Just a stock photo of a happy family enjoying their delicious meal. (iStock)

Poll

Poll: Should Children Be Allowed to Use iPads at Restaurants?

Let's discuss.

A couple of weeks ago, while dining at an intimate neighborhood restaurant, my relaxing meal took a turn when a family allowed their child to watch a movie on an iPad with no headphones. You can find the full account of the situation here. The experience started a discourse. When is it acceptable to have technology at the dinner table? And under what circumstances? It’s too great an issue to cover at large. But let’s talk about this one, specific incidence.

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Comments

  • MattL1

    If I can’t hear it, I don’t really care. As long as it keeps the kid(s) from running around, yelling excessively, or otherwise disturbing other guests.

    I dine alone a LOT (shocking), so I can’t really be too harsh on electronic device use without being a massive hypocrite.

  • Mavdog

    Any device that is making a noise which can be heard from over 2 feet away shouldn’t be used in public without a headphone.

    What is fascinating is to watch whole families, or a couple, who are at the same table but are all glued to what they are seeing on their respective devices. Zero communication among them while they peer into what it is they are engrossed with. They might as well be at separate tables, they are actually there alone.

  • Randy Zimmerman

    Just yesterday I was having dinner at a casual family restaurant in Oklahoma City. There was a couple at a table and about 30 ft away, their little boy was eating at a table by himself. After I was seated the boy turned up the volume on his smart phone so high that I could clearly hear it nearly 15 ft away. He was listening to something that sounded like funny voices screaming a play-by-play of some game. When my food arrived I told the server that I would need to move to a different dining room. I can’t imagine people being this inconsiderate in a restaurant. What is wrong with people?

  • dallasmay

    Given that just about every restaurant these days has 300 90in TVs in view of every square inch of the place with their audio at full volume anyway, what’s the big deal?

  • john reimer

    It’s not appropriate for any person child or adult

  • Aardvark

    It’s hard for parents to tell their kids no electronic devices at the table when we grown-ups are all staring at our phones.

  • Aardvark

    If noise is the issue, let’s go one step further and turn off the volume of the restaurant TVs. You can’t make out the dialog anyway, so it’s just noise that we all have to compete with, increasing the volume of the restaurant even more. I’m talking to you Brick House and Chips, among others.

  • Aaron

    Next question: should adults be allowed to text/browse throughout the meal on phones? Leave their phones on the dining table (making it interesting trying to serve them food)? Require 1000 selfies and pictures during dinner?