Mobile Alerts May Be Bothersome, Yet Essential.

At times, cell phones can be more trouble than they’re worth. Especially when you consider the irrelevant and untimely emergency notifications that cause your phone to go haywire! This is how many Boston residents felt a couple of weeks ago when they suddently receive flash flood warnings. Naturally, most people do not enjoy being notified of emergency that are not relevant to them. Why would someone care about flooding if they are living in a high rise or apartment building? Furthermore, if these alerts wake residents up, it becomes more of a nuisance than helpful.

However, is opting out of these emergency notifications what our response should be? Citizens should be encouraged to stay signed up for these alerts. We are not always prepared for emergencies, but with even a short notice, we can make decisions that could save our lives. These emergency notifications on our cell phones do save lives and are vital to our society. Eric Randall recently wrote:

“Recall the lines of people waiting to charge their iPhone in Manhattan after Hurricane Sandy, and it’ll remind you        that cell phones are one of our last sources of connectivity in times of mass power outage and emergency. Just as          an older generation once gathered around the radio to listen to presidential messages in the wake of disasters, our        generation should take comfort that we have a high-tech way to connect to our emergency services that doesn’t            require our power lines to be up and running (at least until our battery runs out.) These alerts are annoying,                    particularly when we don’t feel very threatened by the flash flood that woke us up from our pre-Wednesday                    slumber, but the alerts do give us a modern-day way to stay connected in dark times. And that is something to                consider when staring down the opt-out switch.”