According to YouGov, at least, manners count in Germany | Germany| News and in-depth reporting from Berlin and beyond | DW | 20.04.2015
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According to YouGov, at least, manners count in Germany

Hold the door open for the person behind you, offer your seat to someone who needs it, be on time - the pollster YouGov has found that Germans feel people are not as polite as they used to be. But manners still do count.

The younger and the older generations agree that manners are not what they used to be in Germany.

According to a survey conducted by YouGov Internet market researchers, three out of four Germans agree that people used to be more polite and that young people aren't as respectful of older people as in the past. Only 16 percent don't see much of a change.

Fifty-nine percent of the people questioned earlier this month say it is up to parents to teach their children manners, and only 1 percent feel that it is the sole responsibility of a child's teachers.

About 38 percent say both parents and teachers are responsible.

Independent of their age, people apparently feel a need for manners.

Ninety-four percent say it is important to offer seniors or pregnant women a seat on a crowded subway or bus. Seventy-eight percent feel that men should open the door for women, and 95 percent appreciate punctuality.

Hands with cell phones

"Life is not so short but that there is always time enough for courtesy," Ralph Waldo Emerson wrote

Etiquette matters

Irrespective of age, 91 percent feel that it is impolite when people they are talking to are distracted by the cellphones they continue to peek at all the time.

Many Germans polled for the survey say they are often unsure how to address others: using the formal "Sie" or the informal "Du" commonly used for family, friends and private circles.

More often - and not surprisingly - it tends to be a dilemma for younger people. Only one out of four people polled say it is OK to be addressed informally by a waiter in a cafe. The older generation dislikes being addressed informally without first being asked permission.

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