Media & Press Media - Text

[MEDIA] Mobile phone zombies are endangering themselves on the street, so how do we solve the problem? with @theipaper

Dean Kirby, Northern Correspondent for the iPaper, contacted the MMU press department yesterday, looking for someone to comment on the fact that he’s observed so many people walking into things because they are paying too much attention to their phones.

I’m very happy to have my words quoted in full, and as the final word on the article:

Dr Bex Lewis, a senior lecturer in digital marketing at Manchester Metropolitan University Business School, says the issue should not be taken at face value and further questions need to be asked. ”It’s very easy to fall into the narrative that everyone is now engrossed in their phones, and that they are not paying attention to the rest of the world,“

Dr Lewis says. ”There are definitely some people who fall into this category, but we have a slightly rose-tinted view that before phones we were all chatting to each other, and paying attention to the world.

“One question we really need to ask is more about what people are doing on their phones, rather than how much or the fact that they are on them.

”I am quite likely to be using my phone whilst out because I’m using it as a map, or I’m out exploring and using the ‘Around Me’ app, or I’m getting some exercise by catching Pokemon. There’s no excuse for people not to be paying attention to people around them, and to traffic.

“It’s more likely that there are other reasons people won’t intervene when someone has their phone snatched,” she adds, “including fears of getting involved and becoming a target, and an expectation – particularly in a big city – that someone else will sort it out.”

Read the full article online (or in the paper tomorrow):


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I’m quoted in the final paragraphs of this article in the iPaper – are we really a #zombienation? #mobilephones

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History Reviewer

Why do we quote? The history and culture of quotation.

Quoting Quotables ( the days following the death of Osama bin Laden, a quote attributed to Martin Luther King pinged about social networking websites and into email inboxes: “I mourn the loss of thousands of precious lives, but I will not rejoice in the death of one, not even an enemy. Returning hate for hate multiplies hate, adding deeper darkness to a night already devoid of stars. Darkness cannot drive out darkness; only light can do that. Hate cannot drive out hate, only love can do that.”

While the second, third and fourth sentences were spoken by King in 1957, the first 23 words are the appended thoughts of a US schoolteacher. In a cyberspatial game of Chinese whispers, the distinguishing marks of punctuation become detached as quickly as you can say “retweet”. In a short time, the Twitter-friendly opening line ensured that the hybrid phrase was truncated to its first sentence, King’s name still affixed.

A number of journalists have since traced the alchemy and transmission of an unknown teacher’s thoughts to a misdescribed memetic sensation. Yet the pathologies failed to investigate questions that seem far more fundamental. Why did so many feel impelled to disseminate it? In what way did the attachment of a famous name make it more meaningful? Ruth Finnegan’s study makes a remarkable attempt at answering these types of question.

Read full story.


Winston Churchill wrote ‘Keep Calm and Carry On’?!

Wow, someone’s discovered who wrote “Keep Calm and Carry On”….

11. The best piece of advice you actually followed?

Well, nobody takes good advice, but I like Winston Churchill’s “Keep calm and carry on.” And my best advice to people is to find what you like and let it kill you.

Hmm, read this, and I think you’ll realise that this is wrongly attributed… how history can be (incorrectly) made…


Great #quote

We could learn a lot from crayons… Some are sharp, some are pretty and some are dull.

Some have weird names, and all are different colours, but they all have to live in the same box.

Thanks to a friend’s status update!