The story’s charm disguises the invasion of privacy at its heart: the way technology is both eroding our personal boundaries and coercing us in deleterious ways. To some, the story from that flight to Dallas already has a happy ending. The mystery man revealed himself on Twitter as former soccer player Euan Holden and gave Blair permission to share his Instagram and reveal his name. He has eagerly taken a liking to his newfound social media fandom and embraced the moniker of “Plane Bae,” even appearing on NBC’s Today to bask in the attention. Surely, this is the ultimate consent and the final proof that people like me are just being buzzkills about a fundamentally innocent story.
This is the larger issue. Many people think public space is fair game. Some people like to wear computers on their face or record everything they do. The person at the centre of the story did well to hide others identity but so many people don’t bother. When wandering the streets or taking a flight I shouldn’t need to worry that I might end up on the internet.