Date
25 May 2018
A survey by the Hong Kong Wan Chai District Association finds that some people in Hong Kong use their mobile phones as long as 16 hours a day. Photo: HKEJ
A survey by the Hong Kong Wan Chai District Association finds that some people in Hong Kong use their mobile phones as long as 16 hours a day. Photo: HKEJ

80% of Hongkongers use mobile phones during family meals: poll

On Mother’s Day this Sunday, we can show our appreciation to our mothers by putting away our mobile phones while having the family dinner.

The Hong Kong Wan Chai District Association made this appeal after a survey showed that most of its 2,884 members are in the habit of using their smartphones at the dining table with other family members around, the Hong Kong Economic Journal reports.

According to the survey, conducted from April 11 to May 7, eight in 10 of the respondents, all aged between 19 and 45, admitted using their phones while having meals with family members.

Asked how long they used mobile phones each day, 30 percent of the respondents said eight to 12 hours while 5 percent said as long as 16 hours.

More than half said their life could be greatly impacted if they did not use mobile phones for just one day.

Still, nine in ten of the respondents expressed willingness to stop using their mobile phones while having family meals.

Michael Ng Kwok-wing, chairman of the association, said it is a common sight for members of the family to be using their smartphones while together.

Ng cited his experience at a dim sum restaurant, where he saw a child watching short videos on the smartphone while the parents were also surfing the internet on their respective phones. He said it was supposed to be a family dinner, but there was no communication among the family members.

Ng said it is also impolite for people to take photos of their food before eating it.

He said Mother’s Day is one occasion where family members can start the habit of putting down their phones while gathered in front of the dining table, and use the time to communicate with each other.

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