Nothing Sparks Fear And Loathing Like A Stoolie


Some things are encoded into the DNA of all humans. Say, for example, a universal desire for glazed donuts or the natural tendency to run from a charging rhino. Things like an appreciation of the double-wide modular as classic architecture or Coors being a real beer and, especially, privacy, vary from culture to culture. Asian cultures, for instance, don’t seem to mind a little snooping and neither, evidently, do our British cousins who have London wired up with a half million CCTV cameras.

But Americans? We are in a league of our own when it comes to defending privacy and it’s a toss-up whether we fire a few warning rounds or sue someone to make the point. Improbably, Cirrus wandered into this briar patch when it announced the new IQ feature for the 2020 models. As covered in this video, IQ is a real-time data monitoring system that uses cellular technology to snatch the airplane’s data stream and send it to the mothership back in Duluth. The idea is that trend monitoring will improve safety by detecting wear and failure trends and, ominously, pilot shortcomings. This capability has been found in many airliners for quite some time and is part of the increasingly effective safety net that has made airline flying all but accident-free, at least in the U.S. For the Cirrus version, a pot sweetener is that the system allows the pilot to use a cellphone to wake up the airplane remotely and check fuel status or other parameters.

Before it was announced, Cirrus’ Ivy McIver showed me a demo and my immediate reaction was this: I’m not even vaguely interested in using it to get remote fueling done, whether it’s 20 below or dumping rain and snow or 120 degrees on the ramp. I have a thing about being present for fueling and I don’t give an inch on it. But I was interested in the data because, as you have noticed, I’m a data nerd. If you don’t got data, you got nothing, including any understanding. Of anything.

Said Cliff Allen, in the video: “That’s the way we hope everyone will look at it. This is not going back to a regulator. It’s being used for us to make Cirrus owners and Cirrus pilots safer. If we can reduce the number of runway loss of control, that’s good for everybody. Hopefully, everybody will embrace this for a way for them to get better.”

But, oh no. On both our YouTube channel and the video comment field, the reaction was almost universally negative, to the extent of obscuring the considerable benefits the system might offer. The last time I saw a reaction this negative was in 2016 when Icon introduced the first version of its buyer agreement that so tilted against the customer that the pen would have rolled off the table. The company admitted its blunder, retrenched and rewrote the contract.

The Cirrus version will, presumably, be to offer IQ as an option. That’s too bad, I think, because crash prevention in GA has reached a plateau and further gains will be in the margins. Data and trend monitoring can help this both in finding the mechanical faults and patterns in the data and, might as well be blunt, sorting through and correcting pilot shortfalls. Allen may have used an unfortunate word choice in saying the airplane would “rat you out” to home base for your screwups, but are egos so tender as to prefer a smoking crater as the wake-up call?

The answer to that for many—and maybe an overwhelming majority—is probably yes, such is the commitment to privacy and paranoia over enforcement action. In the age of Google, Facebook and Instagram, I’m way past the privacy worry. A friend of mine in the tech field told me 10 years ago, if you want privacy, find a cave in Tibet. And maybe not even then. Capricious enforcement? Possible, I suppose, but the FAA barely has the resources to do much of that now and an airplane stoolie might not help. They still have to fill out the paperwork.

When I measure these give-ups against the benefit of having all my flight data, my engine trends and measured flight performance at my fingertips, I see a positive balance sheet. I suppose the data could be anonymized at the expenses of Big Mama not reviewing my personal performance, but I doubt I’d bother.

My ego has been dented so many times, I long ago gave up being sensitive about criticism I have often so richly deserved. I’d rather be thought a mediocre pilot than to be an actual dead one.

Lifting a Coors here in hopes that with time, buyers will warm to this worthy idea.

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  1. Until the first time that data is used or wanted to be used in some kind of legal action whether it be a lawsuit or enforcement action. These are issues that are just starting to be dealt with in the automotive world with engine computers that can record data in crashes. Cockpit voice recorder recordings were supposed to be for NTSB use only until a civil suit involved with the LEX accident when an RJ tried to takeoff on a then too short runway. So therefore nothing is immune or restricted in the US legal world, as we all know anything can and will be used against you.

    The other issue is cost. My former employer would have pilots manually record engine trend data even though trend data was available from manufacturer using already on board computer recorded data. I was told the cost from the manufacturer to decode the engine data was not worth it. This from an employer who has never had an turboprop engine failure.

