The public relations fire storm at United Airlines sparked by this video of a man being dragged off a flight, escalating Tuesday with outrage going global and investors dumping the stock. And the CEO isn't helping matters, already under fire for a tame statement released after the video hit social media.
United CEO Oscar Munoz followed that up with a letter to his workers, offering them support. At the same time he showed little sympathy for the paying customer who was ultimately dragged off the flight in order to make way for airline staff calling him, quote, disruptive and belligerent. Reuters airlines reporter, Alana Wise.
>> In the letter, he made it very clear they did an outline of the steps that led up to the moment that we saw and captured on video. Wherein he said, we asked, quote, politely several times for this passenger to leave and he refused to do so. And began screaming, something that Munoz pointed to in his letter to employees.
>> His response described as being nothing less than tone deaf, and is not going over well on Wall Street. The company losing nearly $900 million dollars in stock market value Tuesday. A big hit to shareholders, considering United could have avoided this by offering more than the $1,000 for volunteers to switch flights.
Shares slumping, as investors fear that rather than doing more to get ahead of the story, the CEO is actually feeding the outrage.>> Because it was not United staff, it was members of airport security who in fact took this passenger off the plane. United does not want their hands involved in it.
So, Oscar Munoz's thinking could be, why would we issue an apology for something that we weren't involved in the highest point of escalation?>> Negative comments piling up on social media for a second day running and spreading all the way to China. Where social media site Weibo was lit up by upset users, thinking the man dragged off the plane may have been Chinese.
Founder of Chinese e-commerce giant JD.com telling his 3 million followers, quote, United service is definitely the worst in the world. Not the kind of reviews Munoz was aiming for when he took over the top job a year and a half ago.