Tuesday, December 31, 2013

Spying on Your Kids!

Should Parents Spy On Their Kids? [MUO Debates]

by Ryan Dube
Do you spy on your kids? If so, why? If not, why not? This is the question at hand today.
Every now and then at MakeUseOf, we’ve covered various articles about spying on your kids’ computer or Internet use. Some examples include my article about cellphone apps to monitor kidsthe review of iSpy for monitoring activity on your family computer, Matt’s list of 4 tools for tracking activity on your home computer, and of course many reviews of parental control software.
With all of these, the big question is always whether or not it’s ethically or morally responsible to spy on your kids. When is there a good enough reason to do so? What’s a good excuse — their online safety? Their physical security and privacy? Or is it never okay to spy on your kids and invade their privacy?
These are the questions that we’re going to explore in this debate. Ryan Dube and Justin Dennis face off, with Justin taking the anti-spying stance, and Ryan taking the pro-spying stance. At the end of the debate, it’s up to you to vote on who you feel won the debate!
So let’s get started with Justin’s opening argument.

Justin: The Case Against Spying on Kids

Today, the technology exists for parents to spy on their kids in all sorts of ways, but that doesn’t mean that they should. I know it’s hard to believe, but children have some basic human rights as well, and I think that privacy should be one of them.
Now of course, you want to know if your child is getting into anything bad: talking with their friends about illegal drugs or drinking, planning to sneak out after curfew, talking to strangers on the Internet, etc. But the truth is, no matter how intently you watch their online activities, they will find ways around it. Unless you want to imprison your child in a room with absolutely no connection to the outside world, they’re going to communicate with other people without your knowledge.
Let’s say you find a way to track all the websites your children visit on the home WiFi, you track their text messages and phone calls, and you don’t let them have Facebook or any kind of instant messenger. Great. But what about when they’re at school? Or at a friend’s house? They can still do bad things and make plans to do bad things when you’re not around. They can use their friends’ phones or computers or public WiFi hotspots or proxies to get around your parental controls. You’ll never be able to fully control everything your child does.
In junior high and high school, I remember the Internet filters that the school used were seen as a joke. Everyone knew the websites and tactics for getting around them, and they still do. Censorship is never perfect, and where there are cracks in the system, people will exploit them.
You can argue that by spying on at least most of what your children are doing, you can have some sort of control or influence over them, but I have to say that the opposite is true. Children whose parents constantly stalk what they do, looking over their shoulder and reading every message and Google search, those children are the ones who want to rebel. They’ll grow sick of having no privacy and overprotective parents, and they’ll be much more likely to attempt bad things outside their parents’ watch.
Now of course, there’s no foolproof way to prevent your children from getting into trouble. In fact, it will probably happen no matter what you do. But respecting your children and giving them some degree of privacy will allow you to forge a much stronger relationship with them based on mutual trust, instead of them seeing you simply as an evil dictator who they must work to avoid.

