An Apology (And Decision On Moderating Comments)…

On Friday I shared the first part of the story of my plane side bag being misplaced. While it blows my mind that a plane side bag on a nonstop flight can be misplaced, I get that stuff like this happens if you fly enough.

To add insult to injury, I dealt with an exceedingly unhelpful supervisor. But what really pissed me off was when she accused me of taking a picture of her, which I didn’t do. When I denied it, she told me she could call law enforcement, and when I asked her to look at my camera roll, she walked away. There’s something really crappy about not only dealing with an unhelpful supervisor, but then having her accuse you of something without merit, and then threatening you further after you deny it.

Why I included the agent’s first name

When I posted the story, I shared the agent’s first name. Some people said it was unnecessary. Some people said it was racist.

I guess I didn’t put enough thought into it. Generally speaking I post as many first names of the people I interact with as possible. If you look at my trip reports, you’ll see that most of the time I include the names of the people I interact with onboard, in hotels, etc. To me posting a first name isn’t usually identifying.

So as is the norm when I write travel stories, I decided to post her first name. I didn’t think it would be identifying. I actually had her full name and Googled it before I made the post, and I couldn’t even find her online. So I figured posting her first name wouldn’t make her identifiable — it’s different than posting someone’s full name, picture, or employee number.

I don’t generally moderate comments

As a general rule of thumb I don’t moderate comments. I’ve permanently banned one commenter from the blog, and that’s because I literally received dozens upon dozens of requests for it because of how distracting he was.

I’m not trying to get off on a technicality here, but for me moderating comments is a very slippery slope. What’s that “line” that shouldn’t be crossed? Should calling someone an idiot be moderated? What about calling them a pig? Or a different slur?

Everyone has to make that decision on their own. I’ve been blogging for nearly seven years, and my general thought is that what an anonymous person says on the internet reflects their character more than it reflects that of the person they’re speaking about.

So that’s why I don’t generally moderate negative comments when they’re directed at me. I can take it — I have plenty of experience. But it’s different when they’re directed at someone else.

Some internet comments make me lose faith in humanity

The internet is an amazing place in many ways. I can’t imagine my life without it, because I’ve been able to pursue my passion full time thanks to it.

But if you go to the comments section of any major news story today, you can’t help but shake your head.

I appreciate that this blog is a community of sorts, and that the comments are consistently insightful. Then there’s some “noise” from people that love hiding behind the veil of internet anonymity, but they’re not the core of the community, the way I see it. I can spend my efforts trying to censor them, or we can all just accept that there are ridiculous people in the world and put our efforts towards being positive and constructive.

What I decided to do… and why

The comments in that previous post did cross the line. Someone managed to find the agent’s full name and picture based on her first name. Some called her names that made me shake my head. But just because I let a comment stand doesn’t mean I agree with it. After all, on this blog I get called a useless, entitled prick that has (apparently) never had a job on a daily basis. And you don’t see me deleting that. šŸ˜‰

So while I let the comments calling me a prick stand, in this case I did delete some of the comments that crossed the line in what they called the agent, by my view.

In hindsight, I shouldn’t have posted the agent’s first name either. If her name were “Sue” or “Mary” I guess it wouldn’t have been a big deal. But people made assumptions based on her name and perceived race. And equally bad on the other side, people made the assumption that my posting her name was racially charged, which wasn’t the case.

Like I said, it’s all a very slippery slope. Just because I deleted some comments doesn’t mean I condone all the comments that are still there. But I feel like I deleted the ones that most crossed the line.

This isn’t something I want to make a habit of. There are internet trolls, and I’m fine with that. But when people are trolling someone else rather than me, and when they’re doing so based on the name I posted, then I think it makes sense for me to take action.

Bottom line

I had intended to post part two earlier, but first wanted to put some thought into how to handle this situation. I know the solution isn’t perfect, though hopefully most of you at least get where I’m coming from. I regret posting the name of the agent, as I should have anticipated the potential outcome.

I won’t make a habit of moderating comments in the future, as I’d like you guys to be able to post whatever you’d like, whether I agree with it or not. That being said, I’ll try to be more proactive in making sure my posts in the future aren’t (inadvertently) written in a way that gives “ammo” to those looking to make slurs.

