Tag Archives: hazards

EMF-Omega-News 26. March 2011

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Health Effects of our ‘Wireless World
http://www.buergerwelle.de:8080/helma/twoday/bwnews/stories/2390/

Wireless radiation is interfering with our natural body frequency
http://www.buergerwelle.de:8080/helma/twoday/bwnews/stories/2374/

Is Cell Phone Radiation Weakening the Brain?
http://www.buergerwelle.de:8080/helma/twoday/bwnews/stories/2394/

Mobile radiation can weaken your eyesight
http://www.buergerwelle.de:8080/helma/twoday/bwnews/stories/2375/

Wearing Phone on Belt Linked to Decreased Bone Mineral Density in the Hip
http://www.buergerwelle.de:8080/helma/twoday/bwnews/stories/2393/

Science being abused
http://www.buergerwelle.de:8080/helma/twoday/bwnews/stories/2397/

Keep Your Children Safe
http://www.buergerwelle.de:8080/helma/twoday/bwnews/stories/2379/

Report of lawyers meeting at EU Parliament in Brussels the 25th January, 2011
http://www.buergerwelle.de:8080/helma/twoday/bwnews/stories/2381/

ICNIRP DRAFT Guidelines on Limits of Exposure to Incoherent Visible and Infrared Radiation
http://www.buergerwelle.de:8080/helma/twoday/bwnews/stories/2391/

Corporation plans to bring mobile towers under tax net soon
http://www.buergerwelle.de:8080/helma/twoday/bwnews/stories/2380/

Celebrity backing for battle to block mast plan
http://www.buergerwelle.de:8080/helma/twoday/bwnews/stories/2382/

Health fears over possible phone mast
http://www.buergerwelle.de:8080/helma/twoday/bwnews/stories/2385/

Caution needed over phone masts
http://www.buergerwelle.de:8080/helma/twoday/bwnews/stories/2398/

LOUGHTON: Fears over districts latest phone mast plans
http://www.buergerwelle.de:8080/helma/twoday/bwnews/stories/2399/

Some Worry About ‘Smart Meters’
http://www.buergerwelle.de:8080/helma/twoday/bwnews/stories/2387/

Smart Technology Not So Smart?
http://www.buergerwelle.de:8080/helma/twoday/bwnews/stories/2395/

4G Networks Raising Havoc on Swedens Railway System
http://www.buergerwelle.de:8080/helma/twoday/bwnews/stories/2386/

Japan and its special fear of radiation
http://www.sharenews-blog.com:8090/helma/twoday/sharenews/stories/5166/

Next-up News Nr 1647
http://www.sharenews-blog.com:8090/helma/twoday/sharenews/stories/5128/

Next-up News Nr 1648
http://www.sharenews-blog.com:8090/helma/twoday/sharenews/stories/5141/

Next-up News Nr 1649
http://www.sharenews-blog.com:8090/helma/twoday/sharenews/stories/5157/

Next-up News Nr 1651
http://www.sharenews-blog.com:8090/helma/twoday/sharenews/stories/5176/

Next-up News Nr 1652
http://www.sharenews-blog.com:8090/helma/twoday/sharenews/stories/5195/

Next-up News Nr 1653
http://www.sharenews-blog.com:8090/helma/twoday/sharenews/stories/5218/

Next-up News Nr 1654
http://www.sharenews-blog.com:8090/helma/twoday/sharenews/stories/5230/

News from Mast Sanity
http://tinyurl.com/2vhcbl6
http://tinyurl.com/aotw3

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Filed under 3G / 4G, cell phone, children, disease, electrohypersensitivity, electromagnetic radiation, EMF, environment, pollution

Does being in denial serve you best?

embrace or deny; you choose and accept responsibility. no blame game.

