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back to article Blogger freaks after airport lackey fondles checked-in vibrator

Air travellers in the US can rest easy that they can happily pack sex toys in their luggage after the Transportation Safety Administration began a "removal" action on an errant employee. The TSA found itself impaled on the horns of a dilemma last week when Jill Filipovic, a New York-based lawyer and blogger, revealed that a TSA …

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Reaching out...

"Agency officials have also reached out to the passenger to personally apologize for this unfortunate incident."

Wasn't that part of the problem in the first place?

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Anonymous Coward

Reaching out...

... Is American corporate-management-speak for "we got in touch/picked up the phone/emailed/wrote".

It is, for the lack of a better expression, the most poncy term I've ever come across to date.

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Thumb Up

reached out to the passenger ...

... wearing gloves, presumably.

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Anonymous Coward

You will think twice with this one

Quick google shows her to be very active politically. Any "reaching out" is likely to be much more trouble than you expect.

Whoever did that was having a death wish and it was personal with regards to her, not just because some anonymous woman happened to carry a rabbit in her handbag.

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Anonymous Coward

No kidding

Rather stick intimate parts of yourself into an industrial meat grinder than come to the notice of the feminist blogosphere -- it'll hurt less and be over a lot quicker.

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WTF?

Oh, noes!

And then you'd probably also be, for the first time in your life, useful - as fertilizer.

What the hell does "feminist bloggers" have to do with invasion of privacy? Oh, noes! I forgot! Only the boyz can have their privacy invaded.

Here, have a medal.

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Anonymous Coward

AC above is just jealous of the battery-powered one.

Can't compete with it on either staying power OR personality!

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Anonymous Coward

You wouldn't be a feminist blogger by any chance would you??

Nice reaction to an obviously non-serious post...

Here have a lighter for that bra

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Anonymous Coward

Would it not

have been an invasion of privacy if the screener hadn't written on the ticket, then?

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FAIL

@ Oh, noes!

It seems many people don't get it.

Writing that note was potentially offensive but it was not an invasion of privacy. The invasion of privacy was the initial, accepted search of the luggage to find the vibrator at all. There was no less invasion of privacy if the note had not been written.

Is it a matter of ignorance is bliss? It's ok if our privacy is invaded so long as we aren't reminded of this fact?

Certainly the TSA agent writing the note is unfit for the position if not being fired, but the actual offense is no greater than if you see a woman holding a vibrator up in plan sight and say "about to have fun with that". In fact, it was the supposed victim that actually gave up her privacy beyond that of any other passenger when she took an event nobody else would have known about and made it public.

Ironic.

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Anonymous Coward

@ "Nice reaction to an obviously non-serious post..."

Yes. Ironic isn't your own post. :-P

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Anonymous Coward

Someone has to say it

Wow, must have been a real big one.

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Bronze badge
Devil

Huh

"a New York-based lawyer and blogger"

And my sympathy meter is now wedged firmly at 0.

All seriousness aside, a friend once played a joke on an unsuspecting (and unliked) roommate by sneaking an aluminum foil-wrapped dildo into her carry-on bag. Those wild, carefree days seem to be forever gone, alas.

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Stop

What do you have against bloggers?

Or is it lawyers, or New Yorkers, who you automatically lump into the pile of people you can't have sympathy for, no matter the situation? Not all lawyers are amoral bloodsuckers. Not all New Yorkers are (also possibly bloodsucking) investment bankers. Not all bloggers are vacuous.

Please, provide an explanation of your standards for who deserves sympathy for government invasion of privacy.

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Anonymous Coward

I guess we found a blogger...

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Megaphone

You know a lawyer who is NOT an amoral bloodsucker??????? WOW!!

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Anonymous Coward

If they are finding this manny guns and knives now there must have been hundreds on every flight before the scaners... so why havent every US flight ended in a terrorist attack ?

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Anonymous Coward

It is quite simple

Terrorists aren't so stupid as to sneak guns and knives aboard this way.

That is left to idiot 'entitled' assholes.

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FAIL

Didn't used to scan checked in luggage

The reason for a lack of terrorist attacks previously, is because its difficult to retrieve your bag from the cargo hold.

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Pirate

Zero tolerance

So, there'll be no more stealing stuff from checked luggage, then?

//yeah, right

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Silver badge
Coat

"personally" apologize

"Agency officials have also reached out to the passenger to personally apologize for this unfortunate incident."

"personally" apologize... o_0... I wonder who in the FAA performed this "personal" service.

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Anonymous Coward

I hope they told their staff member to

buzz off

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TRT
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Joke

Note to FEDS...

WMD does NOT mean Woman's Motorised Dildo.

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Happy

@Shagbag

I did a google image search and would certainly volunteer to provide the personal service.

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Not to burst anyone's bubble, but I seriously doubt the people in charge of the TSA actually give much of a flying one what people say about them in the press or (shudder) the 'blogosphere'. If they did, they'd have given up long ago. They've decided to play this one nice for PR's sake but it's not as if anything will change either way.

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Joke

It wouldn't be stolen if users ziplocked them immediately after use.

