Jack White bans phones from concerts by making the audience keep them locked away

Jan 24, 2018

Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.

Jack White bans phones from concerts by making the audience keep them locked away

Jan 24, 2018

Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.

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Are you annoyed by those people who stand in front of you at concerts and you get to watch everything through their smartphone screens? It seems they annoy the performers, too. Looks like Jack White has really had enough of this, and he’s taking phone ban to a new level. From now on, the audience at his concerts will not have the access to their beloved smartphones while the show lasts. They will be asked to keep them locked in Yondr pouches, and they can only unlock them at certain points of the venue.

In April current year, White starts a tour out of the US. His team has issued a statement that the tour will be “phone-free” and there will be “no photos, video or audio recording devices allowed.”

Upon arrival at the venue, all phones and other photo or video-capturing gizmos will be secured in a Yondr pouch that will be unlocked at the end of the show. You keep your pouch-secured phone on you during the show and, if needed, can unlock your phone at any time in a designated Yondr Phone Zone located in the lobby or concourse.

So, you get to have your phone with you all the time, and you can access it in case you need to make a call or send a message. But oh no, how are you gonna post 30 blurry images on your social networks now? Worry not, you’ll get to download them from White’s website and new Instagram account, according to the statement cited at NME.The White’s team encourages you to repost the photos and videos as much as you want and “enjoy a phone-free, 100% human experience.”

Frankly, no matter how often I generally use my phone, I don’t use it at concerts. I want to be “here and now” and I don’t want other people to watch the entire show through my screen. I go to concerts pretty often, and people who do this really bother me and ruin the experience for me. Judging from the musicians like Jack White, Adele, and Josh Klinghoffer of RHCP, things like this also annoy the musicians.

I can understand it: they don’t get a reaction from the audience because everyone’s so busy with their phones. I guess it also doesn’t work to just ask the audience to stop filming and taking photos, so White opted for a more radical move. It’s pretty sad, though, that people need to be asked and even forced to enjoy concerts instead of staring at their phones.

On the other hand, no matter how people with phones at concerts go on my nerves, this is perhaps a bit too radical. It can happen that you need the phone urgently, for whichever reason, and you can’t access it immediately. You need to go through the crowd to get to the point where you can unlock the pouch and use your phone. Even I wouldn’t be glad to have my phone locked away, regardless of the fact that it’s been buried somewhere in my bag during every concert I’ve ever attended.

What do you guys think? Do you approve White’s move and wish more musician followed his example? Or is it too radical and limiting?

[via The Verge, NME; lead image (left): Michael Morel]

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Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic

Dunja Djudjic is a multi-talented artist based in Novi Sad, Serbia. With 15 years of experience as a photographer, she specializes in capturing the beauty of nature, travel, and fine art. In addition to her photography, Dunja also expresses her creativity through writing, embroidery, and jewelry making.

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29 responses to “Jack White bans phones from concerts by making the audience keep them locked away”

  1. Matt Nicki Lautemann Avatar
    Matt Nicki Lautemann

    Just bought tickets this morning and read about it. It is his show and similar to going to a movie theater there is something disruptive about lots of glowing rectangles. Won’t be a deal breaker for us if other acts follow.

  2. Lucija Ćavar Avatar
    Lucija Ćavar

    it was about time

  3. Hernani Jon Onyok Cañete Avatar
    Hernani Jon Onyok Cañete

    FUCK THE PEOPLE BUY TICKET TO WATCH YOU AND NOT TO GET ORDERS FROM YOU.

    1. Duncan Dimanche Avatar
      Duncan Dimanche

      Well they don’t watch them… that’s the whole point….
      And they are warned so they won’t buy a ticket if they need to film the show

  4. Nick Dunlap Avatar
    Nick Dunlap

    This isn’t that crazy. A lot of performers already do this.

  5. Jonathan C Riley Avatar
    Jonathan C Riley

    Good for him ?

  6. Stefan Kohler Avatar
    Stefan Kohler

    The question is: What would Jack Black do?

  7. Robyn Aldridge Avatar
    Robyn Aldridge

    Well done.

  8. Duncan Dimanche Avatar
    Duncan Dimanche

    Great move !!

  9. Dus Ro Avatar
    Dus Ro

    i dont understand people recording live acts on a shitty phone. why? for the audio? you wont hear shit. picture? even bigger pile of shit. tomorrow ill watch Tricky but in no fucking case will i hold my shitty little phone ting in front of me.

    1. Marc Falzon Avatar
      Marc Falzon

      The same reason why people take pictures at all Dus Ro.