Ryan: The Argument for Spying on Kids

Gone are the days when kids can walk free on the streets without fear of getting abducted. The communities where children are safe to roam is shrinking. As of 2010, according to the a National Survey of Children’s Health in the U.S., in 2010 a whopping 11.4% of parents sometimes felt like their kids weren’t safe in their own community. Nearly 3% feel like their kids are never safe.
Take it online, and the problems only get worse. According to the Journal of Adolescent Health, 26% of online sex offendors make use of social networks to get information about where kids live or their whereabouts during the day. If that isn’t scary enough, consider the fact that according to the National Center for Missing and Exploited Children, 1 in 7 kids receive some kind of sexual solicitation online at some point, and over half of those solicited are asked to send a picture of themselves.
These statistics prove there’s a very real danger to anyone under the age of 17 on the Internet. It would be completely irresponsible of any parent to not take an active role in monitoring a child’s use of the Internet, and making sure that the activity taking place doesn’t leave a door open for Internet predators to take advantage of a child’s naivety.
In 2012, I interviewed Russ Brown, the supervisor of the FBI Cyber Crimes Division in Boston. Russ advised that in recent years the FBI has seen an increase in what they call “sextortion” cases. That is, the child is convinced to send progressively more explicit photos of themselves, “extorted” by the fact that the perpetrator threatens to send the previous explicit photo to friends and family if they don’t send over more photos that are even more explicit.
The children that get into these situations are not stupid or immature, nor do they lack the understanding that there is a very real danger online that needs to be avoided. What children lack is the years of experience that adult have in dealing with people who may not be completely honest.
This isn’t a situation or a personality that many children are accustomed to, and the idea that someone who appears to be so kind online could actually be a terrible criminal is unfathomable by the teenage mind. It isn’t until the crime has been committed and it’s too late, that the child may understand the reality of the situation.
This is why it’s up to the responsible parent to install strong and effective filters and surveillance software, in order to track what sorts of IM software the children are using, who they are talking to, what social networks they use and who they are communicating with through those networks as well. The idea isn’t to spy or intrude into the private lives of the child — it’s to monitor for the tell-tale signs and red-flags that only adults with years of hard-earned life experience will recognize. To do anything less would be irresponsible, and even dangerous.
In the FBI interview in 2012, Russ said it best when he explained:
“So, is it a child or is it an equal adult with the same developed emotional capabilities as an adult? If you’re empowering your child at the age of twelve to be on an equal level as you are, then you aren’t really a parent anymore. Technically, they aren’t really mature enough to handle that stuff.”
The truth is, in a world where the Internet is as dangerous as it is today, a child shouldn’t have to handle that stuff. By appropriately monitoring and blocking things that could pose a threat, you can ensure that your child never has to do so, before they are old enough and emotionally prepared enough to handle the darker things that life can throw at them. But by then, they will have the tools necessary to recognize the threat, and to say no.

Justin’s Rebuttal:

Actually, the days when children could walk the streets safe are right now. According to a 2009 Salon article titled Stop Worrying About Your Kids, Crime has been dropping across the board for the last 40 years, and children are just as safe now, if not safer, than they were in the 70s.
However, I will agree that online predators are still a real threat. The best way to deal with this problem, though, isn’t to block your children’s access to social networks or instant messengers or spy on them. The best way to protect your children is to talk to them and warn them about the dangers of people who aren’t who they say they are online. Your children are smarter than you give them credit for, and educating them rather than spying on them shows that you respect and trust them.
Installing “strong and effective filters and surveillance software” can only go so far. Let’s ignore the fact that most parents today probably don’t know the first thing about Internet filters or surveillance software and assume that all parents are certified tech professionals. Even then, you can’t monitor everything your child does.
Teenagers can (and will) buy cheap phones, tablets, or laptops without their parents’ knowledge, and free public WiFi is then widely available. Younger children will use the computers or phones of their friends, or they will get around their parents’ Internet filters or the weaker filters at their school.
And then, because they are already defying their parents, they will not tell their parents about any of it. If your children have to sneak behind your back to do something, you won’t hear of any of it until it’s too late.
Instead of instating harsh rules and regulations that you (falsely) believe can’t be broken or circumvented, try building a genuine relationship with your children; educate them about the dangers that lurk online and make them feel comfortable talking to you about it.
A relationship of mutual trust between you and your child is the only real thing that you can do to protect them online.

Ryan’s Rebuttal:

Justin’s stance has two flaws in it. The first is the assumption that talking with kids about the potential dangers online is enough to ensure young children make the right choices when talking with strangers online. The second is the assumption that every kid out there is irresponsible and looking for new ways to circumvent Internet filters and visit sites that are inappropriate for kids under a certain age.
The reality is that Internet filter software and parental control software is made these days so that parents don’t have to be computer experts to use them. Secondly, and more importantly, those filters can be customized to be very lenient, even in many cases allowing all traffic through, but flagging parents when certain activity takes place, like inappropriate words during IM chats, new and unknown incoming email addresses, or IM contact activity.
Surveillance and filtering doesn’t have to be intrusive, it does need to be in place to ensure parents have their eyes open — and are not turning a blind eye — to what their children are doing on the Internet.
There is no argument here that talking with your child about the dangers that are present on the Internet — dangers that have most certainly grown since the growth of social networks and online gaming — is the single most important thing a parent can do with their child. However, just flipping the switch and opening the floodgates without appropriately monitoring who is communicating with your children is irresponsible as a parent.

