I was recently on a transatlantic flight and watched the movie Steve Jobs on the plane’s entertainment system. Every movie I tried, including that one, had a message right at the start saying the movie had been edited for content.

In one scene, the caracter of Steve Wozniak is fiddling with a watch and the character of Steve Jobs makes a joke it looks like he’s messing with a bomb. Those words were muted. The word “bomb” (and one or two words around it) were gone from the movie. I even rewinded to make sure, and the words were indeed gone.

Is there some weird law that forbids the use of the word in inflight entertainment systems? It there is, it’d be particularly weird since you need to plug headphones to listen to the movie in the first place, so it’s unlikely you’d cause hysteria. In addition, the word was pronounced again later on in the movie but wasn’t muted then. It was less clear audibly, though, so it’s feasible it wouldn’t have been caught by the automated system (if any is used).

The airline was TAP, and the entertainment systems are individual per seat.

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    $\begingroup$ I'm voting to close this question as off-topic because it is about passenger aspects and should be posted on travel.stackexchange.com $\endgroup$ – Ron Beyer Mar 8 '16 at 5:37
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    $\begingroup$ While the flight entertainment system indeed is about passenger aspects, censoring several words may be done due to safety reasons. In this case, the questions belongs to av.se. (However, I imagine the word "bomb" not being muted. Passenger: "Oh, they said 'bomb'. A bomb can take aircraft down! I'll going to panic in 3...2...1...". And the terrorist: "Ah, yes, sorry, I forgot about. See you in heaven in 3...2...1...") (Oh, and did I trigger a red light at any agency now?) $\endgroup$ – sweber Mar 8 '16 at 7:28
  • $\begingroup$ @RonBeyer inflight-entertainment already existed as a tag, which further reinforced to me I was asking in the right pace. No quarrels with transferring the question if it’s an issue, though. $\endgroup$ – user137369 Mar 8 '16 at 12:51
  • $\begingroup$ @user137369 The wording on that tag description isn't the best, but I believe that it is about the entertainment systems themselves, not the content they display. The content is chosen by the airline in accordance with local, regional, or cultural considerations and is not mandated by the aviation regulatory bodies. $\endgroup$ – Ron Beyer Mar 8 '16 at 15:06
  • $\begingroup$ @RonBeyer I see. Is it possible to directly transfer the question to the correct Stack Exchange site? $\endgroup$ – user137369 Mar 9 '16 at 18:10

This might be dependent on the airline?

I usually fly Emirates and the movies are not muted for the word "bomb". Maybe because each seat has its own entertainment console?

In the old days when there was one giant projector that displayed movies (which was later replaced by TVs that articulated from the ceiling) - I suppose in these scenarios it might be prudent to mute words or scenes.

  • $\begingroup$ To be clear, the entertainment console was individual in this case, as well. $\endgroup$ – user137369 Mar 8 '16 at 12:48
  • $\begingroup$ Even in the Good Ol' Days™ of a single (or several) public screens, you had to plug your 'stethoscope' headphones into the jack in order to listen to the movie, so even then, the word bomb wouldn't have been broadcast throughout the cabin. $\endgroup$ – FreeMan Mar 8 '16 at 13:25

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