In other news... (humorous news items)

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Grop
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Grop » Wed Jul 23, 2014 9:12 am UTC

Rivalries between countries are not a very rational thing. Also France is the closest country to be farted at from England.

I also doubt that most English people who think farting at France is funny actually hate the French.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby bigglesworth » Wed Jul 23, 2014 10:09 am UTC

Depending on the definition of country - it would be much easier to fart at Wales or Scotland.

And if farting at France from British territory is desired, then setting up your fart cannon on Alderney would be closer.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby karhell » Wed Jul 23, 2014 10:28 am UTC

bigglesworth wrote:Like all great European rivals, we have been brought together by the fear of Germany.

Well said ! let's all fart at Germany :P
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Diadem » Wed Jul 23, 2014 12:33 pm UTC

Mallich wrote:
Adam H wrote:Obviously the damages should be more comparable to a life insurance payout though...
(If you're referring to the £16.8 million, ignore this post.)
If you're referring to the $23.6 billion figure, that's only the punitive fine. Punitive fines aren't compensation (and so it can't be compared to life insurance payouts) - it's intended as punishment. The compensatory damage is "only"* $16.8 million, 3 orders of magnitude closer to a life insurance payout.

The idea of punitive fines is okay. But giving them to whoever happens to sue first sounds somewhat ridiculous. They should obviously, like all fines, go to the state. Ideally the state can then use these funds to improve live for all victims.

What happens if a second person sues the company under the same circumstances? Do they only get $16.8 million? That breaks the principle of equality under the law. Or do they also get $23.6 billion? In that case the punishment for the company is overly harsh.
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Spambot5546 » Wed Jul 23, 2014 1:31 pm UTC

Diadem wrote:They should obviously, like all fines, go to the state. Ideally the state can then use these funds to improve live for all victims.

Should they, though?
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby LaserGuy » Wed Jul 23, 2014 2:40 pm UTC

Diadem wrote:
Mallich wrote:
Adam H wrote:Obviously the damages should be more comparable to a life insurance payout though...
(If you're referring to the £16.8 million, ignore this post.)
If you're referring to the $23.6 billion figure, that's only the punitive fine. Punitive fines aren't compensation (and so it can't be compared to life insurance payouts) - it's intended as punishment. The compensatory damage is "only"* $16.8 million, 3 orders of magnitude closer to a life insurance payout.

The idea of punitive fines is okay. But giving them to whoever happens to sue first sounds somewhat ridiculous. They should obviously, like all fines, go to the state. Ideally the state can then use these funds to improve live for all victims.

What happens if a second person sues the company under the same circumstances? Do they only get $16.8 million? That breaks the principle of equality under the law. Or do they also get $23.6 billion? In that case the punishment for the company is overly harsh.


The punitive damages will probably be appealed successfully in a higher court. There are numerous precedents where punitive damages that grossly exceed the actual damages have been declared unconstitutional.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Mallich » Wed Jul 23, 2014 7:11 pm UTC

Diadem wrote:The idea of punitive fines is okay. But giving them to whoever happens to sue first sounds somewhat ridiculous. They should obviously, like all fines, go to the state. Ideally the state can then use these funds to improve live for all victims.
Agreed, mostly. I really don't understand why all the money went to the individual. I could see a case for the first person to get a little more than compensatory damages (to give people an incentive to be the first one to stand up to a we-can-high-lots-of-lawyers big corporation). Even there, though, I'm still on the fence.

Diadem wrote:What happens if a second person sues the company under the same circumstances? Do they only get $16.8 million? That breaks the principle of equality under the law. Or do they also get $23.6 billion? In that case the punishment for the company is overly harsh.
Well, this bit is a mess.
A group of people could normally come together to launch a class-action lawsuit, with the cash being divided between the people. This would mitigate the situation somewhat as instead of the first person getting $23.6 billion, it's the 1000-or-so people in the suit getting $23.6 million. It would be far from a complete resolution (what about person number 1001? Or 1002? Why should they be given less?). However, there was a "2006 ruling barring smokers from filing class-action lawsuits but allowing them to sue as individuals"*. I don't know why. People wouldn't know how many individuals are going to sue, so won't know how much in punitive fines should come from each case in order to total up to a reasonable figure.

tl;dr: Yeah, I'm not sure why so much of the money is going to the individual.


*The link offers some information, but not much. There doesn't seem to be much talk of justice.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby elasto » Thu Jul 24, 2014 5:05 am UTC

Southwest kicks dad and kids off flight for tweeting complaint

Duff Watson claims that he and his two daughters were forced off their Southwest Airlines flight from Denver to Minneapolis after he tweeted a complaint about the agent at the gate. Only after all three had exited the plane and the agent watched Watson delete the tweet were they allowed back on the plane. The agent apparently told him that his tweet constituted a security threat.

