A man from Minnesota and his two sons were asked to leave their plane last Sunday after a critical tweet about rude gate agents.
Mr. Duff Watson was flying from Denver to Minneapolis on Sunday with his sons ages 6 and 9. As a frequent flyer privilege holder he tried to board early together with his sons despite them not having the same privileges. The gate agent following the rules told him, that if he wanted to board together with his kids, he would have to wait. Watson replied that he had previously boarded planes early with them that way and sent out a tweet that read: “RUDEST AGENT IN DENVER. KIMBERLY S. GATE C39. NOT HAPPY @SWA.”
After they boarded the plane they were asked to exit the airplane again via an announcement. When they arrived at the gate, they were told that they weren’t allowed back on the plane and the police would be called unless he deleted his tweet again. Watson agreed to delete the tweet and was allowed back on the plane and was able to return home with his family.
Duff Watson told the TV Broadcaster KARE in Minneapolis on Wednesday: “We get bounced off the plane, and it turns into a completely different situation and escalated for reasons that are quite honestly silly.”
Southwest Airlines has offered a statement that a customer was briefly removed from the flight and that they as an airline have no intention to stifle customer feedback on social media. They have also offered the customers vouchers as a gesture of good will and stated: “Our decision was not based solely on a customer’s tweet.”
This just goes to show that the old phrase ”If you don’t have anything nice to say, don’t say anything at all” still is valid. Or wait until you’re at home. However it is to keep in mind, that in situations like this both sides were probably at equal fault, it could however have been resolved in a different way right away.
Thank you Reuters for providing us with this information.
Image courtesy of Southwest Airlines.