Green Room

Asiana Airlines drops lawsuit threat against TV station

posted at 7:57 am on July 17, 2013 by

Why do I keep thinking about Kevin Kline telling John Cleese to “apologize!” in A Fish Called Wanda when I read this story?

Asiana Airlines will not pursue a lawsuit against a Bay Area TV station for allegedly damaging the company’s image by reporting erroneous and offensive names of the pilots in the recent crash at San Francisco International Airport.

The company said Wednesday it wouldn’t file a suit after KTVU offered an official apology. The bogus names that phonetically spelled out phrases such as “Something Wrong” and “We Too Low” were read during KTVU’s noon broadcast Friday. The airline called the report “demeaning” and said it was “reviewing possible legal action.”

Well, golly … what is more demeaning?  Being the object of a prank, or botching a landing in perfect weather and broad daylight, getting your passengers killed?  Good to know that Asiana’s top priority this month has been resolved.


Recently in the Green Room:



Trackback URL


A Fish Called Wanda

A Pilot Called Wi Tu Lo

Bitter Clinger on July 17, 2013 at 8:18 AM

I’m sure that Asiana Airlines looked at this more rationally. I’m sure that if they went ahead with this lawsuit then they would have been flooded with civil lawsuits from the victims’ families over the crash.

If the situation was reversed and a Korean TV station released the names of “Ben Dover” and “I.P. Freely” I would’ve laughed hysterically. I wouldn’t have thrown a hissy fit over it.

The station apologized and no actual harm was caused.

Kingfisher on July 17, 2013 at 8:29 AM

The Korean culture is all about face. Saving it and losing it. Asiana lost face when they crashed a plane that was obviously pilot error. To save face they must find a bogey man to divert attention. The Bay area is not Seoul, and simply threatening a lawsuit won’t get them any good publicity. I guess their American lawyers convinced them of that.

As I’ve said before, neither Asiana of Korean Air have stellar safety records to say the least. They reliably pack one in every couple of years. They do have low airfares to Asia, but the way I look at it is “Unsafe at any price”.

simkeith on July 17, 2013 at 8:31 AM

simkeith on July 17, 2013 at 8:31 AM

Yes, but they read Neitzsche, speak Olive Garden Italian, and worked for the CIA, so it’s all good. And don’t ever call them stupid.

Ed Morrissey on July 17, 2013 at 8:34 AM

One of the first rules of public relations is don’t keep a bad story alive. A libel suit that literally would be laughed out of court, is not the way to let a story die. Asiana has enough problems anyway.

The station is protected under Times v. Sullivan. It is a public figure and you must prove malice. The station verified the names from a government source that it knew has access to the names of the flight crew.

Have we all lost our sense of humor?

Corky Boyd on July 17, 2013 at 9:36 AM

I’m sure that if they went ahead with this lawsuit then they would have been flooded with civil lawsuits from the victims’ families over the crash.

Kingfisher on July 17, 2013 at 8:29 AM

That is starting to happen anyway, and lawsuits were already being talked about before anybody heard of pilot “Sum Ting Wong.” Airplane crashes tend to attract lawsuits, especially if there is a reason the crash can be blamed on the airline or the airplane manufacturer. Asiana’s potential lawsuit against the TV station wouldn’t have had any effect on that.

J.S.K. on July 17, 2013 at 9:49 AM

Dropped it like a…..

(oh, never mind.)

CurtZHP on July 17, 2013 at 9:50 AM

Well good, it made them look really silly.

Cindy Munford on July 17, 2013 at 11:36 AM

Well good, it made them look really silly.

Cindy Munford on July 17, 2013 at 11:36 AM

On the other hand, the smoldering hulk at the end of the runway makes them look like they’ve really got their act together.

CurtZHP on July 17, 2013 at 12:23 PM

“We are pleased that the airline chose to resolve this matter.”

–KTVU PR spokesperson Wi So Sawi

A440Hz on July 17, 2013 at 12:23 PM

Good. Too many lawsuits in this world already. It’s about time someone settled their differences like adults.

BigGator5 on July 17, 2013 at 12:24 PM

“Well, golly … what is more demeaning?”

Answer: ANYTHING that ANY jounalist or Media outlet does everyday.

I CHEER for EVERY lawsuit against them. I CHEER when their lives suffer the pain from the impacts of their own behavior.

America NEEDS bad things to happen to ALL memebers of The Media.

Consequences for their behavior are FAR too “forgiving”.

williamg on July 17, 2013 at 1:33 PM

The funny thing is that they were using Chinese-sounding names. There are lots of real Korean names that are funny in English without having to change them, like Yu Suk Dong, etc.

The Rogue Tomato on July 17, 2013 at 1:38 PM

HotAir — Politics, Culture, Media, 2017, Breaking News from a conservative viewpoint
Top Pick


“Felix was out on bond after threatening another public servant and has a history of making threats.”

Chaffetz: House needs housing allowances?

Ed Morrissey Jun 27, 2017 8:41 PM

“There are dozens upon dozens of members living in their offices, and I don’t know how healthy that is long term.”

“This isn’t going to get a lot cheaper, it can’t, it won’t.”

“…what we failed to achieve with votes, we would do with weapons.”

“[S]o dumb it’s amazing we even have to have the conversation.”

“It was not necessary.”

“You’re inflaming everyone right here right now with those words!”

“Trump’s people said, ‘We’ll be writing the speech that the President’s Audio-Animatronic figure will be saying.'”

Excuses, excuses.

Not really a “kill all the lawyers” scenario

4 pm ET!

“it has not taken serious steps to end its own complicity in trafficking, including forced laborers from North Korea.”

Currently doing a search for “good international trade lawyers”

Ransomware attack spreads through Europe

John Sexton Jun 27, 2017 1:01 PM

“A massive ransomware campaign is currently unfolding worldwide.”

At least their address rarely changes

It just keeps on happening

“Trump is good for business right now.”

Start spreading the news…

“Now it’s time for the next step.”

A “cryptic” warning to Bashar al-Assad?

Jazz Shaw Jun 27, 2017 8:01 AM

The three strikes rule may be in effect

CNN reporters resign over retracted story

John Sexton Jun 26, 2017 9:21 PM

“The individuals all stated that they accepted responsibility and wanted to resign.”

Federalism’s greatest champion is now …

Ed Morrissey Jun 26, 2017 8:41 PM

“In the end, we’re a democracy.”

“Almost all controversial speech harms people, upsets or offends them…”

Obama: Back home again in Indonesia

Andrew Malcolm Jun 26, 2017 7:21 PM

The call to prayer and eating dog.

Testing the waters.

“primarily because the penalty for not having insurance would be eliminated.”

“If I were a Seattle lawmaker, I would be thinking hard about the $15 an hour phase-in.”

Days of future past

“Not only are taxpayers footing the bill, but people are dying unnecessarily because of this.”

Israel settles who can stand where at the Western Wall

Andrew Malcolm Jun 26, 2017 3:21 PM

Women to the right, men to the left.

Look on the bright side. There’s less snow in the summer

Big win … but for how long?

“Several Russian cities have unveiled monuments to Stalin in recent months.”

Massive disappointment