Cell Phones Turning Teens Into Chimpanzees

Well, this is certainly news. Looks like a professor at the Kyoto University Primate Research Institute has accused Japanese teenagers of acting like monkeys—all because of their overuse of mobile phones. Basically, younger folk are mocking the behavior of chimpanzees by losing the ability to discern between public and private space.

"They don't eat meals at home with family members and you can clearly see with your own eyes the large increase in young people who hang about on the streets together with the same old friends," Masataka says. "They make places like Shibuya their territory and rarely head even to places like (nearby entertainment and shopping districts) Shinjuku or Harajuku. They get tired going to new places or meeting new people. If they get hungry while they're strolling around, they simply get food by going into a convenience store, buying something and sitting down outside on the curb to eat it. If not that, then they just hang around for hours in fast food joints."

Well, I have to admit, it sounds frighteningly like my younger years, and though I don't like to say I'm old, I can firmly assert that I didn't have a mobile phone. However, Masataka says these behaviors closely resembles the behavior of chimps

which tend to travel in groups, walking around for a long time without going to any specific place, then eating and disposing of their wastes in the same place before bedding down on piles of grass whenever and wherever the inclination takes them.

And this intense loitering happens because of cellphones. He believes parents allow their kids out later because they can reach them easily, and this is actually cutting down on the communications within families. And of course, let's not even get started on the whole text messaging thing limiting conversations. Now can someone please tell the Creationists about this?

Mobile phones making a monkey out of Japanese [Mainichi Daily News]