Cell phones and men

While walking the SHSU campus, it is hard to miss the many students chatting on cellular phones. It is also difficult to avoid the occasional ringing phone during classes. There is little question that cell phone technology is a growing part of society, both on campus and off. The question is why? Why do students use cell phones? Are men or women more likely to dial up friends and family using the small hand-held inventions?At SHSU, it seems women are far more likely to use cellular phones, although men also appeared to make use of cell phones regularly.Dr. Douglas Constance, assistant professor of sociology, said sociological theories begin to explain the differences in how men and women make use of the available cell phone technology.”Functionalist sociological theory would assert that women naturally are more expressive and emotional. As a result, they talk more and keep in touch with their friends and families,” Constance said. “Similarly, men are much more instrumental and goal oriented. They tend to use phones for more business reasons and less in keeping contact with friends and family. Male Bearkats said while cell phones are commonly used among men in the business world, at the college level they primarily use them to keep up with friends. “I use my cell phone to talk to friends mostly; it’s also good to have one so in case of any kind of emergency, my family can reach me,” freshman Brandon Filla said. “It also makes it easier for the ladies to get in touch with me.”Constance agreed that in many cases, men use cell phones to form quick, convenient connections with friends. “I think, in general, cell phones are used more to keep up with friends than family,” he said. Some male students disagreed and said they frequently use cellular phones to keep up with happenings on the home front.”I use my cell phone a lot to talk to family back home,” Filla said. “I like to know what is going on with my family.””I almost always use my cell phone to talk to my family,” sophomore Dustin Savage said. “However, I also use it to keep up with friends and my girlfriend.”Savage and other male students said another reason they use cell phones is to take advantage of the cheaper long distance rates.”I use my cell phone as my only source of long distance,” Savage said. “It’s a lot cheaper that way and you don’t have to deal with the expensive phone companies.”Constance also noted differences in the amount of time men and women spend during telephone calls and said it can be viewed as a result of socialization.”A social constructionist perspective would argue that men and women are not naturally expressive and instrumental, but rather we are socialized by our society through our culture, families, friends, church and community to adopt our assigned masculine and feminine roles,” Constance said. “As a result of this learning, women talk more and longer on the phone and also talk about many more subjects. Men, however, tend to talk less often and in more business-like conversations that are short and to the point.”Men on campus said that whether it represents a socialized behavior or not, women do talk via regular phones or cellular ones, much more frequently.”I don’t know why but women just like to talk more, especially when it’s on the phone,” Filla said. “They like to use their cell phones to gossip more about drama. They also seem to use them on the road more often, which can cause accidents.”Men just don’t talk as much and so they don’t use cell phones as often,” he said. Savage said cell phone usage just depends on the person and cannot be confined to gender.”I think it’s a cop out to say men use them less, or women use them more,” Savage said. “It just varies depending on different things, like if you need to use a cell phone for your job.”Everyone is using cell phones now,” he said. “They are popular with both men and women and will probably continue to be.”

Leave a Reply