As usual, Jenny Levine has a way with words. I heart this comment she left on this post at TTW:
While I am often the first one to get upset about folks talking loudly on their cell phones, I have just as big a problem with parents who let their screaming children scream. So I don’t understand how libraries can single out cell phones, especially when I can sit quietly in the corner and text folks without bothering anyone. If you’re going to ban cell phones because of the noise potential, then you’d better also ban kids, computers, reference staff (who are often louder than the patrons), professors (ditto), printers, copiers, landline telephones, and a whole host of other things.
The key here is civility and noise reduction in general – not just of cell phones – in certain zones, not the entire building, using a *polite* request (which is usually the biggest missing piece).
There is no reason on earth for a library to *ban* cell phones from every inch of the building. None. Ever. Ever. Ever. I mean it – ever. As with all things, moderation is the key.