On a more positive note, happy weekend and happy holidays to everyone! This should be a jolly time, no? šŸ˜‰

Comments

  1. That’s a crazy fallout from a simple name. I honestly didn’t think twice of it — when I pictured your story I pictured an ordinary woman, of no particular race, just of a particular (mean) attitude. I’m of a minority race, myself, and I detected no hint of racism in your original post.

  2. After not getting the rest of the story quickly after the first post, I assumed you were going down these lines…

  3. Personally, I don’t see anything you did wrong. You simply told a story as it happened. Don’t worry about anyone who wants to interpret your thoughts. You’re a class act…Merry Christmas

  4. Frankly Ben I think that you do an excellent job with the majority of your writing. That you recognized this agent by her first name is in keeping of what you would normally do. The sad fact is that this was a negative occasion. To have withheld her name could be construed a disservice. Should one of your readers just happen upon her then they would have an inkling as to how she may well treat them. Forewarned is forearmed.
    I agree that trolls and the anonymity afforded them can be quite unpleasant and although we would like to think that all comments should be left well alone, the reality is that this occasion warranted the removal of such vitriol.
    It all comes down to it being your blog and we should all respect what content you feel should be associated within it.

  5. I didn’t think anything of it while reading your story. I don’t care if your name is “P”, Mary or Sue, being rude and unprofessional is rude and professional.

  6. Another note in support – good story, resonated as a familiar experience for many of us, and you presented it fairly. You’re recognition of the slippery slope of moderation is wise, but you (we) can’t pretend there aren’t sad people trolling for pathetic attention.

  7. I think it was appropriate to post the first name. I have interacted with her before at LAX. While I can’t remember the reason, it was not a negative interaction, but I do remember her demeanor and I do remember who she is.

  8. If this were in China and the agents name was “Li” or “Ting” that would also be “racist” according to the race hustlers and political correctness police. After all you would be assuming her race with nothing more than a first name.Haters are going to hate. Statists are going to state.

    I was the one who posted a link to her name in photo from an american airlines press release after doing a google search on her first name employer and city location. I am sorry for posting her last name and link to her photo.

  9. Ben, I could read but 2/3 of this current post before I became ill. By The Numbers, here’s how I perceived the original post – (and I found Nothing wrong with it):
    1. You and your current flight companions had a perfectly legitimate gripe, recognized that the outcome made No Sense and very properly communicated with the supervisor.
    2. So help me, the supervisor’s given name, as used in your post was assumed to be a slightly humorous, slightly sarcastic name, one applied by you and in an effort to preserve that NASTY woman’s privacy. (How someone could actually be given that name, was and remains beyond my understanding.)
    3. If the details of the encounter are *anything close* to how you reported them, said Supervisor is in need of some major Remedial Training – or dismissal. Her behavior was horrible.
    4. It does not require a degree in Rocket Science to guess this supervisor’s ethnic origins, and I DO NOT CARE. (If she wishes to work in – and supervise in – our society’s workplace, SHE needs to improve her communications skills and attitude – a lot.
    5. After re-reading the original post, I remain convinced that you and your passenger colleagues made few or no significant errors. (The attempt to toss a little weight around my mentioning you “Platinum” status may be over the edge. Simply offering your card, as a means of identification and to give the woman the details necessary to investigate, may have been a better choice.)
    6. As much as you travel, I’m sure that you have encountered a few of her ‘type,’ over the years. As a Big Boy, you should know better than to progress with an encounter that is already out of control. A far better course is to take (full) names and ID numbers, collect names and contact points of the other affected PAX and makes notes. Later, Only Later, write a letter to senior management. If the situation truly warrants it, word your letter in a way that would blister paint on a battle tank at 100 yards, but remain polite.
    7. Yes, said airline #ucked up, on the ramp and especially upon arrival. Never argue with “Special,” ’cause she has the keys and you cannot win.
    8. To repeat, I DO NOT believe that you and your colleagues were out of order. I would also suggest that you DO NOT need to make any modifications to your blog or your policy about dealing with offensive comments. (Yes, I’m aware of the personal attacks from the past and I welcomed your decision to ban that writer(*).
    9. Please, Ben, keep on writing about whatever you wish to write about, and yes, call the shots as YOU see them. Since the unpleasantness associated with item #8, I have noticed that your reports are now, nearly all written in the singular voice. I think that is unfortunate. Travel and exploring new, interesting parts of our world is something to be shared with others. When has the means (or the Points/Miles!!) to share some of the experience with others, *of course,* please continue to do so. To my reading eye, using the plural form, ‘we,’ just suggests more fun. As you have noted from countless prior comments from countless other regular readers, No One Really Cares with whom you travel. My interest is that you continue reporting, push fewer credit cards, share more of a given trips details that were Important to You, and Hell Yes, travel with a friend whenever possible, gender not required. (Must I spell it out? Last I heard, most mature adults are perfectly able sleep well while sharing a large bed and do so without any snickers.) “We,” sounds like a lot more fun and I do not care!.
    10. To be complete, I do NOT believe that your blog’s policy on comments, use if given (first) names, or more than basic filtering is necessary. In other words, please keep on ‘keeping on.’ (OK, there is always room to improve the writing. That comes with time, experience, patience and personal notes about use of words and phrases annoy you when reading other blogs.) Your writing is generally great and ‘yesser,’ a darn sight better than it was ~five years ago.

