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Malaysia Airlines to Rebrand?

Malaysia Airlines could change its name in a radical attempt to rebrand and rebuild itself following two disasters in the past four months that have left the business on the brink of collapse.

After MH370 and MH17 and potential faults—or negligence—notwithstanding, a rethinking might be the only way to redeem the airlines in the eyes of the public. The Malaysian government is the majority shareholder, but privatization could be one avenue, as an Iberia-BA style venture. 

Do Pilots Discuss A Crash?

It feels like everyone in the terminal is looking at you just a little more closely. I know people, especially nervous fliers, can be a little extra sensitive around these events. I feel a bit more motivation on those days to make sure my uniform is on straight and to work extra hard at projecting a professional image while at work. You never know who needs a little bit extra assurance that they are in good hands.

That reminds me of what the pilot of the DL402 from JFK to LHR said to us passengers a few days after the disappearance of MH370:

As you've seen in the last couple of days, airplane flying can be an interesting business.
Technology will hopefully help us solve our shortcomings, but there's a reason we learn what we learn here in front and kindly ask you to follow some safety rules.

Crashes and the Complicated World of Airline Insurances

Peter Greenberg writes an excellent article about the complicated world of airline insurance.

Published before the crash of MH17, it crudely shows how some airlines gain financially with the insurance recovery for a plane loss.

It then all boils down to the ability of proving wrongful death: if the passengers' relatives can't, the Montreal Convention kicks in, with its relatively low financial payouts.

The people who own the plane get a whopping check; the people who financially secured the equipment on that plane get a whopping check, but the family members will be stalled by the defendants. … The commodity is more valuable than human life. And the owners of that commodity are somehow entitled to swift justice — and huge payments — as opposed to the victims.

In the case of the MH370,

unless they find the airplane, the cockpit voice recorder, and the flight data recorder — and those devices can categorically prove terrorism or some other form of negligence — there’s a distinct possibility these families will get little or nothing above the standard $175,000. This crash … “might turn out to be very inexpensive.”

It's too early to say what will happen with MH17. The Montreal Convention governs that an airline can avoid liability for sums exceeding the 175k only if it can prove it was totally "free from fault", usually an impossible task, even in cases of terrorism.

From the looks of it though, Malaysia Airlines hasn't done anything wrong here.