Watson, an A-List Southwest Member, is allowed to board flights early. But apparently, the gate agent refused to allow his children to board early with him.

"I am not trying to game the system," Watson told ABC News. "I'm not going to leave my kids alone to board. That doesn't make sense."

The agent then allegedly told Watson that he and his children would have to wait until the rest of the A-list members boarded before they could walk onto the plane.

"We waited, which was fine," Watson said. "I thought she was very rude and wanted to complain to customer service, so I asked her: 'Can I get your last name?'"

That's when he tweeted the supposed tweet in question. (Watson's Twitter has since been made private.)

"Something to the effect of, 'Wow, rudest agent in Denver. Kimberly S, gate C39, not happy @SWA,'" Watson told the CBS affiliate in Minneapolis.

After sending the tweet, Watson and his kids finally boarded the plane, where the ordeal apparently escalated: An announcement was made on the plane that Watson exit the aircraft. After leaving the plane with his daughters, he claims to have been approached again by the same gate agent.

"She [the agent] said I was a safety threat," Watson told ABC News. "I was shocked. There was no use of profanity, there were no threats made. How was I a safety threat?"

The gate agent allegedly threatened to call the police unless Watson deleted the tweet, and watched as Watson removed the offending tweet from his timeline and then ordered them back on the plane.

Southwest has apparently apologized to Watson for the incident. From WCCO:

Southwest Airlines sent a statement which confirmed that a customer was removed for a short time and continued on to Minneapolis. They also said the incident is under review.

In an email to Watson, Southwest apologized for the incident. Because of confidentiality concerns, they could not disclose any disciplinary actions taken.

Watson says he's not satisfied with their response. All three received $50 vouchers, but Watson says he won't fly Southwest Airlines again.


"I'm not going to fly them again," Watson told ABC News. "I wish I didn't back down, I wish I didn't delete the tweet. But under that quid pro quo situation, I did it."


This is the tweet in question (captured because the internet forgets nothing):

@SouthwestAir and then I get to the gate!!! C39!!! Rudest staff? Kimberly S.


Ironically he had tweeted positively about Southwest moments previously:

@SouthwestAir Who rocks at Denvor bag check for #alist? Cindy! Thanks for the help this afternoon! #bestcustomerservice

@SouthwestAir ...you guys rock! Tonya at #MDW Gate B1 is awesome! Thanks for the assist! #LUV


Yeah. Threatening to call the police and delaying the takeoff of the plane, potentially inconveniencing hundreds, was really warranted and in no way an overreaction...

/golfclap

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby elasto » Thu Jul 24, 2014 10:36 am UTC

NYC Approves Apartment Building With Separate Entrance for Poor People

It would be difficult to come with a more on-the-nose metaphor for New York City's income inequality problem than the new high-rise apartment building coming to 40 Riverside Boulevard, which will feature separate doors for regular, wealthy humans and whatever you call the scum that rents affordable housing.

Extell Development Company, the firm behind the new building, announced its intentions to segregate the rich and poor to much outrage last year. Fifty-five of the luxury complex's 219 units would be marked for low-income renters—netting some valuable tax breaks for Extell—with the caveat that the less fortunate tenants would stick to their own entrance.

The city's Department of Housing Preservation and Development approved Extell's Inclusionary Housing Program application for the 33-story tower this week, the New York Post reports. The status grants Extell the aforementioned tax breaks and the right to construct a larger building than would ordinarily be allowed. According to the Daily Mail, affordable housing tenants will enter through a door situated on a "back alley."

Any of the unwashed folk who complain about such a convenient arrangement, of course, are just being ungrateful. As the Mail points out, fellow poor-door developer David Von Spreckelsen explained as much last year:

"No one ever said that the goal was full integration of these populations," said David Von Spreckelsen, senior vice president at Toll Brothers. "So now you have politicians talking about that, saying how horrible those back doors are. I think it's unfair to expect very high-income homeowners who paid a fortune to live in their building to have to be in the same boat as low-income renters, who are very fortunate to live in a new building in a great neighborhood."


In these economically fraught times, it's easy to forget that the super rich earned their right to never see you, hear you, smell you, or consider your pitiful existence. Expecting them to share an entrance would be unfair.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby morriswalters » Thu Jul 24, 2014 10:55 am UTC

Well before my moral outrage kicks in I would have to know what low income housing means in this case. Besides it may be a nice alley.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby kiklion » Thu Jul 24, 2014 12:50 pm UTC

morriswalters wrote:Well before my moral outrage kicks in I would have to know what low income housing means in this case. Besides it may be a nice alley.


