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(NPR)   SCOTUS to decide if airlines can kick people out of their frequent flying programs for complaining too much. Difficulty: the plaintiff is a douche bag   (npr.org) divider line 61
    More: Interesting, U.S. Supreme Court, Supreme Court, plaintiffs, Measuring instrument, airlines  
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7440 clicks; posted to Main » on 03 Dec 2013 at 1:45 PM (41 weeks ago)   |  Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



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2013-12-03 12:49:04 PM
I'm of the opinion that legally there should be a precedent for no takesies backsies.
 
2013-12-03 01:33:15 PM
"I did exactly what they asked you to do," Ginsberg said in an interview with NPR. "If you have a negative experience, they want you to give them feedback."

Not really. It's just something they say. Also, the cashier at the store doesn't really care whether you have a nice day or not.
 
2013-12-03 01:48:25 PM
Injun givers.
 
2013-12-03 01:48:33 PM
They should have the right to refuse service to anyone.
They do it every day.
What's the issue?
 
2013-12-03 01:49:55 PM
Subby sounds like he works for a major airline.
 
2013-12-03 01:51:14 PM
Your wife can ask for constructive critizism but eventually she will also ask for a divorce.
 
2013-12-03 01:52:35 PM
2.bp.blogspot.com

Sure Delta sucks.  But the free market will correct that, right?  Right?
 
2013-12-03 01:54:02 PM
FTFA:  Delta kicked Harrell out because he always travels with his cello and pays for a separate seat for the large and very valuable instrument.  Delta didn't like that, telling Harrell he was violating the rules. Not only was the cello chucked out of the program, so was the human Harrell. His miles were also confiscated, and he was barred from ever enrolling in any Delta Sky Miles program in the future. [emphasis mine]

How is he a douchebag, now?

Also, old Jews kvetch alot
 
2013-12-03 01:54:25 PM
When you sign up for membership, it is an invoiced transaction (contract) - but oh yea, its the yanks, aka corporate asslickers, so no need for them to live up to it.
 
2013-12-03 01:54:45 PM
This rabbi's not doing much to counter stereotypes of his people.

According to Northwest, he called the frequent-flier program 24 times within seven months to register what the airline viewed as complaints.
static1.wikia.nocookie.net
And trying to get money out of it and suing doesn't help.
 
2013-12-03 01:56:15 PM
All frequent fliers are douche bags.
 
2013-12-03 01:56:40 PM
the plaintiff is a Democrat.
 
2013-12-03 01:57:10 PM

Mad Scientist: Sure Delta sucks. But the free market will correct that, right? Right?


American and US Air are in the merger process now to create the worst airline EVAR.
 
2013-12-03 01:57:46 PM
Seems kinda obvious -- Airlines have the right to be horrible corporate citizens and run their marketing gimmicks whichever way they want, consumers have the right to sue an airline when it plays fast-and-loose with a contract, consumers have the right to choose which crappy airline they want to patronize.
 
2013-12-03 01:59:11 PM
Dear Supreme Court,

These frequent flier programs owe the consumer $8 trillion in unpaid mileage. Think very carefully before giving the SOBs the right to take that away.

Very carefully.

It would be a shame if something were to get broken. That pediment looks mighty fragile. Those columns wouldn't hold up long against a 747. Lady Justice might not be so purty with her nose broken and her head stuffed in her rump.

With all due respect,

The passengers, their CFOs, and their lawyers

P.S. Then again, we'd also accept shutting down the frequent flier programs and distributing all the profits and assets of the companies to their creditors, starting with consumers, and ending with banks and the like.
 
2013-12-03 01:59:14 PM
I bet this guy complains to the manager every time he eats out in attempt to get free meals and never tips.
 
2013-12-03 02:00:05 PM
American Airlines has a history of canceling your miles when it becomes unprofitable for them. Do a Google for 'AAirpass' for more examples.

/Can't post links from my phone
 
2013-12-03 02:00:16 PM
Yeah, sorry, calling the head of the airline 25 times in six months is not "reasonable" no matter how good your lawyer is.
 
2013-12-03 02:01:15 PM

rocinante721: FTFA:  Delta kicked Harrell out because he always travels with his cello and pays for a separate seat for the large and very valuable instrument.  Delta didn't like that, telling Harrell he was violating the rules. Not only was the cello chucked out of the program, so was the human Harrell. His miles were also confiscated, and he was barred from ever enrolling in any Delta Sky Miles program in the future. [emphasis mine]

How is he a douchebag, now?

Also, old Jews kvetch alot


Read further - I think Subby means the Rabbi is the douchebag.
 
