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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
    More: Interesting, U.S. Supreme Court, Supreme Court, plaintiffs, Measuring instrument, airlines  
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7459 clicks; posted to Main » on 03 Dec 2013 at 1:45 PM (2 years ago)   |   Favorite    |   share:  Share on Twitter share via Email Share on Facebook   more»



Voting Results (Smartest)
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2013-12-03 10:18:17 PM  
2 votes:
I don't care if the guy is the biggest douchebag in the world, that's not justification to "confiscate" (steal) frequent flier miles from him.

As for the cello guy, it was a stupid decision by the business, even if it was technically against the TOS.  You can't argue it was unprofitable to allow it, because the cello was an extremely lightweight person with no luggage as far as the airline was concerned.  Two customers is better than zero.
2013-12-03 02:25:03 PM  
2 votes:

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 02:18:01 PM  
2 votes:

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 02:15:37 PM  
2 votes:

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 01:59:11 PM  
2 votes:
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 01:54:02 PM  
2 votes:
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 01:49:55 PM  
2 votes:
Subby sounds like he works for a major airline.
2013-12-03 05:11:46 PM  
1 vote:

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


I did some googling, that was enlightening.

Quick summation for people:  Sometime in 1981, American Airlines began selling the "AAirpass", a super-deluxe golden ticket.  For a $250,000 (in 1981 dollars) you got unlimited lifetime first class airfare, and you could spend another $150,000 to get a lifetime companion ticket too.

The price went up in the late 80's, and was eventually cost a million dollars by 1993 when the program was terminated.  However, people still had their lifetime unlimited first class airfare.

Some people used it constantly.  Flying back and forth to London several times a week.  Commuting cross-country regularly.  One guy was a Good Samaritan with his and used it to fly home stranded passengers and did other good deeds with his companion ticket.

Well, lawsuits are flying because American Airlines has been trying to get rid of the people with these special unlimited deals for years. And AA has been revoking a number of them alleging "fraud", and there are lawsuits out about this from people who say they were just getting full use out of their contract with American Airlines.

http://nypost.com/2012/05/13/freequent-flier-has-wings-clipped-after -a merican-airlines-takes-away-his-unlimited-pass/

http://business.time.com/2012/05/08/the-250000-airline-pass-that-was -w orth-every-penny/
2013-12-03 04:30:22 PM  
1 vote:
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 02:45:32 PM  
1 vote:

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 02:39:14 PM  
1 vote:

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 02:11:07 PM  
1 vote:
www.reelingreviews.com

WAKE UP! YOU'RE WASTING YOUR WHOLE LIFE WITH THIS KIND OF CRAP!
2013-12-03 02:10:55 PM  
1 vote:
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 02:08:29 PM  
1 vote:
So let's just remember this the next time airlines come to the taxpayer for a bailout.
2013-12-03 02:01:56 PM  
1 vote:
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 02:00:16 PM  
1 vote:
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 01:59:14 PM  
1 vote:
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 01:51:14 PM  
1 vote:
Your wife can ask for constructive critizism but eventually she will also ask for a divorce.
2013-12-03 01:33:15 PM  
1 vote:
"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 12:49:04 PM  
1 vote:
I'm of the opinion that legally there should be a precedent for no takesies backsies.
 
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