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why do we have to answer a ringing phone





radel
Don't you realize that when a phone rings you have the choice of answering it or not?

And yet we pick up the phone AUTOMATICALLY, without going through our choices.

**********
Ivan Pavlov's experiments on Classical Conditioning involved dogs, a bell, and food. Everytime the bell rang the dogs were fed.

Eventually, the sound of the bell itself was enough to cause the dogs to salivate.

**********

So why do we automatically pick up the phone when it rings? You know you don't have to pick it up.

You can CHOOSE when or where you will take calls.

Or are we becoming like Pavlov's dogs?
Hogwarts
Well for one, it's the polite thing to do. It also shuts the thing up Razz

Secondly, people realise they have the choice. If somebody who I don't like phones me, I'm not going to pick up. Yet, if it's not for me I feel obliged to pick up (Unless stated otherwise) because it is not my choice. If somebody doesn't want to answer phone calls, they'll just turn their phone off Wink
Liu
I think you've completely misinterpreted the experiment conducted by Pavlov.

The dog's salivate because they can't help it anymore as it's habit. It has become an uncontrollable reflect.

I pick up the phone because someone is trying to contact me. It isn't uncontrollable to not pick up the phone.
Peterssidan
If someone phones me on my cell phone I always take it because it's to me and it is rarely someone that calls me. If I'm at home I often wait so that someone else takes the phone because it's not often to me. If there no one in the surounding I will take it. If I'm in bed and tired I will lett the phone rang out.
eku53ru
In my house, the phone that the main line is connected to is incapable of any volume outside of freakishly loud, if I'm not mistaken (my parents seem to not mind the noise, even though we've had calls at the strangest hours before). They haven't thought of replacing it, and I guess it's because the last phone we had lasted for more than a decade before the receiver went haywire. As a result, picking it up will save the ears of people in my family.

I don't think we'll be going near Pavlov's dogs anytime soon, seeing as we were not trained by someone to pick up a phone when it is ringing, whether we want to or not. I sometimes feel bad when I hear a phone ring nonstop, but it hasn't bothered me enough to force me to pick up any or all phones near us.
desertwind
I don't answer to all phone calls, if i'm busy and if there's a call from a friend or a relative or an unknown number, i'll just cut it. But if it's from my manager or so, i'll answer.
shamy
may be I wish get good news , may be I wait some one call me , may be I used to answer when it ring , there is no same reason every time....
Zampano
The reason I answer the phone is that I expect a certain amount of times to result in receiving important information, and sometimes receive useless stuff. That's a risk we decide to take, though. We value the possibility of important info so much that we risk telemarketers, etc.
Soemtimes we might even be happy to be able to talk to some one; human interaction is a basic need.
rheanna
I never answer my phone.. Only if it's realitives and my friends that's it. Anyone else can leave a message and I'll call them back. I screen them before answering it.
Sensei-kun
well, my brother has his own gardening business going on and has our phone number on his business card. So we get alot of phone calls of his customers, and I mean alot Shocked

they get irritating as hell, so from a certain point I just started ignoring the ringing -_- if it's urgent they'll call back. + there are other people then me in the house, they can pick it up so I don't have to Very Happy
Sick-
thats maybe the best question ive ever seen Laughing well i think that people answer to phone because someone wants to talk to em... i think.. Rolling Eyes well i answer to phone couse of that...
MrBlueSky
9 out of 10 times I don't pick up the phone when it rings. Only when I recognize the number and I indeed want to talk to that person. If people really want to speak to me they will have to leave a message.
furtasacra
Under normal circumstances, sometimes I answer the phone, sometimes not. It depends on who it is and what I'm doing. However, right now I'm job hunting, so on weekdays, I always answer calls from numbers I don't recognize... it could be somebody calling to schedule a job interview.
Josso
For me it's curiosity but with most phones actually displaying who's calling I pick up the phone less these days.
Zug Zug
^_^ I screen my calls-I only pick it up if it's someone I know-and sometimes I allow it go to go the answering machine. If they don't leave a message then I figure it wasn't important anyway. O.o not like I have to answer it lol. Anywhoo catch ya later.

<3

Meghan Laughing
radel
I just wanted to point out that we've become so attached to our phones that we answer a ringing phone automatically.