My understanding is that it is partially due to legal reasons. Legal reasons that could have also been solved by cutting profits. This is a good article that isn't overly biased and gets to the root of the matter:

http://time.com/money/3018706/separate- ... york-city/

West Side Rag also says the developer argues that, since the affordable units are in a separate part of the building, it legally must have its own entrance.


I haven't been able to find the wording that states it must legally have it's own entrance. The only thing I can think of is that the dimensions and structure of the market rate apartments are such that they cannot/don't join well with the low income apartments so the entire building is split down the middle with the low income apartments in the back and the large, spacious,with a 'view of the hudson' apartments in the front. Hopefully someone else can explain why the two types of apartments would need to be mixed in order to be one entrance.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby morriswalters » Thu Jul 24, 2014 2:40 pm UTC

The more I read the more amusing it gets. The separate door is because the units are segregated. If you didn't have a separate door you couldn't get in. Practical. So a related question. Is this white privilege, rich privilege or what? Sorry I couldn't resist. On a more serious note, how is this different than a gated community?

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby CorruptUser » Thu Jul 24, 2014 2:45 pm UTC

What I want to know is if the building is so segregated, why does it still qualify for a tax break?

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Djehutynakht » Thu Jul 24, 2014 2:48 pm UTC

CorruptUser wrote:What I want to know is if the building is so segregated, why does it still qualify for a tax break?


Because technically it still is including low-income housing.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby kiklion » Thu Jul 24, 2014 3:50 pm UTC

Djehutynakht wrote:
CorruptUser wrote:What I want to know is if the building is so segregated, why does it still qualify for a tax break?


Because technically it still is including low-income housing.


As he said, AFAIK the stated goal of the low-income housing program is to ensure there are homes for poor people to live in. Not forcing wealthy people to live next to poor people or some other metric of integration. If I read the article correctly, they could even build low-income housing across the street in some other completely separate building and it would allow them to possibly receive subsidies.

I largely don't agree with all of the uproar about the separate entrance. There could be issues down the line though. Do the two separate buildings have separate heating systems? So one could be well maintained and the other breaks down? Separate water systems? Electrical? How much can the landlords ignore the low-income housing without affecting the money making apartments?

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby freezeblade » Thu Jul 24, 2014 3:59 pm UTC

Djehutynakht wrote:
CorruptUser wrote:What I want to know is if the building is so segregated, why does it still qualify for a tax break?


Because technically it still is including low-income housing.


IANAA (I Am Not An Architect) Wait, well, not a licenced one. But it's what I went to school for, and I've dealt plenty with city planning boards. I figure that it's less that the one building got the tax break, it's that the entire property is getting developed, no matter the number of buildings on it, and so the development company is getting the tax breaks for building low-cost housing on the lot itself.
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby morriswalters » Thu Jul 24, 2014 4:11 pm UTC

The amusing scenario would be that the utilities are NOT divided. And since it appears to be a condo then the richer tenants get to eat the maintenance assuming that the segregated units are rented. One way to heat and cool a highrise is to use a boiler to supply domestic hot water and water for a heat pump loop. With a cooling tower on the roof to supply cool water for the summer season. Everything else could be metered. This is getting funnier as I think about it.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby LaserGuy » Thu Jul 24, 2014 4:28 pm UTC

World's first atheism-dedicated television channel to launch July 29.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Tyndmyr » Thu Jul 24, 2014 5:27 pm UTC

LaserGuy wrote:World's first atheism-dedicated television channel to launch July 29.


As an atheist, I gotta say, I have never felt a need for such a thing.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby CorruptUser » Thu Jul 24, 2014 5:53 pm UTC

What would atheists want to watch that wouldn't already be on other channels?

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby SlyReaper » Thu Jul 24, 2014 6:18 pm UTC

Seems patronising more than anything.
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby freezeblade » Thu Jul 24, 2014 6:22 pm UTC

LaserGuy wrote:World's first atheism-dedicated television channel to launch July 29.


Kornheiser_why.jpg
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Whizbang » Thu Jul 24, 2014 6:25 pm UTC

I'd watch it if it were all Bill Nye, all the time.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Coyne » Thu Jul 24, 2014 6:34 pm UTC

elasto wrote:Southwest kicks dad and kids off flight for tweeting complaint

Spoiler:
Duff Watson claims that he and his two daughters were forced off their Southwest Airlines flight from Denver to Minneapolis after he tweeted a complaint about the agent at the gate. Only after all three had exited the plane and the agent watched Watson delete the tweet were they allowed back on the plane. The agent apparently told him that his tweet constituted a security threat.

