I hate to sound old, but smartphone use is becoming a distraction at shows. I know, you need to let everybody know that you are at the coolest show in town. I think your friends will figure that out after the first ten photos. No need to post all 1000. If you do take a photo, then remember to turn off your flash. The people in front of you don’t enjoy being blinded by bright lights. Believe me. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve had to sit behind the person who is trying to figure out Facebook live for the first time and decides to stream the entire show. I love paying $100 to see my favorite band only to have a super bright LCD held up in my face for two hours.
Sometimes I stop and look around when I’m at a concert to see how people are enjoying the show.
It used to be people dancing, enjoying their time with friends, or totally in sync with the music taking it all in. These days, it is half of the crowd looking at the show through a tiny little screen. Why watch what is essentially the world’s smallest TV when you are there at the event? Nothing can capture the feeling of a live show that you get from seeing, hearing, feeling, smelling, etc. Concentrating on your smartphone disconnects you from the real concert experience.
Don’t get me wrong, I love my smartphone!
I can’t get enough of gadgets, and this is the king of gadgets. It does everything, and it is with me everywhere. I just have to remember that I need a break from time to time. When the concert starts, the smartphone stops. I will check my email after all the face melting solos have occurred.
I must admit that I can see a great use for the smartphone at a live show. If you just found the next big thing at your local dive bar then maybe shoot a video to share with your friends. I wouldn’t stop everything to start a documentary on the band, though. Remember to enjoy the show. The band will respond more when you are rocking out to their songs. It is just weird to have everybody in the crowd pointing their smartphones at the band. They’ll feel like the footage will show up on DATELINE.
Next time you are at a show, make a point to try and enjoy it the old school way. Just be there in the moment and connect with the music. You’ll get more out of it when you remember to enjoy the experience of live music.
*UPDATE: Jack White recently banned cell phone usage during his concerts. I think he and I agree on some things.
You might totally disagree with me on this topic. If you do, then please comment below. Let me know your thoughts.
Photo credit: Roberto.Trombetta Flickr via Compfight cc