Screening our calls or caller ID's are helpful in identifying the caller and they may help us decide whether or not we want to take that call.

But there are times when we shouldn't be bothered with calls.Why do we keep our phones ON during bedtime? During meals? When we're in the shower? These are situations where we can do without the bothersome ringing of our phones.

For me, it's really all about classical conditioning:
Just like Pavlov's dogs who salivated at the sound of a bell, we've been conditioned to respond without conscious, deliberate thought to the ringing of a phone.
Zampano
radel wrote:
I just wanted to point out that we've become so attached to our phones that we answer a ringing phone automatically.

Screening our calls or caller ID's are helpful in identifying the caller and they may help us decide whether or not we want to take that call.

But there are times when we shouldn't be bothered with calls.Why do we keep our phones ON during bedtime? During meals? When we're in the shower? These are situations where we can do without the bothersome ringing of our phones.

For me, it's really all about classical conditioning:
Just like Pavlov's dogs who salivated at the sound of a bell, we've been conditioned to respond without conscious, deliberate thought to the ringing of a phone.

Well, one doesn't turn the phone off because they don't really care enough to do so, and don't expect a late-night call.
Generally speaking, people are not attached to their phones.
E-MAIL, now that's the attachment!
darvit
MrBlueSky wrote:
If people really want to speak to me they will have to leave a message.


I go by the same philosophy. Smile

Unlike back in olden times where called ID was just but a dream, we now have a choice--and I choose to screen my calls. Smile
HoboPelican
radel wrote:
I just wanted to point out that we've become so attached to our phones that we answer a ringing phone automatically.
....
But there are times when we shouldn't be bothered with calls.Why do we keep our phones ON during bedtime? During meals? When we're in the shower? These are situations where we can do without the bothersome ringing of our phones.
....


Two points. First, in reading this topic, it seems that a LOT of people don't answer the phone automatically. I fall into that group. Our home line doesn't have caller ID, so I screen every call with the answering machine. If I want to talk to the caller, I pick up.

Second, the reason I (and I suppose others), don't shut it off at certain times is because friends and family have emergencies at all hours. If one of my friends calls at 3AM, I know it isn't frivolous, but a real emergency and I want to know about it.
TruPain
If I know someone is trying to get a hold of me, I answer the phone, otherwise, they can leave a message. I am not about to waste my time talking to or hanging up on a telemarketer... If the person trying to reach me really wants to talk to me, they will leave a message.

And besides that, too many calls are coming from automatic dialers, nothing I hate more than answering the phone to hear a recording for me to call them back ><

Needless to say, if you feel like you are a salivating dog, perhaps you need to ignore the phone a couple of times... or tell whoever is calling you not to call at the same time every day.

If at noon everyday, someone wacked you with a stick, yes, it would become habitual for that time for you to anticipate being wacked and maybe cause fear for noon... (such as the dog experiment)
If on the other hand, someone just wacked you with a stick daily at no set time, then you would only anticipate being wacked, but would really grow no fear of a certain time... (such as your phone thought)
crimson_aria
In my case, I don't. If it's my mobile, I try to see first who the caller is, if he's someone really important like my parents or relative, I answer it immediately cause they call, it's something really important. If it's a friend, I wait a little before answering.. maybe they're just trying to alert me.

If it's the telephone, well, I used to answer telephone calls immediately. It's because I know it's mine, the caller is definitely going to look for me. I used to use the phone a lot before But I no longer do it now. I wait for someone else to pick it up. If it's bothering me, I put on my headset so I couldn't hear it. XD
guugu
I rarely get any calls... still i dont always answer those if i dont see who is calling... magazine sellers :F
guissmo
Um, because you wont know if it's important or not?

And it wont be noisy?
CMA
Pavlov's experience was quite different from what you interpreted. The dog salivated because it got used from the beginning that bell ringing = food. When you get a phone for the first time, nobody forces you to pick it up, so you can't create a forced habit like in Pavlov's experience.

People pick up phones for a couple of reasons...
- First, because the noise can be annoying, although if it is a cell phone you can always mute the call and leave it unanswered, cut out the call completely, or simply set your phone so it won't ring.

