudly or a very abrasive alert can not only be disruptive to others but may convey a degree of disrespect on your part. Use LED light notification instead of noises or buzzing, and have your keyboard set to silent. Get to know your specific device to control these features.

Put it Away

 It is sometimes difficult to let your phone stray too far in many work environments, but it may be helpful to have  defined situations or places where you do not actively have your phone within arm's reach. This may be when socializing with friends or family, in work meetings, and/or when meeting with patients. 

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