  • ask ourselves if being in denial about things that hurt us, protect us?
  • if you know you are allergic to peanuts, do you consume or avoid them?
  • when you see proof that cigarettes kill, do you smoke or quit?
  • you know wireless technology is harming you; do you protect yourself or remain frozen (immovable) in denial, by choice?

We are referencing the plethora of wireless devices, technology, satellites 23,000 miles from the earth creating these high level frequencies far beyond the norms of all living matter.

We are proving DNA changes, harmful effects and fatal results.  How many decades do we jeopardize our children and Grands before the FCC etc protect us?

CSea Perkins

EMFJournal creator / moderator

//

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Filed under ecoWise choices, EMF, environment, harmonizer, protect

Mobile Phone Electromagnetic Radiation and Sleep

Special thank you to Angela Flynn for posting

http://www.lboro.ac.uk/departments/ssehs/research/centres-institutes/sleep/research1.html

Research from other laboratories has shown that the radio waves from a mobile phone affect the electrical activity of the sleeping brain (the ‘EEG’)’. However, these studies have mostly used one standard radio frequency, whereas the phone signal differs depending on whether we are talking, listening or leave the phone in ‘stand-by’ mode. We have separated out these three signals and find different effects on the EEG. This research program, in conjunction with the Centre for Mobile Communications Research, here at Loughborough, has shown that 30 minutes exposure to the ‘talk’ mode signal delays sleep onset.

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FCC Raises the Red Flag about Cell Phone Hazards

Grateful to Paul Doyon for posting Dr. Mercola’s installation.  The FCC has allowed all these manufacturers to exceed safe levels; now what?

Posted by Dr. Mercola | April 27 2010 | 21,820 views

On November 5, 2009, the FCC released their Consumer Facts on “Wireless Devices and Health Concerns.” In this document, the FCC recommends precautions for the use of cell phones.

According to the FCC, “Recent reports by some health and safety interest groups have suggested that wireless device use can be linked to cancer and other illnesses. These questions have become more pressing as more and younger people are using the devices, and for longer periods of time.”

They now recommend the following steps:

  • Use an earpiece or headset
  • If possible, keep wireless devices away from your body when they are on, mainly by not attaching them to belts or carrying them in pockets
  • Use the cell phone speaker to reduce exposure to your head
  • Consider texting rather than talking
  • Buy a wireless device with lower Specific Absorption Rate (SAR)

Sources:

FCC November 5, 2009

Dr. Mercola’s Comments:

Public health agencies cannot continue to keep their heads in the sand while millions of people, including children, are unknowingly being exposed to radiation at levels that are putting their health at risk.

Warning Labels Should be Added to All Cell Phones

The issue has been heating up recently, and a bill introduced in Maine, which would make it the first to mandate warning labels on all cell phones, created a flurry of national attention. I suspect and sincerely hope it will not be much longer before cell phones are outed as the cigarettes of the 21st century, and this bill would be a first step toward that.

It calls for the following statement to be prominently placed on every cell phone and all related packaging, on a non-removable label:

“Warning, this device emits electromagnetic radiation, exposure to which may cause brain cancer. Users, especially children and pregnant women, should keep this device away from the head and body.”

In addition, the bill, as currently written, requires the label to include the color graphic showing the electromagnetic absorption of a 5-year old child’s brain, as depicted in a 1996 study published by the IEEE on the effect of cell phone microwave emissions on the neck and head.

Why You Can’t Trust Current FCC Cell Phone Standards

You may find it hard to believe that the FCC would allow cell phones on the market if they were unsafe. Well, the FCC does, in fact, require wireless devices to meet minimum safety guidelines for human use.

Unfortunately, these guidelines are based on exposure limits in terms of Specific Absorption Rate, otherwise known as the SAR value. The SAR value is a measure of the power of the cell phone and its potential for heating tissues.

