While this article from the Boston Globe spends much of its time discussing one of the reasons I can’t watch TV crime dramas, their consistent pandering to parents base fears, it’s the commentary on watching mobile device usage that is the most interesting.
… is there anything more irritatingly dull than watching someone else, even a good-looking actor, use a cellphone?
I see no evidence that the shows are protesting the small declines in quality of life that form the downside of the convenience of cellphones. I think it’s more likely that the annoyances associated with cellphones have grown so normal that they’re almost invisible. You so often see in daily life the scenario in which one person abandons another in mid-sentence to chat or tap away on some device, leaving the flesh-and-blood companion to wait for the conversation to finish, that the rudeness and boredom of it barely register anymore. So when actors do it to viewers, it feels like real life, only with better production values.
There is something about seeing it on the big screen that makes you realize how comparatively disruptive it can be. But these representations are seldom current. TV representations of mobile devices are either firmly routed in science fiction or reflect activities that have long since past.
The story of the crime drama and the cellphone