Your Turn

So what’s your take? Is talking with your child enough? Is monitoring necessary? Share your thoughts and cast your vote as to who you felt made the best argument and won this particular debate.

Top Ways To Prevent Diabetes

Whether you fall in the high-risk category for diabetes, or are simply concerned for your health, do read the top ways in which you avoid getting this disease.

A healthy diet and exercise can help prevent diabetes. A healthy snack, by definition, is:

1. Low in fat, especially trans fat
2. Low in calories
3. Low-cholesterol
4. Baked rather than fried

A multi-grain snack made from oats, corn, rice, wheat and flax seeds are rich in fibre and provide wholesome nutrition. Oats, wheat have adequate amount of essential amino acids, vitamin B, calcium, iron and specially rich in cellulose whereas corn is an excellent source of iron, B` vitamins, magnesium, vitamin C, phosphorous and zinc.
Overall this multi grain snack brings you considerable health benefits along with great taste.

Of course, knowing what not to eat is as important as knowing what to eat. One should be wise enough to avoid fried, oily and generally high on calorie content snacks.
Besides this, healthy snacks are at the crux of reducing the chances of diseases, losing weight and keeping you energetic all day. The most important advantage of taking healthy snacks is that you do not binge later on foods that are unhealthy and may become the leading cause of obesity and other diseases.

Burn more calories that you consume - It is a healthy practice to consume fewer calories than you use. Eat foods that are not high in calories and increase your physical activity by walking more, taking the stairs whenever you can and making a conscious effort to stay active.

Be conscious of your measurements - A slim waist is not just a cosmetic vanity, it is also a sign of better health. We have a tendency to gain weight around our midriffs and thus it`s very important to make an effort to keep the inches off. Experts suggest that women should keep their waist measurement below 80 cm (31.5 inches), and men below 90 cm (35.5 inches).

Start eating smaller, more frequent meals - Many of us follow the policy of eating three solid meals a day. Consider changing over to the divide and eat policy. So if you`re used to eating 4 chappaties, eat 2 now and 2 after a couple of hours. Also, whatever happens, don`t skip breakfast.

Include fruits and vegetables in your diet - It`s time to take control of what you eat. Make a conscious effort to include plenty of fruits (whole fruits are far better than juices) and vegetables, especially green leafy vegetables, in your diet. The benefits to your overall health, sense of well-being and looks will be immense.

Gain with whole grains - Wheat, brown rice and oats are far healthier for you than refined foods. Make them a part of your diet and keep diabetes at bay.

There`s no escaping exercise - When it comes to prevention, the power of regular exercise is far greater than that of any medicine created. Through regular exercise, at least 30 minutes a day, you can prevent a range of diseases - from diabetes to heart disease. It keeps you feeling healthy, looking good and makes life far more enjoyable. If you`re not exercising already, start today.

De-stress - Experts have found a strong correlation between stress and diabetes. Don`t simply accept stress as a part of modern living. There are many things you can do to avoid and reduce stress in your life.

Quit smoking -
If you needed another reason to quit smoking, here it is. A study published in the American Journal of Epidemiology showed that a person who smoked 16 to 25 cigarettes a day was three times more likely to develop Type 2 diabetes than a non`smoker.

Reduce salt intake - Hypertension and diabetes have a very close connection. In fact, the prevalence of hypertension in the diabetic population is twice that of the non-diabetic population. So if you have any of the risk factors of diabetes or hypertension, take care of reducing your salt intake.

Check your blood sugar and cholesterol levels - If you fall in the high-risk group, i.e., if you have a family history of diabetes, along with any one of the risk factors listed above, you must get regular blood sugar and cholesterol checks.

