Must you tweet your dinner? Really?

73232241I just read Rhonda’s post on the future of social networking etiquette and it reminded me of something that happened recently.

Over the Labour Day weekend, my wife and I spent a few fantastic days in Quebec City. The weather was perfect and we wandered the streets for hours just taking in all the sights and sounds. If you haven’t been, you should go, it’s a national treasure.

On our first night, we had dinner at a superb five star restaurant called L’Initiale. The food was sublime. It was a pricey meal, but well worth it.

Midway through our appetizer, my wife looked over my shoulder and said in a whisper “I think that guy over there is tweeting”.

As discreetly as I could manage, I looked over to the table she had indicated. I saw a thirty-something couple about to enjoy what I assume was their appetizer. The guy had his Blackberry out and was typing intently.

He then took a photo of his food. And typed a few more lines.

Now, ordinarily, I couldn’t care less what people at another table do so long as they aren’t disturbing others, and they certainly weren’t disturbing us in the least.

But I couldn’t help thinking that some things should never be considered acceptable in certain situations.

It’s rude to answer your phone if you’re in the middle of a face-to-face conversation with someone, unless it’s an emergency.

It’s not okay to cut someone off when you’re driving.

And I think snapping photos of your dinner and tweeting your thoughts on each course isn’t acceptable in a fancy restaurant. I’m not even sure if it’s okay at a McDonalds, but I realize there’s a pretty big difference.

What are your thoughts on the growing question of tech-etiquette in public places?


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