    Your thoughts on all of the above may differ, Ben. Last I heard, this was YOUR blog, all rights included. To hold my reading interest you need only write what you experience, be truthful and try to be objective. (And if possible. limit the credit card pitches to <<25%. ) Otherwise, I see no reason for any significant changes. Best regards, young fellow,
    -C.

  10. I don’t think you did anything wrong. I don’t particularly agree with the increasingly dominant form of color blindness that exists in U.S. society. In the end it minimizes the minorities struggles and life experiences. It’s like going to a family dinner where one of the members is gay and the no one talks about it or acknowledges it because they are in denial. You can’t really win trying to open that door though…

  11. That must have taken quite a bit of effort to find the full name and picture of the supervisor, because I wasn’t under the impression it was all that uncommon a first name. So, to add my two cents, I don’t think there was anything wrong with your post. I certain hope your virtual slap puts the crazies back in their hole.

  12. People, especially in front line customer service positions need to be called out (as do customers) when are acting like assholes in public. Unfortunately, public shaming is the only thing that seems to work these days… See Korean Air šŸ˜‰

    If I ever run in to her, I going to run up and ask “Do I need to call Law Enforcement?” then start laughing hysterically as I walk away.

    Nothing racist about your reporting, as Tocqueville says, it’s all just static from the “PC” police. Saw your Fox News segment with Julie – Good job!

    Merry Christmas!

  13. Some of the comments were out of line. But they were not written by you, so no need to apologize.
    Looking forward to reading Part 2.

  14. I agree with those who say you shouldn’t feel personally responsible for the racist and sexist garbage that some people spewed all over the comments section of the previous post. You can’t help who reads your blog and comments on it. You probably weren’t aware that there is a terrifying and trollish section of the internet who thinks that they are somehow promoting justice by posting personal information about (usually) women all over the internet when an individual does something they don’t like.

  15. It still amazes me that plane side bags get lost – I’ve lost more than 5 in the last 5 years – but only 1 for more than 24 hours. The other thing that amazes me – your thick-skin in the face of comments. I couldn’t do it. Happy Holidays.

  16. Ben has apologized ; in fact he realized he needed to do so; but he has only done so for his readers.

    In fact he also needs to apologize/reach out to the AA/AE employee for allowing racist/hated comments on his blog about her. Deleting the comments does not go far enough. He did not do a thorough job of moderating comments. These racist/hated comments that he allowed and directed towards her have been read by hundreds of readers.

    And for allowing some lunkhead for publishing her full name.

    The fact remains that Ben’s original post is a one-sided account of an event. Only what Ben has written can be read and no response/rebuttal has been posted from the AA/AE employee.

    Ben..you have her name..Reach out to her and send her some flowers and a nice note ?

    Will you ??