Source: IBNS   

To All Esteemed Readers

Monday, December 30, 2013

Amazing Google Facts You Didn't Know

Fact #1: Believe it or not, the Google homepage is so bare mainly because Sergey Brin and Larry Page didn’t know HTML and just wanted a quick interface. Since then, Google has grown to be used by at least everyone on the planet, and processes around 20 petabytes of information on a daily basis. In the past 5 years, it has indexed over 50 billion web pages, and hosts over 620 million visitors a day.

Wednesday, December 25, 2013

Sam Njuba book reveals Museveni secrets

RIP: Sam Njuba's book was launched after his death
It was written by Besigye, says State House
Dead men tell no tales, goes an old English adage.
But in death, the former minister and national Chairman of the FDC, Sam Njuba, tells a gripping story about the war that brought President Museveni to power, and how the spoils were shared or – in his firm view –  squandered.
In a 320-page book, Njuba  reveals how he lived out “every single day” of his political life, his contribution to the 1981-86 National Resistance Army guerilla war, and  how he fell out with Museveni.
The book is titled The Betrayal, as Ugandans are taken for a ride again. It was launched at Njuba’s funeral last Tuesday.
Njuba gives a candid audit of Museveni’s leadership style, and a riveting insight into the workings of his post-war government.
Njuba’s eldest daughter, Stella, told mourners at her father’s burial at Nangabo in Wakiso district, that Njuba failed to print the book in his lifetime due to financial constraints.
“In recognition of his contributions, we decided, as his children, to bring his dream of having this book printed to reality,” Stella said, as she invited the retired bishop of Mityana, George Ssinabulya, to bless it. The first copy was bought by businessman Musinguzi Garuga at Shs 1m.
In the book, Njuba acknowledges that he took decades to write the book largely due to lack of materials, energy or providence.
“The original manuscript was collected and confiscated by the Kenyan police [May 1984]… the reproduced material again disappeared in London when I sought after a publisher,” he wrote.
He later came to look at these incidents as a real blessing rather than a setback. For he had an opportunity to reflect on the contents of his previous manuscripts, which gave rise to questions that resulted into an outright change of some of his earlier views.
During the liberation struggle (1981 – 1986), Njuba was the secretary of the external wing of the NRM. He says he was instrumental in recruiting youths into the rebel ranks.
He also coordinated their transfer to Libya for training and their transit to the jungles of Luweero. His contribution and that of others who were not recognized by earlier authors who published books on the NRM/A liberation struggle is what Njuba tried to bring to the fore in his book.
“Some writers, in their attempt to play heroism, ignored the major roles of many players and, either by omission or commission perverted some vital facts in the struggle. This cannot be forgiven, and it is criminal,” he wrote in the preamble.
He also directly attacks President Museveni for leaving him out of his (Museveni) book; Sowing the Mustard Seed, especially for his role in their trip to Libya to persuade former Libyan leader Col Muammar Gaddafi to support their struggle.
“By the way, Museveni, in his book, Sowing the Mustard seed, conveniently left me out as a member of this trip when he gave an account of this same visit to Libya, and only mentioned Matthew Rukikaire and Ndugu Rugunda,” Njuba notes.
“Maybe I was not worthy of mention because we had parted company, but history must be honestly recorded without prejudice, irrespective of the actors involved; otherwise, analysts will doubt one’s integrity,” he adds.
In Njuba’s account of the June 1981 trip to Tripoli, he says he was specifically selected to join the team because Museveni wanted him to be his witness, though he later on discovered that Museveni wanted to portray to Gaddafi that his (NRA) struggle was not entirely of people from one region of the country.
“It was a cosmetic assembly. Yoweri Museveni wanted to portray an image of nationalism, since the others were all from western Uganda…,” Njuba said.

