We all know the scene — you're sitting at the bar with a friend when they whip out their smartphone to respond to a text. The phone migrates from isolation in your friend's pants pocket to its perch on the bar next to his beer. From that point it's just a few conversational lulls before your collocutor's attention has been hijacked by the instantaneous allure of emails, Facebook notifications, and fine tuning the mechanics of Overgram. The worst part is that half the time you're the guilty party prioritizing the phone.
Brazilian advertising agency Fischer & Friends created a glass to combat this social faux pas, The Telegraph reports. The Offline Glass only sits upright when balanced on a smartphone, making texting while chatting in person nearly impossible. They released a snazzy video demonstrating how the glass works during its debut at Salve Jorge Bar, in Sao Paolo.
There's no questioning that this glass is a gimmick, drawing attention to both the bar and the product (well-played, advertisers) but it's a cup with a loaded question: How do we maintain social etiquette and civility without eschewing an otherwise fantastic tool for information and communication? Is there compromise — a line we walk between devoting our attention to the person at hand and distracting ourselves with our devices? Or should we check our phones at the door like one L.A. restaurant paid diners to do last year?
Do you love having your smartphone at the bar, on standby for settling those heated debates about the chronology of Nicholas Cage's filmography? Or does having your phone out mean disregarding your companion for whatever draws your attention to the phone? Tell us in the comments. Watch the video. And maybe don't try this at home, at least with just any pint glass.
Erika writes at erikabolden.com and @erikabolden. Want more Squid Ink? Follow us on Twitter or like us on Facebook.
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