Mobile phone communication innovation in multiple time and space zones : The case of Hong Kong culture

Research output: Journal Publications and Reviews (RGC: 21, 22, 62)21_Publication in refereed journalpeer-review

4 Scopus Citations
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  • Shirley Chan
  • Douglas Vogel
  • Louis C. K. Ma

Related Research Unit(s)


Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)79-85
Number of pages7
Journal / PublicationJournal of Global Information Management
Issue number4
Publication statusPublished - Oct 2007


In most parts of the world, it is generally considered impolite or even rude to pick up an incoming mobile phone call and to have a longer (and loud) conversation in public places. Yet this type of interruption is generally acceptable in Hong Kong. This inspired the authors to ask: How does Hong Kong culture impact the perception of mobile phone interruption? This research note is about an ethnographical study on the culture in Hong Kong indicating a more positive perception towards mobile phone interruption. Their research results show that the cultural characteristics of fast pace, deal-making and sense of urgency explain why Hong Kong people are receptive towards such interruption and have the habit of participating in both the physical and mobile spaces at the same time. Their findings also challenge the engaging-disengaging paradox theory - that is, mobile phone users find it difficult to simultaneously engage in parallel activities.

Research Area(s)

  • Communication, Culture, Interruption, Mobile phones

Bibliographic Note

Full text of this publication does not contain sufficient affiliation information. Research Unit(s) information for this record is based on his previous affiliation.

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