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Airline attacks 'idiot, lunatic' bloggers

  • Story Highlights
  • Ryanair slams "idiot, lunatic" bloggers after customer highlights flaws on Web site
  • Roe found what he thought was glitch allowing him to book free tickets
  • Airline staff members later posted abusive comments on Jason Roe's blog
  • Ryanair confirmed comments were by staff members, refused to apologize
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By Peter Wilkinson
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LONDON, England (CNN) -- Ryanair attacked "idiot" and "lunatic" bloggers Wednesday after a customer highlighted what he said were flaws in the budget airline's Web site.

Jason Roe said he found the comments by Ryanair staffers offensive and was disappointed by the airline's response.

Jason Roe said he found the comments by Ryanair staffers offensive and was disappointed by the airline's response.

Dublin-based Web developer Jason Roe was booking plane tickets online when he discovered what he thought was a glitch that allowed him to book free Ryanair tickets.

He duly posted details of the "glitch" on his blog as well as a message on Twitter. Soon people were trying to replicate what he had done with little success, and he later confirmed that he was unable to book the tickets without paying.

But among responses on his Web site were three purporting to be from Ryanair staff. One read: "You're an idiot and a liar!! fact is! you've opened one session then another and requested a page meant for a different session, you are so stupid you dont even know how you did it!"

Another said: "Website is not perfect, Life is not perfect...If you would work in your pathetic life on a such big project in a such busy environment with so little resources, you would know that the most important is to have usual user behavior scenarios working rather than spending time on improbable and harmless things." Tell us what you think

Roe said he later traced the IP addresses of the postings to the airline's headquarters in Dublin, something Ryanair later confirmed to CNN.

"Ryanair can confirm that a Ryanair staff member did engage in a blog discussion," said the airline's spokesman Stephen McNamara. "It is Ryanair policy not to waste time and energy in corresponding with idiot bloggers and Ryanair can confirm that it won't be happening again. Lunatic bloggers can have the blog sphere all to themselves as our people are far too busy driving down the cost of air travel."

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Roe told CNN he was disappointed with Ryanair's response. "I was hoping the corporate response wasn't in line with the staff members, whose comments I found offensive. This wasn't a big issue and was really just a small problem; they could have said they were working on it and they over-reacted."

"You can only imagine how many customers they could lose by treating them like this," he added.

A spokesman for ABTA, which represents tour operators and travel agents, said the comments by Ryanair came as no surprise. "They treat their customers with contempt. We know that Ryanair doesn't put any store on customer relations," said Frances Tuke.

"This is the way Ryanair conducts its business. Their clear goal is to provide cheap flights but we don't believe this is the way to provide customer satisfaction. Our members don't do this -- their customers expect a high level of service."

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