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Are Cell Phone Dangerous? Essay (Critical Writing)


Introduction

Cell phones are one of those elements of the modern reality that hardly anyone can handle without. Whenever there is considerable distance between two people who somehow relate to each other, cell phone is the quickest way to keep in touch and pass certain messages. While computer can be switched off and, thus, it will take quite while for the recipient to read an electronic message, a cell phone is something that is always close at hand, the device that is designed to serve its purpose best and the means to get in touch with anyone at any time in any place in the world where the cellular communications have been established. Therefore, it cannot be doubted that a cell phone offers a number of benefits to its owner and contributes considerably to the world communication and, hence, such important spheres as economics, politics and culture.

However, it is worth mentioning that using a cell phone involves dealing with certain issues that have the most deplorable impact on both people’s health, relationships between people and even on the environment. Thus, according to the recent research, there are certain proofs that the use of cell phones enhances the crisis in the world environment, hence, posing considerable threat to people’s health all over the world. Therefore, it is obvious that the use of cell phones involves a number of issues that have to be tackled with to come to the conclusion concerning the harmfulness of cell phones. Once assessing the impact that cell phones have on the environment, on people and on people’s activities, one is likely to come to certain deductions concerning the possible ways to decrease the negative impact of cell phones or the way to replace cell phones with a more efficient and less harmful device.

Literature Review

Whenever dealing with the latest innovations, it is necessary to keep in mind that the newest gadgets, no matter how promising or, on the contrary, threatening the prospects of their use might be, it is necessary to admit that the latest technologies have not been time-tested, which means that they have not been checked well enough to become completely suitable to substitute the existing ones, yet definitely possess the elements of the newest technologies to offer new options for the users. One of the most famous and by far the most popular, a cell phone, its advantages and drawbacks are going to be considered in the given paper.

Hence, it is most reasonable to consider both the adepts of cell phone usage and those who tend to think that the use of cell phones is rather threatening and should be prohibited. Once assessing both viewpoints, one is likely to come to the most reasonable conclusion. Therefore, it is required to consider both the positive impact that cell phones have on the fields of people’s activities and the negative ones that are most likely to hazard not only people’s health, but also the state of the environment.

The Viewpoint of the Cellular Network Adepts

Among the first ideas to consider, the one that manifests the use of cell phones as the most logical phenomenon and the key feature of the XXI century is the fact that cellular communications are part and parcel of the world development, and, hence, contribute to the evolution of the humankind together with the development of science and technologies. Despite the drawbacks and the obvious flaws of the present-days cellular connection, it cannot be denied that the development of cellular communications is a huge step on the way of progress. With the help of cell phones, people have finally reached the goal that they have been striving to for centuries, namely, transmitting the data to the other end of the world within seconds. Moreover, in contrast to the regular phone, the invention of Arthur Bell, cellular phones can be taken wherever the owner goes, which means that the problem concerning the disability to answer the phone call has vanished without a trace.

It is obvious that a cell phone has made the lives of millions people considerably easier. Therefore, it is necessary to consider some of the most essential advantages of cell phones. Hence, the progress of science and the triumph over space is going to be discussed.

The pace of progress

One of the main reasons to consider the cell phone industry progressive and rather promising is the fact that it is constantly developing, offering the users more options and more things to explore. With the variety of additional features, cell phones do remind of the futuristic novels and movies that seize ones imagination at once, which makes cell phones rather popular devices. Using the latest technological developments of the XXI century, the cell phone companies, on the one hand, suggest to blaze another path to the progress; meanwhile, on the other hand, the given gadgets lure people into exploring the new options, while the concept of a phone, namely, the device that is supposed to serve as a medium between the sender and the recipient, remains the same. The latter, however, passes unnoticed by most of the users.

