Unless you 1) hate music 2) have claustrophobia/social anxiety or 3) live under a rock, chances are you’ve probably been to a concert in the past few years. And if you have, you’ve probably noticed the insane influx of technology used at concerts—specifically, cell phones. It seems like in today’s age of live music, audience members are more watching the show through their phones than with their own eyes, desperate to Instagram/tweet/Facebook/Snapchat moments from the performance.
Some musicians have enforced a no photo policy (like Neutral Milk Hotel and the Yeah Yeah Yeahs), but none yet have gone so far as Dave Chappelle is going on his upcoming tour. The comedian is not only banning photos and videos, he’s banning cell phones all together. Yes, you will not be able to have your phone in hand if you’re going to one of his shows.
To help him do this, Chappelle is using a company called Yondr, which creates cases that automatically lock phones inside when one enters a “No-Phone Zone,” then unlocks them once the person steps outside said zone. I know, technology is crazy right?
It makes sense why Chappelle would want to do something like this. He’s one of the most famous comedians in the world who will be delivering new material on the tour. Having someone upload videos of this would negate the effect of seeing it live.
For musicians, something like Yondr could be equally powerful but for somewhat different reasons. While it would decrease the chance of new songs debuted live leaking before an official stream, it would also allow concert-goers to be more present. Which really, when you think about it, is the point of paying to see a band in person.
Of course, points can be made against it (safety, for example, comes to mind first), but Yondr’s plan seems pretty thorough. Which leaves the question, will other forums of entertainment—music, sports, movies, plays—be joining Chappelle in this venture?