Watson, an A-List Southwest Member, is allowed to board flights early. But apparently, the gate agent refused to allow his children to board early with him.

"I am not trying to game the system," Watson told ABC News. "I'm not going to leave my kids alone to board. That doesn't make sense."

The agent then allegedly told Watson that he and his children would have to wait until the rest of the A-list members boarded before they could walk onto the plane.

"We waited, which was fine," Watson said. "I thought she was very rude and wanted to complain to customer service, so I asked her: 'Can I get your last name?'"

That's when he tweeted the supposed tweet in question. (Watson's Twitter has since been made private.)

"Something to the effect of, 'Wow, rudest agent in Denver. Kimberly S, gate C39, not happy @SWA,'" Watson told the CBS affiliate in Minneapolis.

After sending the tweet, Watson and his kids finally boarded the plane, where the ordeal apparently escalated: An announcement was made on the plane that Watson exit the aircraft. After leaving the plane with his daughters, he claims to have been approached again by the same gate agent.

"She [the agent] said I was a safety threat," Watson told ABC News. "I was shocked. There was no use of profanity, there were no threats made. How was I a safety threat?"

The gate agent allegedly threatened to call the police unless Watson deleted the tweet, and watched as Watson removed the offending tweet from his timeline and then ordered them back on the plane.

Southwest has apparently apologized to Watson for the incident. From WCCO:

Southwest Airlines sent a statement which confirmed that a customer was removed for a short time and continued on to Minneapolis. They also said the incident is under review.

In an email to Watson, Southwest apologized for the incident. Because of confidentiality concerns, they could not disclose any disciplinary actions taken.

Watson says he's not satisfied with their response. All three received $50 vouchers, but Watson says he won't fly Southwest Airlines again.


"I'm not going to fly them again," Watson told ABC News. "I wish I didn't back down, I wish I didn't delete the tweet. But under that quid pro quo situation, I did it."


This is the tweet in question (captured because the internet forgets nothing):

@SouthwestAir and then I get to the gate!!! C39!!! Rudest staff? Kimberly S.


Ironically he had tweeted positively about Southwest moments previously:

@SouthwestAir Who rocks at Denvor bag check for #alist? Cindy! Thanks for the help this afternoon! #bestcustomerservice

@SouthwestAir ...you guys rock! Tonya at #MDW Gate B1 is awesome! Thanks for the assist! #LUV


Yeah. Threatening to call the police and delaying the takeoff of the plane, potentially inconveniencing hundreds, was really warranted and in no way an overreaction...

/golfclap


This is a perfect example of why today's world is getting so scary. If his quote was correctly quoted, then someone had to read it, recognize it was about SouthWest, find out where he was, and notify the gate (C39 probably doesn't help much; many airports probably have a C39). My experience is that it is usually 30-40 minutes from beginning of boarding to departure, so they did all that in much less than that amount of time. Think of the mechanics: Who was watching? How were they able to make all those connections in, say, 15 minutes...and notify the gate?

You are being watched, and not by people who have any sense of proportion. People sensitive to the slightest criticism, because you can bet they didn't notify "Cindy" and "Tonya" about the positive comments.
In all fairness...

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Angua » Thu Jul 24, 2014 6:36 pm UTC

CorruptUser wrote:What would atheists want to watch that wouldn't already be on other channels?

Maybe it just doesn't have Christian advertising (like all the ones for Latterday Saints).
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby CorruptUser » Thu Jul 24, 2014 6:39 pm UTC

So the selling point is that the ads are better targeted towards you. Umm...

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Thesh » Thu Jul 24, 2014 6:41 pm UTC

Coyne wrote:
elasto wrote:Southwest kicks dad and kids off flight for tweeting complaint

Spoiler:
Duff Watson claims that he and his two daughters were forced off their Southwest Airlines flight from Denver to Minneapolis after he tweeted a complaint about the agent at the gate. Only after all three had exited the plane and the agent watched Watson delete the tweet were they allowed back on the plane. The agent apparently told him that his tweet constituted a security threat.

Watson, an A-List Southwest Member, is allowed to board flights early. But apparently, the gate agent refused to allow his children to board early with him.

"I am not trying to game the system," Watson told ABC News. "I'm not going to leave my kids alone to board. That doesn't make sense."

The agent then allegedly told Watson that he and his children would have to wait until the rest of the A-list members boarded before they could walk onto the plane.

"We waited, which was fine," Watson said. "I thought she was very rude and wanted to complain to customer service, so I asked her: 'Can I get your last name?'"

That's when he tweeted the supposed tweet in question. (Watson's Twitter has since been made private.)

"Something to the effect of, 'Wow, rudest agent in Denver. Kimberly S, gate C39, not happy @SWA,'" Watson told the CBS affiliate in Minneapolis.

