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Slow lane for phone zombies
By Jinny Throup
The UK’s first “slow lanes” for people who insist on looking at their phones while walking, have opened in Manchester City centre. Two adjacent 75 metre long “mobile safe lanes” have been installed on a busy pedestrian thoroughfare used by tens of thousands of people every week. Arrows and signs mark out separate walking lanes on the pavement that are exclusively for slow-walking smartphone users. Research has shown that being distracted by technology whilst walking is an issue that people want addressed. So the city is hoping that these designated pathways will help to prevent people who walk with their eyes glued to their mobile phones from bumping into each other.

A better solution would be to raise awareness that one does not have to be a slave to mobile technology every second of the day. Paying attention to where you are going as you walk on a busy city street should be the minimum that we expect from our fellow citizens. But it appears that governments are surrendering to the irresponsibility of the ’zombies’ rather than trying to wake them up. These lanes in Manchester have been set up on a trial basis, so hopefully people will see how ridiculous this is and opt for more intelligent changes in behavior.


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