Southwest Airlines Tries To Make Passenger Change "Masterbaiter" Shirt

Southwest again tried to make a passenger change his clothes and again has been forced to apologize, reports the St. Petersburg Times. Flight attendants asked Joe Winiecki, 39, to remove a shirt promoting “Captn. Jack Hoff’, MasterBaiter,” a fictional fish store located in the “Virgin Islands.”

Sure, the shirt is tacky and eye-roll inducing, but no one appointed Southwest the fashion police. Southwest needs to more clearly communicate the situations where it is appropriate to approach customers about their clothing. Their own policy says its only in situations of indecent exposure, extreme vulgarity and clothes with threatening language.

Clothes call dings Southwest, again [St. Petersburg Times] (Thanks to Charles!)
RELATED: Mini-Skirt Customer Doesn’t Accept Southwest’s Marketing-Filled Apology


Edit Your Comment

  1. UpsetPanda says:

    At least it wasn’t a 300 lb. man wearing that shirt. No, no, please don’t make him take it off.

  2. Dead Wrestlers Society says:

    Anybody older than a teenager wearing that shirt should be locked up for being a tool.

  3. Dancing Milkcarton says:

    Sorry, but if you wear that shirt, you’re the douche.

  4. edrebber says:

    “extreme vulgarity”

    The shirt is vulgar. Could you read the words on the back of a shirt to airline security without getting locked up?

  5. Daemon_of_Waffle says:

    Was his seat mate wearing the Morning Wood shirt?

  6. Maude Buttons says:

    You pretty much know all you need to know about the shirt-wearer, don’t you? There’s a singing bass mounted somewhere in his manufactured home, and he punctuates a lot of sentences with “Git’er done!

  7. ATTSlave says:

    Don’t they have better things to do. You know like making sure people aren’t trying to blow up the plane?

  8. Illusio26 says:

    The shirt may be lame, but its about as offensive as the Big Johnson shirts that were popular ten years ago.

    Southwest’s employees need to get out a little more…

  9. niccernicus says:

    I gotta say, it’s SW’s plane. If they want to act like a family airline, I see no issue with curbing the “jackoff” shirts or the like. It’s not like the guy was wearing a sleevless shirt and they said “no guns allowed.”

  10. Consumerist Moderator - ACAMBRAS says:

    One time in an airport, I saw a guy wearing a t-shirt that said, “I’m not a gynecologist, but I’ll take a look.”

    It’s so nice to see young people taking an interest in important issues like women’s health…

  11. Geekybiker says:

    Tacky, yes. Needs to be removed? I dont think so. Whats up with southwest and dress codes lately?

  12. timmus says:

    Could you imagine Greyhound kicking someone off for something like this? Yeah, I said Greyhound. Let’s make no bones about airline travel these days.

  13. morganlh85 says:

    That is so stupid. You wouldn’t even be able to see the tagline when he’s SITTING DOWN IN THE PLANE.

  14. UpsetPanda says:

    @Maude Buttons: Well someone wants to generalize today, anyone else want to talk about his missing teeth?

    I’m not even from the south and your comment annoyed me.

  15. castlecraver says:

    I think you’re all missing the point. Southwest has obviously solved every single one of their problems and created the perfect airline. What’s left to improve upon besides their customers? This focus on customer dress code only further highlights Southwest’s commitment to excellence, and the fact that it would be utterly pointless to continue to try to improve their perfect airline internally.

  16. Sudonum says:

    So let me see if I have this straight. I can watch porn on my laptop while in flight, but I can wear that t-shirt?

  17. Beerad says:

    Look, it’s Florida. You simply can’t visit the state without running into t-shirts proclaiming the wearer to be an agent from the “F.B.I. – Federal Booty Inspections” unit or proudly touting that the wearer violated/would be happy to violate your significant other in some way.

  18. Sudonum says:

    opps… Can’t wear that t-shirt

  19. Trauma_Hound says:

    Ok I’m tired of this. You have a right to free speech. Repeat after me. YOU DO NOT HAVE THE RIGHT NOT TO BE OFFENDED.

  20. MissPinkKate says:

    If a shirt about masturbation isn’t vulgar, what is?

  21. mph says:

    @ BEERAD : It’s actually Female Body Inspector, and its a real government agency. I am a proud member.

  22. MENDOZA!!!!! says:

    Me and my Big Johnson t-shirt collection object to this.
    Maybe this individual is, in fact, very proficient at applying bait to fish-catching equipment.

  23. @Sudonum: I wonder what happens if you have porn on your t-shirt? Is it that porn is OK or is it the medium in which the porn is delivered is OK?

