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In-flight Cell Ban Advances In Congress 404

Posted by timothy
from the myopia-has-a-new-name dept.
narramissic writes "The awkwardly named Halting Airplane Noise to Give Us Peace (HANG UP) Act was approved by the House Transportation and Infrastructure Committee on a voice vote Thursday. The bill would make permanent the long-standing ban on in-flight cell phone calls by the FAA and FCC. 'Polls show the public overwhelmingly doesn't want to be subjected to people talking on their cell phones on increasingly over-packed airplanes. However, with Internet access just around the corner on U.S. flights, it won't be long before the ban on voice communications on in-flight planes is lifted,' said Representative Peter DeFazio, a Democrat from Oregon who co-sponsored the HANG UP Act in a statement. 'Cash-strapped airlines could end up charging some passengers to use their phones while charging others to sit in a phone-free section of the plane,' he said."
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In-flight Cell Ban Advances In Congress

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  • re:or perhaps (Score:5, Informative)

    by dnwq (910646) on Friday August 01, 2008 @07:41AM (#24430655)
    They thought of that -

    "The free market wasnâ(TM)t adequate to regulate smoking on planes and it wonâ(TM)t be sufficient to regulate cell phones either," DeFazio said. "I am pleased that we are taking steps to stop this disruption before it becomes an issue for American consumers."

  • Re:Good! (Score:3, Informative)

    by adpsimpson (956630) on Friday August 01, 2008 @07:49AM (#24430719)

    I totally agree with you - I hate overuse of mobile phones (ok, I'm British) in public places.

    However, I own a mobile phone, and at times I've been known to use it. In a public place. Maybe even on a bus or train. And I might even start by saying "I'm on the train..." And this may be more convenient than other methods - it's the only way I have of communicating from, eg, an airport or a bus-stop, it's instant, it's voice communication, it's reasonably cheap, it takes no setup, etc etc.

    Making them illegal in any situation is not a sensible reaction. The law smacks of the "Get off my lawn" attitude of people who hate everything the "youth" do "nowadays," and react to new technology by banning it, instead of rational law-making for the good of society.

    A much better solution exists on most long-distance trains in the UK now, where there are 'silent' carriages. When travelling with friends, I'd never go in them, as I'm probably one of the people they target. But when I'm alone, I love the ability to travel quietly.

  • False! (Score:5, Informative)

    by Suzuran (163234) on Friday August 01, 2008 @10:11AM (#24432961)

    This is an urban legend.

    The pressurization system does not work that way. It has to be continually fed ram air from outside the aircraft and/or high-pressure bleed air from the engines to make up for the air that leaks out of the aircraft. If the airlines tried to simply "recycle the cabin air" the air would leak out of the airplane and the cabin would become unbreathable in a matter of minutes. See Payne Stewart and Helios 522 for examples of how quickly the cabin can lose pressure when not maintained.

The flow chart is a most thoroughly oversold piece of program documentation. -- Frederick Brooks, "The Mythical Man Month"

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