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FlyerTalk Homepage: Secret TSA Facebook Page

Old Nov 2, 2019, 6:47 pm
  #1  
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FlyerTalk Homepage: Secret TSA Facebook Page

If you come straight to the forums you may have missed this.

TSA Agents Rant About Passengers in Secret Facebook Group by Jennifer Billock.

Employees of another government agency—this time the Transportation Security Administration (TSA)—were just found to have yet another secret Facebook group where they complain about the job and badmouth passengers, similar to the Department of Homeland Security’s secret group unearthed a few months ago.
Ever feel less than appreciated by TSA screeners? About 18,000 TSA screeners were participating in the secret Facebook page complaining about TSA management and passengers. My personal opinion is that ant TSA employee who is found to have put down travelers should be fired for caused.
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Old Nov 2, 2019, 7:30 pm
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Originally Posted by Boggie Dog
If you come straight to the forums you may have missed this.

TSA Agents Rant About Passengers in Secret Facebook Group by Jennifer Billock.

Ever feel less than appreciated by TSA screeners? About 18,000 TSA screeners were participating in the secret Facebook page complaining about TSA management and passengers. My personal opinion is that ant TSA employee who is found to have put down travelers should be fired for caused.
I disagree. TSOs should have the same rights as any other American to express their opinions, even if we think their opinions are so much horse puckey and they themselves are the producers of said puckey.

However, TSA has regs against any off-duty TSO behavior which reflect badly on the agency. They've enforced that rule by getting rid of the Facebook group, but since there were 18,000 TSOs in the group, I seriously doubt that they'll fire more than a handful, if any.
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Old Nov 2, 2019, 7:39 pm
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Originally Posted by WillCAD
I disagree. TSOs should have the same rights as any other American to express their opinions, even if we think their opinions are so much horse puckey and they themselves are the producers of said puckey.

However, TSA has regs against any off-duty TSO behavior which reflect badly on the agency. They've enforced that rule by getting rid of the Facebook group, but since there were 18,000 TSOs in the group, I seriously doubt that they'll fire more than a handful, if any.
I have no issue when a person disagrees with me. The issue is how TSA employees treat the public and I believe a Facebook page or any similar group suggests a broader problem. I have no real expectation that TSA will take any disciplinary actions. Doesn't mean that would be the correct thing to happen.

Edit to add: Why would the page be secret if what was going on was above board?
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Old Nov 2, 2019, 9:18 pm
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I think I'd go crazy practicing law if I couldn't go to the secret lawyer FB groups I'm in and ..... about lying clients, deadbeat clients, crazy clients etc. I'm sure every industry has groups like this and as long as they aren't discussing anything illegal then let them vent.
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Old Nov 3, 2019, 8:37 am
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Most everyone complains about some aspect of their job. This is fine by me.
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Old Nov 3, 2019, 9:55 am
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Originally Posted by Boggie Dog
I have no issue when a person disagrees with me. The issue is how TSA employees treat the public and I believe a Facebook page or any similar group suggests a broader problem. I have no real expectation that TSA will take any disciplinary actions. Doesn't mean that would be the correct thing to happen.

Edit to add: Why would the page be secret if what was going on was above board?
Originally Posted by catocony
Most everyone complains about some aspect of their job. This is fine by me.
I also think it's not a bad thing for every job to have a private place where they can vent about the frustrations of their jobs.

As much as I hate the TSA as an agency, I also have to acknowledge that TSOs do have legitimate reasons to gripe. Between incompetent management, insane rules, and let's face it, passengers who often don't have two brain cells to rub together, TSOs do have a stressful job, even if they bring a lot of it on themselves.

Every job I've ever had that put me in contact with the general public inspired similar gripes from me and my coworkers. I found it best to air those gripes in private, away from the eyes of the public who might express red-faced, huffy outrage that might get me fired.

I cannot and will not defend any bigoted statements made on such a page, and any such statements, to me, are an indication that those who make them are unsuited for any government work, particularly work which brings them into contact with the general public.
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Old Nov 3, 2019, 10:36 am
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Originally Posted by catocony
Most everyone complains about some aspect of their job. This is fine by me.
Originally Posted by WillCAD
I also think it's not a bad thing for every job to have a private place where they can vent about the frustrations of their jobs.

As much as I hate the TSA as an agency, I also have to acknowledge that TSOs do have legitimate reasons to gripe. Between incompetent management, insane rules, and let's face it, passengers who often don't have two brain cells to rub together, TSOs do have a stressful job, even if they bring a lot of it on themselves.

Every job I've ever had that put me in contact with the general public inspired similar gripes from me and my coworkers. I found it best to air those gripes in private, away from the eyes of the public who might express red-faced, huffy outrage that might get me fired.

I cannot and will not defend any bigoted statements made on such a page, and any such statements, to me, are an indication that those who make them are unsuited for any government work, particularly work which brings them into contact with the general public.