2013-12-03 02:01:50 PM
Simple. Give the guy his miles back on Northwest, but he's banned from Delta's program.
 
2013-12-03 02:01:56 PM
I don't understand why the guy with the cello got booted. The airline got their money, and didn't have to deal with a human? Sounds like a win for the airline.

As for the other guy that Northwest cut, according to TFA, he flies a shiatload of miles...if the airline is booting someone that spends that much money, he must be a royal ass-pain, and he should be ashamed of himself.
 
2013-12-03 02:08:29 PM
So let's just remember this the next time airlines come to the taxpayer for a bailout.
 
2013-12-03 02:10:55 PM
On the one hand, sounds like a belly-achin' old guy who's a serial complainer.

On the other hand, this is Northwest Airlines, who are awful even for an American domestic carrier.
Also on that other hand, we don't need to be giving behemoth corporations carte blanche to renege on consumers' valuable reward accumulations, even when they call out said corporations for shenanigans.

Winner: kvetchy old dude, by judges' decision (I hope).
 
2013-12-03 02:11:07 PM
www.reelingreviews.com

WAKE UP! YOU'RE WASTING YOUR WHOLE LIFE WITH THIS KIND OF CRAP!
 
2013-12-03 02:12:07 PM
Why'd he get a separate account for his cello? He should just get double credit for occupying two seats, like a fat guy.
 
2013-12-03 02:15:37 PM

Gyrfalcon: Yeah, sorry, calling the head of the airline 25 times in six months is not "reasonable" no matter how good your lawyer is.


It's reasonable if you got shiatty service 25 times in six months, which is an entirely feasible scenario if you fly a lot - a frequent flyer, you might say. And this guy apparently did fly a whole lot.
 
2013-12-03 02:17:35 PM

Uranus Is Huge!: Why'd he get a separate account for his cello? He should just get double credit for occupying two seats, like a fat guy.


Probably because you can't get double miles for buying two tickets for a single passenger... so he started out gaming the system (which actually seems fair to me: he bought two tickets, let him earn the miles), but that's probably what the airline claims was a violation of the rules. Not human - no miles for you.
 
2013-12-03 02:18:01 PM

Inchoate: On the one hand, sounds like a belly-achin' old guy who's a serial complainer.


I stopped listening to the story right there. He sounds just like my wife's cousin, who thinks badgering and complaining until he get's something (room upgrade, free meal, discount) makes him a shrewd businessman. It makes him a big ol' douche-bag who gets what he wants because people want him to shut up and go away. Unfortunately, caving like that only reinforces the behavior. I say, "Go, Delta!"
 
2013-12-03 02:18:25 PM

oh_please: I don't understand why the guy with the cello got booted. The airline got their money, and didn't have to deal with a human? Sounds like a win for the airline.


Stewardesses got tired of his always showing his wood.
 
2013-12-03 02:18:50 PM

illannoyin: American Airlines has a history of canceling your miles when it becomes unprofitable for them. Do a Google for 'AAirpass' for more examples.

/Can't post links from my phone


That has nothing to do with cancelling miles. People bought an all you can fly pass for a million $ or what have you, years later, American offered people a full refund to give the pass up, some people chose not to take that offer and instead violated the rules by selling or giving people flights in order to accrue miles.

Airlines are douche bags, the general population are bigger douche bags.
 
2013-12-03 02:24:39 PM
SCOTUS to decide if airlines can kick people out of their frequent flying programs for complaining too much. Difficulty: the plaintiff is a douche bag

Oh great, ANOTHER bag charge.
 
2013-12-03 02:25:03 PM

GBmanNC: Airlines are douche bags, the general population are bigger douche bags.


Airlines (and large corporations in general) have squadrons of lawyers, PR flacks, and other suits to white-knight them when this stuff happens. They don't need our assistance.

Individual citizens don't have these resources. That's why I prefer to err in their favor unless available data strongly indicate otherwise.
 
2013-12-03 02:25:44 PM

carrion_luggage: SCOTUS to decide if airlines can kick people out of their frequent flying programs for complaining too much. Difficulty: the plaintiff is a douche bag

Oh great, ANOTHER bag charge.


Extra credit for username synergy.
 
2013-12-03 02:29:26 PM
Did anyone check the TOA?
 
2013-12-03 02:29:50 PM
i wonder if he would have been happier if they never lost his luggage and left on time everytime, but they crashed and he was killed?
 
2013-12-03 02:39:14 PM

wheatpennyandaglock: i wonder if he would have been happier if they never lost his luggage and left on time everytime, but they crashed and he was killed?


Sure, because those are the only two options.
 
2013-12-03 02:40:00 PM
...really?

"you will force me to sue!"

