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HighBypass

Virtual mercy/humanitarian flights - right or wrong?

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Not sure if it was worth creating a poll for this. However, I suppose I had a fit of conscience tonight. As many of you may already know, there's been an avalanche in Italy yesterday which buried a hotel and many lives are feared lost.

 

Tonight I began searching for nearby airports/ large airfields suitable for landing an IL-76 (the big STOL (relatively!) transport in my hangar) full of supplies - helicopter parts, rescue equipment etc. etc. LIAP may just work...

 

Then I thought...  This is a real disaster...many others have happened, and no doubt many more will. Some of them have been magnitudes bigger than one hotel.

 

Why am I doing this: Planning a virtual flight?

 

One of the popular things to do when simming is flying for a purpose; there's packages which generate flights for us to earn virtual revenue etc. all of this just to Entertain us.

 

However, is it wrong to use a real world disaster as a basis for my entertainment? One which is so very recent at least?

 

I'm possibly over-reacting - there are plenty of video games out there, warfighting, combating terrorists all based on reality..

 

I may still go ahead with it - obviously the only thing I would be doing it for is to test my ability and that of a possibly (probably) not so realistic flight model in the sim.

 

Cheers.

 

 

 

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I wouldn't worry about it. At least you're (virtually) doing something to help. The victims of the earthquake won't be any worse off for your using the disaster as a backdrop for your flying, and they won't be any better off for you declining to do so.

 

What you could do, if you felt so inclined, would be to send a donation to a suitable aid fund. There are bound to be some set up for this event, or else something like Medecins sans Frontieres or the Red Cross, perhaps, and thus "earn" the flight. If you really feel you need to.

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Yeh agree. Would not worry about it. Your not doing any harm.

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I sometimes do flights like this coupled with a donation to the real world cause.

 

I had a post in the screenshot forum a year or so ago of a replicated real world Air Canada airlift of Syrian refugees to Toronto.

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Thanks for the replies. :cool:

 

I have used the IL-76 previously on a mission based on a real world situation, but that was just a straightforward supply drop and refugee evacuation - I never thought of it in direct relation to anyone losing their lives. (Posted in the screenshot forum).

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I can see how your thought process makes sense. In the other I think it's not a negative thing. The truth is that we tend to want to do things based on major world or personal events. I.e. When you fly somewhere IRL you tend to want to fly that route more often in the sim. People also have a tendency to view the world events even if negative and want to explore more about that. For example the OJ Simpson lift in Ford Bronco sales.

 

In my opinion there is nothing wrong with doing what you are doing. If it makes you conscious feel better you can always do a small donation to a cause that provides real relief to the victims.

 

Hope my 2 and 3/4 of a cent help.

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I think its a great thing to do. In a way it shows compassion for the circumstance - even though you can't assist for real

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The mere fact the thought occurred to you shows your heart is in the right place, furthermore, your post draws attention to a real world plight and may even induce people to donate to a suitable cause (which I in fact just have done because of having read this post) so now you no longer need to feel any guilt about it, not that you should do anyway.

 

If anyone else feels like donating, below is the link to Médecins Sans Frontières. Note that from that link, you have to pick which country you are from and then you just follow the instructions. Takes about three clicks and they accept CCs as well as Paypal, so there's plenty of options for how to pay. Apparently 86 percent of what you donate goes on aid, the rest on promoting the cause, admin etc, so not a bad cut from what you give. Even if you just give a tiny amount, when lots of people do that, it all adds up. Do that and your humanitarian flight will no longer be merely virtual. And that's cool. You could even screenshot it and Facebook it, I bet that would induce a few donations from people :-)

 

http://www.msf.org/en/donate

 

Incidentally, I'm not sure if this is where you got the idea from, but the new (currently still in development but available slightly cheaper at the moment from Just Flight) version of Air Hauler includes occasional humanitarian mission flights as well as regular passenger and cargo flights. Perfect for the good old Captain Sim C-130 amongst other things :-)

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Thanks for the link Chock. :cool:  ...and for all the replies chaps! I guess the general consensus so far is that it does no harm.

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I think its a great thing to do. In a way it shows compassion for the circumstance - even though you can't assist for real

 

This.

 

One could also couple ones efforts towards help in a more tangible way - such as some of the virtual flying that has helped raise money for good causes.

 

As Chock says; you're bringing a focus to these issues and happenings that brings new audiences and more intense awareness.

 

In some ways; your job is already done by your very action of posting this thread. Anything more is a bonus.

 

Well done.

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HighBypass, I see nothing at all wrong with what you are doing and I think your heart is in the right place. 

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Interesting question, very subjective. I think that you're right: purpose creates immersion in flight, and since it's neither gratuitous nor mocking, then it's not only not a 'bad' / immoral thing, it is actually a 'good' / moral thing. Plus, clearly the flight plan and flight itself show that you are doing something (albeit virtually) for others, and your post shows that you have others in mind.

Otherwise stated, people do far worse on Facebook and Twitter. I trust your flight was a good one? The only thing close to a helicopter I ever flew was the 'Verticopter' for X-Plane, and it was very forgiving! :-)

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jarsky - yes the flight was good, thanks! check out my post in the screenshots forum. Manchester to L'Aquila. I was delivering helicopter parts, not flying the helicopters themselves sorry!

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I was delivering helicopter parts, not flying the helicopters themselves

 

Ikea helicopters! Hope you remembered to bring the instructions...  :wink:

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Haha, IKEA helicopters! (Well, kit cars and planes exist - why not helicopters?!)

I'll check out the screenshots. :-)

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I appreciate the OP's thoughtfulness of this topic.  "Virtualizing" a RL calamity for entertainment has always bothered me (e.g. call of duty games), but OP's scenario about being virtually helpful puts this situation into a truly respectful and humane perspective.

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What you do in your virtual world has zero impact on the real world.

 

Or does it?

 

Your question is one of conscience; or rather, "what will people think of me?"

 

Suppose you publicize your adventure.  Record it, make a video, post it up on YouTube and spread links around forums like this one.  What happens?

 

Of the billions of people on this planet, most will never know of your video.  Even if your effort goes "viral" and you get 1 million views, it is an insignificant spot in the world scheme of things.

 

What could matter is who sees it.  If it is people you know, it could affect your relationship with them.  If it is people more or less in your "world", they can have at least an online affect on you.

 

So we are back to, "what will people think of me?"

 

If you handle the situation with respect for the tragedy and people involved, you are on the right track.  People walk long distances for "causes".  Walking doesn't create any benefit to anything except your health and perhaps the bottom line of your preferred sports shoe supplier.  But the purpose is to raise awareness of some issue, and through that effect some positive action.

 

So phrase and package what you do that way if/when you publish.

 

And of course, still be prepared for criticism.  There is always someone, somewhere, who needs something to attack and rail against, and sooner or later your videos (assuming you make a habit of this) will get some crazies attention.  But are you willing to live under a rock?  If you are not, go for it.  Just be respectful of the suffering in the real world, and phrase as an activity to raise awareness of the tragedy.  Even if you keep it to yourself, at least you should be comfortable with the fact that if anyone DID know about your activity, it would almost certainly be viewed in a positive light.

 

It is even possible for you to organize an event to raise money.  Get sponsorship for example.  You could have a real impact on the issue at hand.

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