However, it is also worth mentioning that in most cases, the idea of new technologies is cultivated artificially by the cell phone users themselves. Therefore, the popularity of cell phones rises without any noticeable changes in the cell phone design or set of functions. As Kavoori & Arceneaux (2006) asserted, “new meanings from new technologies are generally socially and culturally created. In the early years of cell phone development, for example, many people considered it a cordless traditional phone, thus keeping their mobiles at home, like a replacement or additional fixed phone […]. This fact is easily understandable from historical perspective about former uses of past new interfaces and communication media” (p. 36). Thus, it must be added that cell phones have still not become quite an integral part of the modern society.

When it comes in handy

It is clear that due to the efficiency of cell phones, people do not consider certain drawbacks of these gadgets as something that is likely to hinder the communication and convince people that using cell phones might pose certain complexities. Because of the convenience and comfort that cell phones offer, as well as the quality of the communication offered, people often disregard the obvious faults of the devices, considering that what has already been offered is good enough to demand something greater. As Bedau & Parke (2009) explain, the given viewpoint is rather widespread among the users of cell phones, thus, making it clear that technology is one of the most important priorities in the modern world – or, to be more precise, among the modern population:

And I do not think that reassurances from scientists that cell phones present no risks are the reason for the lack of attention to their dangers. Rather, the technology is so convenient and useful that actually taking the concerns seriously would be too much of an obstacle in our everyday lives. (p. 293)

Hence, it must be admitted that people are attracted by the ease which they can use cell phones with. Moreover, with the improvements of the existing design, the developers of the new cell phone models offer more options with each model that hits the market. Therefore, it is the comfort and the user-friendly interface that spurs the use of cell phones and makes them an integral part of a businessman’s or a secretary’s image.

What the Opponents Say: Save-the-Humankind Mission

Despite the obvious positive characteristics that one can give to such device as a cell phone, it is necessary to admit that there are a number of concerns for the device and the way it affects people and the environment. Among the most widespread ideas on the harmfulness of cell phones, one should stress the concern for the environment, namely, the way the use of cell phones affects the environment and whether the active use of cell phones can be the reason for high rates of the Erath contamination.

Moreover, it is believed that active use of cell phones might oust the live communication, which is rather undesirable, since, no matter how sophisticated and highly developed the mobile communications are, they cannot substitute a live conversation. Hence, it is quite believable that cell phones are likely to harm the way in which people communicate. Therefore, it is desirable to consider the effect that cell phones have on people and the environment closer, marking the consequences of the cell phone use.

The Earth is in danger

Among the most dreadful threats that cell phones are said to pose to humankind, the one concerning the environmental catastrophe is the most feared. Even though it should be noted that even the mass use of cell phones is unlikely to cause a disaster of Apocalyptic scale, it is necessary to admit that at certain stage of the cell phone industry development, the danger of contaminating the environment was quite tangible and had considerable scientific fundament to base upon. Hence, the issue should be considered from the viewpoint of the modern scientific ideas as well.

It is a well-known fact that used cell phones emit dangerous radioactive particles. Since very few people know how to get rid of the broken cell phones and know what threat the toxic waste which the used cell phones are, the environment, as well as people’s health, is in a hazardous situation. According to what Home Business Journal (2004) says,

Studies show that 500 million used cell phones currently stored away in closets and drawers will eventually end up in landfills, where releases of the many toxic materials they contain create threats to human health and the environment. (“500 million used cell phones,” 24 Mar 2004).

Hence, it is obvious that cell phones do presuppose certain threat to people’s health once the devices are broken and require urgent waste disposal. It is essential to mention, though, that there are few instructions on the way in which people should get rid of their cell phones. Hence, it is the lack of information that matters in the given case and causes problems (Ashton & Laura, 1999).

Communication issues

Even though it does seem absurd, cell phones contribute to decreasing the quality of communication and depriving people of the skills to communicate efficiently. Indeed, if taking a closer look at what the components of the mobile phone communication are, one will see that an incredibly important element is missing – the ability to see the vis-à-vis and see him/her react to a certain idea or phrase. Therefore, it must be admitted that a cell phone communication presupposes dealing with the lack of non-verbal component, thus, decreasing the quality and the effect of the conversation.