  17. Well said about the Internet being an amazing place with sections that truly make you wonder about the future of the human race. I was raised on the belief that you should treat all people equally and with dignity & respect, and unfortunately, many online commenters feel that doesn’t apply to anonymous postings on websites.

    You did NOTHING wrong here. Keep up the great work!

  18. @Rich – Once Lucky realized it was getting out of hand he deleted the posts but I am not sure he needs to send her flowers because a small percentage of his reader are internet trolls. She was the cause of the entire post and was rude to Lucky during the entire interaction. Had she handled her self differently then this would be a non-story.

    If someone were to write something negative on Tripadvisor about me or one of my Front Desk Agent and uses their name I would not be waiting for them to send me flowers or an apology.

  19. A website is like a home. If comments are not moderated, home left unlooked after, eventually atomes start to get thrown, and the trash move in. You have been lucky over all with the quality of the commenters on this blog but there will always be a need to maintain a standard for acceptable posts.

  20. I think my Christmas gift to myself is a break from Lucky’s blog for the rest of this year. I just want to be entertained from Lucky’s travel and pick up a few pointers. Ya’all are too much……

  21. My suggestion: people follow your (and other) blog for travel deals and reviews. I suspect most have little or no interest in hearing about every time you don’t get your cup of peanuts filled up or a flight attendant doesn’t treat you like a king.

  22. @lucky. This is a very thoughtfull blog entry from you. Interstingly enough myself and my friends who read your entry (we are all white not that i dont have black friends) asked each other aftercreading this if any one of us remembered the name of the agent from your previous post. None of us did. I think , people who brought the argument that you put the name into the blog to point out the color of the agent , well those people are actually racist. It is like if you smelled it you dealt it.
    Have a wonderful Christmas or Hanukkah or a non denomination Holiday and a Very Happy New Year!!!!

  23. @Front Office – Respect your opinion/arguments but I don’t see it as a “Internet Trolls” or as a “Who is Right/Wrong” issue.

    Actually don’t even see a need to place blame/find fault on either Ben or the AA/AE employee as it pertains to the original post.

    I do believe that in the interest of “Customer Service” the AA/AE employee could have handled the situation better. And on Ben’s part; he inflamed the situation more by pulling a “DYKWIA” (Executive Platinum comment). Which caused her to put her “Shields Up” attitude.

    In fact, Ben has gone back to his initial post on the subject and deleted all instances of her First Name and replaced it with “P”.

    And he has deleted all posts by readers that he has deemed offensive to the AA/AE employee.

    Ben believes; rightly so by his apology ; that by allowing the publishing of her name and personal attacks of her on his blog he will not tolerate this. And more so, he agrees that the event that occurred at LAX did not warrant the personal attacks to her on his blog.

    Regardless, he miscued by publishing enough information for others to obtain her full name; allowing his reader to post the information to his blog; and for the posting of hated comments.

    Ben is responsible for any/all information published on his blog. In fact he does and has the ability to moderate this same information.

    Point is she didn’t do anything to allow/warrant the nasty comments that Ben allowed to be published on his blog.

    Ben..you have her name..Reach out to her and send her some flowers and a nice note ?

    Will you ??

  24. i love your self-awareness and reflection here. You’ve got a wonderful set of values which clearly guide your actions; regardless of what people say, your actions are in congruence with your true self. I really admire that about you. I am really impressed.

  25. There was nothing wrong with initial post. There was nothing wrong with using the supervisor’s first name. As someone said in an earlier post, there is a reason why those in the service sector wear name tags.

    However, I must admit that I cringed when I read the supervisor’s first name, as I knew what would be coming in the comments section. Frankly, I thought there would be more vitriolic, racist comments. I applaud Ben for applying a light hand in moderating the comments section but agree that some of the remarks needed to go.

    Another thing that made me cringe were all the apologists for the supervisor’s actions. She was incompetent. She needed to be called out. And I am so glad that Ben did so.

    Good work, Ben. Please keep it up.

  26. I agree that there is no need to apologize or censor information, neither because of the Internet trolls nor the Richs of the world who would censor everything they disagree with.