- Secondly, for the politeness. When someone calls you it's because they want to speak with you. Ignoring your friends and family can be bad, but it's ultimately your choice if you want to speak to that person or not. When someone who I don't want to speak to calls me, I usually cut off the call and turn off the phone for a few moments. I can always say my battery died or that I walked into an area without signal covering.

- Third, curiosity. Especially when you receive calls from people whose number you don't recognize, or when you simply can't see the number. Most people, however, choose not to take calls from people they don't know.


So as you see, the reasons why a person would pick up a call can also be coupled to reasons NOT to pick them up at all.
furtasacra
radel wrote:
I just wanted to point out that we've become so attached to our phones that we answer a ringing phone automatically.

Screening our calls or caller ID's are helpful in identifying the caller and they may help us decide whether or not we want to take that call.

But there are times when we shouldn't be bothered with calls.Why do we keep our phones ON during bedtime? During meals? When we're in the shower? These are situations where we can do without the bothersome ringing of our phones.



I actually DO usually turn the ringer off when I'm taking a bath, LOL, it almost NEVER FAILS to ring when I sink into a tub full of hot water.

I think the reason most people leave them on when they really don't want to be bothered is this: it simply doesn't occur to them to turn the stupid thing off until it rings at a very wrong moment, i.e. during dinner, during sex, while showering, after bedtime, etc. etc.

And of course, there is always the frightful danger of forgetting to turn it back ON again later. My God, I could miss an important call from a telemarketer! Laughing
Cedar Speeder
I'm addicted to screening phone calls. Sometimes I don't like the surprise of an old friend calling me.
Davidgr1200
On a similar subject, why do people interrupt conversations to answer their mobile phone? I think it is very impolite when someone stops listening/talking to me and prefers to answer their telephone. Sometimes it seems it would be easier to get someone's attention by speaking to them via the telephone even if they are standing next to me.
Similarly it seems very rude when someone speaks into their telephone the whole time they are checking out their goods at a supermarket.
Tvis
A lot about the subject has already been said. Normally on your cellular people are trying to reach you especifically. On a house phone indeed I agree can be all kinds of people even the banks that try to sell there services. But your cellular usually is only the people that you gave them your number. I hardly get any commercial calls on my cellular. And yes, I also don't pick it up sometimes if it is someone I don't feel like talking to. But the phone is something holy. Especially in a country like Mexico. No matter to what people you are talking, if the phone rings, they pick it up. Leaving you out in the cold for at least a few seconds. Sometimes it really bothers me. But what can I do to change that? If I'm talking to someone I tend to shut down the phone and reply a few minutes later saying I wasn't able to answer. just of being polite.
Vrythramax
I use caller ID so I don't usually answer it if I don't know the caller...I just let the answering machine handle it after 4 rings.

Some may considering answering the phone the "polite" thing to do, but the callers themselves may be acting impolitely when they let the phone ring 20+ times. I would think that after 5 or 6 rings that the person isn't available, or involved in activity that doesn't allow for answering the phone (i.e. taking a shower, in the bathroom, etc.).
bartdou
This is a quite complex question which looks simple, to answer this question correctly, we have to begin with the relationship between human and universe..................................................................(about 5000 words omitted), So most people pick up the phone automatically when hear the ring. (funny question?)
shwetanshu
depends on my mood... if someone calls on the landline, if i know the number i pick up the phone, else i let it rig

if its on mmy cellphone, i mostly recieve the calls..
scorpiosemotion
Cool I know longer pay attention to my phone. The ringing has become music, and music I am quite found of, so I get to hear my favorite songs everytime they call... Let the damn thing ring I don't care, I probably didn't want to talk to them anyway. I'm a phone recluse! These days an IM recluse as well, never know whatcha gonna get, yet time marches on and everyday is exactly the same. Sorry for the randomness there...
FaLLeN
Hmmm ive never really thought about that.
I think id like to think about that while high, when my mind is free of everything but it's self. All i think about is nothing, and anything i think about is everything...its so peaceful...but anyways, i guess it is a reaction and it also stops the bloody thing from ringing!
Shin
No I don't pick it up everytime. If it's my mobile phone I will check who's ringing, I will then decide whether to answer it or not. If I don't answer it I will just turn off the ring, let it goes to my voice mail.
Qube
I almost NEVER pickup my house phone.
Anyone that's important enough to call me I've given my cell number.
That way I can know who's calling (house doesn't have caller id) and not have to leave my room to answer.
How lazy is that? Hah.

