Everyone hates when they are at a show and it is a sea of cell phones held aloft. It can block the view, it really takes you out of the moment and just feels kind of desperate. Some great bands such as A Perfect Circle and Danzig have been strict or outright hostile enforcing a no cell phone policy, and I understand that. In the case of an Earth show I was at once, Dylan Carlson is at risk from flash photography, if I recall. That is a reasonable excuse to want control over what goes down.
Bands like to say ,”Be here with us” or “share the moment”. I get that. Be present. It’s a once in a lifetime show. YouTube and IG clips can promote but also detract from attendance as people get lazy and watch from home or the secrets of a live performance are laid bare (not always fair for people who shelled out cash to actually show up).
I used to be really dismayed by phones up the whole time instead of lighters, but post Bataclan, Ariana Grande’s show bombing in the UK and Las Vegas, I feel very differently. I think it is outright irresponsible to ban phones unless you have a good medical reason. Otherwise your vanity could result in less eyes being available to document all manner of things. It is also why I think body cams and people filming cops is a good idea, on a related note.
Honestly with concert shootings , as much as it sucks at times, bands need to stop entirely with the no phones bullshit. A million phones up instead of lighters is shitty but I’d rather that than miss footage that could ID a criminal or show abuse by security, etc. Even in low light you could catch a stabbing or gun person who might fade into crowd. Call me paranoid but shit is crazy.
I know this is a sort of straight to the chase think piece but I thought I would put it out there as food for thought and discussion today. Hope you all enjoy whatever concerts you are attending safely (except for in the pit, of course).