Joining the mile high call club?
The FCC (Federal Communications Commission) is considering allowing cellphone calls on planes in flight.
There has been a tremendous backlash, with most of the complaints having to do with how disruptive it would be (and some from flight crew who are concerned about distractions).
The distraction thing I can sort of understand, but I’m pretty surprised at the people who think it would be “rude”.
We already allow plenty of things on a plane which could be a lot more intrusive. People are allowed to talk to each other (that’s what you do on a cellphone call…you talk). 😉
People are allowed to watch movies, which could be full of obscenities, and horrifying screams, as well as other sounds.
People are allowed to listen to all kinds of music.
Here’s the thing: all of that could be really bad, but it usually isn’t.
Human beings are social animals, and they do tend to respond to the culture in which they find themselves.
If the culture on a plane was that a quick call of a sentence or two (“We’ve been diverted to Portland, Maine…should be there at about 2:00.”) was okay, and a two hour conversation wasn’t, the short call is what most people would do.
If someone used the technology unreasonably, the flight crew could intervene, just as they can now with conversations.
There are so many cases where a phone call would be a terrific thing, and not easily replaced with a text (which it seems like everyone would accept). A parent saying goodnight to a child, for example. Someone talking to someone in the hospital…that could be crucial on a delayed flight. Even, as I suggested above, some logistical things (more people can safely hear a phone call in a car hands-free through Bluetooth than can have a text read out).
This seems like a simple issue to me. Of course you allow cell calls in flight…or you ban everything else that is equally “annoying”.
Just my thoughts on it, though…
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