Hence, it can be deduced that cell phones contribute to the deterioration of live communication skills, which is rather sad in personal life and completely unacceptable when it comes to speaking about the job. As Burgess (2004) claims, “The cell phone may be about communication, but only in the most banal or unnecessarily businesslike of fashions, in some estimations” (65). Cutting the process of conversation to merely delivering certain messages, cell communication can be used as a supplementary element, but not the key means of communication. Otherwise, people are likely to lose their skills, creating “problems with face-to-face communication in public space” (Burgess, 2004, p. 65), Burgess (2004) assures:

In July 2002, the Liverpool City Council forbade its 19,500 employees from sending internal e-mails on Wednesdays, in a move designed to help employees realize the extent to which electronic communication might be worsening more interactive, direct contact and the shifting of responsibility for problem-solving. (p. 65)

In addition, it cannot be denied that cell phones pose a certain threat to people’s health. According to what Ashton & Laura (1999) state, “a plausible hypothesis is that mobile-phone headaches represent nature’s early warning of harmful magnetic field interactions with the brain” (p. 62), yet there is no factual proof to the above-mentioned statement. What has been actually found out was the fact that, when exposed to the radiation doses that are close to those of mobile phones, a human brain cells “react by releasing histamine” (p. 62), as Ashton & Laura explained.

Thus, it cannot be denied that cell communication does presuppose dealing with certain negative aftereffects. Moreover, the use of cell phones poses threat not only to the environment, but also to people’s communication skills, which means that the importance of cell communication should be reconsidered.

Addressing the Problem: Where the Truth Is

Being one of the most widespread means of communication for the people who cannot talk to each other directly, mobile phones at the same time are said to pose considerable threat to the well-being of the entire humankind, which calls for thorough research. Because of the double-sidedness of the cell phones effect, it is required that a thorough research should be conducted.

Therefore, it must be admitted that, due to the dual effect of cell phones, the conflict concerning their use is becoming increasingly topical. Being the most frequently used means of communication and at the same time the object that cannot be properly utilized in a number of countries, as well as the thing that is said to cause such catastrophes as the global warming due to its radioactive emissions, a cell phone is definitely a device that is worth a close consideration. Whether it should or should not be banned from global use is the issue of great significance for both the humankind and the state of the nature and the wildlife, which is why the problem has to be discussed.

Concerning the Conflict: The Pros and Cons of Cell Phones

Since a number of people, claim that cell phones are the pollutants that emit the matter which is supposedly hazardous for people’s health, it is rather reasonable that the use of cell phones should be restricted and even avoided; however, being the key element of the modern communication, a cell phone cannot be ousted from the sphere of the everyday use without crucial consequences, which creates quite a dilemma to solve.

However, it is worth mentioning that the harmfulness of cell phones has not been proved ultimately, which allows to suggest that the negative impact that cell phones have on people and on the environment has been exaggerated. Granted that the negative effect that cell phones have on the environment, the humankind and the wildlife has not been confirmed, it can be considered that cell phones are less harmful than most people suppose them to be.

Hence, it is strongly recommended that the effect that cell phones have on people and wildlife should be verified. Once the threat is detected, the possible means to solve it can be detected, which gives hope for the quick resolution of the issues. However, it is still necessary to admit that, due to the impact that cell phones have on the modern personal and business life, as well as the world economical state of affairs. There can be no doubt that without cell phones, numerous deals would have never been made because of the distance between the parties of the alleged agreement. Therefore, the issue in question, namely, the pros and cons of using cell phones is rather versatile and requires continuous speculations.

Discussion

Judging by the arguments driven above, one can see distinctly that cell phones offer great advantages for people to gain more comfort in their personal and business communications; however, cell phones possess considerable drawbacks as well, making people lose their skills of an everyday face-to-face communication and contaminating the environment with the radiation-emitting toxic remnants of the mainboard. Hence, it is quite complicated to decide whether cell phones should be considered a threat to the modern world or the means to communicate that cannot be replaced by any existing alternative. Analyzing the positive and the negative impact and assessing the degree of each, one is likely to come up with adequate comments and solutions.