But simply choosing a phone with a lower SAR value does not at all mean the phone is safe. Camilla Rees, founder of www.Electromagnetichealth.org and co-author with Magda Havas, PhD of Public Health SOS: The Shadow Side of the Wireless Revolution, explains:

“It is important consumers realize that the SAR value, while providing information for comparison purposes between phones, is very limited in its usefulness as a measure of ‘safety.’ We are greatly concerned that people may be turning to the EWG database in droves not understanding just how limited a measure the SAR value is.”

Why is the SAR value not an accurate measure of safety?

  1. The SAR value is only comparing the isolated heating effect of different phones and does not give an indication that a cell phone is ‘safe.’
  2. The power, or heating effect, of the phone is only one of many possible factors impacting cell phone ‘safety.’ Exposures to the radiation from the cell phone at non-heating levels have been linked to many serious biological effects, and the SAR value is not capturing anything about these harmful non-thermal exposures.
  3. SAR values are reported to the FCC by the manufacturer and have been known to vary from the reported number by a factor of two across models of the same phone.
  4. The SAR value varies with the source of exposure and the person using the phone. For example, if you are in a rural area or in an elevator or a car, where the cell phone uses more power, your brain will get a greater exposure from the higher power required in these instances. Under certain conditions, the SAR value can be 10-100 times higher than reported.
  5. Holding the phone in a slightly different way can actually render the worst SAR value phone better than the best SAR value phone.
  6. SAR values have been created based on simulations of exposure in a plexiglass head filled with fluid, not a human head, and many scientists consider them to be inaccurate and irrelevant at determining actual biological effects.

One of the worst deficiencies of the SAR value is that it only considers the thermal impact of cell phone usage, and it is very likely that the non-thermal effects of chronic cell phone exposure are more biologically damaging.

Even the FCC acknowledged this concern in their FCC Consumer Facts:

“Some experts think that low frequency magnetic fields rather than RF energy measured by the SAR possibly are responsible for any potential risk associated with wireless devices.”

Have You Heard? Cell Phones are Dangerous …

In case you haven’t yet heard, there’s a reason why the FCC finally issued cell phone “precautions” despite the industry’s assurances to the contrary.

For starters, the 2009 special EMF issue of the Journal of Pathophysiology contains over a dozen different studies on the health effects of electromagnetic fields and wireless technology

In addition, a review of 11 long-term epidemiologic studies published in the journal Surgical Neurology revealed that using a cell phone for 10 or more years approximately doubles the risk of being diagnosed with a brain tumor on the same side of the head where the cell phone is typically held.

You should also know that:

  • A study by Dr. Siegal Sadetzki linked cell phone use to salivary gland tumors
  • Wearing a cell phone on your hip — either on your belt or in a pocket — has been linked to decreased bone density in the pelvic region. (All the other vital organs located in your pelvic region — your liver, kidney, bladder, colon and reproductive organs — are also susceptible to radiation damage).
  • Proximity to cell phone towers causes an increase in the symptoms of electromagnetic hypersensitivity, including fatigue, sleep disturbances, visual and auditory disturbances, and cardiovascular effects
  • The BioInitiative Report includes studies showing evidence for:
    • Effects on Gene and Protein Expression (Transcriptomic and Proteomic Research)
    • Genotoxic Effects – RFR and ELF DNA Damage
    • Stress Response (Stress Proteins)
    • Effects on Immune Function
    • Effects on Neurology and Behavior
    • Brain Tumors, Acoustic Neuromas, and childhood cancers like leukemia
    • And much more

I’ve barely scratched the surface with the examples I listed above. There are many, many more out there, and if you’re interested to learn more the Web site ElectromagneticHealth.org offers 10 free eye-opening audio interviews with some of the world’s leading experts in the field of EMF.

What Can You do to Stay Safe?

I urge you to take action now to protect yourself and your family from the dangerous effects of cell phones and other wireless devices. Please do not wait for the FCC to make a more serious warning or ban the phones altogether.

