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Summary:

Verizon is showing off an advertisement today (that will run on TV starting Monday) aimed at stopping people from texting and driving, but it’s far too mild for me. I prefer something along the lines of this CTIA ad, which has some of the drama we’ve […]

vztextVerizon is showing off an advertisement today (that will run on TV starting Monday) aimed at stopping people from texting and driving, but it’s far too mild for me. I prefer something along the lines of this CTIA ad, which has some of the drama we’ve come to expect from public service announcements. However, the CTIA ad is aimed at teenagers rather than adults; given how many adults text or even just browse on their phones as they drive, perhaps they need an ad targeted at them, too. But will these ads, a bevy of upcoming laws and even the existence of sites like AKBadDriver’s tweet stream actually stop folks from texting (or reading emails) while driving? What about you? Take the poll below the fold.

  1. This is a serious problem. Nobody would consider fighting MADD to reduce penalties against DUI, even when there are no accidents, let alone injuries, involved. And that’s a decision made by somebody who’s central nervous system is impaired by alcohol. If you’re texting while driving, you are (hopefully) stone cold sober – yet engaging in activity that has been demonstrated to impair your driving more than intoxication. People have been killedBy any logic driving and texting should face similar penalties:

    – first offense 24-48 hours in jail, 5 years probation, 30 day full license suspension, 6 months restricted license, $2000 fine, 3 month alcohol awareness program

    – second offense: 96 hours – 30 days days in jail, 2 year loss of license, and now the state forces offenders to install a “breath machine” in their car.

    Point is that Verizon knows this is more of a time-bomb than “brain cancer” as this is real and demonstrable.

    http://tinyurl.com/ybay4lg

    I’m thinking of starting a group FAT-D (fathers against text-driving)

    Proving it will be easier than a DUI. If you are pulled over for any reason and your phone is nearby, your records could be searched and if you had sent a message in the 10 or so min prior to being pulled over – that should be enough to convict (stoplight or not).

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    1. Stacey Higginbotham Friday, October 23, 2009

      Having seen inattentive drivers staring at their phones while weaving in and out of lanes, I’m aware that this is serious. However, many people out there are such narcissists that the idea that anything bad would happen to them while texting is hard to combat. It’s why so many people still drive drunk.

      Your solution for searching phones during a routine traffic stop, however, is too extreme for my tastes.

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  2. I used to be an avid text while driving fan, that is until I totaled my car and put someone else in the hospital. The word really needs to get out about how dangerous it is. While some states have hands free driving laws, it really needs to be ALL states. Verizon has a good idea going on, except I think that this billboard is not going to do it. they need something that really captures the drivers attention.

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  3. Several recent stuides have shown that most drivers recognize the dangers of texting and driving, but continue to do it anyway (even when they know it is illegal as well). I have spoke with several behavorial psychologists on this topic as well and it is a very challenging and difficult habit to break — there was even some talk that there is an addictive component (a release of dopamine in the brain everytime the phone beeps and buzzes). This is obviously a complex issue that will require more than just legislation and education. Please check out http://www.zoomsafer.com a new solution that is easy to download to your phone and helps keeps drivers focusd on the road but still connected with friends, family and co-workers

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  4. I’d really like to answer your multiple choice survey “what will stop you from texting while driving” — but unfortunately it’s missing a “technology” option.

    One year ago i was leaving my neighborhood headed to work when i got a text. I looked down. Looked up. And i hit a 9 year boy on his bike. He was OK — thank God. But i was the scariest moment of my life.

    Since then i have dedicated myself, along with my partners, to developing a company called ZoomSafer where we have created patented software for mobile phones to prevent distracted driving.

    Distracted driving is a hugely complicated behavioral problem which requires a multi-faceted solution.

    Legislation will help. Education will help. Even advertising and Twitter streams will help. But simple and inexpensive technology such as ZoomSafer holds the most promise to solve this problem.

    It’s available now and is already helping motorists all over the country make better choices so they are less distracted and more focused when driving. You can try it out for free at http://www.zoomsafer.com.

    Thanks for the opportunity to post.

    Matt@zoomsafer.com

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  5. [...] folks checking email, Twitter or my content messages whilst driving. After observation the little public make use of sort announcements as good as carrying the single tighten call to many, we motionless to put the phone in my slot [...]

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  6. Texting, with the sound of your voice is now available. This 9 minute dvd, not only talks about the problem, it also has the solution. http://www.fdidvd.com/mitchellenterprises

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  7. [...] driving before drivers understand that they can’t always get away with it. For that reason, carriers have started to join in on public awareness campaigns to illustrate the dangers that texting brings when operating a [...]

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  8. [...] By Stacey Higginbotham Jul. 30, 2010, 10:35am PDT No Comments       Everyone talks about texting while driving, but what about something I think may be even more distracting: “snapping while [...]

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