After sending the tweet, Watson and his kids finally boarded the plane, where the ordeal apparently escalated: An announcement was made on the plane that Watson exit the aircraft. After leaving the plane with his daughters, he claims to have been approached again by the same gate agent.

"She [the agent] said I was a safety threat," Watson told ABC News. "I was shocked. There was no use of profanity, there were no threats made. How was I a safety threat?"

The gate agent allegedly threatened to call the police unless Watson deleted the tweet, and watched as Watson removed the offending tweet from his timeline and then ordered them back on the plane.

Southwest has apparently apologized to Watson for the incident. From WCCO:

Southwest Airlines sent a statement which confirmed that a customer was removed for a short time and continued on to Minneapolis. They also said the incident is under review.

In an email to Watson, Southwest apologized for the incident. Because of confidentiality concerns, they could not disclose any disciplinary actions taken.

Watson says he's not satisfied with their response. All three received $50 vouchers, but Watson says he won't fly Southwest Airlines again.


"I'm not going to fly them again," Watson told ABC News. "I wish I didn't back down, I wish I didn't delete the tweet. But under that quid pro quo situation, I did it."


This is the tweet in question (captured because the internet forgets nothing):

@SouthwestAir and then I get to the gate!!! C39!!! Rudest staff? Kimberly S.


Ironically he had tweeted positively about Southwest moments previously:

@SouthwestAir Who rocks at Denvor bag check for #alist? Cindy! Thanks for the help this afternoon! #bestcustomerservice

@SouthwestAir ...you guys rock! Tonya at #MDW Gate B1 is awesome! Thanks for the assist! #LUV


Yeah. Threatening to call the police and delaying the takeoff of the plane, potentially inconveniencing hundreds, was really warranted and in no way an overreaction...

/golfclap


This is a perfect example of why today's world is getting so scary. If his quote was correctly quoted, then someone had to read it, recognize it was about SouthWest, find out where he was, and notify the gate (C39 probably doesn't help much; many airports probably have a C39). My experience is that it is usually 30-40 minutes from beginning of boarding to departure, so they did all that in much less than that amount of time. Think of the mechanics: Who was watching? How were they able to make all those connections in, say, 15 minutes...and notify the gate?

You are being watched, and not by people who have any sense of proportion. People sensitive to the slightest criticism, because you can bet they didn't notify "Cindy" and "Tonya" about the positive comments.


He mentioned Denver in a previous tweet.
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Sizik » Thu Jul 24, 2014 7:12 pm UTC

Thesh wrote:
Coyne wrote:
elasto wrote:Southwest kicks dad and kids off flight for tweeting complaint

Spoiler:
Duff Watson claims that he and his two daughters were forced off their Southwest Airlines flight from Denver to Minneapolis after he tweeted a complaint about the agent at the gate. Only after all three had exited the plane and the agent watched Watson delete the tweet were they allowed back on the plane. The agent apparently told him that his tweet constituted a security threat.

Watson, an A-List Southwest Member, is allowed to board flights early. But apparently, the gate agent refused to allow his children to board early with him.

"I am not trying to game the system," Watson told ABC News. "I'm not going to leave my kids alone to board. That doesn't make sense."

The agent then allegedly told Watson that he and his children would have to wait until the rest of the A-list members boarded before they could walk onto the plane.

"We waited, which was fine," Watson said. "I thought she was very rude and wanted to complain to customer service, so I asked her: 'Can I get your last name?'"

That's when he tweeted the supposed tweet in question. (Watson's Twitter has since been made private.)

"Something to the effect of, 'Wow, rudest agent in Denver. Kimberly S, gate C39, not happy @SWA,'" Watson told the CBS affiliate in Minneapolis.

After sending the tweet, Watson and his kids finally boarded the plane, where the ordeal apparently escalated: An announcement was made on the plane that Watson exit the aircraft. After leaving the plane with his daughters, he claims to have been approached again by the same gate agent.

"She [the agent] said I was a safety threat," Watson told ABC News. "I was shocked. There was no use of profanity, there were no threats made. How was I a safety threat?"

The gate agent allegedly threatened to call the police unless Watson deleted the tweet, and watched as Watson removed the offending tweet from his timeline and then ordered them back on the plane.

Southwest has apparently apologized to Watson for the incident. From WCCO:

Southwest Airlines sent a statement which confirmed that a customer was removed for a short time and continued on to Minneapolis. They also said the incident is under review.

In an email to Watson, Southwest apologized for the incident. Because of confidentiality concerns, they could not disclose any disciplinary actions taken.

Watson says he's not satisfied with their response. All three received $50 vouchers, but Watson says he won't fly Southwest Airlines again.


