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The Soft Policy

By Dani Naess Hellesund
Staff Writer

When you are in the library studying, and your friend calls and asks if you want to talk for a bit, what do you do? Well, something you might not know is that The B. Davis Schwartz Memorial Library at LIU Post has a no-cell phone policy.
The policy is in place to ensure that students, faculty and others who try to work in the library can work with minimum disruption. If you wander around the library, you will see small signs that state that there is to be no cell phone usage in the area.
Eduardo Rivera, the head of Reference Services, stated that there have been no major problems with anyone regarding the enforcement of the policy. “People are usually not aware that they are loud,” said Rivera. He also added that people are usually very apologetic and they hang up or take their call someplace else.
Rivera characterized the no-cell phone policy as “a soft cell phone policy,” and that the library staff asks students to be discreet when using their cell phones while in the library. The library staff enforces the policy only when people are being disruptive, but if students are discreet they do not see it as a problem.
When asked if he thought that the no-cell phone policy was effective, Rivera replied, “Yes, generally students are good about it and there’s rarely been an issue.”
Junior Accounting major William Bernal did not know that there was a no-cell phone policy in place. Bernal said that he had experienced disruptiveness by someone using his or her cell phone in the library and, “nobody did anything about it.” Bernal added that people should go outside if they wanted to use their cell phones, and that they should also put it on silent mode.
Just like Bernal, Junior Health Sciences major Zorayda Perez did not know about the no-cell phone policy in the library. Perez has never experienced anything negative with cell phone usage in the library, but added that there should be a policy in place that says, “People should turn their phones on silent.” Perez added that she did not want a “strict policy”.
Biology sophomore Melissa Aben did notice a no-cell phone sign when she was about to make a call. When asked if she had ever experienced a problem with disturbance regarding cell phone usage in the library, she said, “Never been a problem.” She also added that there should be a no-cell phone policy “because it is a quiet space.”
For students and others who use their phones in the library, the staff urges discretion so one does not disturb others.
Failure to comply with the rules will result in warnings, and one may even be asked to leave.

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