CX pilot scams $36k from AC

Old Jan 5, 2018, 2:30 pm
  #46  
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Originally Posted by Shareholder
The focus of this thread is something quite different.
Indeed.
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Old Jan 5, 2018, 4:00 pm
  #47  
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Originally Posted by CZAMFlyer


Yes, the hat dance was completely within the fare rules of the day, and no doubt you did the airlines a favour by identifying arcane loopholes. That favour came at the expense of many more discrete travellers.

Clever people often experience difficulties refraining from letting everybody else know how clever they are.

And THAT is the focus of this thread and its protagonist.

*sounds like the VP played you all well, and went on to much grander things. Gamers played and betrayed by their peers - a lesson taught in Dirty Rotten Scoundrels.

Ah, revisionism at its finest.

At the time of the disclosure of the Mexican Hat Dance (MHD) in FT, FT was still a small forum well out of sight of airlines. And the revelation of it was not boasting, it was an effort to help save others money - lots of money. It was well in line with the ethos of FlyerTalk at the time - that being a forum to share info and tips on how get the most/best out of your FF program. Moreover I don't think very many "more discrete" travellers were doing it.

It only came to the attention of the airlines because a journalist (Doug MacArthur - G&M Travel Editor) discovered FT, and published a story about it: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/life...article771638/ (I'm not certain, but I think it might have been the first G&M article sourced from FT.)

The day that article was published I knew the writing was on the wall. I was not too surprised six months later when the book end piece appeared in the G&M: https://www.theglobeandmail.com/life...article761598/

But here's the thing... airlines, on the whole, are dumber than a sack of hammers. It took about 20 minutes for a couple of us to figure out a workaround. Having learned our lesson we went underground and used e-mail to share various tips and tricks including the new improved MHD. It took the airlines a few months to figure that out, so we again found workarounds. That underground e-mail chain continued for several years. And in fact, the Mexican Hat Dance continued to exist in some fashion or other for at least another decade.

So not really boasting, just altruism. (Although at the time there was no perceived consequence so maybe not altruism but just sharing.)

As for that VP, he was not playing anyone. He was an active participant, and he and I used to tag-team hammering on Air Canada. He just had an absolute fascination for everything airlines, and through a series of fortunate events had the opportunity to go to work for the airline.

I would suggest the airline is better for hiring him. I would also suggest that so are frequent flyers in general, and FTers in particular. For many years he did yeoman's service helping FTers with all kinds of problems. And I have no doubt he regularly advocates for FFers/FTers.

On the other hand the guy who revealed the MHD was a complete idiot, but that had nothing to do with the revelation.
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Old Jan 5, 2018, 4:37 pm
  #48  
 
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This Mexican Hat Dance hack now pales in comparison to some of the stuff I read on the "Trick It" thread.

Those guys are just bonkers when it comes to saving a buck. I keep meaning drop my subscription to that thread but once you peel back the personal sniping, there's something oddly compelling about seeing what they come up with.
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Old Jan 5, 2018, 4:53 pm
  #49  
 
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I'd have thought a mariner would understand the meaning of 'loose lips sink ships'.

To be clear, I 'm completely in support of people finding workarounds and using them to their benefit. I try to do the same thing. Sharing with friends by "going underground" and "using email" is also perfectly well & fine. Again, I've personally benefitted from the same tactics, and thank members here for their wisdom and generosity for helping me. But to believe that FT in MHD days was "well out of sight of airlines" reveals a quaint innocence that I find genuinely surprising. Many years ago, around the turn of the century, I knew a girl in uni whose father was a top executive at CP. He knew all about FlyerTalk (he's how I found out about it), which is hardly surprising, considering CP was internet-savvy for its day, and I believe, the first airline to launch its own website - well before FT was born.

Large airlines are by their nature, ponderous, and it may well take them time to catch on to some games. But if they're dumber than a sack of hammers, yet manage to figure out the tricks, what does that say about the tricksters? It became very easy and glaringly obvious to see what was happening, despite the er, uber-disciplined use of the super-duper encrypted coded posts on this forum.

I wonder if our recently-sanctioned friend will continue to sing his own praises.
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Old Jan 5, 2018, 6:39 pm
  #50  
 
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Googling for the MHD brings up some great articles from 2000 including a G&M one with some familiar names
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Old Jan 5, 2018, 6:41 pm
  #51  
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Edit: complying with mod

Last edited by Admiral Ackbar; Jan 5, 2018 at 7:25 pm
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Old Jan 5, 2018, 6:49 pm
  #52  
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Originally Posted by KenHamer
...............
On the other hand the guy who revealed the MHD was a complete idiot, but that had nothing to do with the revelation.
Would be evangelical if that poster added their thoughts here as well.

Many "active" participants from the past are MIA these days at FT.
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Old Jan 5, 2018, 7:18 pm
  #53  
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Exclamation

Unsurprisingly this thread has wandered well past matters that relate to the thread topic so let's return to more on-topic discussion and save the nostalgia for other threads.

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Old Jan 6, 2018, 5:20 am
  #54  
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Originally Posted by tcook052
Unsurprisingly this thread has wandered well past matters that relate to the thread topic so let's return to more on-topic discussion and save the nostalgia for other threads.

tcook052
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Perhaps it is time for the creation of a history/nostalgia thread?
We old timers have some good stories to share.
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Old Jan 6, 2018, 5:37 am
  #55  
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Originally Posted by airbus320
Perhaps it is time for the creation of a history/nostalgia thread?
We old timers have some good stories to share.
So long as there's a bonafide connection to AC or AP go ahead and create one.

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Old Jan 6, 2018, 5:57 am
  #56  
 
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Originally Posted by Admiral Ackbar
Yeah those are known as smartest guys in the room, not clever. Some people read the rules and used them, others are clueless, the horror! Won't someone think of the children!
Guys and gals... not just guys. Truly clever people have no need to brag to others, especially when it gets them in hot water. Anyhow, I'm not talking about sharing knowledge. I'm talking about people who need to show how "smart" they are. In my books, they just aren't that smart.
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Old Jan 6, 2018, 6:37 am
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So was there any punishment for the person who shared the mystery shopper code referenced in the suit? Also wondering if anyone else benefited similarity or if this was just the most agregious.
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Old Jan 6, 2018, 7:01 am
  #58  
 
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Originally Posted by yyzgigi
So was there any punishment for the person who shared the mystery shopper code referenced in the suit? Also wondering if anyone else benefited similarity or if this was just the most agregious.
9 month conditional sentence for the guy who had the code legitimately and shared it.

Also says in judgement that defendant charged a friend $400 to help book a ticket using code...

​​​​​
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Old Jan 6, 2018, 8:14 pm
  #59  
 
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Originally Posted by xray
Also says in judgement that defendant charged a friend $400 to help book a ticket using code...
​​​​​
Was more curious if others had exploited outside of the case. Seems like if this was an existing loop hole that wed have more than just those in the case doing.
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Old Jan 6, 2018, 9:41 pm
  #60  
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Originally Posted by xray
9 month conditional sentence for the guy who had the code legitimately and shared it.

Also says in judgement that defendant charged a friend $400 to help book a ticket using code...

​​​​​
looks like another famous FT player from years ago who also got caught in the scam, "Taupo". We have not seen him post in a long time.

Last edited by flybit; Jan 7, 2018 at 10:29 pm
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