  27. Ben – you are the most polite blogger I have come across; your posts are consistently thoughtful without resorting to some of the more negative biases that can naturally come across when you are dealing with Customer Experience. I can only imagine how Gary View from the Wing would have written about a similar experience šŸ™‚

  28. Once again, you handled this situation well. You did nothing wrong, but other posters crossed the line and became offensive. I appreciate your blog and look forward to reading it. I do like the diversity of posts you have been doing lately. Your writing style is excellent and easy to understand. Many thanks. Appreciate all your work!!!!

  29. What I find most disturbing is that with her full name on her name tag she still behaved so rudely. A key reason for having one’s name displayed on a uniform is for accountability. A customer can mention the employee’s name to a supervisor in appreciation or relate a bad experience (such as Lucky’s) specifically related to an individual employee. Generally, companies want to know if one of their representatives is showing a bad face so that they can, perhaps, move them to a less public area of the company. Clearly, no one has chastised her for her attitude and behavior. Or maybe someone did and she barely got a slap on the wrist.

    As for Lucky’s handling of the situation, I think a tweet to AEagle first would have been wise. It should be assumed that someone will go google crazy and potentially find the woman’s name and picture, so an advance mention to her employers would have been fair.

    This blog is as much a sounding board as a travel blog for Lucky (part of what makes this blog stand out from the pack) and I don’t think mentioning her first name is problematic. After all, most (if not all) the customer service interactions he recounts always include the first name of the rep.

  30. I read comments on the original post and I’mm thankful you deleted the most spurious. I appreciate how you handle opinions of commenters on the blog. In the twoish years I’ve been reading your blog I do feel like there have been times you don’t name the person you’re talking about. I think you should have done that in this instance and hopefully will in the future, especially now that you know those who appear to be thoughtful and normal citizens of society by posting in your blog including this post ADMITTING IT. Makes you want to bang your head against a wall that people are so callous and freeely admit doing it like it’s no big deal.

  31. I think it’s absolutely unnecessary and ridiculous that you should apologize in this situation. It’s like you said, you always post the names of the people you have experiences with. This should be no exception and you would be doing your readers a disservice if you decided to omit the first names of the people you encounter. Since WHEN was saying someones first name racist!?! That is a completely ludicrous and unfounded notion that bears absolutely no reason. Like someone else said, it’s a reflection on the people that said she was black rather than yourself. If it had been John, Sarah, or Amanda, the racists couldn’t have even said anything because YOU never said Precious was black. How is that your fault and why on earth would you feel the need to apologize for stating someone’s first name? If I’m honest, I’m actually disappointed in this post because it is so illogical. I’ve never found myself going against you, Ben, but in this post I do.

  32. @ Michael — Respectfully I think there’s a difference between my cup of peanuts not being filled/a flight attendant not treating me like a king, and threatening to have the cops called one me for something I didn’t do.

  33. I applaud your choice, even if I don’t necessarily believe that you need to refrain from using a first name. You are consistent in using first names, and you are entitled to report on what you experience. You also are entitled to refrain from mentioning names as you choose–it’s your blog. The true problem is that there are bad people who have issues and who comment on blogs, yours included. You cannot solve that problem, no matter what you do. You can only remove those problem persons by deleting their problematic comments and precluding them making comments in the future–at your discretion.

    There was nothing wrong in reporting the FA’s first name. If people make any assumptions, that is THEIR issue–not yours, as long as you’ve been consistent in reporting first names in the past, as you have.

    Dealing with stupid and/or ignorant and/or rude/inappropriate persons is part of life. Enabling their behavior only serves to increase the bad behavior, so it is usually best to deal with it directly and confront the problem so that you don’t enable it again in the future. You’ve done it in the manner you deem appropriate, which is always the way it should be done. I just hope you understand that you did nothing wrong in the first place–no matter what a small minority of people tell you otherwise.

  34. You frequently, as you’ve said, post first names and just as frequently post about the good, the bad and the ugly of being on the road 24/7. It’s always interesting, always changing, always entertaining and always informative. That’s why we read, or at least why I read. In my “real” life.