Despite the idea that cell phones might emit radioactive substance that is likely to damage the ecosystem and cause irreparable harm to the health of the owner, people will still use cell phones simply because they offer the ability to communicate to literally anyone in any corner of the world at any time, no matter whether it is late in the night or early in the morning. Therefore, it is the ease and comfort that people seem to appreciate most in cell connection.

Moreover, cell connection can help people create even stronger and more important links, including the economical, political and financial ties. Indeed, since nowadays most companies tend to place their affiliates in various cities and even countries, it is crucial to be able to talk to a person directly when being actually miles away; offering a simulation of a live conversation, cell phones help to create links between people, which enhances both the personal relationships and the business affairs. Hence, it can be concluded that cell phones do have considerable impact on people’s lives and banning the use of cell phones can hardly be a solution.

In addition to the personal communication, cell phones also contribute to the development of the business relationships. There can be no doubt that with the help of cell phone communication, people from different cities and even from different countries can correlate their business actions, helping their companies to evolve and spreading their affiliates all over the world, which enhances the world market. Thus, it can be considered that cell phones help not only develop the interpersonal communication, but also enhance the growth of the business sphere.

Once being able to convey their ideas instantly disregarding the distance between the affiliates, the heads of various companies will be able to correlate their actions in a more sufficient way. Hence, it can be admitted that cell phones increase the authority and the influence of various entrepreneurships from all over the world, thus, spreading the ideas globalization and enhancing the effect of the latter. Without cell phones, the entire idea of globalization and the fusion of countries and cultures would be completely impracticable without one of the fastest means to get in touch with the people on the other side of the world.

Even though cell phones might be harmful for people’s health and bring considerable damage to the environment, it must be admitted that there is no alternative for cell communication when it comes to have a conversation across the space borders. Even though talking on a cell phone when making a call to another country might be somewhat more expensive than making a regular call, it is still worth noting that, in contrast to the regular phones, cell phones have made international calls considerably more affordable for most people, since the line is not engaged as often as it is when making a regular call.

Therefore, it can be considered that the use of cell phones contributes to the development of communication all over the world; moreover, cell phones have made it possible that people could talk to each other without any limit, which letters or e-mails presuppose. Hence, it can be concluded that the positive aspects of cell phone use are still to be considered. It goes without saying that with no mobile telephones, people would have lost a number of opportunities that allow them develop at present; moreover, people would have missed a large amount of the opportunities that they can opt for now, like the ability to listen to music while walking down the street, or receiving e-mails on their cell phones, and a number of other important trifles.

Despite their obvious positive aspects, cell phones still pose considerable threat to the modern society. Taking into account the specifics of the ay cell phones work and the radioactive substance that cell phones are said to emit, it is required to consider the issue of hazard that cell phones pose to the society. Since the use of cell phones might cause considerable harm to the environment and people’s health, it is necessary to reconsider the use of cell phones once and for all.

Taking into consideration the above-mentioned, one can say with certainty that the use of cell phones is quite harmful for people’s health. As it has been confirmed, cell phones emit the substance that harms people’s health. According to the reports that have been made so far, one of the greatest concerns for the XXI century as for cell phones use has been the issue of cell phones disposal. Since the latter are classified as a toxic waste after they have been used, it is obvious that used cell phones are even more dangerous than the ones that are still operating.

Hence, despite all the advantages of using cell phones, one must admit that the aftereffect of the cell phone use is still far too harmful to continue communicating with the help of mobile connection. In the light of the above-mentioned and the statistic data which marks that the number of cell phone users is growing, it is highly recommended that the impacts which cell phones have on people and the environment should be considered as soon as possible and the conclusions should be made.

It is worth marking that even the negative impact of mobile phones on people’s health is questionable, since no concrete results have been obtained to prove the above-mentioned. It must be admitted that there is certain information on the supposed radioactive emission that cell phones are responsible for. However, the given phenomenon is not enough to claim that cell phones are hazardous for people’s health or the environment. Therefore, it can be suggested that cell phones might be dangerous for people’s health and environment, yet there are no scientific trustworthy proofs for that.