/facepalm
 
2013-12-03 02:40:55 PM

Madcaplaff: All frequent fliers are douche bags.


Sure, now get back to the gate podium and start boarding, ya putz.
 
2013-12-03 02:45:32 PM

SonOfSpam: Gyrfalcon: Yeah, sorry, calling the head of the airline 25 times in six months is not "reasonable" no matter how good your lawyer is.

It's reasonable if you got shiatty service 25 times in six months, which is an entirely feasible scenario if you fly a lot - a frequent flyer, you might say. And this guy apparently did fly a whole lot.


I fly twice a week almost every week. I have missed flights, gotten stranded on tarmacs and (twice) been denied boarding cause vodak.

If the airline I use had screwed up 15 times in 6 months, much less 25,  I'da switched long ago. Something else is up.
 
2013-12-03 02:59:00 PM

Gyrfalcon: Yeah, sorry, calling the head of the airline 25 times in six months is not "reasonable" no matter how good your lawyer is.



Agreed, to a point.  While there is little doubt that this guy is a whiny, high maintenance pain in the rear, the airline's action to retroactively take away his miles is even less reasonable.

If delta wants to kick him out of the program for whatever reason, that is one thing, but it seems to be a pretty clear breach of the agreement for them to snatch up his previously earned points, just because he "abused" the system.  And frankly, as most of you who have flown them would agree, only 24 complaints against NW over the course of a few months does sound within the realm of reason
 
2013-12-03 02:59:48 PM
IANAE but I'm pretty sure their rules forbid his cello account, which is reasonable for 99%+ of their customers. I'm not feeling a lot of sympathy here.

Protip: All large corporations are d-bags. They have to be, to a point, to be profitable.
 
2013-12-03 03:05:28 PM

dwlf: only 24 complaints against NW over the course of a few months does sound within the realm of reason


you need another airline, seriously...that's ridiculously unreasonable.
 
2013-12-03 03:07:56 PM

Pinner: They should have the right to refuse service to anyone.
They do it every day.
What's the issue?


Its not that they are refusing a service to these people. They can still fly, its that they are refusing to honor these individuals coupons because of past disputes.  The legality is certainly undecided at this point, if it was clear it wouldn't have made it to SCOTUS.
 
2013-12-03 03:19:35 PM

Madbassist1: dwlf: only 24 complaints against NW over the course of a few months does sound within the realm of reason

you need another airline, seriously...that's ridiculously unreasonable.


There are many reasons they no longer exist.  And sadly, for a while, they had the market cornered in Minneapolis...Even sadderer, is that they merged with delta, to create the world's largest airline run by employees who get treated like crap and then take it out on the customer
 
2013-12-03 03:20:32 PM

MindStalker: Pinner: They should have the right to refuse service to anyone.
They do it every day.
What's the issue?

Its not that they are refusing a service to these people. They can still fly, its that they are refusing to honor these individuals coupons because of past disputes.  The legality is certainly undecided at this point, if it was clear it wouldn't have made it to SCOTUS.


I'm sure there's some fine print that says something like that. The thing is, if the guy is a huge customer, why is the airline ditching him?

I think we all know why.
 
2013-12-03 04:27:05 PM
He says he never asked for anything when registering his complaints. The airline contends he "repeatedly asked for compensation."

Whether asked for or not, the airline tried to soothe the unhappy flier. In 2007, Ginsberg was awarded nearly $2,000 worth of travel vouchers, 78,000 in bonus miles, and $491 in cash for a lost bag.


this is why you "never feed a cat".
 
2013-12-03 04:27:10 PM
No soup for you!
 
2013-12-03 04:30:22 PM
I don't get why Delta and other airlines are against letting luggage accrue miles. Encouraging people to buy a plane seat for luggage seems like a huge payday. Heck, with the right promotion they could probably entice photography fanatics to buy a seat for their equipment rather than put it in the overhead. Or maybe design extra narrow seats for luggage.

As for the Rabbi, the guy sounds like a dick, but confiscating FF miles which are worth a lot of money seems unbelievably harsh to the point that I wouldn't want to fly Northwest -- I wouldn't want to fly on an airline that I'm not allowed to complain to about the service.
 
2013-12-03 04:43:42 PM
Bothers me not, I have lifetime bennies for 2 major airlines, but the hardest part is "security". What a load of B.S.
Yes, I've taken day trips to California and back, likewise for shopping in Phoenix, but I'm getting old for that there and back the same day experience thing.
 
2013-12-03 04:47:14 PM
This is why corporate mergers should be banned.  Consumers need more competition not Less.  Any corporate merger should be a violation of anti-trust law.
 
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