That is, of course, unless I'm expecting a call.
Then I'll just keep the phone in my room.
Otherwise you better call my cell, and even then, it's not guaranteed.
PS: I think this is only for the US, not sure, but checkout the DNC.
hofodomo01
Right, I usually (mostly) ignore the phones, unless it's from somebody I know. Especially if it's from like, 1-866-xxx-xxxx....gahh telemarketers...

Sometimes, I wanna do something by myself, and my friends just banter too much...
charisco
Well, to be honest I think the main reason we answer the phone is habit. Just like whenever you are asleep and the alarm clock goes off, most people roll over and hit the snooze button out of habit. Is the 5 or so minutes of extra sleep we get by hitting the snooze button really going to help us feel more refreshed? Probably not, yet we get so used to doing this that it becomes automatic.
furtasacra
Davidgr1200 wrote:
On a similar subject, why do people interrupt conversations to answer their mobile phone? I think it is very impolite when someone stops listening/talking to me and prefers to answer their telephone.


Oh, GOD how I hate that!! Particularly during a meal. And even more during meal that I personally cooked, and invited the person over to share it with me. That implies disregard for my hospitality, and being a (slightly old-fashioned about some things) Southern girl, that's darn near a fightin' offense. I have gotten into the habit of asking friends to turn off their phones at my house after dinner has been served.

Quote:
Sometimes it seems it would be easier to get someone's attention by speaking to them via the telephone even if they are standing next to me.


No kidding. I might actually try that sometime. It might just work.

Quote:
Similarly it seems very rude when someone speaks into their telephone the whole time they are checking out their goods at a supermarket.


That doesn't bother me so much, but here's something that I find very disconcerting: when a stranger makes eye contact with me, smiles, and says "Hey! How are you!" I smile back and say, "Fine, thank you," and they look at me like I've lost my damn mind. Then I realize they're on a phone with a little tiny headset that I didn't see right off, and feel stupid. Embarassed

Evil or Very Mad Rant!
If you're going to have phone conversations in public on a headset, you shouldn't look directly at people who are physically in your presence while you are speaking; they tend to assume they are the one being spoken to when you don't actually have a phone in hand.

Making people feel stupid for trying to be friendly is very, very rude.
End of rant, thank you for letting me get that off my chest. Smile
Seiji
I rarely pick up the phone when it rings since its mostly solicitors. I barely talk on the phone anyway. I'd rather IM a friend over the internet than talk on the phone.
Fright Knight
such an intelligent question. Hmm.. let me guess... I don't know why. Maybe because we believe that it is always an important call from someone important. is it?

I remember back when me and my sister were kids. we always run towards the telephone. having a race on who will answer the phone. Quiet stupid to hear but it was fun. I remember slipping on the floor a couple of times. hehe
The_Gamer294
my phone has a ringer switch and caller id Smile i answer it whenever i feel like it
sanwixh
Of course you have to pick, that's the purpose of having a phone, for people to reach you as well as reach them. If you were on the other line wouldn't you be annoyed if the person your calling didn't pick up even though they are on the other side? It's just common courtesy.

Another reason maybe because its already in our programming, it is common practice and could be even said as a "Reflex" action
Nameless
The way I see it, a ringing phone is the conversational equivilant of calling to somebody "Hey, [name]!" or some other generic greeting. To NOT answer would be rude. Also, even with call id (if it's a number you don't recognise) the phone call COULD be important so people will answer just to check. If it's a telemarketer you can always just hang up instantly, after all.
seanooi
I rely on my cellphone at all times. And I really find the ringing sound annoying that is why my phone is always on silent.
I only answer calls that I want to, other than that, if I know the person who's calling me is going to be an annoying one i'd leave the phone aside. Laughing
skygaia
Well.. actually, I have not thought about it.
It's a kind of manner? if someone gave me a call while I was not there and I knew that someone called me then I might be wondering who gave me a call Rolling Eyes
JBotAlan
I know that I get really ticked off if I can't get the person I'm trying to call to pick up their phone. I can't stand it when I get the fourth ring from more than one person within 5 minutes. So as not to be a hypocrite, I make sure to pick up the phone when it rings.

