Director Henry Alex Rubin's disconnect speech claims that technology doesn't play a role in people becoming distracted or distant. Rubin actually made a film on the topic, aptly titled 'Disconnect.'
Rubin claims that distracted people would still be distracted whether or not they had a phone in their hands; it's just in their nature. He also describes calm and collected people he knows who keep their phones in their pockets at dinner and engage people without a smartphone screen in front of them. He denies that technology is to blame for people losing touch with one another and says that that's got more to do with people's personalities than anything else. He's happy to be alive in the age of smartphones and laptops.
Rubin's film on this subject was released in 2012 at the Toronto International Film Festival.