Tuesday, August 05, 2008

Have we really reached this point?

Picture this...

You're on vacation at Disneyland, and while standing in a painfully long line waiting to get some overpriced food at the nearest buffeteria, you notice that there's a second line that's completely closed while the one open line stretches all the way to Fantasyland. You casually pick up a comment card and sarcastically suggest that when it's busy they open the second serving line. Next year you return to the same place, and lo and behold, both serving lines are open.

What do you do?

A typical response would be: "Hey, they took my suggestion! Look at how much better it is!"

But apparently, far too often the response has been: "Hey! I gave them that idea! Now Disney owes me money for using it."

Seriously? Is this what our American society has come to?

As reported this morning on MiceAge, it's exactly what it's come to:

"In late July all Guest Relations offices in Disneyland and DCA stopped allowing any visitor to fill out a comment card or leave any comment in writing.
Whether it's a compliment about a great Jungle Cruise skipper, or a complaint
about cold gumbo in New Orleans Square, you can no longer write anything down at
Disneyland Guest Relations. Believe it or not, this new decree comes from
Disney's legal department who was getting tired of being threatened with
lawsuits from angry park visitors upset about something they had put on a
complaint form at City Hall."

The article goes on to explain the lengths to which Disney is going to ensure that in no way will any suggestion/complaint/compliment ever get any attention by the company whatsoever.

Obviously these aren't isolated incidents, and obviously they have their own various success rates based on the fact that Disney is so afraid of them. It's utterly ridiculous that our society actually allows such frivolous lawsuits to occur--that we are so consumed by greed and entitlement that no good deed goes unpunished. While many frivolous lawsuits regarding the perceived negligence of companies have become perhaps less favorable in the eyes of society, we've moved onto the age of protecting "intellectual property", in whatever form it may conceivably take. Soon, the world will be left to fend for itself. Nobody will help anyone else for fear that their good-intentioned help will be seen as a hindrance punishable by gobs of monetary damages. Is this really protecting our interests and the freedoms we hold?

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