I believe this issue is so important I’ve created an entire web site dedicated to EMF education and information. Feel free to bookmark EMF.mercola.com and check back on occasion for the latest news and updates.

If you are not ready to give up your cell phone just yet, at the very least don’t let your young children use one, and avoid cell phone exposure while pregnant or carrying your infant. Children are FAR more susceptible to harm from microwave radiation than adults.

Further, you can at least minimize exposure by heeding the following advice:

  • Reduce your cell phone use: Turn your cell phone off more often. Reserve it for emergencies or important matters. As long as your cell phone is on, it emits radiation intermittently, even when you are not actually making a call.
  • Use a land line at home and at work: Although more and more people are switching to using cell phones as their exclusive phone contact, it is a dangerous trend and you can choose to opt out of the madness.
  • Reduce or eliminate your use of other wireless devices: You would be wise to cut down your use of these devices. Just as with cell phones, it is important to ask yourself whether or not you really need to use them every single time.
  • If you must use a portable home phone, use the older kind that operates at 900 MHz. They are no safer during calls, but at least many of them do not broadcast constantly even when no call is being made.

Note the only way to truly be sure if there is an exposure from your cordless phone is to measure with an electrosmog meter, and it must be one that goes up to the frequency of your portable phone (so old meters will not be of much use). You can find meters at www.emfsafetystore.com.

As a general rule of thumb, you can pretty much be sure your portable phone is a problem if the technology is DECT, or digitally enhanced cordless technology.

  • Use your cell phone only where reception is good: The weaker the reception, the more power your phone must use to transmit, and the more power it uses, the more radiation it emits, and the deeper the dangerous radio waves penetrate into your body. Ideally, you should only use your phone with full bars and good reception.
  • Don’t assume one cell phone is safer than another: Please understand that despite assurances, there’s still no such thing as a “safe” cell phone.
  • Keep your cell phone away from your body when it’s on: The most dangerous place to be, in terms of radiation exposure, is within about six inches of the emitting antenna. You do not want any part of your body within that area (so do not carry your cell phone on your belt, either).
  • Use safer headset technology: Wired headsets will certainly allow you to keep the cell phone farther away from your body. However, if a wired headset is not well-shielded — and most of them are not — the wire itself acts as an antenna attracting ambient information carrying radio waves and transmitting radiation directly to your brain.

Make sure that the wire used to transmit the signal to your ear is shielded.

The best kind of headset to use is a combination shielded wire and air-tube headset. These operate like a stethoscope, transmitting the information to your head as an actual sound wave; although there are wires that still must be shielded, there is no wire that goes all the way up to your head.

Related Links:

The Big “Hidden Cell Phone Lie” Companies Will Never Admit

New Law May Slow Cell Phone Cancer Epidemic

Cell Phones are the Cigarettes of the 21st Century

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Filed under cancer, cell phone, electromagnetic fields, electromagnetic radiation, electrosmog, EMF, environment, greenhouse emissions

Key resources and sounds of EMF

Source: As noted in the tags when published earlier, but finally getting time to devote gratitude and elaborate on the author.

This contributor is t.unrelated@googlemail.com.  We know him as Tom Unrelated but read all of his updates  We desire to pass on his education to as large an audience as possible; we respectfully request you share with those you care about as well.

This gentleman is a continual source of  information posted in this blog.  His exhaustive work on collecting, formatting, giving extremely easy access to thousands of hours of collective research.

Eternally grateful, as we hope you readers are, for the education provided in the Yahoo, Google, Facebook and WWW.  If there are other authors, we are proud to share your hard work in honor of saving lives.  Awareness + Acceptance = Action.

_______

EMF Sounds

Each electromagnetic source has it’s own characteristic sound, which is demodulated by broadband-meters to allow evaluating the source from the sound. Although GSM-900 and GSM-1800 can’t be differentiated by their sound as it is the same. Other sources are easily detectable, here are a couple of examples. If you’d like to listen to some other source, please contact us.