"I'm not going to fly them again," Watson told ABC News. "I wish I didn't back down, I wish I didn't delete the tweet. But under that quid pro quo situation, I did it."


This is the tweet in question (captured because the internet forgets nothing):

@SouthwestAir and then I get to the gate!!! C39!!! Rudest staff? Kimberly S.


Ironically he had tweeted positively about Southwest moments previously:

@SouthwestAir Who rocks at Denvor bag check for #alist? Cindy! Thanks for the help this afternoon! #bestcustomerservice

@SouthwestAir ...you guys rock! Tonya at #MDW Gate B1 is awesome! Thanks for the assist! #LUV


Yeah. Threatening to call the police and delaying the takeoff of the plane, potentially inconveniencing hundreds, was really warranted and in no way an overreaction...

/golfclap


This is a perfect example of why today's world is getting so scary. If his quote was correctly quoted, then someone had to read it, recognize it was about SouthWest, find out where he was, and notify the gate (C39 probably doesn't help much; many airports probably have a C39). My experience is that it is usually 30-40 minutes from beginning of boarding to departure, so they did all that in much less than that amount of time. Think of the mechanics: Who was watching? How were they able to make all those connections in, say, 15 minutes...and notify the gate?

You are being watched, and not by people who have any sense of proportion. People sensitive to the slightest criticism, because you can bet they didn't notify "Cindy" and "Tonya" about the positive comments.


He mentioned Denver in a previous tweet.


It was tweeted @SouthwestAir. It's reasonable to assume there are PR people monitoring what people tweet about the company.
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby pseudoidiot » Thu Jul 24, 2014 7:24 pm UTC

Yeah, I imagine it's trivial for someone at Southwest to look up someone's name and see what flight they're on, especially knowing what gate & city.
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Coyne » Thu Jul 24, 2014 7:34 pm UTC

Thesh wrote:
Coyne wrote:
elasto wrote:Southwest kicks dad and kids off flight for tweeting complaint

Spoiler:
Duff Watson claims that he and his two daughters were forced off their Southwest Airlines flight from Denver to Minneapolis after he tweeted a complaint about the agent at the gate. Only after all three had exited the plane and the agent watched Watson delete the tweet were they allowed back on the plane. The agent apparently told him that his tweet constituted a security threat.

Watson, an A-List Southwest Member, is allowed to board flights early. But apparently, the gate agent refused to allow his children to board early with him.

"I am not trying to game the system," Watson told ABC News. "I'm not going to leave my kids alone to board. That doesn't make sense."

The agent then allegedly told Watson that he and his children would have to wait until the rest of the A-list members boarded before they could walk onto the plane.

"We waited, which was fine," Watson said. "I thought she was very rude and wanted to complain to customer service, so I asked her: 'Can I get your last name?'"

That's when he tweeted the supposed tweet in question. (Watson's Twitter has since been made private.)

"Something to the effect of, 'Wow, rudest agent in Denver. Kimberly S, gate C39, not happy @SWA,'" Watson told the CBS affiliate in Minneapolis.

After sending the tweet, Watson and his kids finally boarded the plane, where the ordeal apparently escalated: An announcement was made on the plane that Watson exit the aircraft. After leaving the plane with his daughters, he claims to have been approached again by the same gate agent.

"She [the agent] said I was a safety threat," Watson told ABC News. "I was shocked. There was no use of profanity, there were no threats made. How was I a safety threat?"

The gate agent allegedly threatened to call the police unless Watson deleted the tweet, and watched as Watson removed the offending tweet from his timeline and then ordered them back on the plane.

Southwest has apparently apologized to Watson for the incident. From WCCO:

Southwest Airlines sent a statement which confirmed that a customer was removed for a short time and continued on to Minneapolis. They also said the incident is under review.

In an email to Watson, Southwest apologized for the incident. Because of confidentiality concerns, they could not disclose any disciplinary actions taken.

Watson says he's not satisfied with their response. All three received $50 vouchers, but Watson says he won't fly Southwest Airlines again.


"I'm not going to fly them again," Watson told ABC News. "I wish I didn't back down, I wish I didn't delete the tweet. But under that quid pro quo situation, I did it."


This is the tweet in question (captured because the internet forgets nothing):

@SouthwestAir and then I get to the gate!!! C39!!! Rudest staff? Kimberly S.


Ironically he had tweeted positively about Southwest moments previously:

@SouthwestAir Who rocks at Denvor bag check for #alist? Cindy! Thanks for the help this afternoon! #bestcustomerservice

@SouthwestAir ...you guys rock! Tonya at #MDW Gate B1 is awesome! Thanks for the assist! #LUV


Yeah. Threatening to call the police and delaying the takeoff of the plane, potentially inconveniencing hundreds, was really warranted and in no way an overreaction...