  2. I completely fail to see why anyone would object to this initiative, but I’m British. Robinson has had engine exceedance monitoring in the R66 from the get go. Some Americans appear to value individual freedom above all else, exhibiting a powerful distrust of their Federal government. This is seen in the Anti-Vaxxers; the protesters against lockdowns; those defending the right to carry arms; and the “preppers”. I wonder if this has its roots in the mythic cowboy past? But I’m viewing this at a distance and through the distorting lens of “news”, so this is a comment based on that only and not a judgement about the peoples of your wonderful country. There is no better place to fly GA in the world than the USA – unless you’ve been here, you wouldn’t believe what we have to contend with in the UK!

    • Thanks Bob G., your comment reminded me of the structure of The United States of America Constitution. Our Constitution is all about checks & balances on the government NOT the people. The architects of this country did not trust the people who wield government power.

      If the FAA can be trusted with information why did they create “The Pilot Bill of Rights”?

      • Simply put, Senator Inhofe landed on a closed runway and had to undergo some remedial training in order to keep his pilot certificate. Well, that made the senator worried and he felt powerless as any of us would if we were suddenly getting scrutiny from any type of authority. We all love our freedoms and there was great public support for “The Pilots Bill of Rights”. Don’t get me wrong, I support the Pilots bill of rights but I also don’t think it is right to villianize the regulators for doing what is expected of them especially for this case.

    • “ those defending the right to carry arms; and the “preppers”.

      I mean really. When was the last time anyone was holed up in their homes with the need to live off what they had in their pantry. You’d think that they were preparing for a global pandemic or something.

    • (Different Bob here…)
      “Some Americans appear to value individual freedom above all else, exhibiting a powerful distrust of their Federal government.”
      One could argue that the government has given all Americans, of all colors, origins, and persuasions, *plenty* of reasons to distrust it at various times in the past. It amazes me how many people will trumpet those wrongs from the past, and in the same breath clamor for bigger government and more government action… but I digress.

      Back on topic, if a system like this is an option, fine. Let those who choose to use it do so. I’d rather make use of a service like SavvyAnalysis (not a paid promotion, I don’t even have a complete airplane yet, I just think the service sounds neat) where you control the data that’s uploaded, as they only get what you send them.

  3. Do I see the oncoming landing light of a UAV? Shouldn’t be too hard to start the engine after checking the fuel. I’m not worried about my employer firing me in place of an autonomously piloted plane. However, the next generation growing up with self-driving Ubers may accept stepping into a plane with an empty cockpit.

  4. All become concerned when company will use data to deny a warranty or insurance to deny a claim. The bottom line is folks are concerned when the information is used against them. Just as the movie Sully demonstrated, when a company wants to smear you, they will try many different ways to do it. In the end, if the information provides a safer airplane then we should look as safety first and then weave the privacy issue second.

    • >>Just as the movie Sully demonstrated
      To be clear, that part of the movie was fiction. Necessary to move the plot along for a public theater audience.

      The real NTSB was never after Sully like that, and in fact Sully himself forced the movie’s producers to change the NTSB characters’ names to fictional names so they didn’t use the real peoples’ names, because that’s not how the real investigators behaved in the real world.

      • The controversy was a very compelling part of the movie, but yeah, the NTSB was not happy with the way they were portrayed as it didn’t happen that way. Americans do love to hate their government more than the people of many other countries.

      • Loved the movie and appreciated the drama, imagined and real, to present a visual representation of what occurred. I like being immersed in movies but usually figure out what’s true and what’s over dramatized to deliberately create emotions – all part of the movie experience. I also regard the thoroughly dry NTSB final reports as a library of what not to do in aircraft. It’s unfortunate that many misinterpret movies based on actual events as 100% true with mistaken beliefs that the gov’ment is the enemy. And I’m only discussing adults missing the point.

  5. I’m conflicted on this rush toward data on just about every part of my daily life. While it’s good to know if #4 cylinder is showing signs of wear, it isn’t necessarily good to know the whereabouts of an airplane or its pilot; that information has all sorts of implications. So it may be the answer lies in just what data is collected; the kind of data may clearly define purposes.

    ADS-B is data enough, my flight planning/flight management software nosy enough to make the time in my traveling airplane a bone for all the geeks to chew. That makes time in my no-electrical-system, steel tube, dope and fabric bug smasher pure delight.

  6. If privacy really is a concern, I don’t understand why pilots are up in arms about this system.

    Already, by default, when you use Garmin Pilot – even just to upload database updates on the ground – the entire logging data is downloaded to your iOS device and then sync’ed with That has been happening for years – and it includes position data and time stamps.