Use the embedded Player Embedded MP3 Player to listen or download the file (right click the download button below the embedded Player, chose “Save Link/Target as…”

Name Sound
HAARP High Frequency Active Auroral Research Program Download/Telecharge File
TETRA TErrestrial Trunked Radio (government agencies, emergency services, (Police, Fire Departments, Ambulance), rail transportation staff, transport services and Military. TETRA BasestationDownload/Telecharge File
GSM 2. Generation Mobile Phone GSM Mobile PhoneDownload/Telecharge File
GSM 2. Generation Mobile Phone Base Station Transmitter (BST) GSM BasestationDownload/Telecharge File
DECT Digital Enhanced Cordless Telecommunication (Common technology wireless phones at home use, max. 400 meter distance) DECT Base FarDownload/Telecharge File

DECT Base Near

Download/Telecharge File

UMTS (3G) Universal Mobile Telecommunications System (3. Generation), Base Station (Node-B) UMTS (3G) BasestationDownload/Telecharge File
WLAN/WiFi Wireless Local Area Network/Wireless Fidelity (Wireless computer network for short distance (max. 100 meters), such as Internet Connection at home) WLAN/WiFi Router Stand-ByDownload/Telecharge File
Bluetooth Proprietary open wireless technology standard for exchanging data over short distances using microwaves. Bluetooth StandbyDownload/Telecharge File

Bluetooth Working

Download/Telecharge File

WiMAX Worldwide Interoperability for Microwave Access (wireless computer network for medium distance up to a few/couple kilometer/miles) Download/Telecharge File

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Filed under cancer, cell phone, cell tower, EMF

Mobile Phone Tumor Fears

Grateful to Paul Doyon for submitting this via emfrefugee.

April 17, 2010 by: admin

http://squall-blog.com/?p=32815

David Smith faithfully sold mobile phones for 10 years. Little did he know, he was getting paid to sell something that he believes has now ruined his life. “I think it would be very foolish, very foolish, to assume there is no relationship and not take any precautions,” David said.

“What makes me angry is that they continue to sell these phones without making sure that they are safe.” The evidence is mounting. Brain tumors are on the increase – even neurosurgeons are concerned. The industry stands firm, however, not all of them. David was just 30 years old when he underwent three operations to remove the tumor as big as a golf ball, around his acoustic nerve.

During the surgery, the nerve was removed and another was accidentally damaged, causing David to lose muscular control in his face. “I believe mobile phones gave me this tumor and I blame the mobile phone companies,” David said.”I was angry at the mobile phone companies and at the telecommunication companies because they’ve put this product on the market without the proper research to what it does, I guess they’ve used us as guinea pigs.” The tumor was situated just behind his right ear.

“I used to use my right ear as my phone ear, but I don’t do that anymore because I can’t hear out of it,” David said. “I used to use the mobile phone maybe one or two hours a day for the 10 years or so before I was diagnosed.”

David’s tumor is one that studies have linked to mobile phone use. Professor Bruce Armstrong is head of Sydney University’s Public Health Dept. He’s spent 10 years looking at the research between mobile phones and brain tumors.

There was evidence of a twofold increase in risk of tumors. While David is trying to piece his life back together, he worries for the millions who constantly use their mobile. “You see 10 year olds running around the street using mobile phones, I wonder how they’ll affect the development of their brains,” said David.

Enrico Grani too blames his brain tumor on heavy mobile phone use over 10 years. “I had an analogue phone it was like a toy, you know what I mean, you get a new toy you talk on the phone,” said Enrico. He was diagnosed with a meninglioma in the right parietal globe.

After the operation, he was in a coma for three days and suffered a stroke. “I blame the cell phone industry blinded by greed, they’ve known about this for many, many years but they still deny it,” said Enrico.

None of this surprises those in the business of brain surgery.