/golfclap


This is a perfect example of why today's world is getting so scary. If his quote was correctly quoted, then someone had to read it, recognize it was about SouthWest, find out where he was, and notify the gate (C39 probably doesn't help much; many airports probably have a C39). My experience is that it is usually 30-40 minutes from beginning of boarding to departure, so they did all that in much less than that amount of time. Think of the mechanics: Who was watching? How were they able to make all those connections in, say, 15 minutes...and notify the gate?

You are being watched, and not by people who have any sense of proportion. People sensitive to the slightest criticism, because you can bet they didn't notify "Cindy" and "Tonya" about the positive comments.


He mentioned Denver in a previous tweet.


So that makes it all better now?

Someone was reading tweets, probably many thousands of tweets, selected his tweet because it was critical (do they have a computer that can identify "critical", or just thousands of readers?) of an airline (instant on-hand knowledge that @SWA=airline), commingled criticism with terrorisim (apparently, since mere criticism was regarded as enough to act on), analyzed it to determine where the tweeter was (even if, yes, that only involved digging into his previous non-critical tweet), obtained a phone number for the gate (requiring high level access to restricted phone numbers), called the gate (and how did they know he was still at that gate), and informed the agent (who regarded the caller as having authority enough to require her to listen at a busy time) about it. Perhaps ordered security action. Found this one solitary tweet among probaby tens or hundreds of thousands sent within the same five minute period and acted (all of the above) on it in approximately fifteen minutes.

Stop ignoring the broader concern.
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby CorruptUser » Thu Jul 24, 2014 7:37 pm UTC

So instead of a future with Friend Computer sending troubleshooters after mutant commie traitors, it's mutant Muslim terrorists?

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby speising » Thu Jul 24, 2014 7:39 pm UTC

i highly doubt that swa receives hundreds of thousands of tweets in any five minute period.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby bigglesworth » Thu Jul 24, 2014 7:39 pm UTC

To be honest, the most egregious part for me is where they got him to delete the tweet, then let him back onto the flight. It's one thing to misuse security protocols because you're corrupt as hell. It's another to completely disregard them. If he was a terrorism risk, then he was one regardless of if he deleted the tweet.
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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby KnightExemplar » Thu Jul 24, 2014 7:48 pm UTC

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby jareds » Thu Jul 24, 2014 8:33 pm UTC

Coyne wrote:So that makes it all better now?

Someone was reading tweets, probably many thousands of tweets, selected his tweet because it was critical (do they have a computer that can identify "critical", or just thousands of readers?) of an airline (instant on-hand knowledge that @SWA=airline), commingled criticism with terrorisim (apparently, since mere criticism was regarded as enough to act on), analyzed it to determine where the tweeter was (even if, yes, that only involved digging into his previous non-critical tweet), obtained a phone number for the gate (requiring high level access to restricted phone numbers), called the gate (and how did they know he was still at that gate), and informed the agent (who regarded the caller as having authority enough to require her to listen at a busy time) about it. Perhaps ordered security action. Found this one solitary tweet among probaby tens or hundreds of thousands sent within the same five minute period and acted (all of the above) on it in approximately fifteen minutes.

Stop ignoring the broader concern.

I don't think you understand what it means to tweet @someone. It means that the tweet is directed to the attention of "@someone". In this case, @SouthWestAir is the company's official account, presumably used by multiple employees in customer service and marketing. This is like complaining that SouthWest reacted to an email sent to customerservice@southwestair.com within 15 minutes. The reaction was totally inappropriate, but there is no broader concern that they were somehow able to notice that someone sent them a message and react to it within 15 minutes.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby PeteP » Thu Jul 24, 2014 8:35 pm UTC

Coyne wrote:
So that makes it all better now?

Someone was reading tweets, probably many thousands of tweets, selected his tweet because it was critical (do they have a computer that can identify "critical", or just thousands of readers?) of an airline (instant on-hand knowledge that @SWA=airline), commingled criticism with terrorisim (apparently, since mere criticism was regarded as enough to act on), analyzed it to determine where the tweeter was (even if, yes, that only involved digging into his previous non-critical tweet), obtained a phone number for the gate (requiring high level access to restricted phone numbers), called the gate (and how did they know he was still at that gate), and informed the agent (who regarded the caller as having authority enough to require her to listen at a busy time) about it. Perhaps ordered security action. Found this one solitary tweet among probaby tens or hundreds of thousands sent within the same five minute period and acted (all of the above) on it in approximately fifteen minutes.

Stop ignoring the broader concern.