  24. NoWin says:

    …Oy, my head hurtz….

  25. chili_dog says:

    This cracks me up because they seem to have no problem with passengers that look like they are homeless and smell like it too.

  26. royal72 says:

    [happy friday to all, i’m probably in trouble for this one, but so worth it]

    if he was wearing a shirt that said “mistress cherry’s brothel” on the front, with “i drank a tequila shooter out of your crusty cunt pump that tasted of blood, urine, cum, crisco, and ball hair… and all i got was this lousy t-shirt” on the back, then yes i’d agree that’s a lil offensive and make him change or boot him off the plane.

  27. alhypo says:

    Uh, wouldn’t his back be against the seat for 98% of the time he’s on the plane thereby obscuring the logo anyway?

    Also, I understand some people are fairly prudish and consider things such as this vulgar. But masturbation is just a fact of life — a perfectly natural part. So please resist inflicting your own sexual fears and immaturity on the rest of us. I personally consider the wearing of a cross as vulgar, but I doubt anyone who wears one would remove it for my benefit.

  28. B says:

    Personally, I’m more offended by his obviously died beard. Who is he trying to kid?

  29. hn333 says:

    There’s way too many uptight people flying Southwest. Nothing is wrong with this shirt.

  30. axiomatic says:

    Good grief.

    Puritanic thread responses multiplied by eleventy billionz.

    Should I bring a bible next time I fly? It is apparently required reading per you lot.

  31. Razzler says:

    Holy crap, you guys. The airline has a policy against vulgarity. The t-shirt is vulgar. What is so difficult to comprehend about that?

  32. ancientsociety says:

    The issue w/ SW’s “dress code” isn’t necessarily whether or not it’s right.

    The issue is, if they do have a dress code, then they need to be up-front about it and make it publicly accessible before you book a flight. And, if they don’t have a dress code, then they need to fire the overzealous employees who are doing this.

  33. Anonymous says:

    I fly Southwest a lot and the behavior of the airline personal varies extremely from plane to plane. In some flights, the airline staff crack jokes and sing on the plane, in other flights the staff practically ignore you. Their uniforms also vary greatly from person to person. Southwest clearly does not have a “standard” of how their personnel should act. They seem free to do whatever they want. Dont get me wrong, the singing/joking flight attendants make the best flights, but I am sure that with every amazing crazy flight attendant there is also an equally prudish uptight attendant.

    The point is, Southwest lets their flight attendants do whatever they want, and in that we get some morons enforcing a prudish dress code.

  34. Heyref says:

    Sheesh!! Yes, the shirt has junior high humor on it. Who cares? It’s a flipping SHIRT. Get over it! I can guarantee that you’ll hear worse language between the check-in and the gate.

  35. full.tang.halo says:

    @axiomatic: Amazing use of eleventy billion well meet SNL jepordy watcher.

  36. CumaeanSibyl says:

    Well, thank God it’s not another young woman in skimpy clothes. I don’t think I could stand another round of SHE SHOULD PUT AWAY HER VAGINA.

    This is one of those situations where a young child wouldn’t necessarily get the joke, and an older child would be all “huh huh, you said ‘masterbaiter.'” Not harmful to anyone, though offensive to some senses of humor.

  37. Murph1908 says:

    Great shirt – wear it proudly to bachelor parties, poker games, and anywhere vulgar humor is appreciated.

    Wear this on a plane, and you are as previously stated, a tool.

    Southwest’s policy does explicitly state ‘no vulgarity’. The shirt is vulgar.

    And yes, masturbation is a natural part of life, but so are many other sexual acts and bodily functions that need not be worn on the sleeve.

  38. axiomatic says:

    @full.tang.halo: Thank you sir! Have a great day!

  39. subzi says:

    Darn it! I was going to board on a Southwest flight wearing a shirt with Uranus on it :(

  40. GiselleBeardchen says:

    He should have sat next to the chick with the ultra mini and no panties. By the end of the flight he wouldn’t need that particular shirt any longer.

  41. Jon Parker says:

    I have to agree with SouthWest. I don’t think it’s offensive, but it is unfunny and stupid, and he should have been kicked off based on that.

  42. cryrevolution says:

    I think some of your aren’t reading the post carefully. Their policy covers “situations of indecent exposure, extreme vulgarity and clothes with threatening language”. Now who on this post can say that t-shirt is EXTREMELY vulgar? I doubt any of you. While stupid and slightly offensive, extremely vulgar it is not. If they are going to have such a strict dress code that bans stupid t’s and mini-skirts, I agree, they need to inform the passenger BEFORE they purchase the ticket. Otherwise, let the man ride.

