Thursday, May 04, 2006

Flying sardine can

Instead of being forced into embarrassing serial corrections on what seemed like a dubious story from the start -- the New York Times story that Airbus was considering planes with standing seats -- the NYT would have a better starting point with the observation that the Airbus A380 is being marketed as holding around 550 people, with news programs obligingly running corporate footage of spacious cabins, but the safety test for the plane was conducted with 853 people on board. Standing seats or not, being on a plane with 850 other people is going to suck.

UPDATE 21 May: The NYT now publishes a full length explanation of how the original story made its way to the front page; our honest thought when the initial story ran was that someone had gotten taken in by an April Fools story and it does seem amazing that more warning signs didn't flash as it got bumped up in importance by the paper's editors. But again, our main point: do you really want to be on a plane with 852 other people?

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