Whether it's all just a publicity stunt or it's been Michael O'Leary's dirty little secret, the flamboyant owner of Ryanair certainly knows how to stimulate headline writers. The Irish entrepreneur's latest media bombshell is the suggestion that his no-frills airliners stream, among other things, porn to the handheld devices of passengers. He's also thinking about games, gambling and more wholesome fare like movies but it's the prospect of catching a glimpse of something creating heat besides the engines that has tweaked the Times, titillated the Telegraph and seared the Sun. "I'm not talking about having it on screens on the back of seats for everyone to see," he told the Sun. "It would be on handheld devices. Hotels around the world have it, so why wouldn't we?" Perhaps the Sun reporter didn't mention that hotels have doors with locks on them, too, but the problem with quoting O'Leary is that it's impossible to tell when he's serious.
He's made headlines before for implausible (but possible) suggestions like standing room areas on his airplanes and pay toilets that haven't gone anywhere but he's also followed through on some of his seemingly outlandish schemes. Whatever the real motives behind O'Leary's latest brainwave, he concedes airliner porn won't see the light of day for at least a year since Ryanair doesn't have onboard Internet and it will take at least that long to figure out the mechanics of such a project.