You are making a ton of assumptions about the whole thing. First why are you assuming that some outside tweet watcher informed them of this tweet instead of someone from @SouthwestAir keeping an eye on tweets about them (which isn't very hard even if you watch @swa and @SouthwestAir since there aren't that many tweets with the tag)? (Btw elasto quoted the actual tweet which uses @SouthwestAir making it even easier.) The rest of the things you say are all based on this "outsider watching over the tweets" assumption so why exactly are you so sure of it?
Not that it would be particularly surprising if tweets about airlines were watched but what exactly makes you assume it was the case here? (And it wouldn't be very hard if most of them have a similar tweet count as the @SouthwestAir tag. Before this article it got a couple tweets a day - add some filtering and it would be easy to check the tweets for many airlines as they come in. Though the biggest airlines have probably more tweets per day. )
Last edited by PeteP on Thu Jul 24, 2014 8:40 pm UTC, edited 1 time in total.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Tyndmyr » Thu Jul 24, 2014 8:39 pm UTC

Yeah, I just sort of assume that the airlines, like any other big businesses, monitor appropriate tags, whatever those are, for information they deem important.

I don't really have an issue with them noticing the complaint. The reaction, however, does seem ridiculous.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Adacore » Thu Jul 24, 2014 11:25 pm UTC

I can see two likely scenarios here, really.

First: Some PR people at Southwest were watching the @SouthwestAir (which I'd assume they would be), and saw the tweet. It was flagged as 'critical', which probably means it's passed to someone to follow up to try and reduce the damage to the company. In most cases, that means addressing the complaint and offering platitudes to the customer, but it's feasible that someone thought the best idea was to try to suppress it instead.

Second: Someone working for Southwest at Denver airport - either 'Kimberly S' or someone who knew her (which is probably pretty much everyone they employ at the airport, I doubt their staff is that big, and most companies have some communal events and stuff) - was following @SouthwestAir, since it's their employer. They saw the negative comment and either decided to be vindictive and 'punish' the guy by pulling his clearance for the flight, or tried to coerce him to hide the complaint so that the PR people from the first scenario didn't see it and penalize the cited staff member. Given, as PeteP says, they only receive a couple of tweets a day, they probably don't have someone watching the account fulltime, so an employee could reasonably think that if they saw the tweet within 10-20 minutes, they could get it removed before anyone important at the company saw it and came after the check-in agent for her poor service.

It seems really unlikely that this was a terror concern, more just someone at Southwest trying to cover their ass by suppressing criticism and having that backfire spectacularly.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby Djehutynakht » Fri Jul 25, 2014 1:45 am UTC

Creepy porcelain look-alike dolls showing up on doorsteps of young girls they resemble.

Police are investigating a strange case in a California community, where porcelain dolls are being left on the doorsteps of girls they hold an eerie resemblance to.

At least eight families have received the dolls in the Talega community of San Clemente, with all of the girls targeted around 10 years old.

Families began filing police reports about the dolls as early as June 16, but the mystery of their origin continues.



This is either some kindhearted and touching anonymous gesture that just happens to come off as slightly creepy or something straight out of a horror movie.

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Re: In other news... (humorous news items, etc)

Postby johnny_7713 » Fri Jul 25, 2014 7:32 am UTC

Adacore wrote:I can see two likely scenarios here, really.

First: Some PR people at Southwest were watching the @SouthwestAir (which I'd assume they would be), and saw the tweet. It was flagged as 'critical', which probably means it's passed to someone to follow up to try and reduce the damage to the company. In most cases, that means addressing the complaint and offering platitudes to the customer, but it's feasible that someone thought the best idea was to try to suppress it instead.

Second: Someone working for Southwest at Denver airport - either 'Kimberly S' or someone who knew her (which is probably pretty much everyone they employ at the airport, I doubt their staff is that big, and most companies have some communal events and stuff) - was following @SouthwestAir, since it's their employer. They saw the negative comment and either decided to be vindictive and 'punish' the guy by pulling his clearance for the flight, or tried to coerce him to hide the complaint so that the PR people from the first scenario didn't see it and penalize the cited staff member. Given, as PeteP says, they only receive a couple of tweets a day, they probably don't have someone watching the account fulltime, so an employee could reasonably think that if they saw the tweet within 10-20 minutes, they could get it removed before anyone important at the company saw it and came after the check-in agent for her poor service.

It seems really unlikely that this was a terror concern, more just someone at Southwest trying to cover their ass by suppressing criticism and having that backfire spectacularly.


Third possible scenario: He loudly announced to the gate agent and/or people on the plane that he would be tweeting (or had tweeted) about this. Gate agent heard that, checked twitter, and decided to abuse powers.


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