April 18, 2005
A study by the advertising agency, BBDO Worldwide, has found that 14 percent of the world’s cell phone users will stop in the middle of sex to answer the phone or their Blackberrys. The Germans and the Spanish were the most likely to interrupt sex, 22 percent. The Italians (of course!) were the least inclined to answer the phone, 7 percent. Americans rolled over 15 percent of the time, cell phone interruptus. As reported in AdAge.com [free subscription], the report came from “Wireless Works: Exploring New Brand Connections,” a study designed to show how people use wireless communications. The motive was to see if there was room for advertising on cell phones, which is just what we need. People apparently are reluctant not to answer lest the call be important and besides, getting a cell phone might impress your partner, according to Christina Hannis, head of BBDO Europe. In fact more than 52 percent of respondents used their cell phones to flirt. Almost half the respondents believed their cell phone says as much about them as the car they drive. Answering the phone during sex certainly does. [If my wife is reading this, I was much younger then, and besides it was always my mother.]
Jonathan Beard points out another phenomenon: men who stand at the urinal talking on the phone. He finds that odd. OK, a survey: how many of you have taken a business call whilst sitting on the toilet? I thought so.