If you're doing something that might get you fired perhaps you (the collective you) shouldn't be doing it.
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Old Nov 3, 2019, 10:43 am
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Originally Posted by Boggie Dog
If you're doing something that might get you fired perhaps you (the collective you) shouldn't be doing it.
Complaining about customers or management in private won't get you fired.

Complaining about customers or management in public where the customers and management can hear it, that can get you fired. And rightly so.

Hence, I don't have a problem with TSOs complaining about customers or management in a closed social media group that doesn't allow outsiders.
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Old Nov 3, 2019, 10:54 am
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Originally Posted by WillCAD
Complaining about customers or management in private won't get you fired.

Complaining about customers or management in public where the customers and management can hear it, that can get you fired. And rightly so.

Hence, I don't have a problem with TSOs complaining about customers or management in a closed social media group that doesn't allow outsiders.
Understand what you're saying but secrets can be hard to keep secret as has been discovered by this group of TSA employees. I don't think it is wise or appropriate to complain about the people who create your pay check.
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Old Nov 3, 2019, 11:24 am
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There is nothing "secret" on the internet. Anyone who has an expectation of privacy has a false expectation.
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Old Nov 3, 2019, 12:05 pm
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The problem here is that it reflects a fundamental misunderstanding by TSA clerks of what their job is. The job of a TSA clerk is to find and remove dangerous items. This facebook group and numerous other remarks and actions by TSA clerks show that TSA clerks believe their primary job is to enforce their authority and make travel difficult for passengers. This is why TSA clerks break locks, why they blame passengers for their own failure to know what IDs are acceptable, why they try to demand passports as ID from US citizen passengers departing from international terminals, why they try to do "behavioral detection" and on and on and on.

If there were a real terrorist threat, there would be acts of terrorism whenever and wherever a terrorist group wanted to launch one, because as this Facebook group shows, TSA clerks are detached from any idea of what they need to do to obstruct a terrorist threat, which is to smoothly and efficiently search for dangerous articles. Instead, No terrorist is going to object to a clerk's failure to follow the rules or to resist a clerk's attempts to assert his authority. A terrorist is going to be perfectly compliant and slide right on through.

The Facebook shows a focus on assertion of the TSA clerk's authority and a contempt for passengers who are insufficiently deferential. TSA clerks say that they have to get it right every time, while the terrorists only have to get it right one time. I believe that TSA clerks are taught this in training and that they are taught in training that their job is to assert their authority and show disdain for passengers. And this is what they do and this is what this Facebook group shows, and while TSA clerks are focused on this, they miss 95% of all dangerous items presented at the checkpoint.

I think any TSA clerk who expresses contempt for passengers or makes racist remarks should be fired. This isn't a free speech issue, it's an issue of being fool enough to post on a public forum that someone has no respect for the members of the public he or she claims to be protecting.
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Old Nov 3, 2019, 6:12 pm
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Originally Posted by Carl Johnson
The problem here is that it reflects a fundamental misunderstanding by TSA clerks of what their job is. The job of a TSA clerk is to find and remove dangerous items. This facebook group and numerous other remarks and actions by TSA clerks show that TSA clerks believe their primary job is to enforce their authority and make travel difficult for passengers. This is why TSA clerks break locks, why they blame passengers for their own failure to know what IDs are acceptable, why they try to demand passports as ID from US citizen passengers departing from international terminals, why they try to do "behavioral detection" and on and on and on.

If there were a real terrorist threat, there would be acts of terrorism whenever and wherever a terrorist group wanted to launch one, because as this Facebook group shows, TSA clerks are detached from any idea of what they need to do to obstruct a terrorist threat, which is to smoothly and efficiently search for dangerous articles. Instead, No terrorist is going to object to a clerk's failure to follow the rules or to resist a clerk's attempts to assert his authority. A terrorist is going to be perfectly compliant and slide right on through.

The Facebook shows a focus on assertion of the TSA clerk's authority and a contempt for passengers who are insufficiently deferential. TSA clerks say that they have to get it right every time, while the terrorists only have to get it right one time. I believe that TSA clerks are taught this in training and that they are taught in training that their job is to assert their authority and show disdain for passengers. And this is what they do and this is what this Facebook group shows, and while TSA clerks are focused on this, they miss 95% of all dangerous items presented at the checkpoint.

I think any TSA clerk who expresses contempt for passengers or makes racist remarks should be fired. This isn't a free speech issue, it's an issue of being fool enough to post on a public forum that someone has no respect for the members of the public he or she claims to be protecting.
Years ago, there was an open FB page of TSA screeners from either LGA or JFK. The participants on the page spent most of their time bragging about how "tough" they were on passengers and expressing contempt for said passengers. The page quickly went private when passengers and others found the page and began to "fight" back.
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Old Nov 3, 2019, 6:37 pm
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Originally Posted by Boggie Dog
If you come straight to the forums you may have missed this.

