Maybe they should just seal all the balconies, put in windows and forget the balconies--if they start screening, putting bars , etc on the balconies, I'll just book an outside cabin and forget the balcony. But it doesn't matter in the long run, as you can't fix stupid and even if a ship had no balconies, there would still be people go over on occasion, simply due to the larger number of people sailing now and the number of cruise ships afloat.
There's simply no way you can protect people from themselves--when you consider the number of people who cruise in a years time ( which I believe amounts to somewhere close 20 million world wide,) and the minute number of people who are injured or go overboard, the number is miniscule---in comparison, if I heard the news correctly tonight, we have about 17 thousand deaths a year in auto crashes, mostly due to speed, alcohol and drugs.
Yet, no one is for lowering the speed limit, increasing the cops on the roads, limiting the alcohol people can buy, etc--we just hear about it when it happens close home and --oh well-- another car wreck!
If 25 people a year went overboard from cruise ships there would be a hue and cry heard round the world from all the do-gooder politicians that are after the badly run, dangerous cruise lines.
I still say the cruise lines have to start being on the offense instead of always on the defense when it's plainly not their fault that some nut case goes overboard. Sure, the family wouldn't necessarily want to see a video of one of their offspring or family members climbing around drunk on a balcony or taking a swan dive overboard, but the when the lawyers (aka sharks) start swimming around the money pot, these videos should be shown by the cruise line with an explanation of --ok, here's what really happened--see for yourself.
The one thing they need to do, as as far as I know it's not done, is to post warming signs on the balconies to not be climbing on them-- like the old lady who spilled hot coffee in her lap and sued McDonald's and got several million mainly because of the sympathy factor and too, they didn't have a notation on the coffee cup advising it was hot ---duh !