Author Topic: Door is closed, light is on... do you knock first?  (Read 7923 times)

0 Members and 1 Guest are viewing this topic.

steelstress

  • Member
  • **
  • Posts: 282
Door is closed, light is on... do you knock first?
« on: March 13, 2013, 12:57:14 AM »
The bathroom only has facilities for one person at a time (in the office).  Door is completely closed, but you can see the light is on at the bottom of the door.  Do you try the doorknob first, or knock?

When I'm in there, if another person needs it, they just try to walk on in.  They mess with the knob, realize it's locked, then wait or walk away.  There's only 4 of us using that bathroom.  Shouldn't they knock first before trying to force their way in?  I finally had to lecture them today about it, ESPECIALLY when the light is on.  Isn't it common sense to figure if the light is on, assume someone is in there?  They said sometimes people leave the light on (them) after they exit.

I can't believe they never learned to knock first.  I knock even when it's dark.

katycoo

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 3778
Re: Door is closed, light is on... do you knock first?
« Reply #1 on: March 13, 2013, 01:07:12 AM »
If a bathroom door is closed, I always knock.  I'll proceed when there is no answer.

Aeris

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 9638
Re: Door is closed, light is on... do you knock first?
« Reply #2 on: March 13, 2013, 01:22:39 AM »
It sort of depends on how sound proof the door is. Most bathrooms I've seen that have a fully closing door (not a stall), you have to shout to be heard through the door anyway. So I personally find it vaguely annoying when people knock, because then I have to shout "JUST A MOMENT" while on the toilet, which is just rather uncomfortable. If they just try the door, then they get to realize on their own that someone is in there without requiring any interaction from me.

But here's the thing - even though I find the knocking slightly uncomfortable, I recognize that not everyone thinks about it the same way, so I don't see any value in getting upset about it. There's not a 'right' way or a 'wrong' way to handle it. My preferred way doesn't appear to be your preferred way.

I certainly wouldn't *lecture* other grown adults about how they approach the bathroom door, and if someone (even my superior) lectured me, I'd be pretty annoyed. If someone who was not my superior lectured me about how I approached a bathroom door, I'd be floored.

sweetonsno

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1395
Re: Door is closed, light is on... do you knock first?
« Reply #3 on: March 13, 2013, 02:04:09 AM »
I'm with Aeris. The knock is usually louder (and more startling) than the ktch-ktch sound that someone trying the door makes, and I find it a bit embarrassing to need to yell that it's occupied. I'd much rather that they just give it a try and then wait. I'd also be taken aback if someone lectured me on this type of thing.

This situation is exactly why I wish all one-seaters had a lock that showed "vacant" when the lock isn't engaged and "occupied" when it is.


Hmmmmm

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 6459
Re: Door is closed, light is on... do you knock first?
« Reply #4 on: March 13, 2013, 07:03:55 AM »
The bathroom only has facilities for one person at a time (in the office).  Door is completely closed, but you can see the light is on at the bottom of the door.  Do you try the doorknob first, or knock?

When I'm in there, if another person needs it, they just try to walk on in.  They mess with the knob, realize it's locked, then wait or walk away.  There's only 4 of us using that bathroom.  Shouldn't they knock first before trying to force their way in?  I finally had to lecture them today about it, ESPECIALLY when the light is on.  Isn't it common sense to figure if the light is on, assume someone is in there?  They said sometimes people leave the light on (them) after they exit.

I can't believe they never learned to knock first.  I knock even when it's dark.

Well, since you already lectured other adults I'm not sure why you are asking us the answer to that question.

I have no issue with someone walking up and trying the knob on a closed door. If it's locked as it should be they can walk away.  I don't walk up to doors and try to peek through to see if there is a light on and as one of your co-workers said, some people do forget to turn off the light.

Why are you so angry over someone trying to turn the knob that you'd lecture others?

Deetee

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 5599
Re: Door is closed, light is on... do you knock first?
« Reply #5 on: March 13, 2013, 08:15:57 AM »
Like the previous posters, I would prefer that someone simply try the knob and walk away, rather than knocking and engaging in conversation.

 If I was going to enter a room to join someone I would knock, but in this case the fact the door is locked is all the information that the outside person needs.

Piratelvr1121

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 11033
Re: Door is closed, light is on... do you knock first?
« Reply #6 on: March 13, 2013, 08:37:20 AM »
I would.   Just to be on the safe side.  Our boys sometimes will leave the light on and close the door to the bathroom as they leave, which means it looks occupied.  I usually do a count of those able to use the bathroom and if we're all present and accounted for outside the lavatory, it must be empty.  Then we get after them for doing that. 

I think scolding other adults is a bit too much but...I don't think a note on the door politely requesting a knock or knob wiggle would be out of line.
Beyond a wholesome discipline, be gentle with yourself. You are a child of the universe, no less than the trees and the stars.  You have a right to be here. Be cheerful, strive to be happy. -Desiderata

Knitterly

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 1562
    • That other knitting blog
Re: Door is closed, light is on... do you knock first?
« Reply #7 on: March 13, 2013, 09:05:20 AM »
My opinion is that any door that is closed should be knocked on first.

If it is a continuing problem in your office, perhaps you can get a little vacant/occupied sign to hang on the doorknob?  You could make one if you cannot find one at a store.  You can probably find brightly coloured paper and self-sticking laminate at the dollar store.  I'm sure others in the office would appreciate it - more than being lectured for sure.  :)

Luci

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 6011
Re: Door is closed, light is on... do you knock first?
« Reply #8 on: March 13, 2013, 09:46:32 AM »
For a restroom, just try the knob. I think it is more an invasion to have to talk. Also, ofttimes the light is connected to the fan, so the light should be left on. (Apparently that's not the case here, or you wouldn't be questioning why the light is on.)