Then again, there are times that it is really inappropriate to call; texting is more suited for some of these situations; meetings, for example. But a reply of some sort is warranted. Unless that person is harassing you.

Letting your phone ring around others--that's what's rude.

JBot
Mare
I think it totaly normal to answer the phone widouth any thinking...

First of all, someone DID dial your number so someone wants to talk to you..

Second, it realy might be inportant and our curiosity is very strong that moment...

Third, (I'm quoting someone) It's polite to answer the phone...

My opinion... Very Happy
Bluedoll
Why is it that I usually know who it is. If I fell like it great otherwise I let it ring then call someone later and say, "did you call me earily?" Ok, I know there are better ways but I am not running an office and love it when people think I am way behind the times.
jylan
I always answer the phone, as it could be important. I think it is rude not to pick the phone up.

What I really don't like is if someone rings early in the morning and I am still in bed. Confused .
[FuN]goku
Well usually.. i look @ Call display... Since i live with my dad on weekends and my grandparents through the week... When i check it at my dads if its long distance/blocked call/unknown name/number i dont answer it... if its someone i know on it ill answer it.. if not then i dont bother. However @ my grandparents this is not the case..... I still look at call display but ill answer it more often... most of the time its telemarketers i can tell off Razz
hack_man_
Hogwarts wrote:
Well for one, it's the polite thing to do. It also shuts the thing up Razz

Secondly, people realise they have the choice. If somebody who I don't like phones me, I'm not going to pick up. Yet, if it's not for me I feel obliged to pick up (Unless stated otherwise) because it is not my choice. If somebody doesn't want to answer phone calls, they'll just turn their phone off Wink


Completely true...

But if you are like me who has a really bad phone provided free by the phone company that does not have Caller ID, you are forced to answer it to find out who is calling. Then is when you realise if picking up the phone was a mistake. The other day I was phoned by a old "friend" who just thought that I was his friend, but I actually hated their guts. I was stuck on the phone for hours as he rambled (and mumbled on).

I have since bought a phone with Caller ID. Razz
molif
nowadays, all phones have caller id, provided if u subsribe with the phone services.. its helpful.. but its irritating when i receive calls from private caller...
Idoru
I belive the core of this question is ego. We like to feel needed, wanted, important,
and the phone symbolizes that for us. When some one tries to reach us the ego
feel a bit good about it, no matter what. To not answer produces a feeling of ignorance
and is concidered rude.

We've built a network for communication sometimes so self-fullfilling that we let it
use us. We even make those taking the stand not to be used feel guilt, since they
actually proclaim that their ego sometimes doesn't need false confirmation to
feel good. Wink
Disaster-Pieces
"Don't you realize that when a phone rings you have the choice of answering it or not?

And yet we pick up the phone AUTOMATICALLY, without going through our choices"

I dont know Razz When a phone rings to me it sounds like "GET UP YOU LAZY CRAP! PICK ME UP NOW!" so thats why i awnser it... sometimes...
hack_man_
molif wrote:
nowadays, all phones have caller id, provided if u subsribe with the phone services.. its helpful.. but its irritating when i receive calls from private caller...


Nowadays, monopolized Arab phone companies are cheap-skates who try and con you out of every penny I have...

Q: "Why is my broadband so slow?"
A: "It is not our fault, it is yours..." *disconnects*
Dean_The_Great
I check call display, and answer the phone hoping that the caller has a purpose.

In regards to pavlov's dog... a more fitting example would be if the phone rang, and we always picked it up, and there was no one there. If that kept happening, would we pick up the phone anymore?!
PatTheGreat42
You don't have to pick up the phone. But you do. That's your own thing.

Think of it this way: either the machine will get it, or if it's really important, they'll try again.
R2.DETARD
(i bolded the entire point of my post)

Its part of the communications heirachy.
1:Human contact.
nothing gets you to listen better than someone standing in front of you, If needs be, you may be physically forced to communicate.
2:Letter.
When is the last time you got a letter(an actual letter, not just an ad or bill) and decided not to read it?
3:A Phone Call
What we are discussing. You can choose not to answer it, but it is probably important so you do.
4:An e-mail
Easily ignored, but less so than text messages or an IM. It can still be semi-official.
5:Text message (SMS)
Because it costs money, its slightly more official and important than IM
6:IM
Barely even communicating, ignored about as much as a windows error message.

