Nowadays, a cell phone is not only a technical device but also a social phenomenon. Therefore, the question about its impact on the psychological state of people becomes urgent for the modern society. Along with the positive aspects provided by this device, its harmful effect on the psychological and social conditions is constantly observed. Moira Farr has written the work “A Cell of Our Own Making” regarding the issue of intervention of mobile phones into personal space, which deprives people of the ability to analyze and follow their inner intentions because of constant communication. The author introduces the concept of ‘togetherness’that is shaped under the influence of redundant usage of cell phones and, as a consequence, of people’s fear to remain unaware of any information without identifying whether it is necessary or not. In general, Farr’s claim regarding the harmful influence of the extensive usage of mobile phones on the psychological state of an individual is quite creditable due to the results of different social studies that prove the negative effect of mobile addiction.
The existence of the extensive usage of mobile phones is proved through the appearance of the term ‘technological addiction’ that is used to mark permanent individual’s dependence on the technological device. The main problem is that cell phones are mostly used to maintain the created relationships and not for establishing new communication channels. As a result, the study that was conducted among Korean students demonstrated that most of them feel anxious when not using cell phones during the day, what can be defined as a starting point of addiction (Isiklar, Sar, and Drmuscelebi 10). Farr also proves this fact by introducing the example about the student who wailedabout the importance of the call responding to the demand to turn off the cell phones (Farr 260).
The next problem is that mobile phones influence on emotional state even when they are not used directly by an individual. The overall presence of mobile phones is felt everywhere, in particular in public places. Surveys show that, as a rule, those who have to witness a call conversation in the public place usually feel annoyance, since such conversations are regarded as interference into one’s private space (Galvan, Vessal, and Golley 7). Such evidence shows that the extensive usage of cell phones tends to negatively impact even by-standers by disturbing their inner state. In terms of this issue, Farr provides personal experience when the involuntary listening of permanent call conversations that occur in public transport does not give an opportunity to devote time to reading or thinking (Farr 260). These facts represent the negative consequences of mobile addiction that can disturb even those who are not involved in cell phone usage directly.
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The other issue that is caused by extensive mobile usage is particular psychological disturbance provided by the emotional dependence on the device. People tend to feel nervous and anxious when they are not called back or while waiting for the call from friends and relatives. Such feelings can cause depression and other physical disorders, e.g. sleep deprivation or headache (Isiklar, Sar, and Drmuscelebi 10). Farr explains such obsession by the fear of loneliness that is provided by people’s experience when the lack of information caused long separations and other misunderstandings (Farr 261). In fact, the author highlights the significant of loneliness and separation as the time that has to be used for self-consideration and inner reflection.
Considering the provided evidence, it can be stated that, despite all benefits of the cell phone, its extensive usage can disturb physical and emotional states of individuals. Farr’s opinion regarding the negative consequences of technological intervention can be accepted as the right one as numerous conducted social studies prove this fact. Therefore, people should pay more attention to the extent of the usage of mobile phones as it influences not only their health but also the emotional state of by-standers.
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