David Stuart

Stop watching pornography when you're on a plane

It's a travel tip I never thought I'd write, but here goes.

It is not appropriate to watch pornography on planes. Well, unless you are on your private jet where you can watch pretty much anything you want, but if you are flying commercial with the rest of us then it is most definitely not the time or the place.

When a regular traveller first told me that she couldn't believe some men were watching porn on planes I couldn't believe it myself. So much so that I thought she must have been mistaken and suggested perhaps it was just a saucy moment on the in-flight entertainment.

But when she went into some more details about what she had seen on more than one occasion it became very clear that some men - and perhaps some women too, though so far all the stories I've heard involve men - are happy to fire up some X rated adult entertainment on their laptops, tablets or phones, and don't seem to care whose line of sight they may be in.

After my initial eeeew my next thought was, why?

 

Make sure your plane viewing is appropriate for others.
Make sure your plane viewing is appropriate for others.

I understand why such viewing is popular in private spaces, but there's usually an end result that really shouldn't be shared in a public space. It just doesn't make any sense, unless they're doing the unthinkable, and frankly, that's something I don't want to think about.

I've since heard more tales of this sort of viewing taking place in economy, business and first class seats. The privacy screens provided by some airline suites would at least protect children from seeing the action, but frankly it's not just young eyes that should be spared.

I don't consider myself a prude but I definitely don't want to see that sort of thing on a plane or know that the stranger beside me is getting all hot and bothered.

And no, it's not okay to start watching when the people around you have gone to sleep. I can't even imagine how creepy it would be to wake up to that unpleasant surprise.

While some people may feel comfortable confronting a fellow passenger over the issue, I've decided if I ever am faced with the situation I'll turn tattle tale instead.

Sure that's not very brave but it would be awkward enough to ask them to stop without worrying about spending hours in the sky with someone who is judging you for judging them.

So instead I'd simply go on a bathroom break and have a quiet word with a flight attendant so that they could happen to walk past, spot what was happening, and have a little word with the passenger about public viewing material choices.

What to do during those awkward movie scenes on a plane.
What to do during those awkward movie scenes on a plane.

Now that I know this sort of thing is happening I have to laugh when I think about how I've wanted to throw myself in front of the in flight entertainment screen from time to time.

Just recently I found myself trying to keep a straight face next to a sweet old lady who was trying to do the same when the in flight episode of Sex and The City that I was watching cut to Samantha Jones and Smith Jerrod having sex for the first time. Fans of the show will remember just how graphic that episode was, and for some reason I thought the airline would edit that part out and was unprepared for the slightly awkward moment.

While it was actually quite funny when I realised she was amused rather than offended it could have gone the other way.

As much as I appreciate having a wide range of in flight entertainment choices that haven't been given the PG treatment, I also think it's a good idea to check who's around you before you press play. It's easy to tell if a child can see your screen from where they're sitting and if that's the case then that movie or TV show that you just know will have scary or sexy scenes can wait for another time.

Sure you may not have seen Alien Covenant yet, but if a child can also see your screen their parents may not be seeing a lot of sleep in the weeks to come. Spare a thought for those sharing your space in the sky and there'll be plenty of time to watch grown up shows in grown up time.


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