One prominent Canberra Neurologist has written a research paper on the link between mobile phones and brain tumors. He believes mobile phones will be the next great public health issue and he compares their effects with those of smoking and asbestos.

He’s calling on government and industry to take immediate steps to reduce exposure of consumers to mobile phones. As a Neurosurgeon Richard Bit-tar has seen a rise in brain tumors in the last 15 years, but says its hard to point the finger solely at mobile phone use. Yet Richard tries to use his mobile phone only on loudspeaker or uses a nearby land line when possible.

“There is certainly an element of concern not only from myself but from a lot of my colleagues. A lot of my neurosurgery colleagues go even further and really try and minimize the amount of mobile phone use they engage in, that reflects an underlying concern that there may well be a relationship,” said Richard.

His warning to consumers? “Minimize the amount of time you spend with your mobile phone up against your ear. “We asked the Australian Mobile Telecommunications Association’s Chris Althaus if he was worried about getting a tumor: “No.”

Does he use his phone every day? “I use it every day and I use it a lot every day, I’m very comfortable personally with the way the research effort conveys to markets like Australia and globally the level of safety you can enjoy when using a mobile phone,” said Chris. But David had a different view.

“It’s ruined the life I had previously had, all these plans and ideas and so much hope for the future and now that’s all changed. I’ve had to reevaluate everything,” said David.

Educational Cell Phone Digital Book by Paul Fitzgerald, EMF expert, graduated from NJIT in Newark, NJ. He has been studying EMF’s for over 15 years.. He has done over 100 radio shows in 2006 and released his book CellPhone Lies

To learn more go to EMF Radiation News.

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Wide Web of diversions gets laptops evicted from lecture hall

http://www.washingtonpost.com/wp-dyn/content/article/2010/03/08/AR2010030804915.html

_

Wide Web of diversions gets laptops evicted from lecture hall

By Daniel de Vise
Washington Post Staff Writer
Tuesday, March 9, 2010; A01

On a windy morning in downtown Washington, a hundred Georgetown Law students gathered in a hall for David Cole’s lecture on democracy and coercion. The desks were cluttered with books, Thermoses and half-eaten muffins.

Another item was noticeable in its absence: laptop computers. They were packed away under chairs, tucked into backpacks, powered down and forgotten.
Cole has banned laptops from his classes, compelling students to take notes the way their parents did: on paper.

A generation ago, academia embraced the laptop as the most welcome classroom innovation since the ballpoint pen. But during the past decade, it has evolved into a powerful distraction. Wireless Internet connections tempt students away from note-typing to e-mail, blogs, YouTube videos, sports scores, even online gaming — all the diversions of a home computer beamed into the classroom to compete with the professor for the student’s attention.

“This is like putting on every student’s desk, when you walk into class, five different magazines, several television shows, some shopping opportunities and a phone, and saying, ‘Look, if your mind wanders, feel free to pick any of these up and go with it,’ ” Cole said.
Professors have banned laptops from their classrooms at George Washington UniversityAmerican University, the College of William and Mary and the University of Virginia, among many others. Last month, a physics professor at the University of Oklahoma poured liquid nitrogen onto a laptop and then shattered it on the floor, a warning to the digitally distracted. A student — of course — managed to capture the staged theatrics on video and drew a million hits on YouTube.

Cole was among the first professors in the Washington region to ban laptops, in the 2006-07 academic year. He found them an “attractive nuisance.” It was a bold decree: Georgetown had only recently begun requiring that first-year law students own laptops, after painstakingly upgrading the campus for wireless Internet access.