    This new Cirrus IQ system just uses a cellular interface to upload that data to another cloud.

    Any law enforcement agency could already tap the Garmin cloud for almost all Cirrus Perspective/+ pilots and get the same info.

    Why the fuss now?

    • I’d say because that wasn’t obvious. This is bold and in your face, “We will inform your CFI for your next biannual where you need training”. While this would be great if we lived in a society that continuously evaluates and tests us in everything we do. Where do you draw the line on that? Many times over analysis on our behavior makes us worse versions of ourselves. When people are trained good from bad and then allowed the freedom to act on that knowledge, they typically choose to be good actors.

  7. It’s amazing how everyone now agrees with your opinion in these comments. I am still profoundly uncomfortable but then I don’t have Alexa in my house and I keep exposure to Facebook et al to a minimum. The difference between Cirrus and the airlines is, if I fly for an airline they own the planes and pay me to fly. Cirrus doesn’t pay me and hence have no business monitoring my actions with “their” aircraft. They need to rethink their strategy.

    • I don’t have Alexa in my house too and I’m not fred d. but I see your point between a company owned a/c and a privately owned one. The trouble is that the FAA set regulations for the most part that have borne out suggestions for public air carriers above a weight class(?) or passenger number to have cvr and flight recorder. If this wasn’t mandated, there would be countless NTSB reports without a final determination. Studying flight data and cvr without survivors continues to set safety standards upwards ever since data acquisition started with that little red box thingy. As to privacy issues and owning a private a/c, I think the option for the owner to enable or disable data acquisition may be a good compromise but then we’re all flying in regulated airspace that just happens to be public (except for military airspace). Data acquisition for private a/c has been stewing with all the glass cockpits and Garmins already having the ability to save data. And more often than not, a crash has already shown any data saved from electronics is examined as another piece in determining failure occurred.

      Some years ago when surveillance cameras were being put up in metropolitan cities, a strong protest was made about privacy issues. The fact that walking in public spaces is not private with well meaning protests, those protests have fallen by the wayside as the same cameras are used regularly as electronic eyewitnesses to a crime not one single victim has protested against. Some victims may even be the protesters against video surveillance. How ironic is that? I believe the naysayers about surveillance cameras in public invading ‘their privacy’ has fallen into grudging silence while proving cameras can serve the public in positive ways. We’re not anywhere near Skynet, yet. Personal a/c saving data does have its pros and cons but if the commercial airline business and public benefited with cvr and flight recorders, data acquisition should not be as alarming for privately owned a/c.

  8. I’ll admit to having a knee-jerk reaction against any (further) loss of privacy. To those people who say, “if you have nothing to hide, what’s the problem?” I respond with this: Don’t confuse secrecy with privacy.

    For example, what happens inside of a bathroom is no secret. But it is private, hence people will continue to close the door even though they have “nothing to hide”.

    I realize that in this modern age with smart-phones, modern OBD-II, ubiquitous public security cameras, etc., the fight to preserve privacy is akin to tilting at windmills. But I still believe the fight should go on to ensure such data capture is used for as benevolent a purpose as possible, with the fewest downsides. Otherwise, every device would be effectively “Mirandized”, i.e – “anything this device collects can and will be used against you.”

  9. If this data is being generated by MY airplane, then *I* should have it. Give me access and the same tool to process it with that you’d use for the online version, and I’m all IN. But my rule is, what happens in Vegas, stays in Vegas, and what happens in the airplane stays there or at least under my exclusive control. If a methodology requires someone else to be responsible for protecting MY data, then no, no matter the benefit. Even the most powerful and feared government agency is incompetent to do that. And if a dataset exists, no matter how bulletproof the user agreement is, as soon as some government agency really wants it — it’ll be GONE.

    “I don’t recall that, Senator”

    So, not only “no,” but “@#$% NO!”

  10. A funny story to start. This is an automotive story but bear with me. I have been developing methodologies and software for industrial companies to capture part data for 20 years. One the first implementations was for an oil and gas services company in Texas. We presented several training classes for engineers and would begin the class with this story. As you know, our company develops the part data that automotive repair shops and insurance companies use for collision repair. We capture and distribute all the part numbers and dimensional characteristics of the major automotive companies. You also have heard recently that the ECU (Electronic Control Unit) in an automobile captures the last several minutes of data such as speed, engine RPM, etc. This data is often used to assess an accident cause. I bet you didn’t know that some ECUs have voice recording capability just like an aircraft. It’s interesting to note that the most common words from pickup trucks in Texas are “Hey Bill, hold my beer, watch this”. Apologies to my Texas friends. Most of this story is true. Your automobile has been capturing and recording data on you for years. Companies such as GE, have been using AI software to predict locomotive and jet engine failure for years. A disabled locomotive due to an engine failure is almost unheard of. Same for jet engines. I have often wondered why we couldn’t have similar predictive capabilities for our aircraft engines. I would certainly like to know well in advance that an engine is sick before it decides to give up on take off at 400ft (true story). With all the cheap sensor hardware available and smart engineers, I’m sure there are ways to predict engine failures before it happens.

