Virgin America encourages passengers to flirt

Virgin America is giving passengers the ability to send beverages to other passengers using its in-flight entertainment system.

Richard Branson stars in a video guide to "getting lucky"

Virgin America is giving passengers the ability to order other passengers beverages and snacks using a new seat map via its in-flight entertainment system. The sender can have his or her altruism repaid with a potential connection by making unsolicited requests for a private chat.

The service was launched this week, and Clickorlando.com says that it will make its debut on Virgin's Los Angeles to Las Vegas route with all national routes to follow soon. It's easy to imagine the desire for some people to 'opt out' of the service, but on the other hand, it could make long flights more interesting.

Of course, incidents of sexual harassment in the air aren't uncommon - just do a Web search. There's even theories about a transient "bystander effect" where sex crimes in the sky go unreported or are ignored entirely. Is Virgin embarking on a social experiment at 35,000 feet? And are tie ins to personal profiles coming next?

Here's Virgin boss Sir Richard Branson describing the company's motivation for the service:

(image credit: youtube)

This post was originally published on Smartplanet.com