The storeroom, don't knock.

A private  office, of course knock.

camlan

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 8586
Re: Door is closed, light is on... do you knock first?
« Reply #9 on: March 13, 2013, 09:50:32 AM »
I always knock before trying to enter a bathroom. So I'm on the OP's side there. Light or no light, I knock, because sometimes people leave the light on when they leave.

And if someone wiggles the handle, I always call out, "Occupied!" so I don't see any difference between a knock and a handle turn. It has never occurred to me that I shouldn't say anything if someone tries the door.

I was in another office for a day last week. The closest bathroom was right off the working space and was a single stall. The staff hung a "Occupied/Vacant" sign on the door handle, mostly to stop the knocking as it could easily have been heard by everyone in the surrounding area. That many knocks a day would have been a disruption.

Of course, then you run into the person who changes the sign to "Occupied" but forgets to return it to "Vacant." And people think that the bathroom is occupied for hours.
Nothing is impossible, the word itself says, “I’m possible!” –Audrey Hepburn


Zilla

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 6506
    • Cooking
Re: Door is closed, light is on... do you knock first?
« Reply #10 on: March 13, 2013, 10:31:50 AM »
I wouldn't want to knock either.  Especially if I am using the toilet, I don't want to yell out, Be right out every time.  No thank you. 


If it bothers you this much, contact your boss about maybe having a sign put up that says Please knock or like another poster suggested, "Occupied" or "Vacant".


But honestly?  I would just lock it and not take it so personally whenever that door knob turns.

Yvaine

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 8883
Re: Door is closed, light is on... do you knock first?
« Reply #11 on: March 13, 2013, 10:33:06 AM »
I always knock before trying to enter a bathroom. So I'm on the OP's side there. Light or no light, I knock, because sometimes people leave the light on when they leave.

And if someone wiggles the handle, I always call out, "Occupied!" so I don't see any difference between a knock and a handle turn. It has never occurred to me that I shouldn't say anything if someone tries the door.

I was in another office for a day last week. The closest bathroom was right off the working space and was a single stall. The staff hung a "Occupied/Vacant" sign on the door handle, mostly to stop the knocking as it could easily have been heard by everyone in the surrounding area. That many knocks a day would have been a disruption.

Of course, then you run into the person who changes the sign to "Occupied" but forgets to return it to "Vacant." And people think that the bathroom is occupied for hours.

Usually when I've seen a Vacant/Occupied sign, it's not directly operated by the user, per se. It's connected to the door lock, so it automatically displays Occupied when the door is locked and Vacant when the door is unlocked.

Perfect Circle

  • Hero Member
  • ***
  • Posts: 2995
  • Birdie in the hand for life's rich demand
Re: Door is closed, light is on... do you knock first?
« Reply #12 on: March 13, 2013, 10:55:23 AM »
Try the knob. And lecturing adults does not seem particularly polite.
There's a secret stigma, reaping wheel.
Diminish, a carnival of sorts.
Chronic town, poster torn, reaping wheel.
Stranger, stranger to these parts.

TootsNYC

  • A Pillar of the Forum
  • *****
  • Posts: 30648
Re: Door is closed, light is on... do you knock first?
« Reply #13 on: March 13, 2013, 11:11:11 AM »
It sort of depends on how sound proof the door is. Most bathrooms I've seen that have a fully closing door (not a stall), you have to shout to be heard through the door anyway. So I personally find it vaguely annoying when people knock, because then I have to shout "JUST A MOMENT" while on the toilet, which is just rather uncomfortable. If they just try the door, then they get to realize on their own that someone is in there without requiring any interaction from me.

But here's the thing - even though I find the knocking slightly uncomfortable, I recognize that not everyone thinks about it the same way, so I don't see any value in getting upset about it. There's not a 'right' way or a 'wrong' way to handle it. My preferred way doesn't appear to be your preferred way.

I certainly wouldn't *lecture* other grown adults about how they approach the bathroom door, and if someone (even my superior) lectured me, I'd be pretty annoyed. If someone who was not my superior lectured me about how I approached a bathroom door, I'd be floored.

I would not knock, generally, because it's loud and a whole big production about the potty. Which I'd like to avoid.

I'd *gently* try the bathroom door once, to see if it's locked. If it's locked, then I wait. If my wait gets very long, then I knock.

In fact, when people do this to me when I'm in the bathroom, I appreciate it. And I don't even bother to call out "I'm in here" unless they try a third time (figuring the 2nd jiggle is just testing the first one) or actually seem to try opening the door. It's not that I think it's *wrong* to call out "occupied" at the first wiggle--it's just that it seems unnecessary. Their 3rd attempt is the indicator that they need more than a locked door as information to go on.

And even then I don't get mad about it; I just figure they are using a different set of communication "codes."

stargazer

  • Super Hero!
  • ****
  • Posts: 5466
Re: Door is closed, light is on... do you knock first?
« Reply #14 on: March 13, 2013, 11:11:39 AM »
Try the knob. And lecturing adults does not seem particularly polite.

This.  It's a bathroom door.  I really prefer people NOT knock so I don't have to yell something out.  And it's REALLY rude to lecture your co-workers about it.