Pleased to meet you – ouch!

10 Dec 2008

European users of mobile social networks have been warned that addiction to these sites can result in physical injuries, whether through whacking into each other on the street, or worse, in a car.

A survey of 1,000 users by mobile social-networking portal,, has revealed that 64pc of respondents worldwide have already bumped into someone else or fell over something while they were surfing mobile internet and walking down the street or in other locations. has called on the European Union to create a new concept of street sign that should call the attention of all road users to mobile internet usage outdoors.

Around 43pc of male and 55pc of female respondents admitted to having had a collision with other people, doors and even bicycles while surfing mobile internet.

The new street sign concept is a result of the ideas of users, and will – after the submission to the European Union – also be submitted to the US authorities.

“This idea has been developed by as internet usage via mobile phones grows dramatically,” explained Mikko Saarelainen, director of Communities at

“We feel responsible for our users, not only on the mobile internet, but also outside,” Saarelainen continued.

“Our users have an average community usage time of 52 hours per month – with their mobile phones! And we want to make these hours not only entertaining, but also safe,” he added.

By John Kennedy

John Kennedy is a journalist who served as editor of Silicon Republic for 17 years