News broke yesterday where a flight in Australia was delayed due to some intellectually challenged individual thought it would be funny to rename his/her wifi hotspot. But, before we dig into that I’ll share a personal story.
A few months ago I took my daughter to her piano lesson. Normally this is where I sit there for a half hour with a book and a coffee and relax. On this occasion I managed to forget my book and my coffee. So, I decided to look for open wifi access points for giggles. One of the first ones that I discovered was an iPhone belonging to a woman named Carrie.
My smartass side jumped up and said, “Hey I have an idea”. So, I renamed the wifi hotspot on my iPhone to “Hey Carrie, what’s up?” Now, not one to pat myself on the back but, I found that funny. What happened on the Qantas flight QF481 was most assuredly not funny.
The Australia-based Qantas airline delayed a flight leaving Melbourne for two hours over the weekend when a passenger noticed a Wi-Fi hotspot called “Mobile Detonation Device” after boarding.
After the crew notified him of the hotspot name, the captain broadcast over the speakers that the flight would not leave until the source device had been located and cleared with security.
After a search of the plane nothing was unearthed. No one came clean as to being the instigator of the incredibly stupid joke. The real problem here is that this sort of puerile behavior puts passengers at risk from possible law enforcement responses and jeopardize their travel plans through their nonsense. Pathetic really, much in the same vein of people who think it is acceptable to flash green lasers at flights on final approach.
But, this isn’t unique. It seems that morons love to do this sort of thing. Here is an example from 2014.
An American Airlines flight was delayed for 17 hours at LAX because a passenger spotted an 'Al-Quida Free Terror Nettwork' while trying to connect to the WiFi on board.
The aircraft bound for London turned back to the gate after a flight attendant was shown the list of hotspots while taxiing.
Passengers were then forced to get off of the plane with some having to stay in hotels overnight while waiting for the next available flight.
While this isn’t as bad as defeating the laws of physics and changing a flight direction it is still foolish. I would hope that people who find this sort of thing amusing at some level would take the time to learn how to actually be funny.