EasyJet is probably best known to Americans as “the European discount airline that isn’t RyanAir,” if they’ve heard of it at all. Now they’re also the airline that grounds adults for sassing them on the Internet. That’s what happened to a law professor and columnist who was annoyed that he might miss his connection when an EasyJet flight was delayed, and more annoyed that a soldier might miss his.
“I wasn’t concerned for me,” he told the Independent, but if [the soldier] might miss his boat, which was potentially disembarking into a war zone, because he had relied on EasyJet, then I thought put pressure on them to do something about it.” Fair enough: we understand wanting to stick up for fellow consumers. This wasn’t very fair from EasyJet’s point of view, though.
Word about his tweet traveled from the company’s headquarters to the airport, apparently. He says that while the passengers were queuing up to board, a gate attendant pulled him out of line. A manager explained why, and told the attendant to find out whether he had checked any luggage so they could kick it off the plane, too.
In the end, free speech won only because he “flashed” a card identifying him as a law lecturer. Finally! An affiliation with academia has a use in the real world!
Evidently, an ordinary citizen would have been removed from the flight and forced to take a train or rebook.
EasyJet threatens not to let passenger board after he criticises airline on Twitter [Independent]