  10. PatrickS Avatar
    PatrickS

    Hands down the worst part about concerts or live events are the A-holes around you, ruining it by using their phones, talking, drunk, etc. Although I think taking people’s phones away (or not allowing them into the venue) is a bit of a mixed bag, for safety issues mostly). I think Jack stating up front why he doesn’t want people to use their phones during a show, might help the situation. Kind of like imploring people at a wedding to not use their phones and keep it an “unplugged” wedding.

  11. Britt Thomas Avatar
    Britt Thomas

    I went to his white stripes concert back in the early 2000s prior to smart phones. He stopped the concert when a guy was trying to crowd surf and cursed him out saying people can’t enjoy the music with his ass in the air and to gtfo. They crowd surfed him straight to security and then White restarted the song. He’s always been about the experience.

  12. Hector Macias Avatar
    Hector Macias

    Stoopid. Let people enjoy how they want to.

    1. Laurie McKay Avatar
      Laurie McKay

      Except when they are ruining it for everyone around them have some consideration for the performers as well

  13. Nick Britsky Avatar
    Nick Britsky

    Approve.

  14. Eduardo Xavier Vaca Ochoa Avatar
    Eduardo Xavier Vaca Ochoa

    Great… people is too adicted to smartphones… the thing is keep memories in your brains!!!

  15. Laurie McKay Avatar
    Laurie McKay

    Good deal it is extremely annoying to have everyone waving their phones around and even using a flash.

  16. Kryn Sporry Avatar
    Kryn Sporry

    I don’t get it. People using their phones to record a concert mostly do so to have nice memories to share with others, not to make money by distributing sub quality recordings for money.

    In fact, it’s actually free advertising for the artist when clips of their concerts appear on FB etc.

  17. Zygmunt Zarzecki Avatar
    Zygmunt Zarzecki

    Who is Jack White?

  18. Adrian J Nyaoi Avatar
    Adrian J Nyaoi

    High time someone stop the epidemic

  19. Clement RENAUT Avatar
    Clement RENAUT

    look with your eyes, not through your screen  :D

  20. Philou Nefland Avatar
    Philou Nefland

    Radical but apparently necessary :/

  21. Darren Jenks Avatar
    Darren Jenks

    Good on him I say. I wouldn’t be seen dead at his gigs, but why should people watch him through a fucking screen that doesn’t even belong to them? Having to watch a live gig with peoples arms in the air makes me want to buy a machete and chop the fuckers hands off ????

  22. Anthony Woodruffe Avatar
    Anthony Woodruffe

    Locked phones during concerts, a potential safety hazard?
    Seems we have entered an era where people are detached from a life before the mobile phone. A time when during an emergency exit, you got out as swiftly as you possibly could. Making a call wasn’t a consideration.

  23. Stereo Reverb Avatar
    Stereo Reverb

    If you want to see how well the “no cell phone policy” works, check out all the cell phone photos from The Misfits reunion show back in december. The singer is notorious for his anti cell phone/camera policy and has gone so far as to assault fans who use them. Btw, he used the famous Yonder cell phone pouches that Jack White is using, and they worked great. Actually, folks snuck in phones or unlocked their pouches and took photos and videos galore. http://www.metalsucks.net/2017/12/31/here-are-hundreds-of-photos-and-videos-of-the-misfits-reunion-despite-danzigs-no-cell-phone-policy/

  24. Timothyf7 Avatar
    Timothyf7

    I understand both sides. Growing up when cameras were allowed at any concert, I took some great pictures. I didn’t use a flash, respecting the performer. I understand the artist’s view on not getting immediate feedback due to the audience using their effort to keep their phone on target. But I didn’t pay to provide feedback. I paid to be entertained. Granted, without feedback, the show probably won’t be near as enjoyable. As far as hands stuck up in the air – during my concert-going phase, it was common for dozens of girls to be on the shoulders of their date. Phones are much smaller than a human being. Using an honor system to keep phones locked up seems ridiculous. Honor is not a strong point today. It’s a “ME” generation. A performer can ban “all” recording devices from being brought into the arena, but the downside is that there are people that would still do it and ticket sales would probably suffer a bit too (people today cannot exist without their cellphone). But in the end, it is a decision that the performer must make and assume any negative repercussions from their decision.

  25. moonshin Avatar
    moonshin

    several years ago i was a photographer at sxsw when jack white was performing. even though we had permission from sxsw to shoot his show he wouldnt allow sxsw photographers in..

    he can go to hell

  26. Mar Avatar
    Mar

    I saw his show last night in DC. I loved the cell phone free experience!! When I was younger we didn’t have cell phones. What did we do then? We were fine!