Tuesday, 7 April 2009

Cellphones and Scouting

As this world gets more and more technologically inclined we a scouts and scout leaders need to truthfully consider what the purpose of cellphones should be in Scouting. Yes I believe that cell phone use should be allowed in scouting. It is just a matter of teaching the the youth and to appropriately and responsibly use their cell phone. The scouts are just going to bring them anyways so what is the point of banning them. Also they can be very useful. Lets first work on some cellphone etiquette:
  • Cellphones should not be used including the texting feature when a person is speaking to the group. It does not matter whether it is a youth or adult.
  • Put the cellphone on at least vibrate but preferably silent when involved in a Scout meeting.
  • Just because you want to talk or text someone on your phone does not mean that the rest of the world wants to experience or hear the conversation.
Cell Phone User Code
  • I will take full responsibility and not blame anyone else if my phone is damaged, loss, or stolen. The only exception is if a phone is stolen by another scout then appropriate consequences should be used.
  • I will use my cell phone only when appropriate.
  • I will only use my cell phone when I have to. When I have to means it is for communicating information to parents, communicating information to adult leaders or communicating information to other youth members.
  • I will keep my conversation on my phone down. I realize that the whole world does not want to hear my conversation.
  • I will not let my phone become a distraction to myself or others.
  • I realize that if I do not take appropriate percautions on scout outings there is a very high likelihood that the phone will become damaged.
  • I agree that I will not be a show off with my phone because show offs are really just insecure people that have to push others around to feel good.
This code is probably not complete but the point is that cell phones are going to become a part of scouting whether or not we want them to or not. We as leaders must teach our youth how to use the phone just like we teach a new tenderfoot to setup a tent and the rest of his campsite.

Yours in Scouting Service
Mark W
Junior Assistant Scoutmaster
Troop 1616
Great Alaska COuncil
Eagle Scout OA Brotherhood Member
NSJ '05 WSJ '07 Philmont AA '08

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