Study finds rude behavior on the rise across the globe

KTNV 13 Action News
KTNV 13 Action News

It may be the most wonderful time of the year, but the holiday season may not feel as bright as usual. A new study says rudeness is on the rise.

13 Action News anchor Tricia Kean spoke with Las Vegas locals who say it's true — but each of us can make the difference.


"Where I work, everyone's just fighting and just being pushy," says valley resident Francine.
She says she's worked in customer service for decades, and this is the worst she's ever seen it.

"I think after this pandemic, everyone was sheltered so long, they're coming out and just angry at the world," Francine said.

Local retail worker Felix agrees and says it feels like more and more people are losing their patience these days.

"I think it's due to the fact that people have lost their jobs. Money is tight right now. Prices are increasing, so it's affecting everybody," Felix said.

A new study found that it's a problem across the globe. A Georgetown University professor surveyed people around the world and working in more than 25 different industries. It says rude behavior is on the rise and contagious.

"The definition of rudeness is being uncivilized. Lack of manners. I think sometimes that, in and of itself, can be contagious," says Sandra Raichart , clinical social worker and owner of Executive Therapy Solutions on West Charleston and Rainbow.

She says stress, the pandemic, the economy, war and politics all play a part. The problem is far too many people are responding to rudeness with further bad behavior.


"And so people feel, 'wow, I feel like this person doesn't think I'm worthy of respect and manners,' and then their hurt will go and trigger someone else. They might offend somebody else in their day," Raichart said.

Raichart believes social media is also lending to the spread of abuse.

"With the influx of influencers on social media and the 'you must think like I do.' ...We should be able to feel the freedom to think as we want and not feel ostracized or disrespected for sharing a different point of view," Raichart said.

Attitudes are so bad, 73% of respondents in health care, education, retail and other service industries said it was not unusual for customers to behave badly. And 66% said bad customer behavior toward other customers is more common than it was just five years ago.

Raichart says being kind starts with you.

"Start your day being mindful. Start the day being grateful... I'm going to do something kind for myself or just give myself compassion," Raichart said.

It can be tough, but Raichart says the right frame of mind helps when you're confronted with a bad attitude.

"Rudeness is contagious, and the world actually will get worse if we don't change it. And we really and truly can start to diminish the rudeness by being mindful and reducing our transgressions towards others," Raichart said.


The locals we spoke with agree. Each of us can make a difference.

"Be kind to everybody. Just treat everybody like you're treating your family members at home," Francine said.

"You know what, kindness is contagious, too. If we get more people that are kinder, it's contagious... Conquer it with kindness. A smile goes a lot longer than a frown," Felix said.

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