I sent a message to my professor today:
I am currently attending your class on Wednesday evenings. I am wondering if you would be willing to say something to the class about the use of cell phones. Yesterday evening during class there were 3 students around me all receiving text messages and replying to them during class. No, their ringers were not on but the buzz every few minutes of an incoming text and the consequential typing of a students reply I find highly distracting. Perhaps I have just never encountered this before as this is the first class I have taken in 10 years. Perhaps I am just not the least bit in touch with how students act as I am at least 10 years older than most of my fellow students. I sat in a different area last night hoping to eliminate this problem. For someone who struggles to concentrate at the best of times, I find their texting to be rather selfish. Maybe I am just feeling a bit like Wordsworth, disenchanted by our collective inability to turn off the additional distractions of technology, but I really would appreciate it if you would be willing to address this with the class.
I tried to make it somewhat entertaining and self depricating and something he might be slightly amused with, we will see if it helps at all.