Exile in Nairobi

During the 1980 elections, Njuba was an active member of Museveni’s Uganda Patriotic Movement (UPM). The duo worked together to found the Popular Resistance Army (PRA), later renamed National Resistance Army (NRA). When the rebel force launched its attack on Kabamba army barracks in 1981, Njuba felt betrayed that his colleague Museveni had not informed him.
“This was a deliberate attempt to sacrifice me and my family. Museveni did not care as long as his personal agenda proceeded as planned. I felt betrayed,” Njuba writes.
The betrayal Njuba speaks of results from the fact that rebels had used his car to visit places earmarked for the rebel camps. And he later discovered that by the time of the attack, Museveni had moved his family from John Kazoora’s house at Kabalagala, where they lived, and did not bother to inform him to relocate his family from Kawuku Ggaba.
After escaping death on three occasions following his 1980 arrest, Njuba says he started pondering his next move. He said he had three options; stay and die, flee into exile or join the armed rebellion.
“The February [6], 1981 attack on Kabamba came as surprise, but cracked my courage to stay in Uganda,” he writes.

Prof Ssajjabi

He moved to Nairobi, where he met a Ugandan insurance broker, Joseph Katende, who was later to link him up with Amama Mbabazi, Ruhakana Rugunda and Matthew Rukikaire, with whom they formed the NRM external wing. Because the Kenyan government was an ally of the Obote government, they adopted pseudo names to disguise their identity.
Njuba took on the name of Prof Yafesi Ssajjabi because his former student at Makerere Law School Amama Mbabazi had adopted the name of Dr Karyaburo. Njuba had also recruited another of his students Kale Kayihura (current police boss), who was sent to Libya for training. Kayihura was known as Rev Tebenda.
When Kenyan authorities started arresting Ugandan exiles, Njuba says members of the external wing forsook him and fled the country without alerting him. He later moved on to Papua New Guinea, where he secured a job as a university lecturer.
In Papua New Guinea, he met the late James Wapakhabulo whom he struggled to recruit into the struggle. Wapakhabulo was reluctant, because he perceived Museveni as a leader full of greed for power.
Wapakhabulo had been with Museveni at Dar es Salaam University, and his description of Museveni forced Njuba to question his own judgment. But he feared that history would judge him wrongly if he did not make his contribution to the struggle. He later on managed to convince Wapakhabulo, and soon they started to mobilize support for the rebel fighters especially in New Zealand and Australia.

Ethnic tensions

As the struggle progressed, there were rising concerns about the Bahima dominance of the leadership of the rebel outfit. Prof Yusuf Kironde Lule, who had become chairman of the NRM following a merger between Museveni’s PRA and Kironde Lule’s Uganda Freedom Front (UFF), would raise these concerns every time the two met.
“This, which I may loosely refer to as tribalism, is a thorn in the side of NRM. It has to be checked, else it may tear apart this country once again,” Njuba writes.
Maj Abraham Ssenkoma, a retired officer who served in the Uganda Army before the 1966 attack on Sir Edward Mutesa’s palace at Mengo, was identified to reinforce the rebel command structure. Ssenkoma, then an employee of the UN in Addis Ababa, was to deputise Museveni in the field command hierarchy but opted out after his attempt to join the rebel bases in Luweero was frustrated by some of his colleagues.
In various sections of the book, Njuba suggests Museveni wants to build an enduring, if narrow, ruling class.
“Museveni claims he is the only Ugandan with a vision for this country. He is resolute to build a class from his own ethnic group to lead Uganda, as the ruling clique forever,” Njuba writes.
Because of this fear, Njuba is not convinced by Gen David Sejusa defection. To Njuba, Sejusa, is a creation of Museveni.
“One will ponder and ask what of Gen David [Sejusa]? The answers are easy to guess. David is Museveni’s creation and is therefore, made to echo his statements irrespective of the truth,” Njuba writes.
Gen Sejusa, currently in exile in the UK, is Museveni’s tribesmate, whose agenda, according to Njuba, is pursuing a purely personal and selfish agenda, as he delves into their (Museveni and Sejusa’s) hatred of the Baganda.
He specifically accuses Museveni of being mischievous against the Baganda despite their goodwill and huge support extended to him during the liberation struggle. He says Museveni and his generals have accused the Baganda of being discriminative. He also offers a pointer into the decades’ long bad relations between Museveni’s government and Buganda kingdom.
“Museveni had his own mission and agenda. To him, anything that is an obstacle to achieving his desire must be crushed. It does not matter by what means.
“Because of his burning desire to rule forever and rule absolutely, Museveni sees the Kabaka and his subjects as stumbling blocks. Most Baganda don’t run to him for favours, nor do they worship him,” he writes, drawing readers into why he thinks Museveni continues to dole out financial hand-outs.
“In his view, if he is to have control over the citizens, they must be poor and submissive. It is his belief that in order to rule the people, they must look to none other than him as a fountain of survival,” he wrote.