Just last week, a colleague of Cole’s unwittingly demonstrated how thoroughly the Internet has colonized the classroom. When Professor Peter Tague told students a canard about Supreme Court Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. stepping down, students promptly spread the news into the blogosphere. Later in class, Tague revealed that the tip was false, part of a lesson on credibility, according to the blog Above the Law.
The laptop computer, introduced in 1981, has become nearly obligatory on campus; some colleges require them. They are as essential to today’s student as a working stereo system was to their parents.
“My laptop lives with me. I’m always on it,” said Madeline Twomey, 20, a George Washington junior.
Twomey has used a computer since age 6 and had her first laptop at 15. She senses a widening generation gap. “Most professors, even at their youngest, they’re in their 30s,” she said. “They don’t understand how much it’s become a part of our lives.”
The ‘cone of distraction’
Professors say they do understand — all too well.
Diane E. Sieber, an associate professor of humanities at the University of Colorado at Boulder, has debated her students on the collegiate conceit of multitasking, the notion that today’s youths can fully attend to a lecture while intermittently toggling over to e-mail, ESPN and Facebook.
“It’s really serialized interruption,” Sieber said. “You start something, you stop it, you do something else, you stop it, which is something you’re doing if you’re switching back and forth between World of Warcraft and my class.”
One recent semester, Siebert tracked the grades of 17 student laptop addicts. At the end of the term, their average grade was 71 percent, “almost the same as the average for the students who didn’t come at all.”
Sieber believes that those students, in turn, divert the attention of the students behind them, a parabolic effect she calls the “cone of distraction.”
José A. Bowen, dean of the Meadows School of the Arts at Southern Methodist University, is removing computers from lecture halls and urging his colleagues to “teach naked” — without machines. Bowen says class time should be used for engaging discussion, something that reliance on technology discourages.

Cole surveyed one of his Georgetown classes anonymously after six weeks of laptop-free lectures. Four-fifths said they were more engaged in class discussion. Ninety-five percent admitted that they had used their laptops for “purposes other than taking notes.”
Even when used as glorified typewriters, laptops can turn students into witless stenographers, typing a lecture verbatim without listening or understanding.

“The breaking point for me was when I asked a student to comment on an issue, and he said, ‘Wait a minute, I want to open my computer,’ ” said David Goldfrank, a Georgetown history professor. “And I told him, ‘I don’t want to know what’s in your computer. I want to know what’s in your head.’ ”

Some early attempts to ban laptops met resistance. In 2006, a group of law students at the University of Memphis complained to the American Bar Association, in vain. These days, the restriction is so common that most students take it in stride.

“I think that a professor’s well within reason to ban laptops,” said Cristina Cardenal, a 20-year-old Georgetown junior. “Professors aren’t stupid. They know what’s going on.” She also happens to believe that the rule benefits students, who should know better than to “pay as much money as we do to sit in a class and read a blog.”

Flipping a switch
Perhaps no college has experienced the good and bad of laptops like Bentley University in Waltham, Mass. In 1985, Bentley was the first college in the nation to require students to own portable computers. By the late 1990s, professors complained of distracted students. In 2000, the college installed a custom-designed system to let professors switch off Internet and e-mail access in their classrooms. They’ve flipped the switch “thousands of times,” said Bentley’s Phillip G. Knutel.

Universities have stopped short of disabling Internet access entirely, which might create a raft of new complaints from professors who routinely ask students to go online in class.

Plenty of professors still allow laptops. Siva Vaidhyanathan, an associate professor of media studies and law at U-Va., generally permits them in his classes. He remembers his own college diversion: reading newspapers surreptitiously on the floor beneath his desk. He believes that, ultimately, it is a professor’s job to hold the class’s attention.

“If students don’t want to pay attention, the laptop is the least of your problems,” he said.

Vaidhyanathan, an Internet scholar, senses a losing battle. In an era of iPhones and BlackBerrys, Internet-ready cellphones have become just as prevalent in classrooms as laptops, and equally capable of distraction. If professors had hoped to hermetically seal their teaching space by banning laptops, they might be about three years too late.

“The question ‘Laptop or not?’ isn’t as big a question as the question of a screen or not,” he said. “And, sitting in front of 200 students, I can’t really enforce a ban on anything.”

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