That is my personal order of communication. Depending on how much you want the listener to pay attention/respond the lower the number you choose. The downside is that the overall time pretty much increaces the more you want to communicate with someone.
They are also in order of oldest-newest, technologywise, that is part of the reason we have to answer a phone, we are socially obliged to. If we didn't have a system like this, everyone's time would be wasted.
The government will be sending you an AIM message that your taxes are overdue, and that guy you met at that conference will be flying over from New Zealand to say:
"hey"
j_f_k
What if its the guy from the lottery company and youve just won a million dollars?

Of course with mobile phone you know who it is - and can choose to not answer the phone.

As an interesting experiment try going into a room full of work collegues and yell 'ring ring ... ring ring' at the top of your voice and see how much attention you get. However people know its you.
zichlone
I believe the reason people always answer the phone is because most of cannot stand not knowing who is calling us and what they have to say to you (if you have caller id im talking about blocked numbers) or your just lonely and want to talk to someone very very bad
master12
This sounds a lot like the monkey see monkey do theory...

I pick the phone up because the ring tone (old phone) is so loud and obnoxious that I just want to smash it. (It reminds me of my alarm clock and I want to smash that too.) Also, I don't usually pick the phone up at my house but when I do it's when no one is around too answer it.

But looking at it from another angle, the reason most ppl pick up the phone (in this house) is because there is a possible important call that has something to do with your job or an emergency aroused.

In some cases, yes it is normal to automatically pick up the phone when it rings without thinking but most of the time I disagree with this statement.
seagullspirit
this is a misinterpretation of facts. First of all if you have a cell phone and it rings I kindda guess you bought it to be able to receive calls and 2nd of all the reason they invented caller id, so you'd be able to ignore whoever you want Very Happy
riv_
Lots of people don't answer their phones. That's why they have answering services, answering machines, call display, caller ID, email, etc.etc.
It seems there are different types f people. THere are healthy introverts, who sometimes answer the phone when it is convenient. Healthy extroverts, who always answer the phone when it is not inconvenient.
Unhealthy introverts never answer the phone. Unhealthy extrovert have to answer the phone/cell etc. whether it is convenient or not.
It's a theory anyways... Wink
Crazy_Canuck
bartdou, that's a funny answer!

Actually, the TRUE answer to the question: "why do we have to answer a ringing phone" is that if you answer a non-ringing phone, there probably won't be anyone on the line.

Very Happy (sorry, couldn't help myself)
starfish2007
with me i see no need to answer thephone athome because its almost never forme andmore offen then not its oneof thos people trying to sell somthing. I let eather the voice mail pick it up or let myparence answer insted
datter
I rarely if ever answer the phone.
ambit
I usually do not answer the phone when it rings. Talking on the phone is not my favorite activity. I would rather email or text message someone instead. I never answer my house phone with all the telemarketers out there.
TwilightXZone
Funny how I do pick it up. Probably mostly because of the fact that I'm excited that it might be my friends:D But I guess it's also cause if I don't answer it, no one will.
Fake
The reason we answer is prolly the reason why we carry a phone
To keep in touch with the ones whom we have shared our numbers with
Utopia GFR
Lol Very Happy

Well, I dont systematically answer the telephone for it sometimes really annoys me; I feel like losing my privacy when requested.

We live in a society surrounded by Information technology (IT tools) where people are acquainted with mass communication equipments creating a special social sphere where people feel the need to be reachable at any moment.

I'm pretty much sure that more than 95% (if not 100%) of the Frihost community has a mobile phone simply because it became a standard tool in everyone's life.

Maybe a poll could confirm this hypothesis Very Happy

Of course, one could act sideways and pretend not to be concerned but most people would consider him as being some social reject.

