Yondr Phone Pouches At Concerts

I remember last year reading about these Yondr pouches and Jack White insisting they be used at his gigs and I was wondering if they had caught on, essentially when you enter the gig your phone is locked inside a pouch that you keep with you but it can only be opened in a designated area or when you leave.
Have any members been to a concert where Yondr pouches have been used?
Seems like a great idea to me the last couple of concerts I went to the phone thing was just stupid and annoying.


Only seen them at Jack White’s concerts in London last year, wish more artists insisted on them, it’s great to be able to watch a show without the distraction of a sea of lofted mobile phones.

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I hadn’t heard of them until now. I think should be mandatory in every performance venue, provided that by simply stepping outside the auditorium it can unlock instantly, so you can take that unwanted urgent call you’d been dreading would come at the wrong time, but really mustn’t miss.

There are areas within a venue using the Yodr pouches where you can go and have them unlocked whilst you take or make that important call the pouch will then be relocked before you return to the concert area.

“Where you can have them unlocked” sounds unmanageable when a gig/show is over, especially a large one… they need to make it proximity triggered.

I have just read an article about the grime artist Skepta who is trying to introduce a new way of clubbing or raving where Yodr pouches are used inside nightclubs so that people can again be themselves and not an Instagram, Twitter or Facebook user name ‘sharing’ online and experience a night in the moment, at that venue and with just the other people who are physically there.

Phone use severely impacts my enjoyment of concerts. Anything to get people to stop using them is fine by me. I go to far fewer concerts because of phones.

We often talk about the way smart phones have impacted on the young people around us and how their enjoyment of life is diluted or in some cases changed because of them.
My nephew has gone to Ibiza this week but where he should have been looking forward to it he has been literally starving himself dieting and spending every hour in the gym obsessing about how he will look in the videos he posts of himself at the beach parties.
He and his friends had a whats app Ibiza training camp group!
His sister is totally addicted to her phone and is obsessed with her physical appearance try taking a picture of her without prior warning and preening time and if she doesn’t see it deleted she freaks out. We have been on holiday, out celebrating or at home watching a movie and she will see something on that phone and her whole mood changes.
I was convinced there would be a backlash and that some young people would rebel against the phone obsession and I really hope that the actions of artists such as Skepta
help and in the Yondr pouch perhaps things can begin to change conciousness and it will be seen as uncool to be constantly filming and using social media at social gatherings.

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There is nothing social about Facebook, Twitter and the like. To me they are simply evil.

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Software is largely not evil. The purposes to which it is put, determined largely by people, are potentially evil. I’d rather not indulge in sweeping generalisations.

Mixed feelings on the phone front. I don’t for example see anyone campaigning against ***** who continually go to the bar during gigs and disturb entire rows of people repeatedly because of the bar trips alternating with loo trips. Ditto the campaign to stop people who talk all the way through gigs or who think a gig can only be enjoyed on the shoulders of someone else. Always been there. Just as annoying.

That’s not to say I’m pro phone users at gigs. It does however strike me there’s a certain pious self-righteous element of trying to save people from themselves. It smells a little unsavoury and 18th century religious. I actually use a monocular and my phone at gigs to help me see detail I couldn’t otherwise see. Every band has impacts people who genuinely have a need. My friend with epilepsy simply can’t wait for someone to get her out of the crowd and alert a paramedic. She needs someone with her at all times who has a phone.

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I couldn’t agree more.

King Crimson use a more low-tech approach: signs posted at the entrance to the venue and on the stage while the band is offstage, a prerecorded announcement before the concert starts, eagle-eyed ushers who will pounce at the first sight of an illicit light source, and a quid pro quo with the audience that allows the audience to photograph the band after the last encore has finished and bass player Tony Levin has picked up his camera to photograph the audience.

It’s worked pretty well at their recent concerts that I have attended and being able to concentrate on the music made the concert much more enjoyable. I even saw someone thrown out for dancing once, which was fair enough in an all-seater venue where everyone else was sitting down.

Mike what is unsavoury about wanting young people to enjoy life on it’s own terms without the shield of social media? And let’s be plain that smart phones (not mobile phones) and social media are one and the same thing and couldn’t exist without the other, can’t really see people whipping out a laptop or a pc at every oppurtunity in the same way.
Social media lets children at an age when they are still developing define a sense of self and self worth that at times isn’t based at all in reality and isn’t sustainable out in the real world. Likes and social media friends and followers are now taken as indicators of popularity and of self pride and of course the opposite.
When my niece who is mixed race was being bullied for not being black enough by a group of girls whose parents where both black the bullying was constant and walked out the school gates with her, through her front door and into her bedroom via her smart phone where one night when it became too much she took an overdose, the bullying started because of social media and was started on social media.
I am convinced that the rise in popularity of the smart phone and social media has happened so lightning quick that we haven’t had a real chance to adapt to it properly, we haven’t had a chance to debate it properly or to work out what the negative affects are on our physical and mental health and we need to catch our breath a bit. Primary studies are showing that because of ‘google’ problem solving and the internet in general accesed via smart phones that our childrens cognitive responses are developing much slower.
In my view any artist looked up to by young people who says this smart phone, social media thing isn’t cool all the time should be applauded and the Yondr pouch is a great way to help.
“Mixed feelings on the phone front. I don’t for example see anyone campaigning against ***** who continually go to the bar during gigs and disturb entire rows of people repeatedly because of the bar trips alternating with loo trips. Ditto the campaign to stop people who talk all the way through gigs or who think a gig can only be enjoyed on the shoulders of someone else. Always been there. Just as annoying.”

I went to a Neil Young concert with my brother and our experience was totally ruined by people keep shushing and tutting everytime we spoke or went to toilet if you want to forensically study a concert buy the DVD and let the rest of us enjoy the emotion of it.

