Is United Airlines (Expletive Deleted)? TV, Social Media Think So


Late in the day Tuesday, United Airlines CEO Oscar Munoz finally issued what communications experts consider a true apology and a promise to ensure such an incident never recurs. But not before comedians and the public reacted negatively to Sunday night's events.

With the release of a video showing strong-arm tactics to eject a paying customer from his seat, United Airlines has become the brunt of every imaginable joke -- on Twitter and late night TV -- but it is ABC’s “Jimmy Kimmel Live” that may have epitomized it with a parody video depicting United’s new marketing tagline: “F*ck you!”

The incident has also provoked a storm of discussion not just over United’s response, but about the customer rights of all airline travelers.

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“I’m never flying United again…,” Tom Goodwin, Zenith Media, executive vice president-head of innovation, quipped in a tweet this morning, adding, “unless it is a bit cheaper or has better flight times.”

It was a similar sentiment offered by Kimmel in his set up to the faux United marketing video: “The next time we book a flight, It doesn’t matter if it’s United, or Delta, or American, if one of those flights is a dollar less than the others, that’s the one we’ll pick. They know this. That’s why we’re stuck with them.”

@ianbremmer posted a mock Southwest Airlines response campaign: “We beat our competitors. Not you.”

@atlantaholic posted an image of “Waking Dead” nemesis Negan walking through a United aisle, with the tweet, “United Airlines be like “eenie… meenie…,” suggesting he’d remove passengers with his baseball bat, Lucille.

2 comments about "Is United Airlines (Expletive Deleted)? TV, Social Media Think So".
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  1. Chuck Lantz from 2007ac.com, 2017ac.com network, April 11, 2017 at 4:31 p.m.


    My own reason for avoiding United flights after seeing the video is simple; ... While I realize all airlines can make stupid decisions, do I really want to book a flight with an airline that made one so openly, and one that chose to forcibly eject a passenger instead of simply offering more money until someone accepted the offer?

    To me, it was a no-brainer. And United proved beyond any doubt that they acted brainlessly. Do I want them in charge at 30,000 feet in the air?

  2. Doug Garnett from Atomic Direct, April 12, 2017 at 12:53 p.m.

    Quite an event. But more concerning was that when I expressed a milder view than the outraged vigilantism that exploded in social media, good friends turned in anger - I suppose for spoiling the entertainment they were getting by beating up on United with suggesting that explosions of social media mob violence aren't terribly useful.

    What has happened to us as a society that we gleefully leap into rabid declarations without significant foundation in knowing the truth?

    (And, to be clear, I firmly believe United screwed up - no question about it.)

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