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El Camino College Union

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Electronic Etiquette (Headphones)

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The clock strikes 9 a.m. as an EC student dashes to her first class. Her friend tries to stop her for a quick chat when she yells from a distance, “Monica! Monica, hold up.” Little did Monica’s friend know that she had her favorite Rolling Stones song blasting through her headphones as she walked by without a care in the world.
As time goes on and technology enhances, so does today’s youth, and with the common trend of students listening to music both in class and outside of class, others are easily annoyed and amazed at the sight of someone who is completely not in tune with the rest of the world.
“It has become apart of our everyday living,” Christopher Cerda, 21, philosophy major, said. “When we want to escape from our troubles, or even when we are bored, all we really need to do is pick our favorite artist, put in the headphones, and listen.”
Instructors and students alike have their own opinion on headphone etiquette.
One instructor finds it embarrassing when they say “hello” to their students and in return they don’t get acknowledged at all.
“If I had a dollar for every time I was ignored in the hallway I wouldn’t have to work another day,” Tom Fonte, an EC Spanish professor, said. “I like to greet my fellow students with a smile and a warm ‘hello’ and it seems to me that all they care about is which song to listen to next.”
Headphone use in the classroom can be even more distracting, Daniel Chevalier, 19, psychology major, said.
“One thing that really irritates me is when that ‘one guy’ wearing all black and with big hair enters the classroom with his Metallica song literally blaring and doesn’t think to turn his music player off until the instructor begins the lecture,” Chevalier said.
Diana Crossman, an EC Speech Communications professor, has learned that setting the rules on the first day of class is a sure way to keep headphones out of the classroom.
“I do not allow headphones, or any electronics for that matter, when I am lecturing or when others are performing in front of the class,” Crossman said. “It is very rare that I’d have to mention it after going over it as a policy on the first day of class.”
It’s easy to talk down upon people who use their headphones as a way to avoid confrontation, but for others it’s merely a “way to escape from reality,” Craig Scott, 18, business major, said.
“The moment I step out of my car and head to class I immediately put in my ear buds and put on my favorite band,” Scott said. “I don’t do it to avoid social encounters or anything, but for me it’s a way to drift off into my own world where stress and anticipation do not exist.
Another EC student finds that listening to music is a form of energy similar to a cup of coffee or an energy drink.
“Without music, my day would be so dull,” Jessica Mendoza, 20, communications major, said. “Listening to my iPod while walking to class makes time fly by and I can literally feel my legs move faster.”

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The student news site of El Camino College
Electronic Etiquette (Headphones)