    • Well, if you believe that, maybe you can invent the device that does it. Maybe instead you are the kind of guy that funds stuff like this. I’m sure plenty of folks would be happy to work for you if you cough up the funds to support the research. It is a novel thought though.

  11. What would Cirrus have done if Halladay was flying an IQ equipped SR22 and doing the things he was doing in the Icon ?

    Anyway on a lighter note anyone who is married should be OK with the plane recording what they are saying, after all they should be used to the concept that anything they say will be used against them 😉

  12. Assume the following.
    In five years Cirrus makes some mistake and you are disabled because of it. You would like Cirrus to pay for that. Cirrus data shows that three times on 2022 you performed two operations in reverse order, which affects nothing whatsoever of safety, aircraft structure, etc. Would you like that transferred to their attorney so they can show you as unsafe pilot?

    Scenario 2: Cirrus owner in China would like to disgrace you because you claim that China did something improper. would you like them to have access to such an error, or to let someone know that you had flown to a place that is advantageous to your business and nobody else’s?

    In the medical world there is a strict protocol nicknamed “Helsinki” or Institutional Review Board (IRB) for each institute that signed up to that contract, to verify that collected data is depersonalized immediately after it is used for its intended purpose. After Cirrus commits to that in a 99.999999% irrevocable way with 99.999999% guarantee, including all its current and future owners and employees, this is a good idea. Not before.

  13. There are always going to be people who look at a new piece of technology and try to come up with ways that they can exploit that technology for their own benefit. For “the lawyers”, it’s to get access to as much data as possible to strengthen their case of blaming someone else (that is, after all, essentially their job). For “the regulators” (at least, the few of them who are in that field only because they get to stroke their own egos by throwing the book at others), it’s to get access to as much data as possible to strengthen their case of blaming the pilot flying the plane. And for the manufacturers, it’s to prove they weren’t at fault and that it was someone else.

    But all of the above aside, I would much rather have trend analysis data show me that my aircraft requires maintenance of X to prevent something bad from happening in flight, or that I’ve been consistently flying in a certain manner that should be corrected to prevent something bad from happening. Done non-punitively, that is so much better than finding out a problem exists because there’s a smoking crater.

    I have no particular problem with the concept of “IQ”. I don’t know how Cirrus is implementing it, but it would be the implementation–if anything–that should be scrutinized, rather than the concept itself.

  14. I didn’t catch the byline at the top of this article, but as soon as I read the words “data nerd” I thought; “oh, this is Paul’s writing.” 🙂

    Personally, I would love to have the collective data set identifying potential safety issues, so that they can be proactively corrected. And whether those safety issues are an engineering design issue, an unforeseen wear problem, or a common pilot error, I want to know about it.

    How can something like “you are consistently flaring your Cirrus too high and fast, and our data set shows that Cirrus pilots who do this are 34% more likely to have an off-runway excursion” not be viewed as helpful? I’d love to have data like this!

  15. First, let’s not get confused about the real reception of the technology. Negative feelings are generally a much better motivator to comment than agreement.

    I’m no great writer so I’m going with bullet points.
    1. Cirrus is a Chinese company.
    2. We are all pretty sure, even if we haven’t thought of it, that the data will never be used to inform everyone that we are good pilots.
    3. Generally, these efforts are predesigned to benefit the manufacturers. That doesn’t mean it doesn’t offer benefits for the end user.
    4. Even benevolent data fanatics often gather misleading data or interpret incorrectly. For instance, healthcare ratings are often good at accidentally identifying those that seek out or specialize in the toughest cases and labeling them as incompetent.
    5. Someone with an agenda can use data unfairly or incompetently.
    6. Juries and voters don’t understand the data.
    7. Where’s my copy of ALL the data.
    8. Red light cameras were thought to add safety, but the systems were manipulated to increase revenues and thus caused accidents while randomly taxing people for non infractions and harmless missteps.