Bob I think it is because people paid good money to hear Neil Young’s voice and not yours. They are probably thinking the same thing why did these guys pay good money to see Neil Young and feel the need to prattle on rather than listen to the show. Why didn’t they just buy the DVD and pause it and have a good old chin wag and re the toilet can’t you just tie a knot in it for an hour or so.


You’re probably right AndyP we can be bit boisterious when we get together especially after a few beers and we thought we had bought tickets to a Rock ‘n’ Roll concert but instead for the first hour and a half which was all accoustic Neil Young sat inside a huge semi-circle of guitars and before each song made the pretence of choosing which one to play with added chin rubs and finger pointing whilst his adoring audience shouted encouragement ’ pick the 12 string Neil’, ‘choose the Gibson’ then gave wild applause, ‘great choice’, ’ Yeah, Wooooo’.
He then proceeded to play one of the most grindingly boring sets I’ve ever heard him play akin to Dylan at his self indulgent worst, he was accompanied by his then wife Pegi and an artist painting pictures to his songs.
The second half was a Racous Rock ‘n’ Roller at his best and made the first half worth perservering with it was a fantastic electric Crazy Horse like experience but clocking in at over three and a half hours it would have been difficult to just tie a knot it and with a concert filled with more than a few thousand over 50’s that does mean a lot of people going for a toilet break all of the time. The experience did make me resolve though to never again go to the concert of an ageing rocker.

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To take those in turn.

  • I’ve no idea what “life on it’s own terms” means. Imposing ones own philosophy on others in social situations is never a good look.

  • you seem to have gone off at a tangent re: children and social media. I agree with you in principle (my 14 year old has access to zero social media accounts and no smartphone and that won’t be changing any time soon) that’s a wholly different discussion to one on the behaviours of adults at gigs. It’s adults who should know better not kids. I will add though that there’s a solid body of research which shows that making a distinction between the net/social media and the “real world” is not an accurate reading of what’s taking place.

  • there’s a big difference between saying something isn’t cool and depriving people of something with no exceptions.

  • I absolutely hope your Neil Young experience was ruined by people tutting and shushing. Good for them. No-one is asking for the equivalent of a recording or something “forensic” but people who ceaselessly talk either when the artist is talking or all the way through song after song are tedious arses and literally spoiling the enjoyment for everyone around them. The distraction of that is absolutely no different to that of smartphones.


What I actually said was

I absolutely stand by that. Wasn’t personal. Was about the approach to this issue. Ditto

[quote=“mikehughescq, post:15, topic:3344”]
people who ceaselessly talk either when the artist is talking or all the way through song after song are tedious arses and literally spoiling the enjoyment for everyone around them.

General observation. Not personal. I can see it would be construed that way following my comment about hoping your enjoyment was spoiled but that wasn’t the intent so I’m more than happy to apologise.

I hardly think that hoping that your gig experience was ruined by people asking you to show some basic respect for the people around you at a gig is “nasty and vindictive”. I actually think that being able to hear the artist is the minimum I have the right to expect at a gig. If the sound is poor I will say so. If the arse next to me is talking I always ask them to STFU. Very rare that alcohol isn’t involved and most of them have literally no self-awareness as to how loud they are. At standing gigs they will move away. At seated gigs they will try and carry on right until the next person they annoy says something emboldened by the fact someone else did. Most effective tactic I’ve seen was a major female Americana artist recently stop a song; tell an audience member to sit down; shut up; hold their desire for a piss until the end of the song and show some respect for the people around them. 3,000 people cheered and the noise and movement level dropped by around 75% for the rest of the gig.

A survey done by a certain very big ticketing company in conjunction with a very big festival showed that it’s actually the number one irritation for gig goers over the age of 25. Talking not phones.

Whilst my child is 14 I’ll be making decisions on his device usage. When he’s independent financially he can make his own. I am pretty much guarantee that no 14 year old has ruined your gig though. You were absolutely way off tangent. Phone use at gigs is not some weird 14 to 25 year old demographic. I’ve seen Neil Young recently and it was as much people in their 60s and older as it was anyone else. At Janelle Monae it was people in their 30s and 40s. Last night the idiot next to me at Book Of Mormon who felt the need to blind me by checking his phone every 15 minutes or so until I had a word was seeing it for the 2nd time in 2 weeks at the age of 74. So, who are Yondr eat al going to educate then? The bloke at the Chris Rock gig in Glasgow thrown out for checking on his Dad’s health in an aisle?

You want young people to enjoy life on its own terms (still no clarity on that one) which presumably involves confirming to some kind of norms or acceptable behaviour. The research suggests your behaviour is actually not the accepted norm. All looks a bit tricky all of a sudden doesn’t it.

Let’s be clear. Phones at gigs or in the theatre or cinema largely get on my wick. They literally blind me momentarily and when held up prevent me from seeing detail in front of me. Talking though always has and will be the bigger annoyance. Banning them at gigs is not about the experience. Skepta probably wouldn’t have broken at all were it not for social media. The pouches are about a financial deal and brand differentiation as well as wanting to profit from their own official footage or recordings. Nothing wrong with any of the latter but a bit of honesty about it wouldn’t go amiss.

It’s been a long day and I cannot believe I actually bit find someone else to annoy Mike.

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Having a rational opinion based on 40+ years of gig going and backed up by the majority of gig goers is “annoying”? Bless.

Years old but still accurate.

Doubt you’ll ever find this level of vitriol aimed at phone users at gigs.

How many do you want?

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Maybe this is the answer to the question someone posed about live gigs in the Thoughts on Sound Quality thread: But why does it have to be so loud?

After all, teenyboppers screaming at Beatles’ gigs fueled the move to more powerful PA systems.