So that way, you can do something about this:

The European Commision has opened the door for mobile phones on planes, introducing measures to harmonize the technical and licensing requirements for mobiles services in the sky. This means that 90 percent of European air passengers can remain contactable during flights, according to the Commission. … As a result of the introduction of the measures by the Commission, local regulators will be able to hand out licenses to make services a reality. One regulatory decision for all of Europe was required for this new service to come into being, according to Viviane Reding, the European Union Telecommunications Commissioner. “In-flight mobile phone services can be a very interesting new service especially for those business travelers who need to be ready to communicate wherever they are,” she said in a statement.

As Kevin Drum remarked recently in connection with the possibility of acquiring the power to remain invisible, the question is not so much whether you would like to be able to do this, but whether you’d be happy if everyone else could do it, too. Looking forward, I wonder whether, in a decade or so, people who are irritated by endless yakking on a long flight will be a robust majority, or whether their disgust will seem more in line with Leon Kass and his intense disapproval of people who eat ice-cream in public.