In government

Njuba returned from exile on January 31, 1986 in the company of the late Dr Samson Kisekka, who was appointed prime minister, and Janet Museveni, among others. As he prepared to travel back to Nairobi to pick his belongings a few days later, he was informed that he could not leave the country without permission from the president because he had been appointed minister for Constitutional Affairs.
To Njuba’s surprise, neither the prime minister nor NRM Vice Chairman Al Hajj Moses Kigongo knew about the appointment. This he said, made him realise that the Museveni he knew had changed just a few days into State House.
“Nobody really sought to question the choice or selection of ministers as they were announced, because everybody believed in Museveni and trusted he practised what he all along preached – wide consultations. In fact, if he did consult someone before any appointments, it was a very small inner circle of his, possibly wife – a kitchen cabinet,” Njuba writes.
Njuba’s time in government, 1986 to 1993, enabled him to discover that Museveni’s style of leadership was not any different from that of Idi Amin. The only difference, Njuba notes, was that whereas Amin’s ministers feared to question his actions for fear of losing their lives, Museveni’s ministers avoided asking questions for fear of losing their bread.
“I recall one day, as we all woke up to the news that the president had appointed a one Cosmas Adyebo prime minister. I cannot remember to have seen him in Parliament. He was not conspicuous at all in the House before his appointment. I told a colleague this was a vote of no confidence in the existing ministers,” Njuba recollects.
Njuba and his cabinet colleague were later sacked. The book also gives an insight into what goes on behind the cabinet doors, where members are treated to embarrassing situations, largely because the president does not consult. He narrates two incidents. In One, Museveni, in his first government appointed Prof Musa mwene Mushanga as state minister for Defence.
The professor had not been consulted, but he honourably stepped forward to take oath to the amusement of everyone. It turned out later that Museveni in appointing Mushanga, he thought he had selected Amanya Mushega, a lawyer and an army officer.


“When Museveni saw Prof Mushanga step forward, he noticed the error. He instantly mediated. He had chosen Mushega and not Mushanga. He was the only person who knew the correct appointee. Amanya Mushega was called to take his oath to the embarrassment of the leadership,” Njuba says.
The second incident was when Museveni appointed a Makerere University lecturer as state minister for Barter Trade. When Museveni heard the lecturer’s name, he assumed that he was the same man he knew in Tanzania in the 1970s. Because he had not consulted anyone, he was surprised to see a young man turning up to be sworn in, Njuba says.
He consulted those next to him about the lecturer’s youthful appearance. The lecturer later travelled to Cuba with Museveni, and because he knew nothing about barter trade, Museveni asked him to find his way out of cabinet, and on return, the lecturer resumed his teaching job at Makerere, recalls Njuba.
“Museveni plays his cards close to his chest. He takes no one’s advice. Even where he did not know a thing, he refuses to admit it. Before long, he came to believe that he knew it all. He is a super human. This is how dictators are made,” Njuba notes.
“There is total lack of the ideals of the struggle, and it makes me wonder why the war that claimed close to half a million people was even fought,” he says.

