Earlier this year, many blogs and news sites reported about the rise of "the phone stacking game." In this friendly competition, a group of pals gets together for a meal, and each person is required to place their phone on the table facedown in a stack. Foodbeast explains the rules:
[A]s the meal progresses, you will all inevitably hear phone notifications going off. Texts, calls, Tweets, Facebook Notifications. But you’re not allowed to check your device. … You’ll spend all dinner almost-reaching for your phone. What’s holding you back from picking up your machine and checking it? The punchline that is: first person who touches their phone, picks up the tab for the entire table.
This weekend, your task is to get a group of pals together for a round of the phone stacking game. Or better yet, tell your friends to leave their gadgets at home, and plan a totally device-free dinner.
To brace yourself for the shock of going phoneless, read Jenna Wortham's recent celebration of JOMO (aka the Joy of Missing Out): "Turn Off the Phone (and the Tension)."
Would you do away with your phone if it meant getting a discount on your dinner bill? Check out this interview with Los Angeles restauranteur Mark Gold, who has implemented a policy of giving customers 5% off the price of their meals if they agree to leave their phones at the door.
If you're up for taking on a bigger tech-free commitment, you might consider the Digital Detox Retreat, a "personal wellness retreat where attendees give up their smart-phones and gadgets in exchange for four days of serenity and bliss." GOOD is working with the people behind this program on an upcoming Digital Makeover post, so stay tuned.