FCC Considers Lifting Ban On Cellphones on Planes

cellphonesThree weeks ago, the FAA lifted the ban on the use of non-transmitting electronics on planes  below 10,000 feet.

Today, most of the major U.S. airlines follow the new rules. No more do passengers have to put their e-readers, tablets or video games away while the plane is taxiing, climbing or descending.

Now, the FCC is considering lifting the ban on the use of cellphones in flight. If approved, passengers would be able to make phone calls and text messages  above 10,000 feet.

As of now, those activities are banned because the FCC was concerned the use of phones on planes could damage cell towers on the ground. Now, they claim,  the technology has changed and don’t see any problems.

But I do. Can you imagine what it would be like to have a hundred people or more talking on their cellphones at the same time in an enclosed space like an airplane?

Let’s face it, some people get on their phones and become oblivious to the world around them.  They talk louder on the phone than they would to a person sitting next to them. Isn’t  passenger rudeness bad enough?  Can you imagine what adding cell phones conversations would do?

And what about the noise level? Airplanes are already loud. Now add 100 or more people talking at the same time. I doubt too many noise cancelling headphones could tackle that.

I have no problem with texting. Let’s face it, it’s no different than sending an email or playing a game. But having an actual conversation? No thanks.

Let’s hope enough people complain to the FCC so they keep cellphone conversations on the ground.

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5 Responses to FCC Considers Lifting Ban On Cellphones on Planes

  1. Just wanted to say – I read your comment on Nomadic Matt’s website and I liked the sound of your ethics Frank Brown!

  2. Ev says:

    We flew on Austrian Airlines two weeks ago. We were not allowed to have any headphones or earbuds on during takeoff or landing. (It would interfere with hearing any possible emergency procedures) The flight attendant actually pulled the earbuds out of my teenage son’s ears, rather than ask him to remove them. His take: “They should have stopped showing the movie if they wanted us to remove the earphones.”

    Anyway, I can’t imagine how awful it would be with everyone talking on their phones.

  3. lewis clark says:

    This is one of those cultural things. In Japan, subways and trains have ready access to cell service and passengers are on their mobile devices pretty much the whole ride… reading and texting. It’s considered rude to have an actual conversation as it might bother fellow travelers.

    As Americans, we might take note. Of course, I’m dreaming. Right country, wrong year.

  4. Paula Bag Lass says:

    It’s bad enough on the train when you hear a thousand times on one journey “hi, yeah I’m on the train……….blahblahblah.” Can you imagine that on the plane? “HI!!!! You’ll NEVER guess where I am???”
    “Hey, I’m flying over you right now, look up…COOOEEEE….wave at me!”
    I have a difficult enough time interacting with people who, when I’m speaking with them, constantly look down at their cell phone when it gurgles an incoming text message, more so when they reply to it, I know they haven’t heard a word I’ve said. Now I stop mid-sentence and walk away. Can’t walk away on a plane so I’ll have to utilize the family ‘stare.’ (Turning people to stone might just come in handy).
    Lawks knows what it will be like on flights were everything is allowed and no one will be paying attention or listening to each other. I pity the air crews.

  5. Maggie says:

    There isn’t a pair of noise-cancelling headphones that could block the noise of a couple of hundred people talking on their phones. I get annoyed enough with people who don’t turn off keyboard sounds and tap away in the lift (elevator).

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