  43. Anonymous says:

    If their policy involves anything vulgar, then I’m with them.
    Capt. Jack Hoff?
    Master Baiter?
    I’m sure the under 18 crowd finds that amusing. I imagine the parents of the under 13 crowd might have a problem with it though…
    And how old is this guy?

  44. MalichiDemonos says:

    @public enemy #1: LOL your the tool for stating what people can and cant wear
    @bitfactory: Same applies to you…

    If i want to wear a “my little pony” shirt then i will; and anyone that states i cant… i will meet you later in the parking lot.

    “I’m a distence fighter. I’ll take you out from the bell tower.”

  45. MalichiDemonos says:

    @fejjnagaf: Sorry if i don’t ask you what shirt i should wear every day of the week. If you don’t want your kids exposed to such “volgar” things then you need to keep them home and away from the tv, radio, and any other outlet to the real world. At least it wasn’t anything like “$%@@ you in the #$!”

    I’m 24 and i decide what i wear.

  46. King of the Wild Frontier says:

    If SW’s policy bans merely “vulgar” attire, and leaves it up to any random flight attendant to decide what that consists of, then that’s their way of announcing that they have too big of a share of the air passenger market and that they want to reduce it. Srsly. Some middle-aged bear wearing a T-shirt with a couple of bad double entendres on it that was probably marketed toward college students isn’t in the same league as some gal who can’t put her carryon in the overhead compartment without flashing her vajayjay at the people across the aisle. Whether or not you feel that the shirt is in bad taste or not–I certainly do–you should think twice about agreeing that he should take it off, unless you want to stare at his chestrug for the remainder of the flight.

  47. altcountryman says:

    What if the guy is just a really, really good baiter? Then what’s he supposed to wear?

  48. vaxman says:

    He may be a Master Baitor, but I, I sir, am a cunning linguist!!

  49. mconfoy says:

    @MissPinkKate: Master Baiter is not masturbater which is not a real word anyway. You have never had the pleasure yourself?

  50. Xerloq says:

    @cryrevolution: The way the policy reads, it sounds like it’s up to the employees to decide. He’d have to be brain dead not to think that someone might be offended by his shirt. Obviously he isn’t offended. But maybe the employee was, or or thought that others would be offended. So the employees are trying to apply vague standards to a dress code? Big deal. The airplane isn’t a public forum so free speech isn’t an issue, since you have to pay to enter, and they can bar anyone access they wish. Boot the guy and give him back his money.

    Bottom line: be considerate and don’t be a jerk-off trying to offend people with your 12-year-old-boy humor; or do we need government regulations on clothing that can and can’t be worn while flying?

    Careful, or they’ll change their dress code into a uniform code and make you wear Southwest T-Shirts and sweat pants while flying, and charge you a $45 ‘uniform fee’ to boot!

  51. Anonymous says:

    i can’t believe the nerve of southwest. apparently they must have too many customers and are not smart enough to learn from their mistakes. either that or there is no such thing as bad publicity in their eyes. look at all the attention they got from the first two customers they had done that to. they got national t.v., web, radio, and newspapers talking about them—for free! how much would that have costed them out of pocket? and i’m sure they haven’t lost any business over it.


  52. not_seth_brundle says:

    RTA. SWA doesn’t *have* a written dress code policy. Direct quote from the article:

    “It was inappropriate for our employee to approach Joe,” said spokesman Chris Mainz. “We don’t have a dress code. Only in extreme situations would we want to address this to our customers.”

    He cited three examples: indecent exposure, extreme vulgarity and clothes with threatening language.

    Seems to me SWA shouldn’t be asking people to change clothes for violation of a dress code policy that doesn’t exist. OTOH, this guy’s cries of “free speech” don’t apply here.

  53. mandarin says:

    Ugh, how old is this guy?

  54. cryrevolution says:

    @not_seth_brundle: Aha! Then why is there an argument? SWA was wrong, they stated it, theres no dress code period. End of story.

  55. SaveMeJeebus says:

    That’s it. I’m breaking out the “Osama’s Homobortion Pot ‘n’ Commie Jizzporium” t-shirt next time I fly SW.

  56. caffeinequeen says:

    Well, crap, I’m flying Southwest in a couple of weeks. What am I supposed to wear, a burqa?

    …oh, wait.

  57. not_seth_brundle says:

    @cryrevolution: I think there’s an argument here only because people didn’t read the article. :) And SWA isn’t arguing with the guy; they admitted the employee was wrong and apologized.