TSA Agents Rant About Passengers in Secret Facebook Group by Jennifer Billock.



Ever feel less than appreciated by TSA screeners? About 18,000 TSA screeners were participating in the secret Facebook page complaining about TSA management and passengers. My personal opinion is that ant TSA employee who is found to have put down travelers should be fired for caused.
On the list of all the things I care about, this is near the bottom. TSA screeners are people, and they need to vent about the horrible people they have to deal with every day. A private facebook page seems really useful for that. Why on earth would I care or want them fired?
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Old Nov 4, 2019, 11:43 am
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Originally Posted by bitterproffit
On the list of all the things I care about, this is near the bottom. TSA screeners are people, and they need to vent about the horrible people they have to deal with every day. A private facebook page seems really useful for that. Why on earth would I care or want them fired?
I agree that they should be allowed to vent (see my post above), but I do have a serious concern when bigoted and prejudicial opinions are aired in such a forum.

I care a great deal if there are TSOs who are targeting members of a particular race, gender, creed or other group out of bigotry, and a TSO expressing a negative opinion of an entire group is a huge red flag that they have such bigoted feelings and are more likely to act on them.
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Old Nov 4, 2019, 2:17 pm
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Originally Posted by bitterproffit
On the list of all the things I care about, this is near the bottom. TSA screeners are people, and they need to vent about the horrible people they have to deal with every day. A private facebook page seems really useful for that. Why on earth would I care or want them fired?
Because saying things like that indicates that they don't understand the job and have no interest in learning how to do the job or doing it according to the rules. I have had several encounters with TSA clerks who didn't want to follow the rules. I have twice had clerks who didn't want to accept my NEXUS card as an ID and belligerently resisted being shown the list of acceptable IDs. One time there were FOUR clerks, including a supervisor, none of whom knew what a NEXUS card was and none of whom wanted to learn what it was. This at JFK Terminal 2! Another time I presented my NEXUS card and the clerk didn't know what it was; I forget exactly what happened but maybe I finally prevailed on him to accept it. I then asked why didn't he know what a NEXUS card was. He THEN decided to call a supervisor and said I'd been giving him a hard time. The supervisor said he'd never seen a NEXUS card, and didn't want to look at the list. I gave up and presented my driving license, and then asked to speak to a supervisor he said there was no one senior to him in the terminal. I finally went away because I was wasting lounge time. It is worth noting that TSA clerks have numbers on their little plastic toy badges and I memorized the badges of both of the clerks I spoke to, and I emailed some TSA email address I found and described the incident. After that I never got pushback about my NEXUS card. If that was because of my email and if it helped other passengers, I'm glad.

Another time, at JFK terminal 1, I couldn't get to my NEXUS card fast enough to avoid holding up the people behind me, so I presented my driving license. The clerk kept saying she needed to see my passport, I kept asking why. She never answered, just kept repeating. After about 3 rounds of this she called for a supervisor, who spoke to someone on his walkie-talkie and then took my boarding pass and driving license, made the customary marks on my boarding pass and sent me on through. What he was saying on his walkie-talkie I do not know.

People have gotten all kinds of pushback from taking video or pictures of the checkpoint even though the rules specifically allow it, including having TSA clerks file perjured police reports and give perjured testimony against them.

This happened:



This happened because of the WATER RULE!!!! The clerks did this because she defied their claim to authority to make up rules. And THEN, after that, the next time she went through she got a TSA person to shadow her through the checkpoint and the clerks at the checkpoint tried to harass her AGAIN! But her shadow spoke up and make them behave. That shouldn't have to happen.

Clerks evidently get taught to assert their authority and present a command presence, and the way they do this is by refusing to listen to passengers try to tell them about the rules, being obnoxious about IDs and making up all kids of rules about liquids which aren't the real rules. As a result of this, they miss 95% of weapons brought to checkpoint. They think the point of their job is to be intrusive, and nobody in management seems to understand that a terrorist won't make any waves, will just slide by, and will put a jar of peanut butter in his carry-on for them to find, while bringing in whatever it is he wants to bring in.

What should cause clerks to get fired for posting disparaging remarks about passengers isn't the disparaging remarks, it's for having an attitude that they don't have to do the job right and the passengers are at fault for wanting them to do the job right.

My experiences and the other incidents I pointed to are examples of the "horrible people they have to deal with every day." These "horrible people" are people who want TSA clerks to know how to do the job and to do it.

This is another of the "horrible people" the TSA clerk has to deal with every day:


And THIS is what the TSA clerk Facebook group is complaining about. 16-year-olds who know and respect the rules of the TSA better than TSA clerks.
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Last edited by Carl Johnson; Nov 4, 2019 at 3:00 pm
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