In addition, the idea of cell phones being hazardous to the environment and the wildlife is rather far-fetched. Indeed, it is worth acknowledging that cell phones utilization problem is still an issue in a number of countries, yet establishing the required service is a matter of time. It is also important to mark that the radioactivity of cell phones does not cause much concern while phones are being in use, yet becomes quite topical as soon as cell phones stop operating and need to be recycled somehow. Therefore, it can be suggested that the alleged harmfulness of cell phones and the supposed radiation issue comes to the fore when a cell phone stops operating, whereas in its working condition, it is viewed as a useful device that helps people communicate. Hence, it is of utter importance to find out if cell phones pose a threat to the health of people and the state of the environment only when stopping operating.

Nevertheless, it cannot be denied that cell phones do emit radioactive waves. Therefore, their harmlessness is questionable. Although the principle of cell phones work is no longer a mystery, it cannot be denied that the issue concerning the harmlessness of the matter that cell phones emit is rather questionable, which means that the latter can be considered potentially dangerous objects and the possible threat for the world. Thus, cell phones should be rather classified as potentially hazardous devices. Moreover, even though the impact that cell phones radiation has on human body has not been measured yet, it is clear that the exposure even to a minimal amount of radiation is threatening for people’s health, which means that one should offer an alternative to cellular connection.

In addition to the hazard that the cell communication poses to the environment, one must note that the addiction to cell phones provokes an excessive use of the so-called “easy” communication that does not involve anything but the vocal component. Hence, it is evident that in the given kind of conversation, one of the most important elements is missing, namely, the non-verbal messages that are transmitted to each of the participants throughout the conversation. Getting addicted to the above-mentioned type of handling a conversation, people are likely to become dependent on it. Therefore, the participants of a cell phone communication are likely to lose the basic skills of a live interpersonal conversation, which, in its turn, will harm their personal and professional skills. Hence, it is obvious that cell phones contribute to a considerable extent to the communication regress, which is a sign that the excessive use of cell phones is likely to lead to the lack of efficient communicational skills and the inability to maintain a basic conversation. The latter being an obvious sign of a mental regress, one must say that mobile phones must not be used as a basic means of communication unless any other is unavailable.

Conclusion

To sum up the above-mentioned, one must mark that, even though cell phones have become an integral part of the modern personal and business communication, the use and the utilization of the above-mentioned devices must be reconsidered. It is obvious that the toxic waste that the remnants of cell phones emit due to the improper utilization is an extreme hazard for the environment. Therefore, cell phones are supposed to be replaced with another means of communication that presupposes a more careful treatment of the environment and the people’s health. Once providing a specific means of communication that will not pose a threat to the world, people are most likely to stop the environmental disasters that the humankind is currently facing, among them the most dreadful being the pollution.

Reference List

500 million used cell phones pose environmental threat. (2004). Home Business Journal. Web.

Ashton, J., & Laura, R. S. (1999). Perils of progress: The health and environment hazards of modern technology and what you can do about them. London, UK: Zed Books.

Bedau, M., & Parke, E. C. (2009). The ethics of protocells: Moral and social implications of creating life in the laboratory. Cambridge, Massachusetts: MIT Press.

Burgess, A. (2004). Cellular phones, public fears, and a culture of precaution. Cambridge, UK: University of Cambridge Press.

Kavoori, A. P., & Arceneaux, N. (2006). The cell phone reader: Essays in social transformation. Bern, CH: Peter Lang.

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IvyPanda. (2020, May 27). Are Cell Phone Dangerous? Retrieved from https://ivypanda.com/essays/are-cell-phone-dangerous/

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"Are Cell Phone Dangerous?" IvyPanda, 27 May 2020, ivypanda.com/essays/are-cell-phone-dangerous/.

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IvyPanda. "Are Cell Phone Dangerous?" May 27, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/are-cell-phone-dangerous/.

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IvyPanda. 2020. "Are Cell Phone Dangerous?" May 27, 2020. https://ivypanda.com/essays/are-cell-phone-dangerous/.

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