According to some data, 80 percent of the population in the United States lives in urban areas. For those of you not counting (ahem...me), that's about 243 million people, give or take a million. These same people contributed to the 10.7 billion trips taken on public transportation in 2008 alone. In short: there are a lot of freakin' people who take municipal transit. If you are one of them, pay attention.
All too often, commuters forget one very important word in public transportation: public. There are innumerable ways in which this lack of consideration for one's fellow humans can become aggravating, offensive, or downright disturbing. I would take great pleasure in airing them all here*, but as this is CNET, I'll stick to tech-related grievances. What follows are some general guidelines for using your gadgets on transit (or in the general public, for that matter).
DON'T talk loudly on your cell phone when riding mass transit. In fact, if you can avoid it, don't talk on it at all. With the exception of some admittedly curious bystanders, most people don't want to be made privy to the ins and outs of your life...especially if the conversation is of a particularly private nature. No one wants to hear you berate your mom for calling too often (true story), and we certainly don't need to hear the words: "Yeah, so the doctor said you should probably get tested, too" (also a true story). OK, so maybe there's a bit of humor to that last one, but really, people? Have you no shame? Oh, and if it wasn't already clear from this, DON'T use your speakerphone, either.… Read more