I wonder whether any of these are electrically powered and whether some passengers packing them are the ones spinning an en(d)ordinate amount of time in the lavatory in the tail end of the plane. I wonder: can one bring an inverter with it? Drain the plane of electricity... cause brown-outs... I imagine many would take a dim or dimmed view on this -- especially if it led to aeronautic aerobatics in a confined space

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Facepalm

CHECKED baggage, not HAND baggage

CHECKED baggage is CHECKED-IN baggage, not luggage taken on-board into the passenger cabin, where, as you *so* eloquently put it, passengers can spend a lot of time at the tail end of the plane. CHECKED baggage is inaccessible to passengers.

The complainant checked her bag in, it was taken to the TSA scanners, where the bag was opened, inspected by hand, a note scrawled and put in the bag and the bag closed again before making its way through the baggage handling system to her plane.

Considering how often things "go missing" at such inspections, I am very glad to see the TSA starting to take this kind of report seriously.

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Anonymous Coward

dssf - I was enjoying your post until you mentioned 'brown-outs'.

Who else did a google image search/ C'mon - admit it.

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Headmaster

get your freak on girl?

Eh?

One of the strangest linguistic gaps is knowing the language, understanding every word in the sentence, but not having a clue what it all means.

"Reaching out to," on the other hand, I do understand. It is pseudo-emotional management-jargon bollocks.

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Anonymous Coward

Confused

Not sure what the actual problem and outcome was here.

Is it the fact that TSA screeners fondle people's personal belongings and invade their privacy or is it just the note?

It seems the only thing being punished is leaving the note, so if the screener had fondled with, giggled, tampered with (etc) the vibrator and *not* left a note, no one would be any the wiser and he or she would still be in Federal employment.

Why is leaving a note any more of an invasion of privacy than normal "screening"?

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FAIL

Re: Confused

>Why is leaving a note any more of an invasion of privacy than normal "screening"?

It's not, except that we believe our own lie that our privacy is not invaded. Having a hand-written note of a sexual nature placed in your bag is not just a reminder of this lie, it is a flagrant breach of trust and etiquette.

Similarly, you can admire the cute derrière of someone walking ahead of you in the street, but if you call out and tell the owner of the aforementioned derrière what you'd like to do with it, you could be arrested for offensive behaviour.

Simple, really.

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Anonymous Coward

Confused.com

So it isnt an invasion of privacy until the person realises it has been done?

That doesnt make sense and certainly doesnt accord with legislation.

The analogy is wrong unless you think that is ok for me to go through your post, your voicemails, your emails etc as long as I dont let you know I have done it. If this is the case, we can eliminate the "damage" done by 90% of hacks by simply removing monitoring.

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Windows

Could've happened to me several years ago...

I was on a London - Helsinki flight. somehow, my electric razor kicked in (Mid-flight??) and when I collected it from the conveyor, the looks of the other passengers when they heard the noise was priceless.

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Joke

Impressive

"...passengers who try to sneak shooters and shanks onto planes hidden in their nuts."

Fitting a plane in there would be a trick for most of us.

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Unhappy

"was highly inappropriate and unprofessional, and TSA has zero tolerance for this type of behavior."

Sure, so is theft from baggage but there are still some TSA employees trying to upgrade their standard of living through theft.

I always use Pac Safe products, made in Australia but sold every where, as the TSA fondlers can examine the contents but not actually remove them from the Pac Safe which has a stainless mesh which is impervious to most everything other than torch cutters.

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Anonymous Coward

Indeed

Flew home from the US a few weeks back using a bag that has travelled to NYC/DC many time before. It wasn't till I was waiting for the tube at Heathrow I realised that the lock was missing. Turns out that the TSA had broken/stolen(!) the combo lock to have a rummage round. They event left a note saying that if anything was damaged it's my fault not theirs.

No idea what they thought they could see in there. Though I guess the potential thief was annoyed that the iPad2 box didn't have an iPad in it, as it was in the cabin with me.

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Anonymous Coward

Generation Sex ?

Am I the only one to find it curious that the sex toy having been discovered by the TSA employee she would then go on to blog about it on the Internet. Is this a generational thing, what with 'real` people appearing on reality television programs and where such concepts as the private or public space or personal morality don't apply anymore? Your sex life or what you had to eat in that curry house last night having equivalent value to blog about?

"Generation sex respects the rights of girls

Who want to take their clothes off

As long as we can all watch that's o.k"

http://www.lyricsmania.com/generation_sex_lyrics_divine_comedy_the.html

http://www.feministe.us/blog/archives/2011/10/26/note-leaving-tsa-agent-suspended/

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Bronze badge

Yes, it's a generational thing

in the sense that we're several generations removed from the Victorian era and have realised that we can openly acknowledge that we are sexual beings and even (gasp) discuss our sexuality with others.

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Anonymous Coward

re: Yes, it's a generational thing

Not at all I just don't see why I have to blog about it for the amusment of the unwashed masses. All this does is trivialize the subject. I call it the Oprahization of the culture (well not only me, I just looked it up). Whatever the subject euthanasia, stuffed cadaver sculptures, cannibalistic German chefs, we demand the right to all watch. It's sad watching the culture slowly sink into the slime (frogs boiling water and so on).

http://www.wordspy.com/words/Oprahization.asp

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She "freaked out"

Um . not so much. She thought it was funny and posted about it. Unless "freaked out" means something different over the pond. Here it means got really upset. She didn't.

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Facepalm

Since when is scribbling a note an invasion of privacy? The TSA guy had to search her bag anyway.

Sounds like this 'lady' needs her vibratory friend as she's too uptight to get the real thing!

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