Hollywood celebrities call for boycott of Southwest Airlines if it doesn't condemn Texas voting law
Hollywood celebrities are threatening to boycott Southwest Airlines for not speaking up about a new election integrity law in Texas. © Provided by Washington Examiner “[email protected] will you speak out to condemn Texas state legislature’s voter suppression bill #SB7?” actress Piper Perabo tweeted in response to a post from former DNC Chairman Howard Dean. “I spend my money with companies who support voting rights.”TOM COTTON CRITICIZES MLB FOR PUNISHING GEORGIA OVER VOTING LAW WHILE PARTNERING WITH COMMUNIST CHINAMore info on #SB7 https://t.co/4oKAcHhbeN— Piper Perabo (@PiperPerabo) April 5, 2021 “.
Planes are reemerging from their desert vacations. © Provided by ZDNet A different experience? Screenshot by ZDNet © ZDNet
A different experience?
Pilots are being recalled. (Delta, for example, is reactivating all of its pilots.)
NHL's COVID protocol-related absences for April 17, 2021
Players in the protocol are: Colorado's Bowen Byram, Philipp Grubauer and Joonas Donskoi; Edmonton's Dmitry Kulikov; Los Angeles' Matt Roy; Montreal's Jon Merrill and Erik Gustafsson; Philadelphia's Jackson Cates; Toronto's Nick Foligno, Riley Nash and Ben Hutton; and Vancouver's Nate Schmidt and Jake Virtanen. Read more here.APRIL 15The NHL has confirmed that the Vancouver Canucks will not return to play from their lengthy COVID-19 pause Friday night versus the Edmonton Oilers as originally hoped.
Airlines believe that the great new travel takeoff is about to occur.
Why, Southwest Airlines has just ordered 100 new Boeing 737 Max planes. (I have a feeling the airline got a very good deal.)
Sadly, though, not everything is returning to the artistry of what used to be called normal.
Recently, Southwest made another announcement that may make a few passengers wonder where customer service might be headed.
The airline is reintroducing soft drinks on its flights. It would, however, very much like passengers to, well, keep quiet while they're ordering drinks. The technical term the airline is using, The Points Guy reported, is "non-verbal ordering."
Ideally, the airline wants you to go to its inflight wifi portal and carefully zoom into the drink you desire. And then, presumably, point to it as if you're doing the old safety demonstration. An alternative -- perhaps for flights where there's no Wi-Fi -- is for the flight attendant to hold up a card with numbered pictures of the drinks. To which the passenger holds up the appropriate number of fingers.
New CDC guidelines say fully vaccinated Americans don't need to wear masks outside, except in crowded settings
As of Tuesday, nearly 30% of the U.S. population has been fully vaccinated and more than 42% have received at least one dose, according to CDC data.During a White House briefing, public health officials said fully vaccinated individuals can unmask while walking, running, hiking or biking outdoors alone or with members of their household.
COVID-19 is, of course, at the heart of this move.
The airline offered: "Customers are expressing a preference for additional beverage options, so this is one small way that we can meet Customer requests while still limiting selections to support the wellbeing and comfort of our Customers and Employees."
The words are, of course, understandable.
Presumably, silent ordering cuts down on your inner droplets being emitted into the outside air. Yet airlines have been boasting about their cabin air being among the purest and most breathable forms of air there is.
Sample: "All of our aircraft are equipped with High-Efficiency Particulate Air (HEPA) filters, which remove 99.97% of airborne particles, similar to technology found in hospitals."
Or: "Our aircraft are designed with an air circulation system that mixes in fresh air from outside the plane with air inside the plane."
NHL's COVID protocol-related absences for May 8, 2021
Players in the protocol are: Colorado's Devan Dubnyk and Washington's Evgeny Kuznetsov.Calgary – TBA
Yes, these are both from Southwest.
Most airlines also packed their middle seats as soon as they could, with United insisting such closeness was absolutely fine.
Still, perhaps you can never be too careful and it can be harder to hear others when they're wearing a mask -- or to make yourself understood when you're wearing one. Moreover, for those who have difficulties with speech, language, or hearing, this new process will be entirely helpful. Even if it won't be so helpful for the visually impaired.
Yet, still I worry.
For some passengers, any amount of normal human contact with a flight attendant can add to the experience. Especially on an airline like Southwest, which is renowned for its human-friendly service attitude.
If it will all now be a performance of pointing and nodding, perhaps some of that humanity will be lost.
And what happens when the drinks are served? Will a Carmelite silence descend?
Moreover, the "non-verbal" ordering method puts the onus on passengers to open their phones, scroll, and be ready to point. Southwest, after all, has no seatback screens -- which some airlines have used to facilitate drink ordering.
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Social media users are falsely claiming that Don Lemon's prime-time CNN show is being canceled. The segment is being renamed.Fans and critics alike assumed the prime-time anchor was leaving the network, which he has been working at since 2006.
So, just as the likes of American Airlines are increasingly relying on passengers to use their own gadgets for entertainment, Southwest would now prefer passengers to use those gadgets to order drinks.
And what, I hear you cry, if all you have is an iPhone SE? There will be pointing and squinting and nodding and more squinting. And wait, some will surely say, isn't everyone supposed to be wearing a mask anyway? So is this silent, gadget-based ordering truly necessary?
Southwest isn't alone in wondering whether in-air customer interactions should change. United Airlines flight attendants believe that offering on-board snacks and alcoholic drinks is causing a "toxic environment."
Worse, they say, United's sales software is deeply imperfect and enforcing mask compliance is becoming increasingly difficult.
Sometimes, it's hard to know whether every COVID-inspired, technology-enabled move is there to make passengers feel better or whether the balance of benefit is tilted toward the airlines.
NHL announces blank COVID protocol-related absences list
The long-awaited day has finally arrived. When the NHL released it’s COVID Protocol Related Absences list on Monday evening, it contained no names. It is the first time since the list originally debuted at the start of the regular season that the contents has been empty. Granted, the list now only includes the 14 active playoff teams as opposed to all 31 clubs, but it still marks a major achievement in the league’s battle against the Coronavirus. © Sergei Belski-USA TODAY Sports Of course, the final step toward a league-wide clean bill of health actually came with the elimination of the St. Louis Blues on Sunday.
American Airlines, for example, recently announced that -- perhaps very soon -- you won't even need your phone to check-in, drop off your bags and board a plane. Everything will be dependent on facial recognition.
The pandemic is the driver or excuse, depending on your perspective. But the effect will surely be for the airlines to employ fewer people, for there to be less natural human contact between airline staff and customers, and for customers to worry where their most intimate personal data is flying to next.
Of course, COVID-19 has necessarily created change that will last long after the pandemic subsides -- and may even become permanent.
Perhaps one of those changes will be that customers expect (even) less humanity from airlines -- and from so many other businesses which are increasingly becoming robotic -- and disappear numbly into their devices the moment they board.
It's the way of the world, perhaps. Somehow, though, it feels like a pity.
Pilot Sentenced for Watching Porn on Flight, Exposing Himself to Female First Officer .
Michael Haak, 60, pleaded guilty on Friday to the charge and admitted to watching porn and exposing himself to the female first officer mid-flight. (Photo by KAMIL KRZACZYNSKI / AFP) (Photo by KAMIL KRZACZYNSKI/AFP via Getty Images) Michael Haak, 60, pleaded guilty on Friday to the charge and admitted to watching porn and exposing himself to the fe On August 10, 2020, after the plane reached cruising altitude, Haak, of Longwood, Florida, "got out of the pilot's seat, and while still in the cockpit of the plane, intentionally disrobed and viewed pornographic media on a laptop computer,"