State House responds

Former FDC President Dr Kizza Besigye, addressing mourners at Njuba’s burial recounted those times in cabinet when Njuba would pull him aside to tell him that from the way Museveni was managing the affairs, he was fast moving away from the ideals of the struggle. However, Presidential Press Secretary Tamale Mirundi dismissed the book as utter rubbish, casting doubt whether it was authored by Njuba.
“Why should a dead woman leave a will [stating] that some of the children are not for her husband? Njuba had time to bring these issues out when he was still living,” Mirundi says.
“Anyone would want to produce a book and defend it. Why did this one wait until he is dead? Those are Besigye’s lies, it was authored by Besigye, not Njuba,” he adds.
Just in case the book is his, Mirundi says, Njuba should have also written about his failure to produce a constitution during his eight years of service as Justice and Constitutional Affairs minister.
“Does he explain why he failed to produce a constitution in the [eight–year] period he served as a minister for Justice and Constitutional Affairs? He is the reason why NRM extended its term from four years to nine years,” he says.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Etiquette For Phones

Etiquette For Phones: Is Your Smartphone Making You Totally Obnoxious?

by Joshua Lockhart
We’ve gone over the standard smartphone social fare: don’t text during a conversation, don’t ignore friends to take a long phone call, don’t send text messages completely full with abbreviated words.
But that’s all we’ve done: don’t, don’t, don’t.
Instead, let’s talk about how to function in this smartphone-infused world. It’s been integrated in our daily lives – how do weuse it when among friends, co-workers, and family? What are the acceptable uses, and what aren’t the acceptable uses?

Taking A Phone Call

These days, it’s inevitable that we get phone calls that we just must answer immediately, despite the fact that just a decade ago, if the caller couldn’t get through to you, they would have to wait for you to get the message on your home answering machine. Social rules have changed, and current society desires a more immediate gratification of their needs as opposed to delayed. That said, you’re expected to answer your phone right away or at least call back in the next few minutes.
Rather than completely ignoring your phone, try planning andevaluating the situation instead. If you are expecting an important call, then be honest: “Guys, someone’s going to call me in a few minutes – mind if I take it?”
Of course, make sure to be reasonable about the situation. Are you among company which will be understanding? How loose or strict are social rules in your particular setting? Is this an important meeting or are you hanging out with a friend?

Someone Isn’t Answering

Put yourself on the other side of an unanswered call or text:you’re the one doing the calling or texting, and you aren’t getting any feedback. We’ve all been there. Two things in this instance:
  1. Don’t keep calling. If they didn’t answer two minutes ago, they aren’t going to answer now.
  2. Don’t send “???” texts. Those are annoying, too.
In short, be patient. There’s a variety of reasons for not answering your call. For instance, the person you’re calling may be in the middle of a meeting (as expected). Or even worse, they may – for whatever reason – have the ringer turned on, and it’s continually ringing wherever they are.

You’re At A Party

Parties are designed for social interaction between people, face to face. If you’re on your phone the entire time, you may very well appear stand-offish and rude. If you’re at a party, devote thirty minutes to not touching your phone. See what other people are doing.
Are over half the people texting and sharing funny pictures with the people in the room? Eh. Might be okay to play with your phone. On the other hand, if everyone is chatting and playing board games, then you may want to engage.

Texting A Co-worker

Before you get on texting terms with a co-worker, establish your relationship with them first. Texting is more of an informal way to address someone, but at the same time, they are quicker and often more useful than a phone call.
Are your texts exclusively for professional means – that is, are they solely work-related? Have your texts become more friendly, and are they acceptable outside of work? What about humorous pictures and animations?
That said, identify the line, and make sure you don’t cross it. This line is different for various co-worker relationships, so all one can advise is that you evaluate where you are.

While In The Car

Riding in the car with your friend? Make sure your phone habits aren’t too distracting to them while they are driving. A few things to consider:
  • How bright is your screen? It could be distracting for the driver..
  • Are your phone calls a nuisance to them?
  • Would it be beneficial to them if you navigated using your GPS?
  • Planning to go eat somewhere? Make a reservation on the way.
It’s easy to think, “Well, they are doing their thing, and I’m doing mine“ while in a car. However, what most people do not consider is that the person with you is driving a 2-ton vehicle at 70 mph. You don’t want to be a problem for them.


How to View and Delete Your Location History on Facebook

By  Nancy Messieh, If you have the Facebook mobile app installed on your phone, chances are it’s storing a lot more of your location hi...