Cellphone has reached into the hands of every adult nowadays. Sometimes we even allow adolescent children to carry it if we are out for shopping to keep track of them. But hardly ever have we bothered to tell them the mores and manners and caution to be observed in handling it. Here the Islamic Voice would like to lay down a code of manners to be observed.
- Cellphone is a handy tool that keeps us company in crowded bazaars, shopping malls, rail and bus station, places of pilgrimages and marriage and convention halls. It is preferable that we carry it on our person, possibly in a pocket that can be closed with a zip, button or Velcro. If this is not possible, carry it in a bag that is sure to keep a constant company with you.
- Remember in the event of it being lost, more than the cost of instrument, it is the loss of contact with dear ones that will be painful for the loser, more so now that the PCO and STD booths have disappeared from our streets and markets.
- Do not depend too much on numbers stored in the directory of cellphone. Memorize the phone numbers of person with whom you need to remain in constant and frequent touch. Possibly carry a short directory recording the numbers you frequently use while travelling.
- Do not leave your cell unattended when you are in college, bazaar, restaurant, meetings or places that are unfamiliar to you.
- Do not engage in long conversation with friends and relatives while travelling. If ever, such use is necessary, tell the caller to wait till you reach a place from where you can use it comfortably. Never use loud voice for talking, lest it put the co-travelers to inconvenience.
- If you notice a missed call from an identifiable number, call back the caller at your earliest. This needs to be done compulsorily with those who are dependant on you, e.g., wife, children, home-bound parents, sick persons, servants, drivers, employees and attendants.
- If the missed call number is not identifiable, return it with a missed call as a matter of courtesy.
- If a call cannot be returned to a person with whom you have to deal frequently (in case you are in a meeting, seminar etc), send him SMS to this effect.
- Put the cell in silent or vibrating mode if you are in a mosque or meeting but check immediately after the prayer or meeting is over. Do not feed film tunes into the cell to replace the normal ringtones. This will offend the worshipper, if your cell begins ringing during namaz.
- Do not believe SMSes that call for claiming unsolicited prizes and awards. Remember Internet and Cellphones are not location-specific medium and pranksters and fraudsters can deceive gullible people.
- Do not pay heed to advertisements announcing discounts, gifts, shopping bonanzas.
- Do not react to information or sensational news being circulated received on cellphones. These may be rumours. By forwarding this info, you may help rumours and information of provocative nature.
- Most cells now come studded with What’s App. They bring in a deluge of news, info, jokes and wisecracks incessantly. Avoid looking into the cell following every ping. Most jokes evoke prejudices against certain communities, opposite gender and persons in public life. Never forward them to others as it is an offence to create prejudice, hate and hostility against any one. Some people are in the habit of pushing wrong and weak Hadith etc on cellphones. Do not pay heed to such items. Minutely screen the content before you think of forwarding any message or image. If you constantly receive such messages from any particular source, bring this to the notice of Cyber Police in your city or state.
- Do not click the photograph of other persons, their kids or families, without seeking their permission. In case of road or rail accidents, take photographs of colliding vehicles, injured persons etc as such photographic evidence might help them seeking legal, medical help or insurance claim. Inform such persons to reach you in case they need any help in this regard.
- In case of loss or theft of your cell, register a complaint in the nearest police station and inform your family of your whereabouts, lest they get worried about your safety, security or health.
- Record the cell number of the closest relative under ICE (In Case of Emergency) in your instrument. If by chance, people find you in any emergency situation, they can call this number to inform your near and dear ones.
- Do not use cell belonging to others without their permission. Do not look into the info stored in cellphones belonging to other persons. Just as others letters, diaries and bank passbooks, the cellphone too is a private thing of use and others should not access info stored therein.
(Compiled by Maqbool Ahmed Siraj)