C'mon FAA, it's time to rethink the overly strict rules governing the use of electronic devices aboard planes, writes Nick Bilton in the Disruptions blog at the New York Times. There's just no evidence to suggest that somebody with an ebook or video game will endanger a takeoff or landing. Banning phone calls during those times is fine, but why not let people shift their devices into "airplane mode" to block radio signals and let them stay on?
"Surely if electronic gadgets could bring down an airplane, you can be sure that the Department of Homeland Security and the Transportation Security Administration, which has a consuming fear of 3.5 ounces of hand lotion and gel shoe inserts, wouldn’t allow passengers to board a plane with an iPad or Kindle, for fear that they would be used by terrorists," writes Bilton. His column generated lots of response, and he deals with some of the main questions here.