  58. cryrevolution says:

    @not_seth_brundle: Oh, I know. I wasn’t disputing your comment, I was agreeing! :)

  59. Sudonum says:

    Where can I buy one? Come to think of it, I think I saw one for sale down on Bourbon Street last weekend

  60. SOhp101 says:

    “Southwest prohibits “lewd, obscene or patently offensive” clothing.”

    The T-Shirt might not be the best taste around but it meets none of the three requirements. it’s SUGGESTIVE, not patently offensive.

    Ever shopped at Hollister/Abercrombie & Fitch? Their screen T’s are just as suggestive, if not more, than this guy’s shirt. In fact I first thought he bought it at one of those two stores.

    WHoops, better not wear that “Jesus is my homeboy” t-shirt, because that’s patently offensive to non-Christians!

  61. Consumerist Moderator - ACAMBRAS says:

    What’s that rumbling sound?
    Oh, yeah — it’s the sound of my departed grandparents turning in their respective graves. ;-)

  62. ShadowFalls says:

    Must have been approached by those all so “well-trained” flight attendants with the inability to spell.

  63. Trai_Dep says:

    It’s nice to see that Pee Wee Herman is still out and about.

  64. XTC46 says:

    I think this guy is a moron for wearing the shirt. But I also think it’s his choice and my opinion of the shirt (and the wearer of the shirt) shouldn’t prevent him from wearing it.

  65. deserthiker says:


    I guess that makes you a silver tongued devil!

  66. deserthiker says:

    When I was a teenager I got tossed out of church for wearing a Mr. Zog’s Sex Wax t-shirt. The church usher, who was about 75 and didn’t surf, asked me to turn my shirt inside out and I told him I would if he would. He refused so I left.

    I later ended up working at that church as a youth group leader and I never, ever kicked a kid out of church no matter what he wore. I figured if God is able to love people just as they are, who I am to argue?

  67. kenblakely says:

    Southwest’s planes – Southwest’s rules. Wanna wear a retard t-shirt or revealing clothes? Fly some other airline. I think Southwest is right on target.

  68. smarty says:

    Please explain the “rules” considering that the Southworst spokesman said, “”It was inappropriate for our employee to approach Joe,” said spokesman Chris Mainz. “We don’t have a dress code. Only in extreme situations would we want to address this to our customers.”

    You’re right, Southworst is on target, and they are apologizing to him. Thanks for supporting the guy’s right to wear a funny/poor taste T-shirt!!

  69. textilesdiva says:

    The only vulgarity is in furthering the all-too-common misspelling of masturbation

    If you like doing it, it’s worth knowing how to spell, and spelling right.

  70. the_wiggle says:

    2 conflicting impulses:

    a) never fly SW again

    b) grab a tshirt off [] & buy me a SW ticket to anywhere. . . .

  71. Ryuuie says:

    Wow. That shirt is tackier than most MySpace pages. He should’ve been forced to change it as soon as he walked outside of his home. :|

    But still, SW is just being nit-picky. They can’t even follow their own rules.

  72. BlackestRose says:

    OK people:

    Masterbator MasterBaiter

    The argument is that it is close to something sexual but not quite. If we ban the second word, where’s the line? Should words like rod, pussycat and names like Dick also be removed from the public eye?

  73. bnorton says:

    It’s not like he got the shirt from here

  74. EmmaC says:

    I think it’s time airline companies just came out with a dress code for their passengers. That way there won’t be this confusion. While I think he has the right to wear what he wants, a private entity has a right to ask him to change. I wish I’d had the guts (if I were there) to ask him to put on a sweater. Honestly to wear a shirt like that in public, I’d be afraid to sit next to that guy during a long flight in case he was a sicko or something.

    I know his shirt is not a case of sexual harassment, but sexual harassment can be considered when a person exposes another person to something they may find offensive, even if the exposure is caused indirectly. ie: Someone is watching a very offensive movie in a public area on a portable dvd player. A family walks by. Was it illegal? No, but could it allow a case of sexual harassment–yes.

  75. stepho says:

    I was flying home from Philadelphia and got stopped by airport security because I was wearing a Tori Amos concert shirt that said “Mother Revolution” on the back. The security guard physically stopped me by grabbing my shoulders and asked me about the shirt. At first I thought she was a Tori Amos fan but when I explained that “Mother Revolution” was the name of a song I could tell she had no idea who Tori Amos was. So apparently wearing a shirt with the word revolution on it is a security risk!

  76. @EmmaC: Doesn’t sexual harassment only apply in professional or educational situations?

    Can you (passively) sexually harass someone by watching an offensive movie on a plane? And what is an offensive movie? Is that sex? Kissing? Two men kissing? An interracial love scene?