Mobile Phone Communication Innovation in Multiple Time and Space Zones: The Case of Hong Kong Culture

Mobile Phone Communication Innovation in Multiple Time and Space Zones: The Case of Hong Kong Culture

Shirley Chan (City University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong), Douglas Vogel (City University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong) and Louis C.K. Ma (City University of Hong Kong, Hong Kong)
DOI: 10.4018/978-1-60566-054-7.ch171
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Abstract

In most parts of the world, it is generally considered impolite or even rude to pick up an incoming mobile phone call and to have a longer (and loud) conversation in public places. Yet this type of interruption is generally acceptable in Hong Kong. This inspired the authors to ask: How does Hong Kong culture impact the perception of mobile phone interruption? This research note is about an ethnographical study on the culture in Hong Kong indicating a more positive perception towards mobile phone interruption. Their research results show that the cultural characteristics of fast pace, deal-making and sense of urgency explain why Hong Kong people are receptive towards such interruption and have the habit of participating in both the physical and mobile spaces at the same time. Their findings also challenge the engagingdisengaging paradox theory - that is, mobile phone users find it difficult to simultaneously engage in parallel activities.

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