"You're a lawyer. You know u can't tweet stuff like that and expect to get on an @easyJet flight."— Mark Leiser (@mleiser) September 24, 2013
Mark Leiser, a law professor who writes a tech law column for The Drum, says he was denied boarding on an Easyjet flight after he tweeted critical remarks about the airline (he said that a delayed flight had caused a soldier on his flight to miss a connection and that Easyjet had refused to help). According to Leiser, a member of staff told him, "You're not allowed to talk about Easyjet like that and then expect to get on a flight."
“I put out a tweet about it and then when I got in the queue, and a member of staff approached me and asked if she could have a quick word," Leiser explained. "She said she understood I’d said something on social media about easyJet and then told me they were not allowing me to board the flight.
“I said you’re kidding me; I asked where that had come from and she told me I should know I’m not allowed to do that. I was stunned. I told her I didn’t really understand what she was telling me and she said: ‘You’re not allowed to talk about easyJet like that and then expect to get on a flight’.”
“She then asked me to step out of the queue and repeated that she was not letting me on the flight. I told her she’d better get somebody down to discuss this and she told me the manager was on his way to speak to me. Then she told said she couldn’t believe I thought what I’d done was appropriate. I was just sitting there in disbelief.
“So the the manager arrived and told me that based on my tweet they couldn’t let me board the flight because I wasn’t allowed to do that and I should know better. He then called over to the girl on the counter to instruct my bags be taken off the flight. It wasn’t until I asked him if he’d heard of free speech that the tone changed. He asked me if I was a lawyer and I told him I taught law at Strathclyde.
"He quickly had a word with his staff and then told me I’d better get on the flight because they were waiting for me. If I hadn’t had my ID badge I don’t think he’d have let me on the flight."
I write books. My latest is a YA science fiction novel called Homeland (it's the sequel to Little Brother). More books: Rapture of the Nerds (a novel, with Charlie Stross); With a Little Help (short stories); and The Great Big Beautiful Tomorrow (novella and nonfic). I speak all over the place and I tweet and tumble, too.