Smartphones foster dumb habits among pedestrians

By David Bauder

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"The Pennsylvania woman, Cathy Cruz Marrero, appeared on ABC’s “Good Morning America” Thursday with a lawyer and said they’re looking into who was responsible for spreading the video."

Zero chance she will prevail on this.

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Saw the YouTube video of her interview on American TV. If someone at the mall circulated the video, she MIGHT have some recourse. Still, check out the exaggerated sad and shocked expressions on her and her lawyer, who are obviously looking for a big monetary reward.

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The woman is not even close to identifiable. Is a judge really going to allow a lawsuit to go through? Did someone say her name in the video? No one would have known who she is otherwise. Bizarre.

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Public place and silly people, their bad habits will eventually get someone injured or killed. Texting while driving or waking is You tube worthy at all times.

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Whatever the result of the lawsuit, my guess is the security guards involved will be soon looking for new jobs. Hope the giggles were worth it.

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"a simple walk down the street is considered wasted time"

As is a simple ride on the train or the bus or even the bicycle, lol.

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It's not the people who are the problem. These dumbphones should maybe have spacial awareness collision course sensors on them. They could coin a new name, like, er... Smartphone ???

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nandakandamanda: Smartphones do have GPS capabilities and cameras so having it "watch where you're going" doesn't seem so far fetched.

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If you were walking on the street your phone could alert you that you are approaching a crossing and whether the light is green or red.

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Similar scene here in Japan and I would guess globally.

I expect to see more Darwin Awards winner soon.

Good point raised was that the devices that your attention away from your surroundings and thus make you easy targets for criminals, etc.

Had one idiot on a bicycle and texting, rode in front of me than while texting he sharply turned and stopped to cross the road, nearly piled into him. He got to know what I though about him in rather uncertain Terms.

Seen many riders here leaning on the handlebars one hand with umbrella other with Keitai, wish the cops would hit them for the combined fine of 80.000Yen(50.000 for Umbrella, 30.000 for keitai) + extras.

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As for the Marrero case, Lady you did something stupid and funny in a PUBLIC place. Get a life.

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It seems that now the lady in the fountain is in hot water.

She has a criminal record and is in court for credit card fraud and theft.

Their is even speculation that she may have staged the fall.

All we know for sure is that she now only wants an apology (dropped the lawsuit) and the security guard has been fired.

This crap of texting while walking, riding or driving has got to stop and the laws need to be changed in accordance.

Last years while driving this idiot on a bicycle while texting drove strait into my car, I was driving in the right direction on a one way road and he was coming up the wrong way right in the middle of the road while texting I stopped my car beeped my horn but he just kept on texting and drove right into my car.

Luckily it was right in front of the Koban and the cops yelled at him because normally under Japanese road laws the car is always responsible.

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Best worst story was some Scandinavian guy a few years ago on the deck of a cruise ship, so drunk that when he dropped his beloved Nokia overboard he dove in after it and drowned.

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Recently I've been looking at my phone a lot while I'm walking ... because I'm using my maps app to figure out where exactly I am! But it seems this would be counted as being "glued to the phone to the point of distraction," when otherwise I would be getting lost lost lost ...

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Do it like the Bikers do, remember landmarks, etc.

We don't have a spare-hand time, sapce to check the map while riding. Takes a bit of practice and studying the map for 5 min before heading out.

My phone got GPS, used it twice for actual on-time navigation.

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This bothers me a lot in Japan. I can't count the number of times I have had to step aside for someone who would have walked right into me because they were engrossed in their cell phone. I also don't get why women have to carry their cell phones in their hand all the time. I leave mine in my jacket pocket and if there is a call, I can feel the vibration.

I fondly remember growing up when there were no cell phones, smart or otherwise, and we got along just fine without them. I bet if you took a cell phone off someone today and told them they'd have to go a day without using it, they'd go into a state of meltdown worse than a drug addict being denied his fix.

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I think the worst I've seen so far was in Asakusa. A very large man with a very small baby strapped to his chest, a cigarette dangling from his mouth (the man's, not the baby's), ON A BICYCLE, talking on his cell phone as he rode down a sidewalk crowded with Saturday-afternoon strollers--half of whom would stop in the middle of that same sidewalk to snap pictures of the new Tokyo Sky Tree...

Sheesh, you'd think he'd care about the welfare of his child, if no one else's...

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Smartphones are an increasing menace, BUT-the walking while engrossed in a PSP loser is the very worst perpetrator of all. These clowns, usually socially inept dorks to begin with are an absolute menace. About the only time I ever walk and use my smartphone is while using the map function to navigate somewhere new. Actually..... in hindsight the Psp boys are trumped by someone even worse: the walking smoker. I can't type here what I think of these loathsome "people" it would get deleted.

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smoking and texting on a bike equals not long for this world. But sadly these losers may take others with them to the great cellular cloud in the sky.

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To be honest, in Japan it has not made the already spacially challenged masses any more of a mess to navigate. 2000 or 2011, same story different gadgets. Smart phones don't seem to have had any impact.

What I find is the real problem, is that these phones have made it impossible for many of us to escape work or business, EVER. Aside from sleeping, flying and movies (when it must or should be turned off)or after death, how many people actually manage to escape their phones?

Even if you do, people will send message after message expecting you to be 24/7 - 365 available.

Sometimes I miss the old days where once you left the office, few could reach you. And if away from home, friends could leave a message and feel at ease knowing you would reply when you have time.

We have given up something precious for the convenience of universal connectivity. We have given up our private lives and personal time.

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IMO using a "smart phone" while walking or riding a bike or otherwise engaged is an oxymoron. Only simple-minded folks, who are so easily distracted or needlessly engrossed in what's on their screen, are the issue here. And, unfortunately, there are more than the fair share here in Japan.

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It amazes me how Japanese people can drive while smoking, drinking canned coffee, changing the CD in their stereo system AND check email on their phones. That takes REAL talent!

I find it endlessly frustrating when commuting to and from the stations to be stuck behind someone walking up or down the stairs as if in a zombie-like state, only to find that they are focusing on their cellphones, and not where they are going.

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For the Tokyo commuters I don't think Smartphones have made much of a difference - staring at an iphone while bumping randomly into peple has simply replaced staring at their feet (or to the side, or in the air, or anywhere but in front) while bumping randomly into people.

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It's like that lady on the youtube video who fell in a shopping mall fountain because she was texting. It's her own fault. But too bad if one steps out in front of a car and some innocent person is charged and jailed for manslaughter...

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I thought it was only in Japan that electronic device fixation has gotten this bad. In supposedly more social, groups of people play with their phones while at a party? HAHAHA!

And fountain woman deserves whatever comes to her. You do something stupid, you aren't allowed to sue whomever laughs at you.

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I actually seen a person walked into a light pole. It was really funny.

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