digital do not disturb sign?

do not disturb

There’s nothing worse than staying in a hotel, getting in to bed, then thinking to yourself “damn, i forgot to put the do not disturb sign on the door”. Thinking that the chances of cleaners coming in before you wake up in the morning is slim, you take a calculated risk (which is heavily influenced by laziness) in not getting out of bed to put the do not disturb sign out. What happens at stupid o clock in the morning? *knock knock* “is there anyone in there?”…

True story, and it’s happened to me on more than one occasion.

Ban the cardboard

I’ve always thought the way the do not disturb sign works is just stupid. It’s a piece of cardboard hanging on a door knob. Anyone can come along and flip it over for the craic. Or it could fall off and often does when closing / opening the door. If you’re like me, most of the time you forget it’s there.

All hotels need to do is have a button on a wall somewhere. Press the button and that tells the cleaners to stay away. Or better yet, when you insert your key card in to the holder thing that activates the power, hook that up to a cleaner’s PDA device. If a keycard is in, that means the room is occupied…

Sure, a piece of cardboard is cheaper but it’s also unreliable and inconvenient. I shouldn’t have to tell somebody i’m in a room, nor should they have to ask. They should just know with technology. Anyway, there are loads of things i don’t like about hotels and it’s the very fine detail which separate good hotels from great hotels.

I’m on holiday, go away

I think there is also a need these days for a digital do not disturb sign. So if someone emails, calls, facebooks or tweets me, they know i’m not going to respond so they either can’t send me a message or at the very least know that i won’t respond as normal.

I know gmail have autoresponders but that’s just gmail. And sometimes i don’t want to auto reply to all emails with a generic response. I don’t think we’ve mastered the art of holidays online. It’s too easy to contact people and we expect them to reply immediately. I’m not sure how to go about it, but i do think a ‘digital do not disturb sign’ is needed. Perhaps a place where you can connect all of you social accounts and suspend all activity on them for ‘x’ number of days and anyone who tries to contact you is informed you’re on holiday or not available. As a result their message cannot send until you’re back from a holiday.

The problem with real time is that it’s information overload, we need to filter it to gain any value. If you’re away and get a bazillion emails when you come back, that sucks. All of them should wait or be blocked completely – it’s unacceptable in the offline world to call somebody whilst their on holidays, so that same etiquette should be brought in online or the option should be there for those that want it..

I’m already fearing coming back from my week long trip away in May to bosnia herzegovina where i’ll most likely be without internet access. It will take me days to catch up with everything online. I’d love to mass block everything on all of my accounts for that week. Agree / Disagree? Let me know and perhaps i can attempt to make it a reality.

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