Students weigh in on proper audience etiquette

Haljit Basuljevic Reporter

Audience etiquette in a world riddled with distractions may seem like a outdated and alien concept to some, but there are those who still feel that fully engaging with a performance lends respect to both the performer and the viewers.

Imagine going to a concert featuring your favorite artist and then being totally obliterated from the experience, all because you were zooming into this small device that you could have waited to check until at least the event was over.

The hardest part about this is that the crowd can usually influence your behavior. If you are the type of person who needs to check their email or send that text message but feels rude to do so, then seeing other people who the same can undermine the guilt.

“I’m not inclined to do the same,” said Amanda Merturi, a junior and biology major. “ In fact, the opposite, I find myself staring at them and thinking ‘Why don’t they just put down the phone and enjoy the concert?’”

Raihan Ahmed, a senior and business major said that a few trips to the movie theater have been, “completely ruined,” by other audience members.

“It especially aggravates me at the movies when I see a blue light on or when the phone rings during an important scene,” said Raihan Ahmed.

The word ‘performer’ can also imply different connotations, such as a teacher or lecturer, who have always had to deal with the challenge of keeping students continually engaged with the material.

The constant interruptions that may occur within the class can create a discord between the teacher and students, often messing up the flow of absorbing the course material.

Meredith Jessey, a junior and political science major, said that the solution to this may be professors taking participation into consideration for final grades. She said she feels sympathy for professors in this regard and that one’s attention should be undivided towards them.

Associate professor of biology Rebecca Silady said that students are not enganging with the material if they are not paying attention.

Giving the performer his or her owns time to shine seems to be based on a mutual respect. One where, as an audience, proper engagement means allowing the performer to flourish on their platform. This means not engaging in activity that is disruptive in a way that compromises the experience for both audience and performer.

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