    Enough I suppose.

  16. When everyone who is paid by the taxpayer’s dime is required to wear a bodycam, has a dashcam or panelcam in their vehicle, Alexa feeds and Siri communications all uplinking 24/7 real time and accessible to any and all taxpayers (some of whom, rest assured, will record and store all this data), I might be persuaded to take a look at the kind of surveillance perpetrated by IQ to be present on a vehicle I have bought and paid for. And then I would reject it.

        • I believe he was suggesting that if you want complete privacy, you’re in the wrong century. Data is already being collected in far more ways than many people realize. The least that can be done is turn the data into actionable information that we who generate the data can use.

          • Has anyone really thought through this argument about how we are already being watched so relax?

            If someone’s daughter is heavy petting on dates, you don’t tell him not to worry about the rapist on the corner just because she’s already getting fondled by teenagers. Perhaps it wasn’t appropriate to jail the neighborhood boys or lock up the daughter, but that doesn’t mean the rapist looking fellow ought to be ignored.

            Frankly, I think there have been serious violations of ethics and law already.

  17. On average, Cirrus sells about 350-400 airplanes per year. The data trends will only apply to Cirrus airplanes. Since IQ applies to new Cirrus airplanes produced in 2020 moving forward, the amount of data available will be useful only to Cirrus aircraft. These trends, as Paul points out, will not significantly decrease accident totals unless the predominant airplane crashed happens to be Cirrus produced airplanes manufactured during or after 2020 ( which will probably be a poor sales year). Since Cirrus airplanes are not falling out of the sky in significant higher numbers than any other airplane, or are involved in loss of control accidents on the ground more than the aggregate number of taildraggers for example, statistically, this data stream will only affect the folks flying a Cirrus. Even engine trends for the IO-550 will only apply to the Cirrus it is attached to, as its nuances are a reflection of that particular airframe and cowling design. So, another brand of airplane using the same engine, will not be able to use that captured data to support or refute any issues that apply to their airframe and/or cowling design.

    Worried about “Big Brother” using the captured data stream for nefarious reasons? Don’t buy or fly a Cirrus. Even though Cirrus has outsold virtually all manufacturers since 2001, the largest portion of GA flying are flying “Edsels”. Even the 7,000 Cirrus airplanes sold since 2001, are “Edsels”. The vast majority of GA is flying 50+ year old airplanes. Many of us are flying airplanes older than the Edsel.

    So, this invasion of privacy, this possible attack of personal freedoms, the ability of Cirrus IQ to invoke a constitutional threat is way down low on the priority scale compared to your electric “Smartmeter”, your current pilot app, ADS-B technology, DVD player, Alexis, FB, smart-phones, credit card usage, auto/truck ECU programs, and RC drones just to name a few. For those 350-400 folks capable of purchasing a Cirrus aircraft post 2020, maybe this blog and all of the concerns expressed will make you do what? Buy a G-36, or a Matrix, a Mooney? (oh yeah, they closed this year), because they don’t have factory trend monitoring?

    Pretty much anything technologically significant causes a potential erosion of personal freedoms. But we like our creature comforts more than our freedoms. So, we we sound tough about losing our personal freedoms, but in practicality, we put up with the Smartmeters, we like our pilot apps and the data derived from ADS-B, we like our on-board navigation on our cars with the ECU driven FI, and even us driving our Edsels, use our smarphones with Google maps to drive to the next car show after texting our wives for permission.

    Data mining from a few hundred Cirrus airplanes over the next decade? Chump change compared to what is being used in the average American home, by the average American pilot.

    • All that is true – Cirrus IQ is but one pixel in the big-picture of data gathering.

      But, like the proverbial nose-of-the-camel, it sets precedent. And while Cirrus may have benevolent intentions, others may not. They’ll look at Cirrus and say, “hey – no one’s objecting to that Hoovering of data, we can get away with…”. To not question and/or push back on each nybble[sic] out of data ‘privacy’ is to give carte-blanche for the whole herd of camels to move into the tent.

      Look at the privacy policies (such as they are) of many companies nowadays. Do you think they talk about safe-guarding your data, not selling your PII (Personally-Identifiable Information), giving you access to privacy controls, etc. out of the goodness of their heart?


      They were dragged, their paid lobbyists kicking and screaming, into such a world by a bevy of privacy groups and consumer action. Facebook, for example, has added more and more privacy controls over the years, and not because they wanted to. Now, the results may not be as private as we’d like, but they’re far better than what the corporations wanted.

