Are our relationships 'in-hand' Headliners young people examined just how deep their relationship with their phone runs. Was it a case of true love between the average teenager and their smart handheld companions, or could they see a downside to always being contactable? The group agreed that their sleep and study patterns were often disrupted by their phones. They discussed economic implications of phone ownership but the consensus was that this was not a huge problem. Possibly because of 12 mobile phones in the group, parents picked up the tab for….a dozen of them. The entire group were surprised to learn that Ireland has the highest ration of phones to people in the Western World. According to Ireland’s Commission for Communications Regulation Authority, there were in December 2015, 5,460,507 active Sim cards in Ireland. The Authority reports that there are 1.8 mobile handsets for every person in Ireland. Only one member of the Headliners Foyle Bureau do not own a mobile telephone while Conor McCauley confessed readily: “My phone is my life.” Hannah Partridge said: “I panic when I don’t have my phone with me, It is comforting knowing I can always be in contact with family and friends. I love my phone, maybe even worship it. It’s my life.” Neil Cadieux agreed adding: “My phone means a lot to me too but I could be doing something more productive with my life instead of sitting on Facebook Messenger all day talking to my friends.” Daniel McCafferty mused he would: “Only last the better part of an hour without access to my smart phone. Without my phone I wouldn’t even know about Headliners. I couldn’t arrange to meet up with my friends and pretty much all I ever do is listen to music, Youtube or read Facebook on my phone.” Asked why their phones were in hand so often the group compiled a very long list. Strangely it wasn’t until page four of that list that the group mentioned making phone calls! Lauren Quigley said: “Phones aren’t always positive. I constantly have mine taken from me in school as I am continually distracted by all the wondrous things inside my mobile.” Zoe Carlin said: “Despite the fact we have phones to communicate with one another, people tend to ignore others when logged on to whatever app they have open on their phone. “I feel like my phone has become an escape, something that helps me ignore the stress of school. My phone helps me avoid being bored. Therefore it also sometimes adds to my stress levels as I ignore any work I have to do. “I think it is really important to discuss the power of and our relationship with our smart phones.” The members of Headliners Foyle are currently devising a short documentary examining teens relationship with their mobile phones.