The allusion to Pavlov's dogs can perfectly be transposed in social behavior as (most) people tend to be living stereotypes.
glenn83e
Ever see the movie phonebooth? It is always a good idea to answer a rining phone... never know who or what is going to be on the other end. unless you have caller id then u can see who is calling you Smile
Pikokola
I NEVER answer any call to my cellular phone, why? Because it'll turned off instantly (max : 5 seconds) *_*

but if it's home phone, I'll answer it as fast as possible, why? Maybe my girlfriend call me Razz
alfiqrah
through phone i can keep in touch with my friend... without friend , you will be lonely...... when you answer the phone, you don' have to pay.. some one is paying the bill just to talk to you! so, why don't you appreciate them by answering the phone...

one more thing, when someone call you, definitely it means that someone need to talk to you... so be a good person and answer your ringing phone.
tbsmicro
Its a good question, and many people have suggested good reasons why... I personally answer a ringing phone because I want to know who it is that is phoning ! It could be important and if I don't answer it, I have to phone 1471 to find out who it was otherwise i'd go mad.

I would say though that depending on your mood, you are bound to react differently to the ringing phone scenario. If you are in a bad mood you're likely to ignore it, a good mood then pick it up.
JC Denton
Well..I kinda got the phones to answer them when they are calling. Feels like it would be kinda stupid to not answer them then. Razz
Vrythramax
because it's annoying when it just keeps ringing and ringing.
ankur.vatsa
I read an article in a daily newspaper, a professor from the Indian Institute Of Technology does not carry a mobile phone - the reason seems to be very valid to me. She says that when the mobile phone rings it is almost like people telling you that your help is solicited but without an appointment and at the very moment when the phone rings.

I think it is normal for most of us to attend to the phone-ring when it rings but there are some good things that you can do if you really do not want to answer the phone:

1. Do not own a phone, as the lady professor from the Indian Institute of Technology does.

2. Own a phone but keep it on silent and no-vibration mode, let the calls and messages come-in and attend to them when you really have the time - and only to those which really need your attention.

3. Shut your phone down if you have to or keep it off the cradle.

I have had effciency problems with my time-management and I have tried to be the follower of option 2 and with a "THANKS" to you - I'll try harder and stick to that option for always.
bigdan
It's the polite and right thing to do. If it's a telemarketer, or a prankster, I just hang up.
KHO
It's cause people are desperate for social interaction. If you don't answer immediately, your often with someone already, or have something better to do. When you are alone and bored, it's almost reflexive to answer because you subconsciously long for that interaction.
Kaisonic
I don't usually feel the compulsion to answer the phone because I feel like I need to answer the phone; I usually do it to make it STOP MAKING THAT ANNOYING NOISE. I think that was the whole technique developed behind telephones - make them make annoying noises so people are forced to answer them. If it were a soothing noise or nice music, I'd be compelled NOT to answer it, but that isn't good - hence, annoying ringing.
jayrelle
I have to answer a ringing phone because someone is calling and probably that call is for me even if its not an important call, still I need to know! Very Happy
Aless
To stop it from ringing, obviously! It's far too annoying to allow to keep to ringing.
cybernie
why not answer your ringing phone? who knows somebody wants to inform you that your loved one had an accident or you won billions from the lottery... nobody knows what's gonna be the news you'll get from the phone...
eday2010
I don't pick the phone up automatically. I always think about it first. Sometimes I don't answer it because I am busy or just plain dont feel like it. If it's important, they can leave a message.
ainieas
radel wrote:
Don't you realize that when a phone rings you have the choice of answering it or not?

And yet we pick up the phone AUTOMATICALLY, without going through our choices.

**********
Ivan Pavlov's experiments on Classical Conditioning involved dogs, a bell, and food. Everytime the bell rang the dogs were fed.

Eventually, the sound of the bell itself was enough to cause the dogs to salivate.

**********

So why do we automatically pick up the phone when it rings? You know you don't have to pick it up.

You can CHOOSE when or where you will take calls.

Or are we becoming like Pavlov's dogs?



You know if someone really disliked answering the phone they wouldn't keep one.

Why do we answer the phone?
- to know whether it was a boy or a girl,
- to let them know eeveryone's alright,
- just to hear that voice once more,
- to know we're not alone....<insert million different reasons here>



You see there is a REJECT key in your phone. No one is bound to reply to a call. We reply most of the time beacuse you see - man is a social animal - to quote a trite saying. Unless you're a criminal on the run you'll answer the phone.

