Cell phones and Cameras Distract at Concerts…


We all know the cell phone is the new lighter story has been done already. Twice. OK, probably more than twice. Until recently, concert venues were very strict when it came to their camera policies. Now, they’re a little more lax, but really, how can they confiscate a camera when a cell phone has just as many multimedia and flash capabilities?


We’ve all done it at some point. I’m guilty of using  a camera at a concert. I’m also guilty of pulling out a cell phone as well. On occasion, I’ve used both a camera and a cell phone to capture concert moments. Guilty, guilty, guilty.


I never really thought much about it until last night when I attended a concert at Hammerstein Ballroom. Granted, I was pretty bored by the line up — all members of the MTV show “Making the Band,” so I had ample time to reflect upon my actions of the past.


Truth is, last night I took a few pictures and even snapped a quick 15 second video as I do like to have a “memento” of sorts from a concert (even a bad one at that!). But when the house lights went down last night to signal the start of the show, I noticed the venue was completely illuminated. Little blue screens of cell phones and cameras lit the room (see pic above). Friends posing with each other to capture their “experience” while others ready to snapped shots of the performers.


The question is, how much of the concert did those people actually experience? They were so busy snapping and reviewing (a digi cam feature I loathe!) to actually actively engage in the show.


I try not to get bogged down in taking pictures – I’ll snap some either in the beginning or the end – but I won’t keep my finger on the trigger throughout the show. It should be a common courtesy of others too as flashes going off non-stop is very distracting. Besides, music is about the overall experience, giving into the music. How can you possibly enjpy a show while trying to capture the perfect shot?


Not a lecture – as I said, I’m absolutely guilty of this. It’s just funny to me. I’m a huge proponent of technology, but I can’t help but wonder if sometimes it’s ruining some of life’s simplest pleasures….


6 responses to “Cell phones and Cameras Distract at Concerts…

  1. When people/fans go crazy at shows snapping pictures and getting caught up in the moment of simply being there, I think they are there because they are more starstruck and desire to be at the same venue as the artist/band than simply enjoying the music in the first place.

    Sometimes I think to myself while walking out of venues that I should have snapped a picture or showed more excitement. The truth is, I didn’t snap the picture because I was too caught up in the music. The excitement came from inside and I argue that fans that take in the experience that way, enjoy it far more than the ones that leave with a tangible memory.

  2. Ap – well said! I’d agree with you. I know I’ve been caught up in the moment, snapping away, and left the show realizing I didn’t remember much of it — so naturally I’d have to thumb through the pics to relive it. That’s why I never want to leave a show like that again. I’d rather enjoy it for what it is. 🙂

  3. This is slightly off topic…not camera related. But I recently attended a concert at Radio City. I got a glass of wine and it came with this super bright light-up stirrer in it. (My boyfriend called it a glowy and the vendors laughed in his face and corrected him. The true name is a swizzle stick. Is that really any better?) But I digress…

    These glowies are SOOOO bright. I think they were trying to get people to use them ala a lighter for the slow songs, but the thing was blinding! I couldn’t sip my drink without squinting. There were so many throughout the audience that it felt like the house lights were on. Fortunately, people figured out a way to turn them off (or hide them in a bag). Seriously, it was too much.

    That really had nothing to do with your story, but my concert going experience would have been ruined if the damn things glowed all night.

  4. Dootz, first of all swizzle stick? WTF?! It’s def. a glowy for sure. 😉 They gave us glowies at a concert at MSG Theater once — they made my eyes hurt, or maybe it was the vodka. Not sure!

  5. Same thing at the movies. Those little green/glue cell phone screens look insanely bright in the dark. I can’t keep my eyes off them. Infuriating. Though when I saw IronMan, this dude in front of me was texting (light and text-received beep!), but the light allowed for me to see what he was writing. Let me tell you, that was some skanky shit.

    Baby when I get outta here, gonna flip you ova and…

    My word.

  6. Oh wow. Dirty Ironman viewer. So much for family friendly!

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