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Frustrated restaurant owners asking diners to put away their phones; others ban use altogether

Il Triangolo in New York City has banned diners from using their cellphones in the restaurant. The owner admitted that some aren't too happy about the policy, but others appreciate it. (Image source: Video screenshot)

Some New York City restaurant owners are frustrated by diners who spend their time using their cellphones and they've decided to do something about it.

John Winterman, a managing partner at Bâtard in Tribeca, has brought some attention to himself and the topic following his cheeky Facebook post on Aug. 16, WCBS-TV reported.

Winterman wrote that he "is beginning to feel it may be his duty as a restaurateur to grab people by the scruff of their neck and introduce them to their dining companions when they have their face stuck in their f***ing phones at the table."

Bâtard hasn't gone so far as to ban diners from using their cellphones, yet.

But Winterman told WCBS that he suggests people put them down so that they can focus on the people across the table.

“You walk by a table and somebody's playing a video game,” he said. “Or people made a note [in their reservation] that they’re celebrating their anniversary and you barely see them speak to each other over the course of the two and a half hour dinner.”

Other restaurants have taken the message a step or two further.

The owner of Il Triangolo Ristorante in Queens, Mario Gigliotti, minces no words over its "no cellphone policy."

A posted sign states clear instructions for diners about their phones.

"Off our tables at all times. Must be silent at all times. All phone calls outside," the sign reads.

Gigliotti explained to WCBS that the restaurant is his home and in his home people speak to each other during meals.

“No cellphones on the table, at dinner everyone talks,” Gigliotti said. “And this is my home here, and when you come into my home, my restaurant Il Triangolo, that’s how we like to run our restaurant.”

The owner admitted that some aren't too happy about the policy, but others appreciate it and enjoy the restaurant's phone-free atmosphere.

One last thing…
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