BTW, I don't think I've ever salivated on hearing the ring of the phone Wink
ehecatl
I pick it up because when it rings, that means someone is calling. However, I don't always answer it... I look at the caller ID first, lol. If I don't wanna talk to the person, I don't answer.
shorty18
yeah thers this thing called freedom which ALL OF US HAVE or at least SHOULD HAVE. It means that we can pick up the phone whenever we want. Even if it's not ringing Razz We have the choice because its OUR phone. I rarely answer the phone because I hate talking n the phone unless its talking to my girlfriend. Other times I'd just rather talk on MSN or some other thing. I dont likes phones for some odd reason.
ryanh2006
Uh I don't think that anyone has to answer the phone when it rings because obviously you have a choice in the matter. Thank God for caller ID i guess! Even if it is somebody who I want to speak too calls but the time is inappropriate (perhaps being at dinner, family time...) then I don't pick up. I would simply return the call later. I guess sometimes you have to say No to something, there are times when you just have to not pick up in order to stay sane Smile At least that's been my experience.
Manus et Therion
Thanks to the invention of caller ID, I don't have to pick up the phone every time it rings. My phone service provides the type of caller ID that tells you the name of the caller - so if it is a business, like a telemarketing service (something something INC or Toll-Free Service) I don't usually pick it up - but having been in that industry before, I do like to pick it up because sometimes the product might be worth learning about.

I work at home as a professional Tarot reader and when my phone rings from one of my clients, or a name I don't recognize (i.e. a new client), of course I am going to pick it up. This is my bread and butter! Besides, I love my work.
soldeinvierno
I think this question was what started the plot of "Phone Booth", terrific movie!!
iNs@nE
Instinct and the bloody curiosity to find out who's on the other side and what they've got to say..


and yeah.. THe Phone Booth is friggin scary..LOL..but no many psycho's like that live on this planet..err..atleast I think so..
mshinwari
we have to answer ringing phone because the person who is calling will need or want
missdixy
I don't ALWAYS pick up the phone, but I mean....I have a phone so that people may reach me if necessary. So, naturally, if it rings, I usually pick up.
PadraigCurran
I say: If you don't want to answer calls, don't get a phone.

However, there are some exceptions. Like if you are extremly busy, your ill or its a private number.

Thats my policey anyway. Laughing Smile
jabronie25
i dont know why

ANyways i usually pick it up after the 4th ring because i wait till my other family members pick it up
yo.hassan
no, i dont see any connection between the bell, dog and the phone.we take the phone or answer them because we choose to do that. lets say ur in meeting and ur phone ringing. would u answer it or shut it? if me, i'd see who's calling them decide to pick or not. but a dog.. in a meeting... bell... salivate... whew.. weird
windrei
eh.... when the phone rings, there is sombody looking for you. Am i right ?

i just think it in a simple way... maybe it's an urgent call. So i think it's better to answer it first...

and, it's a kind of politeness, isn't it ? can you just let somebody waiting for you ........
OutlawSpirit
i never answer the phone.. i just let it ring, kinda annoying but i could care less who is on the other end of the phone Laughing
missdixy
PadraigCurran wrote:
I say: If you don't want to answer calls, don't get a phone.


Exaaactly Very Happy
m-productions
I think this statement is one of the stupidest things i have ever heard..... I almost never pick up the phone when it rings unless i know that someone was going to call...
neji
Nice topic do!

There probably people who rush to the ringing telephone whit their pants still at their feet...

I always thougt i was the only one on this earth who did not pick up the phone when he didn't want to.

If it's urgent, they'll call back... Smile
soulman
well, I think it's only way to keep us pay attention on the phone messege without focus on the phone with our eyes instead... and it will keep ringing when you don't want pick up...
babumuchhala
The phone today is an indispensable part of our life, just cant do without it.

A question that answers this question. Why do we answer the door when someone knocks?
The answer is simple, someone's there, because the person standing outside may have an important work and that's the reason why he/she took the pains to come over. Plus it would be absolutely bad manners if you didn't. Yes here we don't have a choice and have to answer.

The situation with phones is almost similar, but we only have an added option of declining the call (Only in case of cell phones as the landlines rings on with no option to decline the call and the ringer volume increasing with every ring). We decline them only when we are absolutely busy or we know the person at the other end is only calling to waste your time. Plus if its a friend or an acquaintance we do pick up the phone and tell them to call us later. This is because the other person has taken their precious time out to call you and we do respect that.

Accept it or not but we are now trained sub-consciously, to answer them as we do with the door.
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