The guidelines of dating and phone usage have changed as much as phones themselves. With texting, chatting and messaging through social media networks now available, a host of new etiquette considerations have arisen. To make a good impression on that special guy or girl, remember that your phone’s proper function is facilitating communication – not distracting you from your date.
Arranging a Date
The best way to get in touch with a would-be date is to call, according to Michael Matthews, managing director of the social and mobile marketing consultancy, The Mobile Culture. After getting his or her phone number, make sure your romantic interest is expecting a call by saying, “I’ll give you a call tomorrow!” While etiquette guidelines of the past emphasized waiting a certain length of time before calling, such hard and fast rules have been ditched in favor of saying when you will call and sticking to your word.
To avoid frustration and maximize your chance of connecting with each other, ask your love interest his or her preferences regarding text or talk. Express your own opinion, advises Lizzie Post, Emily Post Institute spokesperson, in an interview for Happen Magazine. Some guidelines for phone usage and dating haven’t changed: It is always polite to call and let your date know if you’ll be late, for instance. If you need to communicate a delay or change of plans, make sure you can offer your undivided attention to the call. If you are driving, pull over to a safe place before using your cell phone.
On the Date
Pay attention to your date. If you need to accept a call, let your date know ahead of time and explain the reason. If and when you take a high-priority call, politely excuse yourself if this is an option. If you cannot step away, speak quietly and make the call as quick as possible. Avoid discussing personal matters when others can hear. Silence your phone in the theater.
Social Media Connections
Because most cell phones are equipped with cameras and many come with social media functionality, the rules regarding phone use now cover friend requests, tagging and date pics. Matthews advises not attempting to connect with a date on social networking sites too soon. If you are already “friends” on social sites, make sure that you have your date’s OK before disclosing personal details from the date or posting pictures of the two of you smiling in front of the movie theater. For that matter, make sure you have the other person’s go-ahead before snapping pictures in the first place.