    In my “real” life, I have to exercise a lot of judgment — that’s what I’m paid for — and one thing I’ve learned over the years is that you make the best decisions you can based on the information you have . . . and then you move on to the next problem. That’s what you should do here. Some folks aren’t happy and are never going to be happy, as you can see from some of the comments above.

    There are always going to be fans and haters and everything in between. I wouldn’t start spending half your time on the truly Sisyphean task of moderating comments. You’d never have time for your “real” business.

    I’m a fan.

  35. Of course we didn’t hear the other party’s side of the story but as it is their job to be public facing, I don’t see the big deal in publishing their name. The racist comments were quite inappropriate though.

  36. Well done! I think when someone poops in your living room, you should clean it up (by deleting comments, banning people and/or apologizing). That’s what you did and I applaud you! Having a blog doesn’t mean you should let anyone into your house that wants to come in. That’s brainless stupidity. More bloggers need to take back their blogs.

  37. Ben, as a non white person, who has met you in person, though I doubt you’d remember me in all of your conferences where you meet thousands of people, I don’t think find any racist about you or in you writing for the past 3 years i have been following you. Race-baiters will find racism in anything they want… and those who don’t travel and see the world’s diffrent races and cultures outside their little world usually are the more racist ones… You have more supporter of you here than detractors… i hope you keep up your good work and look forward to hour next blog.

  38. I have been reading you blog for months but never leave a comment before. I decide to leave one this time because I believe you DID the RIGHT thing, nothing to apologies. You handle this accident appropriately.

  39. Given the situation and your wonderfully quirky sense of humor, how could you not use her name? I literally lol’d at the mention of her name and thought nothing more of it!

  40. You’re a good man, Ben! I think that’s abundantly clear to anyone who is a regular on this blog. Keep up the good work.

  41. @Tocqueville
    @Andy

    Her information was just TOO EASY to find, so anyone who wanted to do the same could have easily…

    It was just an unfortunate occurrence for Ben.

    But back to the real issue….

    Ben, please finish the story! How much longer do we have to wait to find out what happened? And what about the two other FC passengers who lost their bags?

    That’s what people [NOW] really want!!!

  42. This has probably been commented to death but I have to say while I thought the original post was totally fine (comments aside of course), I also appreciate that you were conscientious enough to not only moderate the original post but also address it separately. Given that the real issues came from other commenters and not yourself and you already moderated the comments it really is above and beyond to separately discuss what happened but also a good show of self-awareness and empathy on your part. Definitely a reason people think so highly of your blog I think.

    That being said I’m definitely glad you wrote the original post as we’ve all had situations that were extremely frustrating like that and sometimes I wonder if you’re immune from it all given how often you fly international first class on foreign characters. Selfishly it makes us all feel a little better to hear that we’re not the only ones and interesting to see the ways in which you’ve dealt with it.

  43. Hi Ben, for what it’s worth, I read the entire original post. I have two comments. The first is just a suggestion that you adopt a new policy for your site, applicable to all posts going forward, to change the name of the person in any post if it could reflect in any way negatively on the person. I think this is a good idea since it helps protect THEIR privacy from the Internet trolls who inevitably may want to harass those folks. (I think you should continue to address people in your stories by their first name only; I like that casual tone. I’m only suggesting changing that name to something else.)

    And FWIW I thought the post/story was in NO way racist… you told a fairly straightforward report of the facts. This minor kerfuffle aside, hope your holidays are going well! E

  44. When I saw the post “If I ever run in to her, I going to run up and ask ‘Do I need to call Law Enforcement?’ then start laughing hysterically as I walk away.” it made me think. The fact that there are crazy people out there led me to one central question?

    When you blog about a situation do you want the person to be identifiable? Is the purpose to discuss a general situation or a specific person (I think the former)? The more details (name, position, etc.) and the rarer a name (or smaller the airport, etc.) the more likely the person will be known and identified by some people. If you are illustrating a general point what purpose does even a first name show?

  45. Ben, it’s not your fault that her name is such an obvious identifier of her race. As a ‘minority’ in the US myself, I feel that people are overly politically correct and often accuse others as ‘racists’ for something it has nothing to do with race.

