By Mike Pomranz
Updated September 24, 2014
Credit: © Wavebreakmedia Ltd UC6 / Alamy

We hope you’re not reading this article while dining out. If you are, chances are good that the person across from you is hating you right now. According to a recent study, only 28 percent of respondents believe it is acceptable to use your phone while eating dinner in a restaurant with others.

The survey, conducted by The Street, asked respondents if using a cell phone was acceptable or unacceptable under certain conditions. Some responses seemed pretty standard: Only 9 percent thought browsing your smartphone while watching a movie in the theater was all right, whereas 70 percent of those asked were cool with others being on the phone while watching TV (that still leaves a pretty uptight 30 percent).

But the restaurant-related responses were particularly intriguing. Of those surveyed, 69 percent called it “not acceptable to check messages or talk on the phone while eating with others in a restaurant.” Instagramming is conspicuously absent from the list of unacceptable behaviors though.

So what did we learn? For starters, the survey respondents are a bunch of hypocritical dirty liars. Have you ever looked around a restaurant? Nothing but the dim glow of screens as far as the eye can see!

For a skeptic like me, the real takeaway is that people at least want to avoid using their phones during dinner. It is the polite thing to do. But the road to liking something on Facebook is paved with good intensions.

What do you think? Is it acceptable to check your smartphone while having dinner out with friends? What if it’s under pressing circumstances, like an urgent text from a sibling or, finding out if your fantasy team got those last five points it needed on Monday Night Football?