Should Smartphones Be Banned at Thanksgiving?

If you don't want to upset your grandma, you should probably put away your smartphone at Thanksgiving dinner.



Eventbrite recently conducted a study on Americans’ attitudes towards technology use during Thanksgiving and other holiday celebrations. The near ubiquity of smartphones is fueling a “tech backlash” this year — 66 percent of U.S. adults think smartphones should be banned at Thanksgiving dinner.

Women are even more anti-tech during T-day: 71 percent of women think phones should be banned, while 62 percent of men agreed with the measure. (Surprise: The guiltiest frequent phone-checkers are 18- to 44-year-old men.) Northeasterners are much more dogmatic than their West-coast counterparts: 72 percent of Northeast residents think devices should be banned compared to 62 percent of West coasters.

But most importantly, if you want to make your Grandma happy, you should steer clear of your smartphone. Grandmas were the biggest proponents of the no-phones-at-Thanksgiving policy: 85 percent of women 65-and-up think they should be banned at dinner, while 71 percent of men in that age group want people to ditch the phone.

What should you do if you are a compulsive smartphone-checker? Eventbrite suggests leaving it in the car or playing a holiday version of phone stack: First phone-checker has to do the dishes. I don’t know about you, but I don’t want to be the one stuck scrubbing the greasy roasting pan.

If you plan on putting away the phone but want a way to ease your anxious fingers, Eventbrite has some ideas for T-day auto-responses at Just click “Hit Me” for a new idea.