  46. I don’t think you did anything wrong by posting her first name. You can’t hold yourself responsible for other people’s stupid actions. All you did was share your experience, you didn’t suggest that people take action against her.

  47. Most of your comments are insightful. However, you should censor the trolling, and don’t feel guilty about it. It’s your blog.

  48. Listen y’all. I’ve worked for a major international airline for 20 years in customer service. I had many US customers stating “I wish we had you in the US”. I always go by “the customer is always right when it comes to customer service but when it involves safety and security they’re not. This lady was way out of line and should be embarrassed. Lucky was perfectly correct re stating his exec status. Afterall these people pay our salaries and are of upmost importance to the company. She needs retraining, a letter on her HR file. 3 strikes and demoted back to check in. Happy holidays from sunny Australia

  49. Personally I am really glad that you posted the first name. Too many airline employees do a crappy job because they can get away with it.

    The internet is truly a village: just like villagers can’t get away with bad behavior because their fellow villagers won’t allow it, it’s great to see this crappy AA employee have to face the villagers because of the internet.

    As an internet villager, you have a moral obligation to use names in these situations. I am afraid I don’t agree with your conclusion (although I agree that public lynching can get too far and a bit of intervention is appropriate).

  50. All I can say is there’s quite a few people out there who in 2015 should be thankful ( yes thanksgiving is past) that some of us don’t blog and that most of us don’t name names.

    Dissatisfaction is one thing. Everybody’s got a bit of that going on.

  51. Yes I realize I’m on the outer fringe and not to alert anybody or anything but you “do” realize that their prurient interest goes well beyond the simple nonsense off handed commentary.

    Somewhere in some office under the guise of national security somebody is identifying everything you say or write or comment upon, and then attaching an IP address to it when possible.

    Yes this is necessary for military and security reasons and the two are inseparable but if you think there aren’t some parties who are taking liberties with such things, I would suggest that many of you are being naive šŸ™‚

    Have a great week.

  52. It amazes me Lucky’s blog could fall victim to Political Correctness. PC is always so convenient to deflect any real issues to as small as an industry or as large as our society.

    The original post was about a real first-hand customer experience of a poor service. What have the airlines done or could they do to improve the performance of their employees?

    Remember the Korean Air Nuts incident? At least the CEO has the balls to apologize publicly that “he did not raise his daughter properly”. In this case, AA did not train their employees properly.

  53. @ Allen

    Lucky’s blog wouldn’t have had to fall victim to political correctness had internet trolls not seized upon the rep’s name as an excuse to fill the comments section with vile racist and misogynist rants and to doxx her. There wasn’t anything wrong with publishing her first name or calling her out for her admittedly poor behavior, but we live in a world where people (often women and people of color) are so intensely harassed by internet trolls that they live in constant fear of actual reprisal. No one deserves that, but because there are people out there who love nothing more than to have a victim to terrorize, a certain amount of sensitivity and political correctness is unfortunately sometimes necessary.

  54. Thank you for moderating the terrible comments (and folks, some of them were terrible!). This is a community you built, and if the general discourse here starts to look like the YouTube comments section, the civilized readers will leave. It’s bad for your business to have this section filled with trolls and white supremacists — so keep giving ’em the boot!

  55. Stick to what you think is right and stay strong! Unfortunately in this modern US society racism has too often been abused for excuses.

  56. Now don’t anyone ever accuse me of not supporting you Ben but I completely empathised with your plight and in particular your treatment at the hands of a rude and incompetent staff. I fully support your decision to “out” her – I don’t see publishing someone’s first name can be equated with a witchhunt. It isn’t. What is was the subsequent comments which you have every right to moderate.

  57. I hope she doesn’t get fired but I do hope she gets transfered to a non customer facing job. Some people should not be in and are not suited for the jobs they are in. Racist comments are not appropriate and neither is race hustling.

  58. Strongly disagree with the decision to self-censure her name. Her race is completely irrelevant to the issue at hand, but her name isn’t.

    Are you going to censure hotel brand names when you have a bad experience with them? Half the point of this blog is to provide positive and negative reviews to inform your readers’ future choices, and that’s impossible if we can’t figure out who/what was responsible for the experience.

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