Cafe Without WiFi Promotes Interaction Among Patrons



IPOH, May 28 – Most restaurant operators provide broadband wireless internet facility or WiFi as part of their strategies to attract customers. But such a facility has somehow caused the patrons, who come with their families or friends, to have less interaction with each other as they are engrossed with their mobile phones or gadgets.

As such, Karat cafe operator Ezmal Elias, 27, has displayed the ‘No WiFi, Talk To Each Other’ sign on the wall of his premises to prevent customers from spending time browsing the internet. For Ezmal, providing WiFi for customers is more of a distraction than a necessity.

He said he want to encourage the customers to have face-to-face conversations because he do not want them to become anti-social. He said this at his premises in Jalan Sultan Abdul Jalil here recently. According to him, some people found that the lack of WiFi in the premises was a shortcoming but for him, it was a satisfaction to see his customers enjoying their meals and spending time chatting with friends or family.

Meanwhile, civil servant Fadhilul Izmel Ishak, 28, said the opportunity to meet and spend time with family members must not be taken for granted or neglected by doing other things. He said he do not allow his family members to use their mobile phones while having meals because it is not good table manners and that shows disrespect to other people in front of them.

For Diana Salleh, 40, she missed the times when smart phones were not in the picture because at that time, friends would gather and talk to each other rather than looking at their mobile phones. She said they used to really talk in those days, laugh and update on each others’ lives when friends get together. She said, now, even when they meet in persons, many choose to update their social media accounts.

Realising that interactions at the dinner table are diminishing, the Women, Family and Community Development Ministry has launched a ‘No Mobile During Dinner’ campaign on June 24. Its minister, Datuk Seri Rohani Abdul Karim had, in a press conference in Putrajaya, said the campaign was organised by the National Population and Family Development Board of Malaysia (LPPKN) following the tendency of most families preferring to use their mobile phones and communicate using gadgets while having their meals together.

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