      If each new data-mining technique is not met with analysis, questioning, or opposition (as needed) by privacy advocates, then the near-future will be so ‘open book’ as to make our current privacy seem quaint.

  18. Kirk W…You help make my point. We are all so worried about the proverbial camel’s nose in our collective tents, been worn down, and begrudgingly accepted, and now used to… the hundreds of invasion-of-privacy camels in their entirety cohabiting in our tents for years. We have more to get our underwear in a bunch with XM Sirius, Garmin Pilot, FB, and our local electric service than Cirrus IQ.

    Cirrus IQ, from a technology, eavesdropping point of view is pretty antiquated already. 50% of the GA “Edsels” already have all cylinder engine monitors whose information can be downloaded providing similar engine trend information as Cirrus IQ other than potential stick skills. I don’t believe any other aircraft manufacturer is using Cirrus as a poster boy for what not to do, nor a bunch of ne’er-do-wells thinking they will adopt something similar to gain additional information about airplane owners lifestyles, flying habits, and engine operations to an evil end. Even the bad guys know that FAA certification is expensive, takes years to approve, and that statistically, the numbers of new GA airplanes in addition to Cirrus sales is less than one pixel in the invasion of privacy universe. So why would they(whoever they are), the global corporate machine, FBI, CIA, DEA, EAA, AOPA, Pepsi, NFL, Boeing, ABC, FOX, INFOWARS, the Chinese, Putin, and Rocket Man spend any time investing time and money in data mining of a few hundred airplanes with such limited information compared with FB, XM satellite services, FB, ADS-B, pilot apps, traffic surveillance cameras, drones, electric meters, and smartphone opportunities that affect millions if not billions of the global population.

    I believe the average Joe, including Joe pilots, feels so violated privacy wise, yet now so accustomed to the daily use with the conveniences provided by privacy invasion devices and services that have been data mining for decades now, to have any remote feeling of control regarding general life, reacts to something like Cirrus IQ as a citizenry duty to sound another warning of freedom erosion. It makes us feel good as if we have some control of the privacy of our lives. We don’t. We are arguing about closing the barn door long after the camels have escaped, have poked their noses in our tents, and are now living with us as part of our everyday family. The precedence’s have long been set well before Cirrus IQ.

    Aviation, particularly general aviation flying, was, is, and will be an enjoyment, thrill, with the accompanying satisfaction gained from a rewarding sense of accomplishment only a relative few will enjoy. It has been that way since Wilbur and Orville. My suggestion is to savor each flight, be thankful for the technology that has made and will make flying even more safer than now, and concentrate on removing a few of the camel herd that is currently living in each and every American home. The Cirrus IQ nose is not any precedence, it is a late-comer camel who is trying to join the vast herd already in our homes.

    • Jim H.,

      True, where we are today in terms of (lack of) privacy is quite different from the days of the Edsel.

      However, it is far away from China. There, the government is forcing their citizens to put an app on their phone to insure they follow quarantine. If the phone travels outside of your house, or you don’t send a daily selfie of yourself in lockdown to the authorities, you’ll find yourself in trouble. And it is for that reason that I support public review, questioning, and push-back on any further loss of privacy. The situation we have now in this country is the result of a compromise between the citizenry and the government and corporations. Like any compromise, the result is not wholly satisfying to either party.

      If you think the privacy fight is already over and we should no longer bother, ask yourself this…
      …does your medical insurance company use your DNA to set your individual insurance rate?
      …does EZ-Pass send you a speeding ticket if they think the time between two toll booths was too short?
      …does the state/federal government download your car’s OBD-II data to bill you highway taxes for the miles traveled? Does it also ask for GPS data so that each jurisdiction can get their “fair share”?

      These are just three examples off the top of my head of where private-data access was successfully blocked. No, we’re not living in Mayberry, R.F.D any more; but we’re not living in Wuhan, China, either.

  19. Kirk…we are basically in agreement. The disagreement is which battle should we be concentrating on regarding the invasion of our privacy and resulting eroding freedoms.

    In my mind, the Cirrus IQ is a potential battle, but relatively insignificant privacy wise. Could be a benefit to the Cirrus owner, Cirrus equipped flight school, etc. The potential for over reach is always there including using the data for FAA enforcement issues especially in potential litigation scenarios for the blame game. I just think there are far bigger fish to fry with a much better return on investment than Cirrus IQ when it come to data mining, invasion of privacy, and eroding freedoms.

    However, it has been a good, thoughtful debate. Happy flying!